Category Archives: May 2017

MSU Files Lawsuit to Ban Release of Police Records on Assault

Michigan State University has filed a lawsuit to keep news organizations from seeing police and arrest reports that could be related to a suspected sexual assault involving members of the Spartans football team. MSU says complying with a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request from the ESPN sports network would interfere with a criminal investigation.

The lawsuit also comes after the Michigan House of Representatives unanimously passed HB 4077 – legislation that would prohibit public entities, such as MSU, from suing individuals and organizations that submit FOIA requests.

Reminder: FCC Political Rules Apply for Off-Year Congressional and State/Local Elections

According to David Oxenford’s Broadcast Law Blog, FCC political rules apply to off-year elections for vacant congressional, state and local offices. Broadcast stations serving districts with special federal/congressional elections need to offer candidates reasonable access, lowest unit rates and equal opportunities. In states where there are no special congressional elections, there are other political races taking place in this off-year and most of the political rules apply to these state and local electoral races as well.

Candidates for state and local elections are entitled to virtually all of the political broadcasting rights of Federal candidates – with one exception, the right of reasonable access, which is reserved solely for Federal candidates. That means that only Federal candidates have the right to demand access to all classes and dayparts of advertising time that a broadcast station has to sell. For state and local candidates, on the other hand, stations don’t need to sell the candidates any advertising time at all. But, if they do, the other political rules apply.

FCC To Review Media Regulations

Ajit Pai

According to a report in Broadcasting & Cable, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced that he will be launching a major review of broadcast, cable and satellite regulations at the May 18 public meeting of the FCC. The chairman also promised that under his chairmanship, broadcasting and broadcasters will not be a “speed bump” but an indispensable part of the communications landscape.

Pai’s comments were part of the keynote address during the general session at the NAB Show. The chairman addressed restoring the UHF discount, signaling fewer restrictions on joint sales agreements, enacting process reforms, including eliminating cross-ownership rules, small-market duopoly restrictions, raising the 39% national ownership cap and swift action on rolling out the new ATSC 3.0 next gen transmission standard.

Representative Introduces Voter Bill of Rights

State Representative Jon Hoadley (D-60) has introduced a constitutional amendment to include a voter bill of rights. The amendment, HJR O, includes the right to no-reason absentee voting and in-person early voting up to 15 days before an election, and would automatically register any eligible person issued a state driver’s license or identification card. American citizens living or working overseas, including those in military service, would automatically be sent an absentee ballot under the proposal.

The resolution was sent to the House Elections and Ethics Committee. It would need a two-thirds majority vote in both the House and Senate and would then need to be voted on statewide to become law.

MAB Advocacy Conference and Annual Meeting

Crystal_700Your MAB staff is gearing up for our next big event: the annual MAB Advocacy Conference and Annual Meeting, to be held at Crystal Mountain Resort in Thompsonville, August 22-23.

CrystalMountain2_300While speakers are still being finalized for this event, the awards ceremony is not to be missed as we induct broadcasters into the Michigan Broadcasting Hall of Fame and present the Lifetime Achievement Award.  In addition, we’ll be presenting the MAPB Public Media Impact Awards the same evening.

The two-day conference will be a great chance to catch up with fellow broadcasters from around the state and discuss the legislative and regulatory issues facing today’s broadcasters, all at the beautiful Crystal Mountain Resort. If you were with us at Crystal Mountain in 2008, you’ll remember!

Mark your calendar now and join us! More details, early-bird discounted registration, plus highlights from last year’s conference is available here.

WDET Welcomes Journalist Emery King on May 17

Emery King

WDET-FM (Detroit) is presenting “Essential Conversation with Emery King hosted by Ann Delisi” at the Detroit Historical Museum  on May 17.  The event is a fund-raiser for the public radio station.

Delisi is a program host at WDET and also works with former NBC White House Correspondent and former WDIV News Anchor Emery King and his production company, Emery King Communications. For the past 10 years they have worked on countless productions together, met with everyone from doctors to legislators and at one time, they shared an office down the hall from Detroit Medical Center CEO (and now Detroit Mayor), Mike Duggan.

Delisi will put her interview skills to work and interview her boss, Emery King, for the first Essential Conversation of 2017. They will talk about Mr. King’s time covering the White House, the press, race, his work with the Michigan Film Industry, Mayor Mike Duggan, Mr. King’s incredible personal story and how he and Ann Delisi came to work together.

Ticket and event information is available here.

Bill Lake Joins Wiley Rein

William Lake

On April 19, Washington law firm Wiley Rein announced that former FCC Media Bureau Chief William Lake, a veteran communications lawyer, has joined the firm’s Telecom, Media & Technology practice as consulting counsel.  In his new postion, Lake advises clients on media and telecommunications issues, with special attention to navigating the federal regulatory regimes.

