Monday, 17 April 2017

Listener Feedback

Don't Hold Your Breath

So you have just started your very own internet radio station and the listeners are (maybe) flooding in. You have a chat bar on the station web page, you also give out your contact email address during programs and jingles.

Silence?.....well sometimes it happens. Not all listeners want to get involved in your station, they may love the music you play but that's as far as it goes with most. From my last 7 years experience it can be depressing, but don't take my word for it.

Niche is good

One way to attract feedback is through specialist (niche) programs that have a distinct following. Listeners seam to be more passionate about their particular type of music, a good example is  Northern Soul

Social Media 

Facebook 

Got a page? get lots of followers, tell them about your shows, station details and how to get in touch. Keep the content fresh and updated. look for people with interests that align with your station or show content, invite them to your page. Also make a "contact us" button to your page to make it easy for people to get in touch. In reality, it is a must, but can be time consuming for little or no increase in actual listeners. Here is a link to our station  Affinity Radio Facebook Page


Twitter

Using a similar strategy as Facebook, also set up automated twitter feeds of what track you are playing on your station. Get those followers and you will get lot's of likes, again time consuming and generally from an internet radio station viewpoint, a necessity but again 4,000 plus followers does not equate to listeners! Check out our Affinity twitter page



Blogging

So did you find Blog this interesting? Are you going to comment? Has anybody commented? ...............what do you think?

 YouTube

Now this one is something I have dabbled in but must admit to not having much success in generating much interest. It is an area that I will be investigating in more detail soon so will let you know how I get on soon. Here is one video we produced on the missing "radio" button on iTunes

 Website

You need one, this is your shop front and communication hub. It's also a guide to how many interested people are out there by looking at "hits" on your site. Today it's quite easy to set up a website and can be free, check out Wix for a good example. We use a paid for software option from Serif. Check out our website here 



Internet Presence

And finally.... all the above will build your stations presence on the internet. Search for your station name to see how many times it pops up in your favourite search engine. All of the discussed topics will increase your chances of being found on the web. Your website enables people to contact you, but beware, most contacts will be spammers, Russian Brides, etc... so be warned.

References

Well I hope this little rant (blog) has helped some of you. 

Here are a few links to other resources you may find useful.
Top-10-internet-marketing-strategies
how-to-gain-more-listeners-for-your-internet-radio-station
radio.co - blog
5-directories you should list your station with

Cheers for now
Dave
Affinity Radio 

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Things to consider if producing an internet radio show

How we do it

Running an internet radio station is great fun but also for small operators like us at Affinity Radio it can be very time consuming. Live shows from the studio are bounced up to our Cloud server then out to the world, this enables the Cloud to fill in any gaps if the LIVE broadcast drops out, so you should never hear dead air. Prerecorded shows are usually sent to us via Drop box, we-transfer or other file sharing system. We then have to remove all dates, editions etc so that the file title is set to a predefined format (defined by us). We then drop these (mp3) files into our presenters folders then the clever stuff happens.

Automatically add meta data

Data from each show gets transmitted with the music and is displayed on our on line player so we need to make this sensible for the listener, this is often not done by show presenters. 

We used to do this manually which as you can imagine took ages.

We use SAM Broadcaster Pro as our broadcasting software since 2010. We have found that this software can also re write the files with the appropriate data in seconds so that the listener will be able to see the artist name, the show title, presenters picture or Affinity Tile. There is additionally space for website links and much more.

Upload to the Affinity Cloud

Once the metadata is correct we upload the completed mp3 to the Cloud server. The server analyses the file and normalizes the volume so that it is in keeping with the other output on the system so sound levels are at a constant output volume. This is great however if the presenters voice level is low, the system can't compensate for this.

Scheduling

Each show has its own slot (or slots) on the server so times are set automatically when the show is uploaded. 

Things To Consider

So, you have made your show, recorded it onto mp3 and sent it out, fantastic. Making the program for free is amazing, stations like ours are self funding so we can't pay as it costs us a small fortune to keep on the air. Here are a few things to consider when doing your shows.

  • keep file naming consistent
  • make sure the microphone level brings the voice volume slightly above the maximum music level
  • remember to keep the file size to the station maximum output "quality", in our case 128 kbps as it keeps files small and some cloud systems have upload "caps" that prohibit files above certain levels so, again the poor old station manager has to convert these down to an acceptable size.

Contact Us

If you found the information useful, would like to get a show on air, or would like to know more, please email me at studio@affinityradio.net and put "Blog" in the title and I'll get back to you.

Cheers
Dave Kelly
Presenter and Technical Manager
Affinity Radio


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