The 2017 Michigan Student Broadcast Awards Are Coming!

17-hsc-header_700MICHIGAN STUDENTS CAN SUBMIT THEIR WORK TO BE JUDGED IN THE 2017 MICHIGAN STUDENT BROADCAST AWARDS

Do your students know about the 2017 Michigan Student Broadcast Awards?  Information about this awards program has been sent to your school. Please make sure to share it with your students! The Michigan Student Broadcast Awards are a great way for your students to get their work in front of the professional broadcasters who serve as our judges.

Also note, schools need not have a specific broadcasting curriculum for students to submit their work; it could be a club, English class or a digital media advisor who will sign their application forms.

One popular category that is returning this year is Most Innovative Media Technology.  Students can showcase their new and innovative Media Technology idea! Entry must be solely created and produced by the entering student(s) and focus on media technology as it pertains to the broadcasting or media industry. The creative concept of each entry must be original to the student(s) submitting the entry, and must be outlined within this entry. The entry should include a 200-word description explaining all aspects of the idea including: how it would be used, how it would generate revenue, how it would be marketed or branded, and how it would support the broadcasting or media industry. Entries may include supplemental information, including images, audio/visual examples, screen-shots or links, etc. Criteria to be judged on: innovation, creativity, effectiveness, relatability to the broadcasting or media industry.

Important Dates

Friday, December 16, 2016
Contest Entry Deadline
All entries must be submitted via the online entry system.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017
Student Broadcast Awards Presentation & Luncheon
Lansing Center, Lansing MI

For questions, please contact Alisha Clack, MAB Foundation Executive Manager: clack@michmab.com or 517.484.7444.

The Power of Networking: MABF Fall 2016 Career Fairs

16-fall-career-fair-cc-headerThe MABF Career Fair at Specs Howard School of Media Arts is this week! Students and young professionals from the Detroit region will meet and network with several MAB stations looking to hire new recruits!

Stations: Find your next best employee at the MABF Fall Career Fairs! There’s still time to participate in the career fair at Western Michigan University on October 27 and the BCBC career fair on November 18. Sponsoring a booth at one or more of these fairs gives you the unique opportunity to meet with a group of young and eager broadcasters face-to-face and will give you and your station different views, ideas and opinions from this young key demographic!

MAB focus groups have identified recruitment for open positions at their stations as one of the top five most important areas of need. Whether you are looking for interns, employees, or future employees, supporting the MAB Foundation by sponsoring a booth is an excellent way to connect with our future. Here is your chance to encourage young people to seek careers in broadcasting and perhaps find that perfect match for your station. Also, your participation offers you possible EEO credits!

Students:
Attending one of the MAB Foundation’s Broadcast Media Career and Networking Fairs gives you one-on-one interaction with the broadcasters and media professionals in Michigan who can influence your career journey. Whether you are looking for a job, internship, guidance on your resume and demo, OR you are looking to network with other media professionals, these career fairs are FOR YOU!

jobfair_200Make plans now to attend one or more of the MAB Foundation’s Career and Networking Fairs – one will be close to you!!

DATES & LOCATIONS

Thursday, October 20 – 4 – 7 p.m.
Specs Howard School of Media Arts, Farmington Hills

Thursday, October 27 – 12 – 4 p.m.
Western Michigan University, Brown Hall, Kalamazoo
Brown Hall

Friday, November 18 – 12 – 1:30 p.m.
During the Broadcasting Career Builder Conference (BCBC)
Eagle Eye Golf & Conference Center, Bath
Separate registration is required to attend, more information on BCBC can be found here.

BCBC: One Month Away!

bcbc16-web-headerSTUDENTS WILL LEARN AND NETWORK AT THE BROADCASTING CAREER BUILDER CONFERENCE (BCBC)

Attention Educators!  The Broadcasting Career Builder Conference (BCBC) will take place on Friday, November 18, please make sure your students know about this and plan to attend this important career building conference!

Friday, November 18

Eagle Eye Golf Club & Conference Center, Bath, MI
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Early registration is only $20 until November 4!
Registration will increase to $35 thereafter.

New for BCBC 2016:  Check out a new session this year at BCBC: “Filming a Feature on an iPhone” presented by Mike Castellucci of Michigan State University. Here is a quick description:
“Cameras and technology will change, but storytelling will never change.” Mike Castellucci has mastered using the smartphone camera to shoot television specials and he’ll share his insights with attendees! Students will learn about the many benefits of filming with new technology and why this method is growing in popularity.

