local media insider

Best of Local Media - Radio

Best Overall Digital Strategy, Small Markets; Best Overall Digital Strategy, Large Market Group; Best Video Initiative; Best Use of SMS; Best Community Site; Best Social Initiative


Best of Local Media - Radio

Best Overall Digital  Strategy, Small Markets

Company: Federated Media               

Market: Northern Indiana Group

Population: 615,077

Key executives:

James Derby            Debbie Derda-Williams

James Derby                     Deborah Williams

Chief Strategy Officer         VP of Interactive Sales

Judges take: A radio group based in a variety of small markets has been a consistent innovator and digital-first leader. The radio agency is a specialist in B2B campaigns, winner of the most Top Ad Awards in 2014, fields a unique video news show, and has compiled massive social media lists in its markets, topping six figures in social media sales alone last year. It now fulfills digital services for the newspaper company.

* LMI story: Radio Group sales of social media top $100,000

Best Overall Digital Strategy, Large Market Group

Company: Cox Media

Market: Atlanta Radio Group

Population: 5,522,942

Key executives:

Jesse McCambridge                     

Jesse McCambridge                     AJ Punjabi

Sr Director of Digital Solutions      Digital Sales Manager

Judges take: Cox Radio simply dominates in the digital space estimate with millions in digital sales. Only CBS radio comes close.

* LMI story: How Palm Beach Post created an inhouse digital agency

Best Video Initiative

Company: Federated Media Group

Market: Stations WRSW, WAWC, WLEG and WRSW - Warsaw, Indiana

Initiative: LCTV daily news broadcast

Population 615,077

Key executives:

                      Woody Zimmerman

Deb Williams                          Woody Zimmerman

Director of Interactive Sales    General Manager

Judges take: Primarily Facebook delivered and consistently sold out for five figures to an automotive dealer, LCTV provides a daily video update of the news in northern Indiana on a shoestring budget. The only Rock Station we know with a profitable video news play.

* LMI story: Rock stations daily newscast lands auto dealer

Best Use of SMS

Company: Cowley County Broadcasting

Market: KSOK, Winfield, KS

Population: 12,301

Brian Cunningham

Key executive: Brian Cunningham, Operations Manager

Judges take: This company compiled 8,000 text opt-ins in a city of 12,000 in an area of the country famous for tornado and other dangerous weather events. That’s an unusual 66% of the market opted into text alerts.  The community weather alerts program provide a (high five figure) sponsored life and death community service that works well with radio, the leading low tech medium for weather emergency information.

* LMI story: 50% of County signs up for text alerts from country western station

Best Community Site

Owner: Vilcom

Company: WCHL

Initiative: Chapelboro.com

Market: Orange County, NC

Population: Listening area of 1,998,808

Key executive: Akiva Fox, Head of Interactive 

Judges take: It’s unusual for a radio group to commit to a community site, but that’s what locally owned WCHL has been doing - and what accounts for an achievement of 20% percentage of revenues from digital - more than respectable for a radio group.

* LMI story: How WCHL radio station acheived 25% of new revenues from digital sales

Best Social Initiative

Company: Entercom Communications

Market: KOIT - San Francisco, CA

Population: 7.44 million

Initiative: TOMM

Key executive: Brian Figula, Program Director 

Judges take: The TOMM initiative undertaken at KOIT in San Francisco is a best practice that is showing demonstrable results in gaining a share of social audiences in a hyper-competitive online market. Multiple times per week, the entire creative and social team gets together for a Top of Mind Meeting (TOMM), to review the on-air, online and social strategy for FFFF - food, family, Fido, feel good. Everyone in the company is involved in posting, with a 2014 result of 3,000 Twitter fans, doubling Facebook fans, from 24 daily to 48 posts a day between the two. The strategy contributed to the biggest on-air share in 2014 (October 2014, #1 with women and #2 with persons).

Best of Television

Best Overall Digital

Company: Capitol Broadcasting      

Market: WRAL-TV - Raleigh, NC

Population: 2,037,430

Key executive: Missy Geyer, Digital Account Strategist 

Judges take: This group has been ahead in Borrell’s “Bubble charts” way ahead in its group for years, a massive lead that continues to improve with new initiatives, including enhanced online media kits, events production and other strategies. As a local television site, WRAL-TV also has a dominant digital presence in the community. 

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