Looking Ahead

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Most Radio broadcasters are happy to see the last of 2009. With a number of major Radio companies at or near bankruptcy, most operators are struggling to keep their heads above water in an increasingly oppressive economy.

But in the middle of the doom and gloom, there are glimmers of hope.

In a few markets, some stations have avoided double-digit declines; a very few have managed to actually increase profits. In virtually every case, these exceptional stations owe their success to…exceptionalism.

Unlike their competitors, these stations have integrated themselves with their community to the point that they are an indispensable part of that community. In many cases, the station’s call letters have become synonymous with the word “Radio”. This level of integration enables these stations to survive when virtually all others falter.

Such a status is not achieved in a few months or a year. It is acquired over decades of service to the community. It is also more than a few superficial promotions or sponsoring a fundraiser here or there. No, this level of achievement requires complete and absolute dedication to the community; providing a superior level of service in all facets of Radio without the expectation of a reward.

So here’s a salute to those rare stations that have come out on top when so many others have suffered. The coming year will hopefully be brighter. But regardless of the ups and downs of the economy in 2010 and beyond, the exceptional Radio stations will continue to enjoy greater success.