Mr. Lake served as head of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Media Bureau from 2009 to 2017, advising companies in the U.S. and international communications industries on regulatory, competition, intellectual property and trade issues. Mr. Lake was named to that leadership role following his service as FCC coordinator for the digital television transition in 2009.

“Bill’s intellectual rigor, unique insight and deep experience make him a valuable addition to our TMT Practice and we’re delighted that he is joining the team,” said Kathleen A. Kirby, co-chair of the Practice. “He is an exceptional lawyer, widely regarded for his work at the FCC and his government perspective and private sector experience on critical issues impacting companies in the telecommunications and media industries will be of immense value to our clients.”

Prior to joining the FCC, Mr. Lake was a partner at a large Washington, D.C. law firm, where he led the communications and electronic commerce practice. He also has served as Principal Deputy Legal Advisor to the U.S. Department of State, Counsel to the Council on Environmental Quality and Counselor to the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

“Wiley Rein has an unparalleled regulatory team with outstanding expertise in transactional and policy issues in the media and telecom sector,” said Mr. Lake. “Their preeminent TMT Group is one that combines regulatory prowess with public policy, international advocacy, trade, intellectual property, government contracts and litigation experience. I am proud to join this team of consummate professionals.”

Mr. Lake served as a law clerk to the Honorable John M. Harlan of the Supreme Court of the United States and the Honorable Henry J. Friendly of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York. He received his LL.B. degree from Stanford Law School and his B.A., summa cum laude, from Yale University.


Latest MAB Foundation Student Newsletter Available

The latest issue of Beyond the Classroom, the MAB Foundation student newsletter has just been sent out.  In this issue, there’s Michigan broadcasting job opportunities, a review of our recent student awards luncheon and an interview with WLNS-TV (Lansing) News Director Jam Sardar.

And, students write about picking the right college, the benefits of local broadcasters and how to make the most of your broadcasting internship.

Read this issue here.  Subscribe and receive future issues in your mailbox here.

5 Ideas for Podcasts That Your Radio Station Can Launch Now

Seth Resler at NAB Show 2017 in Las Vegas

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

Last Wednesday, I spoke about podcasting at the NAB Show in Las Vegas. My goal was to give everybody in the room ideas that they could use to launch a podcast in the next 30 days. You can see Inside Radio‘s writeup of my session here.

When you set out to create a new podcast, consider launching it as a pilot program. Commit to a finite number of episodes — ten, for example — and then stop to reevaluate after you’ve published those episodes. If it’s going great, publish a second season. If the concept doesn’t seem to be connecting, drop it and launch a different podcast. Most likely, the results will be somewhere in the middle and you’ll want to tweak the podcast before moving forward. By making a point of stopping to reevaluate and giving yourself the freedom to pivot, you don’t lock yourself into a never-ending commitment.

Looking for some ideas for your station’s first podcast? Here are five to consider:

1. A Passion Topic
Geekshow Podcast.  Sometimes, we have on-air talent that is passionate about a specific topic, but they are limited in how much they can talk about it on the air before alienating listeners. If your morning show co-host is a huge wrestling fan, a little can go a long way. But with a podcast, you can free your air talent up to talk about wrestling as much as they want — and they’ll probably enjoy doing so.

A great example of this is the Geekshow podcast produced by Kerry Jackson of the Radio From Hell morning show on X96 in Salt Lake City. Kerry loves geek culture, from superheroes to science fiction, so he launched a podcast dedicated to the topic. Over the years, his podcast has opened many doors for him, including enabling him to get involved with the Salt Lake City Comic Con.

Here is a list of passion topics to consider:

  • Sports
  • Food
  • Wine
  • Beer
  • Movies
  • TV Shows
  • Video Games
  • Music
  • Parenting
  • Pets
  • Cars
  • Geek Culture
  • Technology
  • Fashion
  • History
  • Travel

2. A Crossover Podcast
Mega Cast. If you have two members of your airstaff who like working with each other but never get the opportunity to be on the air at the same time because of their respective dayparts, let them do a podcast together. This is what happened when morning man Steve Migliore and afternoon co-host Ted Smith of KISW in Seattle launched the Mega Cast. By enabling your personalities to team up to do a podcast, it allows listeners to get a deeper look at your station’s family.

3. A Podcast Centered on an Event
An event or a series of events can provide an ideal opportunity for a podcast. Every year, I head out to Hollywood for the Worldwide Radio Summit, where I record a series of backstage interviews with radio broadcasters. Over the past two years, I’ve interviewed people like Emmis CEO Jeff Smulyan, Hubbard CEO Ginny Morris and controversial morning show personality Bubba the Love Sponge.