Students can register for BCBC 2016 HERE.

Current Schedule

8 a.m. – 4 p.m.  Registration Open

9 a.m.  – 9:30 a.m.  Opening Session

9:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.  Networking Break

9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.  UPDATED!! Speed Networking*
9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.  How to Film with an iPhone
9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.  Marketing YOU!

10:45 a.m. – 11 a.m.  Networking Break

11 a.m. – 12 p.m.  UPDATED!! Speed Networking*
11 a.m. – 12 p.m.  Storytelling on Different Platforms
11 a.m. – 12 p.m.  Resume Review and Mock Interviews

12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.  Luncheon and Career Fair

1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.  The WRITE Way
1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.  Filming a Feature on an iPhone

2:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.  Networking Break

2:45 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.  Keynote Address and Door Prizes

*New for 2016: Students will be speed networking with a partner!

If you’re interested in getting involved, please contact Alisha Clack at the MABF, clack@michmab.com or 517-484-7444.

A Broadcaster’s Guide to Website Terminology

Seth Resler
Seth Resler

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

By: Seth Resler
Jacobs Media Strategies

You’re a radio professional. You speak the language fluently, casually throwing around terms like “TSL,” “Cume,” and “PPM.” But when you talk to your radio station’s webmaster, you feel like she’s speaking an entirely different language.

Don’t worry. I’ve assembled some of the key terms you need to know:

  • Autoresponder – An email that is automatically sent out in response to an action taken by a website visitor. (This action is called a “trigger.”) For example, when somebody signs up for your station’s email list, an automatic Thank You for Signing Up email might be sent to them. Autoresponders do not need to be sent immediately; you could set up an autoresponder to be sent weeks or even months after the trigger action. You can also set up a series of autoresponders in an orchestrated “marketing automation” campaign.
  • Bounce Rate – A “bounce” is when somebody comes to a page on your website and then leaves your site without visiting any other pages. The bounce rate is the percentage of your incoming visitors who bounce. You want visitors to explore multiple pages on your website, so the lower your bounce rate, the better. High bounce rates can hurt your ranking in search engine results. In particular, pay attention to your bounce rate across different types of devices (desktop computers, tablets, and mobile devices). If you see that your bounce rate is much higher on one type of device, such as mobile devices, it may mean that your website design for that device is driving people away.
  • Content Marketing – An online strategy to drive traffic, generate leads, and increase revenue. It works like this: Create a lot of compelling online content (blog articles, webinars, videos, etc.). Make those articles easy to share on social media and easy to find with search engines (see “Search Engine Optimization” below). Then, when people find your content, they will click through to your website where you can convert them (see “Goal Conversion” below). Here’s a video that shows how content marketing works for radio stations.
  • Direct Traffic – The people who come to your station’s website by typing the site’s URL directly into the address bar of their web browser. In other words, they do not come to your site by clicking on a link found elsewhere (social media, search engine results, ads, or other sites).
  • Goal – When you use Google Analytics to track your website statistics, you can track goals, which are the actions that you want your website visitors to take. For example, you may want to set up email signups, ad clicks, and concert ticket sales as goals.
  • Goal Conversion – Each time a person completes a goal, it is called a “conversion.” You want to track the number of conversions for each goal over time. For example, you might say “Yesterday, we had ten email signup conversions and five ticket sale conversions.”
  • Landing Page – The first page a person comes to when they come to your website. It’s important to remember that quite often, the first page people see on your website is not your homepage. For example, they may click on a link to a blogpost on your site that was shared over social media. It is important to know which of your pages are your most frequent landing pages. Often, websites will have designated landing pages that are used in advertising campaigns. These pages are specifically designed to drive conversion (see above).
  • Mobile Site – Many websites have a separate site that is designed to look good on mobile devices. Other sites are “mobile-responsive,” which means the website layout changes to look better on a mobile device. In both cases, the site detects what type of web browser the visitor is using (a desktop browser or mobile browser) and responds accordingly. It is important to have a mobile or mobile-responsive site to decrease your bounce rate (see above).
  • Organic Search Results – When people search for something in a search engine like Google, Yahoo!, or Bing, two types of results show up: Paid advertisements based on the terms that were entered and unpaid results. The unpaid results are called “organic.” You can increase your website’s ranking in these organic search results through “search engine optimization” (see below).
  • Pay Per Click (PPC) – Online advertising programs, such as Google’s AdWords or Facebook ads, can be set so that you only pay when somebody clicks on the ad, not when they see the ad. These are called PPC campaigns. Ad campaigns where you pay when somebody sees an ad are called “Pay Per Impressions.”
  • Referral Traffic – When somebody comes to your website by clicking on a link that they find on another website, such as a blog or news site. When people use this term they usually do not include social networks, organic search engine results, or paid search engine results, because those are considered their own type of traffic. You want to keep track of which sites are referring the most traffic to your website.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – Search engines like Google, Yahoo! and Bing return two types of results: paid advertisements and unpaid “organic” results (see above). Search Engine Optimization is the art of increasing your site’s rankings in the organic results. This is done through techniques like including keywords in the text and page titles or adding links to the pages. Because the algorithms search engines use are secret and can change, there are people who specialize in figuring out how to optimize a site to appear in search results. SEO is important because search engines can drive huge amounts of traffic to a website.

