11 comments
Ruffin
Ruffin

I'll bite.  What's the gov't issue with commercials in podcasts?

Dan Manco
Dan Manco

Great post but here's the BIG media issue. Technology has not only made it more accessible, more technologically doable, primed the audience for wanting it when ever they want it, however they want it. And for FREE.  

And digital, for all it's greatness (and I'm a digital professional), can't pay the bills for a traditional media company, be it music, newspapers, magazine, radio, and possibly traditional TV. 

The issue is historically traditional media's business model structure included high overheads (staff, old school processes/technology) and subsidized advertising rates. Digital has killed that model - ask the recording industry...ask anyone - including Mr Tony - in the publishing industry. The reality is that traditional media co's serve niche audiences. Niche audiences with an ad supported business model can't support both traditional and digital. More importantly, the ad supported biz model now can't even support traditional media. Eventually, but probably too late, the radio industry will "discover" this reality that the print industry is now facing and they will grasp at straws (e.g. iPad apps for magazines). The painful fact is that traditional media companies will have to completely restructure how they do business and what their business is. It is and will be painful - lost jobs, lost industries (e.g. buggy whips, LPs, telegrams, faxes, CDRoms, etc.) So in the meantime, while there is a Mr Tony radio show that is still viable using the traditional media model, the business side will hold on hard to the only model they think can work...as the ship sinks...and podcast will be delayed. P.S. A subscription model might work (e.g. Ricky Gervais), but the overhead has to be incredibly low...which it won't be in this case anytime soon. 

BeltwayBoy Sports
BeltwayBoy Sports

This is backwards thinking and delaying the podcasts will not help them with their problem. I think it could potentially hurt them more, but what do I know?

Johnny
Johnny

There's a silent minority of littles out here to which none of this advertising talk matters who are getting stiffed. I'm a huge TK fan with multiple emails read out on the show. Been listening for years through all the podcast versions. I would love to get my breakfast from Bagel City. if I needed new windows I'd love to call Harley & Arron @ Window Nation. But I live in Bristol. Not the home of ESPN Bristol, the "original" Bristol. In South West England. It's a long swim to the "art" of Rockville. I can watch TK on PTI on the correct day. I can see Bob Ryan on ATH on the correct day. On my TV. On ESPNAmerica. I want my podcast on the correct day too and I'm willing to pay a subscription fee to do so. Evolve or die, sons of b!tches, or I might bring a snow shovel on my next holiday [vacation].

Fredo
Fredo

There are elephants in the room here. Most podcast users aren't local, thus listening live would:

A. Artificially inflate the numbers that local advertisers are using to drive revenue.
B. Expensive ads for this type of web-site is an oxymoron. It's a local station primarily, ads will never to high CPM levels.
C. Selling naming rights is a cannabalistic enterprise for local stations. The usual suspects will be those companies who already advertise on the station.

Why not go the micro-payment route? Most of Mr. Tony's listeners are more affluent than the typical radio listener and Apple and Zygna have shown micro-payments can work on a scaling level.

Scott Speh
Scott Speh

I still don't understand how angering loyal listeners, even if they aren't in the desired advertising demo,  is good for business. Do they *really* think that podcasters will flock to the streaming live broadcast in great numbers? As you mention ("We are not going to get any LESS digital"), current trends in infotainment consumption will prove that the percentage of regular podcasters who will migrate to the live broadcast will be minuscule at best. THUS, what does it hurt to put the podcast up sooner? Seriously, ESPN 980 and the radio industry, podcasters are not going to listen live. It's why we podcast, because we can't listen live. Maybe you try to market to us? Another market segment, hmmm.....

Sdlackey
Sdlackey

Ask Carolla it Leo laporte about making cash on podcasts. They can do it. 980 could too

42Screens
42Screens

This is a great post and I understand the heart of the matter is a business decision, however I feel like the point was missed specifically by two things that were mentioned. Unfortunately, my response turned out to be way too long for this so I posted it here (last 2 bullet points)
http://42screens.wordpress.com/2011/06/02/free-mr-tony/

Rick Sharp
Rick Sharp

I blogged my thoughts about how I would have handled this situation.  Check it out and let me know what you think.   http://bit.ly/lLyPpD

Jtkjlp
Jtkjlp

Absolutely correct. Another example is Kevin pollack. He makes money as well. Tony should just go podcast only. He has enough national appeal.

Rick Sharp
Rick Sharp

TK is under contract to Red Zebra through 2012.  RZ should be smart enough to use TK- a well respected pundit with a national reputation and a loyal following to launch their own "Ace Broadcasting" (Carolla's joint which features 9 different podcasts) style network.  They could fill the 10-12 slot with just about anything (Cowherd?) and put TK as podcast only.

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  1. [...] Blogger Mike Shaffer has a take on the business situation and is based on some good reason. However, we feel that we needed to add our commentary to it so here follows our thoughts: [...]

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