Consider launching a podcast around one of the following types of events:

    • Concerts
    • Sports
    • Holidays
    • Art & Wine Festivals
    • News Stories

4. Branded Content
Radio stations.  A particularly well-positioned to create a podcast series for a client. For example, if there is a big craft beer festival in your town, you could do a series of interviews with different brewers that will be featured at the event. Release these interviews as a podcast and promote them through the station’s email database, social media channels and an on-air spot schedule. This is a great way for the station to target listeners who are likely to attend the event with unique content.

5. A Podcast for Clients
Consider creating a podcast that isn’t aimed at listeners, but at advertisers and potential advertisers. This podcast series would focus on how clients can get the best results out of their radio spend. For example, one of your DJs might host a series of interviews, including conversations with:

  • The Program Director on how radio ratings work
  • The Sales Manager on how to choose the right target audience
  • The Production Director on how to write compelling commercial copy
  • The Promotions Director on how to get the most out of on-site events

When it comes to launching a podcast, don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Dive right in with a pilot season and you’ll learn a lot along the way. If you’d like to learn more about these podcast ideas, you can watch this webinar.

This August, Jacobs Media is producing a special track at the Podcast Movement conference designed specifically for radio broadcasters. We’ll zero in on the issues in podcasting that radio professionals need to know about. We hope you’ll join us.

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

Psst! Googling “best sales closing lines” wasn’t my best idea. Who knew?

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.

Chris Lytle

By: Chris Lytle, Content Developer

So, I thought I’d write another article about closing sales. To get the ball rolling, I googled “best sales closing lines.”

Unfortunately . . .

What came up first were some of the worst closes I have ever seen.

Trust me. I’ll be 80 in 13 years and I’ve been exposed to a lot of bad ones.

This site lists dozens of old school, high-pressure manipulative closes:

Concession Close: “John, if I reduce the price by 10% will you sign the contract today?”

Shame Close: “Your son really deserves the new model, don’t you think?”

I won’t even bother you with the Embarrassment Close or Ask the Manager Close.

Manipulative closes are way past their sell by date.

In Spin Selling, Neil Rackham writes about closing, pressure and manipulation:

“In low value sales, given unsophisticated customers and no need to have a continuing relationship, closing “techniques” can work very effectively. With professional buyers, closing techniques make you less effective. They reduce your chances of getting the business.”

Good advice, Neil.

Look, I’m assuming you don’t have a lot of one-call closes.

I’m figuring you’re calling on sophisticated buyers who meet with many salespeople.

If I’m right, then avoid the closing lines you’ll find by googling “best sales closing lines.”

Like the one I found on this site in an article about the best closing lines for life insurance agents:

The Level With Me Close: Polly, level with me. Have I failed to show you the value of what you’ll receive from your investment? (Then, be quiet.)

I like the “be quiet” part. But that’s it.

I kept looking, though. Ultimately I found this good idea from thought leader and author Dave Kurlin.

“Let’s assume that you’ve decided to ask for the order and ask at the right time. When is the right time? It’s when you’ve touched all the bases. You’ve reached first, second and third and you’re sliding into home plate. You haven’t taken any shortcuts. So, what exactly are you asking. You’re asking if they want your help. You might have to customize it a little. “Would you like my help closing more sales?” This question is a close anyone can execute. But you still have to ask.”

Thanks, Dave. I like it. It’s straightforward and fresh. And it’s devoid of any pressure or manipulation.

Here’s what I wrote in The Accidental Salesperson. Hard to believe that book turns 17 this June.

“A Success magazine survey of a thousand top sales performers found out that more than half had abandoned any kind of closing technique. 56% of the salespeople said they looked the client in the eye and said something like, “This is right for you. Let’s do it.” And, then, they waited for the client to sign the order.”

It can work, especially if you believe in what you’re selling. Because problems of belief are more critical than problems of technique.

Here are two closes I teach today in my seminars and webinars:

  1. I would like to have you as a customer. Is there any reason we can’t get started? I got that one from the great copywriter, Bob Bly. It works because it states what you want. It invites the customer to tell you if there’s anything standing in the way of moving forward.
  2. What would you like me to do next? It works because it gives the prospect all the control. No pressure.

Oh, I almost forgot: There’s one more shockingly simple close I really like. I wrote a whole article about it.

If you visit this project of mine and like what you see, then use the promo code LINKED at checkout. You’ll like the price unless I somehow fail to show you the value you’ll receive from your investment.

Hmm. Maybe that close isn’t so bad.

Chris Lytle is the author of The Accidental Salesperson: How to Take Control of Your Career and Earn the Respect and Income You Deserve and The Accidental Sales Manager: How to Take Control and Lead Your Team to Record Profits. Because sales managers are pulled in so many directions, Chris built this resource for you.

Reprinted by permission