Need help deciphering other web buzzwords? They don’t call me the Digital Dot Connector for nothing. Drop me a note at seth@jacobsmedia.com.

For more assistance on digital or social media, contact MAB Member Services at mab@michmab.com or 1-800-968-7622.

It’s Another Fine Mess

dicktaylorEditor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

By:  Dick Taylor,  CRMC/CDMC
Dick Taylor Blog
https://dicktaylorblog.com/

laurel__hardy_275“Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into.” Variations of this line were always a part of Laurel and Hardy movies. In fact, the pair made a film in 1930 with the title “Another Fine Mess.”

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about things I had learned at the Radio Show 2016 in Nashville and one of those things was about “sharing your messes” during a presentation I attended given by John Bates. What I will share today are some of the points John made amplified by my own personal experiences in the classroom and on the job.

3 Ways to Inspire & Connect

John said there are three ways to inspire and connect with people or an audience. Logic is not one of them. We are emotional creatures and to engage people you first need to touch them emotionally. I know from my sales training from the Wizard of Ads – Roy H. Williams – that you first must touch a person’s heart before you will win their mind and their wallet to buy whatever it is you’re selling.

John next said our human eyes are unique. We are the only living creature that has white in our eyes. We always know where a person is looking (or not looking). Our eyes enable us to better cooperate with one another.

Our conspicuous eyes mean we can immediately sense authenticity when dealing with others.

Your Message is Your Mess

I don’t know about you, but over my career I’ve learned that success teaches you very little. It’s our screw-ups that are the great teacher of life’s lessons.

When things are going great, the natural impulse is to not do anything to screw it up.

Likewise, when teaching another person, only sharing your successes imparts very little knowledge. However, when you share the things that went wrong and how you learned from these little disasters and how you changed course to not have something like that happen again, real knowledge is shared.

Les Brown puts it this way: “People don’t connect with your successes; they connect with your messes.”

Life’s real knowledge message is in your mess.

Let Me Tell You about the Time I Screwed-Up

My students tell me how impactful my sales lectures are when they contain stories about the things I did wrong, learned from and grew from, by messing it all up.

Wow, they say, a teacher that doesn’t know it all, that makes mistakes and became a better person through failure. It lets them know that failure isn’t fatal and can provide some benefits.

I vividly remember the time a new hotel came to town and I went in to see the new manager spewing facts and figures a mile a minute. I had thoroughly prepared for the meeting and I was there dumping all of my prep on his head. The only problem was, I had not touched this new manager on a emotional level and I never asked him what he wanted to achieve. I would be the only media property to not be on the initial buy.

I went back to see the new manager, hat-in-hand, to find out what I did wrong. I’m grateful that he would share with me why I wasn’t bought. Turns out, I was such a fast-talker he figured me to be the conman in the group of media sales people who had initially come to call on him. What he quickly learned was, I knew my stuff and that we should work closely together going forward. It was my first impression that needed working on, he would tell me.

I would learn that when you meet someone for the first time, you need to not “spill all your candy at the door” but shut-up and listen first. Establish common ground and build rapport on which a solid relationship can be built upon.

Losing that sale taught me a valuable lesson that would greatly improve my new radio sales career.

Make a Difference

So don’t be afraid to share yourself with others. Let them in and show them you’re human.

My sales mantra when calling on a new business was always make a friend. People buy from people they know and like. They buy from their friends.

People who listen to the customer, define how success will be measured and make a difference will never have to worry about making a sale.

Reprinted by permission.

Dick Taylor has been “Radio Guy” all his life and is currently a professor of broadcasting at the School of Journalism & Broadcasting at Western Kentucky University (WKU) in Bowling Green, Kentucky.  Dick shares his thoughts on radio and media frequently at https://dicktaylorblog.com.

