If you’ve ever watched Family Feud (and we certainly did when reader Ronnie Virgets was on the program with his daughters, responding to topics like “Name the best place to go on a first date!” with answers like “The place where they make all the milkshakes!” and to his credit, I don’t think he was referring to the ones that bring the boys to the yard) then you know something about surveys. A survey is a rare opportunity to register your opinion, to make your ideas count, and to express your likes and dislikes openly without fear of retribution. I’m always disappointed when I get a call from a marketing agency wanting to know what I think about certain issues, but I can’t tell them because the fact that I work for a radio station disqualifies me from answering the questions. Ironically, I’m also sort of proud at the same time, because I tell myself that the logic behind the disqualification is that because I work for WRBH, I’m just too informed on all the issues to be able to answer objectively. That logic may be completely wrong, but hey, it works for me.
We recently conducted a survey of our own, calling and asking listeners, donors, and anyone else who wanted to share their opinions with us about what they thought of WRBH. Our newest hire, David Benedetto, was in charge of developing the questions and collecting the responses, and a lot of the information he gleaned from the phone calls was truly fascinating and sometimes surprising. For instance, most of you have listened to us for at least five years or more, you tend to listen more in the mornings, and your favorite place to listen is in your car. More women than men tune in to hear us, and a hefty percentage of our audience is under forty. I was also surprised to find that only a tiny fraction of our listeners are actually blind–approximately 1 percent.
When asked about activities, a full 34% claimed that being outdoors (running, hiking, swimming, walking) was how they liked to spend their time, and another 29% professed their fondness for gardening as a hobby. Yet when asked what their favorite and least favorite programs were, gardening came up in the “dislike” column more often than any other, while shows that gained favor with our listeners were the Newspaper of the Air, all types of books and literature, the Wall Street Journal, interview programs, and Makin’ Groceries with Marie. A great majority of our audience also had strong opinions about whose voices they preferred, with “Favorite Reader” being split between Cameron Gamble and Constance McEneny, while a strong percentage liked the newspaper readers the most. A few of the responses were rather puzzling; for instance, we couldn’t figure out why someone answered the favorite reader question with the cryptic “The tall black woman.” Hmmm. It’s radio…how can you tell her height? The listener who responded “Older lady with the beautiful voice” also had us wondering who we should give credit to (although there are several of our readers who fit that description.) Many of the respondents like variety and different accents, many others do not.
When asked “What would you like to see most at WRBH in the coming months and years?” a whopping 29% said an iPhone or android app, demonstrating how much technology has changed the way we access the world around us. We took that critique to heart and immediately started researching the possibilities of developing a useful, vibrant app that gives our listeners all the information they need at their fingertips. I’ll supply more on that aspect of our mission as it progresses.
If you weren’t called to participate in the survey, it’s not too late–we want to hear from you! You still have the chance to make your voice heard and to let us know what you think of the station, the programming, and the readers. Please call us at 899-1144 and we will forward your call on to David, who will then contact you with the list of questions. It doesn’t take long, and by sharing your ideas and opinions you provide a valuable service for us. As a station, WRBH wants to engage its listeners and become the best source of information and entertainment it can be, so please take a few minutes out of your busy day to let us know how we can do that. And if you’d like to tell us where you think the best place is to take a first date, well, we’d like to hear that too. After all, who doesn’t like a great milkshake? Call today!