Audience Dialogue

Participative Marketing for Local Radio
Chapter 7: Funding from listeners

Listeners themselves are the best source of funding for a radio station. If they like listening to the station, there is no conflict of interests. In contrast, advertisers and government funders usually have little interest in the program content - they only want to reach a lot of people.

However, because radio is intrinsically free (you can't charge people for listening to a broadcast) it's difficult to get listeners to pay money to a radio station. You have to be offering them something very special: maybe something tangible (that will save them money) but more likely something intangible (such as a feeling that their donation is of great value).

Different people prefer to pay in different ways: some like to give an annual or regular donation, and become subscribers. Others prefer to pay lump sums, and don't want to be tied to the station in any way. Still others would rather give their time than money. Effective fund-raising will cater for all these preferences.

In this chapter...
7.1 On air appeals
7.2 Off air appeals
7.3 Subscribers
7.4 Special events