Cumulus Media Hosts Grand Rapids Job Expo

cumulusmediaThis past Saturday (10/15), Cumulus Media (Grand Rapids) hosted The West Michigan Employment Expo at the city’s DeltaPlex.  More than 35 local employers were on hand for the job fair.

The goal of the expo was to bring area employers to one location for a “one-stop shop” for job seekers.  This was the third job expo the company has put on in the last year.

“We want to attract quality employers who are thinking long-term,” said Rich Berry, sales director, Cumulus Media Grand Rapids. “We want to also let people know that at many of these companies, there is long-term room for advancement and that’s a good thing.”

The majority of the employers are seeking entry-level positions, but many also are looking for employees who can learn more advanced skills and turn entry-level roles into long-term careers.

Lansing Radio Hosts Wear Pink for Breast Cancer

via Haley Nelson, WILX-TV (Lansing) – Reprinted with permission.

It’s a fashion statement a group of men hope will grab your attention.

They are the ‘Real Men Wear Pink of Lansing,” a group of radio hosts, community leaders, business owners and more, all wearing wearing pink every single day this month in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

wilx_300“When everybody rallies together and pulls in the same direction it is remarkable how the recovery process can really accelerate,” says one of the men wearing pink, Ryan Schuiling, host of The Schuiling Report on the WQTX-FM (Team 92.1 FM).

The goal is to not only raise awareness, but to raise funds for the American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” event.

“Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of Lansing is the accumulation of many teams fundraising year round,” says the program’s community manager Katie Jones.

The walk is coming up this Saturday at the State Capitol, so the men are ramping up their efforts to fundraise.

“Anything you can do makes a difference, if that is a dollar, if that’s $300,” says Bob Hoffman of the Wharton Center, who is also wearing pink all month long.

“Cancer strikes our community, it strikes our neighborhoods,” says Hoffman, “it strikes our loved ones, and so it is important to give.”

“If we can start the conversation about anything, then we can make some progress in what we want to achieve,” says another man wearing pink, Mojo an afternoon host at WJXQ-FM (Q106).

They say it is the least they can do.

“It doesn’t take courage to wear pink, it takes courage to fight cancer,” says Mojo.

So far, the men have raised over $10,000 and they hope to up that number.

There is some friendly competition here, each hoping to raise the most money.

Some of the men did have to head to the store to buy some pink shirts to make it through the month.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong With a Broadcast Contest? – From the Legal Side

David Oxenford - ColorBy: David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP
www.broadcastlawblog.com

Recently, our friends at the broadcast and digital media consulting and research firm Jacobs Media posted an article on their blog called What Could Possibly Go Wrong,” dealing with the financial and reputational issues that can arise if a contest is not fully thought out. That article reminded me of all of the legal issues that we have written about over the years that can arise if all of the issues with a broadcast contest are not carefully considered. Those potential issues range from an FCC fine if the contest is not conducted as advertised, to the threat of civil liability if the contest results in an injury to a contestant or observer. I thought that I would highlight some of the articles that we have written in the past to remind broadcasters of those potential liabilities.

On the FCC side, the FCC has always been a stickler on the rules, requiring that broadcasters, when conducting their own on-air contests, announce the rules of those contests and to follow those rules as announced. While that burden has become somewhat lighter in the last year as the FCC has allowed stations to publicize the material rules of a contest on a station’s website rather than having to announce them on the air (as long as the online location of those rules is, itself, publicized sufficiently on air, see our post here), that rule change has not affected the underlying obligation of a broadcaster to conduct the contest as announced, in accordance with the contest’s announced rules.

We have written many times about FCC fines imposed on broadcast stations that announce rules for a contest and then don’t conduct the contest according to those rules. These issues can include not properly identifying the prize (e.g. this case that fined a station for announcing that it was giving away a car when it was actually giving away a two-year lease for a car, a decision that discussed another case where a station was giving away passes to a movie opening without disclosing that it was possible that there would be insufficient seats in the theater to accommodate all pass holders). Broadcasters, in planning a contest, need to anticipate all possible eventualities, from tie-breaking methods in case multiple people qualify for a grand prize, to anticipating the potential that a prize will not be available when the winner comes to collect it (e.g. that the concert tickets that you are giving away is to a concert that gets cancelled after a winner has been selected). Always give the station an “out,” for instance, by allowing the substitution of a prize of equal value should the award of an announced prize become unavailable.

