There are many benefits of having your own online or internet radio station. First, you can be your own boss and program manager right from the comfortable surroundings of your home. Second, you can play your own music collection and other music favourites for your family and friends. Third, you can promote your own band and other artists without any hassles. Fourth, you can be a significant entertainer or an informant for your local community.
With internet radio, depending on the type of program you have, you would easily expand your social and possibly professional network starting in your own town, your niche listeners and the world. Having an internet radio can be a very cheap hobby where you share content and because of its endless possibilities that come with being connected to the internet. If you prefer, it could also result in a profitable business with lots of opportunities.
One of the most exciting parts of having and running an internet radio station is watching your audience or listeners grow. However, don’t expect your radio station to skyrocket in popularity overnight. You will just be disappointed. Don’t be in a rush. Attracting new listener’s takes time and lots of patience.
Now there are a few tried-and-tested tricks that most commercial and successful internet radio stations do and use.
Learn how to build your radio brand on and off air. When building a radio brand, you’re making conscious efforts to making your radio station different from all the other radio stations. Most commercial stations have too many advertisements and not enough music or other content. You have to take action to make your station stand out. To build your radio brand on and off air, you need to:
Follow a Radio Format
Building and maintaining an internet radio station is not just playing music, you need to have and follow a radio format. You need to tailor your station’s image and programming to reach your target audience. This will boost your following, your ratings and help you get advertising dollars in your market if you go on this route.
Be A Memorable Radio Personality
Anyone talking over the radio can be an announcer, but not everyone can be a true radio personality. By building your on-air brand, you’ll be able to separate yourself from competitors. Be unique and rise above the others to be a valuable asset in your station.
Create A Winner Radio Web Site
Your online presence is as important as your online radio brand and what you do on the air. Give your listeners and followers reasons to visit and come to your website by offering them exclusive content or ways to interact with your radio station. If you have acquired sponsors and advertisers, offer special deals to your listeners. This will create a personal bond with your audience even if they’re not tuned in.
Have A Radio Station Logo
Part of your brand is your station’s logo. The font, colours, and the style you choose will tell your listeners a lot about your station and what they can expect to hear when you broadcast. It will also be your station’s image.
Have Your Own Radio Jingles
Radio jingles are as old as radio. Create a short and easy to remember series of notes and words that will create a permanent brand impression on your listeners. You can make them yourself with a free low-cost software or have musician friends do it for you.
Get Tips From Radio Pros
Getting the best advice on building your radio brand is from the people who’ve spent years or decades in the radio industry. These people are the ones that have witnessed and experienced the transition from AM to FM and the competition from Internet radio and satellite music services. Their experiences will help you in managing your internet radio station and how to improve it.
Now, once you have established your radio station branding, attracted new listeners and keep the attention of the existing ones, below are some of the things you need to do to make your audience grow:
Present Your Schedule
Present your schedule to your audience, not doing so will leave your listeners in the dark. Tell them about your features, radio DJs and when what time you’re broadcasting. Advertise your schedule, on your website, your social media accounts and create a buzz about your features in the days or weeks leading up to the actual program.
Have Relevant Guest Appearances
One sure way of spicing your program schedule is to bring in guests. Guest appearances will not only give you something to talk about, but they can also attract new listeners who may be fans of friends of your specific guests.
Focus On Your Listeners
Your station should be all about music or about yourself, once you have regular and loyal listeners, the conversation shouldn’t be a one-way conversation. To gain more loyalty among your listeners, have a real-time conversation with them by allowing call-ins if you have a phone patch equipment, or chatting with them through messenger or your internet radio service built-in chat. You can read their texts, tweets or song requests. By showing that you value your customers, the more they are likely to talk about your situation to other people. Your listeners will be your brand ambassadors.
With so many internet radios broadcasting around the world, you need to think outside the box to make listeners pick your channel over the others. Market your brand, engage with your listeners and bring relevant faces or voices on a regular basis, you will slowly but surely build up your listeners.