Thursday, September 14, 2006

PRPD Update #2

The Sense of Place project delivered lots of useful information. One of the biggest findings is the idea that "merely local" content is not a listener benefit. It puts to rest the idea that listeners will flock to public radio just because news or talk is local. This is not to say stations avoid producing content locally. Instead, the project provides many new insights on how to make that content so it lives up to listeners' expectations. Be sure to check out the findings when they are published.

Much of what was learned about producing local news and information can also inform how stations produce pledge drives. More on that in a future blog. And I'll post support materials for stations on the web site. That'll be in a few weeks.

We had a very productive conversation in our "Challenges, Matches, and Sweepstakes and the Public Trust" session. This is part of the DEI/PRPD On-air Fundraising Partnership project. Our goal is to develop guidelines and support materials to help stations ensure that their fundraising tactics line up with listeners' expectations and public radio's core values. Mikel Ellcessor from WNYC and Andy Bienstock from WYPR made some great contributions as panelists. The questions and conversation with the audience was terrific. I think there were some valuable ideas put forward, especially in the area of challenge grants from businesses.

The Local News Initiative session ran concurrently with my session so I didn't get to see it, but there was lots of good post-session hallway discussion about it and The Morning Edition Grad School project.


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