Even ambiguities in the rules can lead to fines. See our article here about a fine on a station for saying that entries would be accepted “through” a particular date, when in fact the deadline was the previous day, as the award was to be made on the announced deadline date. That article also provides some thoughts about the process of drafting contest rules. In another case summarized here, a fine was issued when the rules of a contest stated that there was to be one winner, but also included boilerplate language lifted from the rules of another old contest that implied that there would be multiple winners – and a listener claimed to be confused about how many winners would be selected. That article also talks about a fine issued to a station that dragged its feet in giving away the prize that a listener had won.

Similarly, know that you are conducting a contest and make sure that everyone at the station knows what the rules are. See our article here about one case where a prize was to be given to someone who called in to the station with a correct answer to a question that was posed on the air. When a caller called with the correct answer, the announcer decided out of the blue to ask the caller another question before the prize would be awarded, even though the rules did not provide for that second question. That article describes the even more bizarre case of an announcer who was bored while on the air over a holiday weekend and he decided to spice things up by announcing that the station was giving away a million dollars when in fact it was not – and listeners complained to the FCC when they did not get their million dollars after they called the station. In both cases, the FCC imposed fines on the stations.

We’ve also written about the potential civil liability for a contest that puts contestants at risk of physical harm. The article describes some of the take-aways for broadcasters from the well-publicized contest “hold your wee for a wii” where the idea of the contest was that contestants had to drink water and the winner of the Nintendo Wii was the last to have to use the bathroom – which led to the death of a contestant as the result of water intoxication. Any contest involving physical feats or races to get somewhere fast need to be carefully thought out, as the promoting station could be looking at potential liability if injuries to contestants or bystanders result.

Even how you conduct the contest can raise issues. Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (the “TCPA”), sending texts to persons who have not given their explicit consent to receive automated commercial messages can result in big fines. We wrote here about some of the issues broadcasters should consider in conducting contests or promotions that involve text messaging.

These are but some of the many legal issues that can arise if broadcasters are not very careful in conducting their on-air contests. We haven’t even talked about carefully following state laws to make sure that your contest is legal where it is conducted; about disclosing the odds of winning (if, for instance, the contest is being broadcast on multiple stations, making sure that listeners know who they are competing against); or the issues that can arise if outside contest companies don’t fulfill on their obligations (e.g. some situations have arisen where broadcasters hire third parties to conduct a big contest, thinking that the company has adequate resources to give away a big prize if there is a winner, only to find out that the company did not in fact have the resources to pay out when a winner won big). There are many, many other issues that can arise. While we don’t want to ruin everyone’s fun, any business, and particularly one as high profile as the broadcast industry, needs to conduct their contests very carefully. So consult legal counsel for the details to avoid having these legal issues become the real answer to the question of “what could possibly go wrong?”

David Oxenford is MAB’s Washington Legal Counsel and provides members with answers to their legal questions with the MAB Legal Hotline.  Access information here. (Members only access).

There are no additional costs for the call; the advice is free as part of your membership.

“Electioneering” Ads Won’t Have to Disclose the Donors

The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit declined to review a recent ruling which means that nonprofit political groups that sponsor “electioneering” ads won’t have to disclose the donors funding those ads. The appeals court’s denial of rehearing, likely ends a long-running challenge of Federal Election Commission (FEC) rules that require 501(c)(4) groups to disclose only those donors that specifically earmark their contributions for political ads.

FCC to TV Licensees: Where Are You?

From the CommLawBlog (10/16):

In a somewhat unusual move, the FCC’s Media Bureau and Incentive Auction Task Force have issued a joint public notice encouraging “all television licensees” to “ensure that their contact information on file with the Commission is accurate and current.” As the notice reminds everybody, licensees are generally required to do so anyway, but it’s especially important now in light of the impending spectrum repack process. The Commission will be reaching out directly to stations concerning channel reassignments and it wants to be sure that it will be able to reach each affected station. Note that this includes not only stations whose reassignment is made as a result of participation in the reverse auction but also non-participating stations subject to repack.

For stations participating in the reverse auction, the Commission will be using the contact information set out in the Form 177 filed last January in the run-up to the auction. For other stations, it will be using contact information currently showing up in the FCC’s Licensing and Management System (LMS). The public notice provides detailed step-by-step instructions for checking (and, if necessary changing) contact info in both places.

In view of the importance of repack-related notifications, it would be a good idea for all TV licensees to take a couple of minutes to double- and triple-check the contact information currently on file, just to be sure.