Forums » COVID-19 Round Table

Make It Easy for Business Owners to Provide Updates

    • 1093 posts
    March 18, 2020 3:11 PM PDT

    Restaurants and bars forced to close. Schools closed. Concerts, athletic events, large gatherings canceled.

    Business disruption is the new norm, and business owners are scrambling to keep their customers and prospects in the loop.

    At our station, we've invited businesses affected by our governor's draconian measures to let us know how they're responding (e.g., restaurants offering delivery or curbside pickup, growler refills, etc.), and we're putting that information out over the air and on our website and social channels free of charge.

    Here's an even better idea - inexpensive to obtain,easy to implement, and offering the added benefit of getting lots of local voices on our airwaves, positioning your radio station as a vital community resource!  Get a VoIP telephone number (inbound only) that greets callers, e.g., your advertisers and other business owners and community leaders, and invites them to record a short audio message to update listeners on the latest news from their business.

    SAMPLE: "Hi, this is Tom from Paradise Creek Brewery. The restaurant is closed, but we're offering online or telephone orders for delivery or curbside pickup. Go to ParadiseCreekBrewery.com to see our menu. Thanks for letting us serve you!"

    I had one of these set up for a jewelry store client last year. We ran radio ads inviting listeners to call in and sing his jingle for fun and prizes. It records the call and immediately emails us the .wav file as an attachment. Think of how easy it would be for your production folks to download, edit as needed, and then  string together these messages for airplay as you see fit. The subconscious psychological and emotional effect of having all these different voices on your airwaves is incalculable!

    The provider I use is Jim Kusznir at Palouse Technologies. The cost is $10 to set up and $15 a month to maintain. Less than an hour to set up. Dirt cheap. I have no arrangement with Jim, financial or otherwise. I just happened to mention this to a customer from New York earlier today and he immediately saw the possibilities and asked for Jim's contact info. Maybe you have a provider in your town who can offer the same thing (and if so, you should buy locally). But if you don't have a local option, here's Jim's contact info: Jim@PalouseTech.com or (509) 338-5920.  

    If you do this, we'd love to hear how you deploy it on the air!


    This post was edited by Rod Schwartz at March 18, 2020 3:36 PM PDT