Twitter is taking brands – whether commercial, radio, or celebrity – to a whole new level. It allows consumers or “fans” to get something extra. Some of it is an interesting insight into people’s lives and some is dull. But it certainly furthers the levels of interaction. In radio – loads of people are doing it. I learn what’s going on from Absolute Radio. I get the latest travel news from Southeastern trains. And I find out what the new big tunes are on BRMB via Tweets from Darren Lee.
In America, Ryan Seacrest has taken it to a whole new level. Not content with being on air in Los Angeles on KIISfm, his show is also syndicated across the country. Plus he does American Idol. And wherever he goes – he tweets. He’s great at interacting with his followers. And you get updates on all his sites as well. In short – he (and his team) – are masters of self promotion.
And if you’re as well known as Seacrest – why not join up with one of your other Twitter chums like Ben Stiller – to up the number of followers with a viral video?
Just happened across the updated for 2009 (or so I guess) Ryan Seacrest website for his show – he is the master of self promotion. But is there anything radio stations can learn from “Brand Seacrest”?
This site is all about Ryan, where you can see him, where you can listen to him, and especially, who he’s been talking to.
But then, this guy’s show is something else – in terms of content and especially how it’s used. If you think that UK stations are networked too much – this show (and it’s many derivatives) are networked and reversioned around the world.
A couple of years ago, whilst I was still working at Capital 95.8, Ryan and his team (Dennis Clark – his Exec Producer, plus his team from Premiere Radio networks who look after his syndicated shows) came to London. They spent a week doing their L.A breakfast show from Capital’s studio. What was interesting was how they did it ; how much was live, how much was pre recorded “as live”, and especially how the content was used an reused. Let’s face it – when you’re on air as a breakfast show in Los Angeles – but also on air 10-1 or 1-4 or maybe 3-7 on maybe 2-300 radio stations- the brand needs to be about Ryan and his celeb friends.
Then there’s American Top 40 – or it’s variations. This alone needs a 2-3 hour weekly recording session, just to record the links for all the formats, plus various localisations for the stations that take it.
Of course, when a guest comes in on Ryan’s show – they put their headphones on, don’t care how they look and just think of it as a radio show…don’t they?
Not with Ryan… The studio often has cameras set up to shoot the guests and Ryan – they don’t wear headphones but have in-ear monitors like on TV…so the content can show on Ryan’s YouTube channel, or be used on his E! Entertainment show, or maybe as footage on American Idol. And of course, the branding on the walls is for “On Air with Ryan Seacrest”
Anyway – back to the main point. His site is Web.2.0 and more in terms of interaction. You can share everything, link to everything, interact with everything. You can link to his social networks – yes he’s on Twitter – and Facebook. And all of these platforms allow him (or his team) to post content that brings you into even more contact with him – and ultimately his show and ultimately the stations he’s on. You can even (should you so wish) share all of his content on your site – from a fully interactive player that gives you audio and video, to sharing any of his blogs or gossip feeds.
So if you’re not a KIISfm – but maybe slightly smaller, can you even hope to interact on this scale? Well, maybe not – but the tools for interaction and sharing are all out there – and don’t take the biggest brain to work out. His site is built on the WordPress platform (please correct me if I’m wrong). If you’re reading this blog – or have a facebook profile, there’s no reason why you couldn’t build something simpler but similar. And if you’re in radio, working as a producer and you don’t think you need to know how to do this – think again.