I’m Bell and I am introducing myself again on this blog because it seems like all my classes want me to blog this year! Very exciting time for me. To find out all my personal details click here to find out more. I am a Communication major and am fascinated by the many types of communication technology. I am also willing to be six months behind the newest gadgets if it means I can save $100. I also adore using the newest apps and tools to manage my life. I manage my family’s schedules as well as my own so any organizational system or app that will add another layer of control is always on my list. I can usually be found on my cell phone either checking my multiple social media accounts or playing a game. Yes, I am a gamer. I used to be a PC gamer but as my life got more complicated, I simplified to my cell. I also use my phone to read, stream music, communicate via text, video, and to make the occasional phone call. I like communication technology. I love that I have all the information in the world in my back pocket.
Yet with all this tech love in my life, I get in my car and still turn the radio on. I grew up with radio. It was free music. Which is an almost foreign concept to me now. The radio was not just music, it was how I learned about the world. I can remember driving in the car with my friends and listening to oldies. I was sitting in the car with my best friend driving out to Pasadena when we heard Rick Dees in the Morning say they were going to stop playing music because of 9/11. My friends where retro before retro was cool, and had old recordings of radio shows that we would listen to and laugh. My favorite was always the Adventures of Superman. While I loved listening to music and dancing around my house the radio shows where always close to my heart. This is probably what began my love of podcasts.
For a communication technology to succeed it needs three things: it needs to be interactive; it needs to demassify (which is a really big word for personalize) the experience; and it needs to be asynchronous (another word to prove to my professor that I was listening). It means that the user can respond when it is convenient for them. Radio made a huge difference in people’s lives and spread communication to the masses. So how does an aging form of communication hold its own in a culture that values demassifying types and an interactive experience? They meet the consumer where they live.
The Ben and Kelly Show on radio station 99.7 DJX in Louisville is doing this wonderfully. Besides engaging their fans on social media via re tweets, likes and comments, The Ben and Kelly Show also uses social media as a form of entertainment with “Facebook Fights Theater” and “Missed Connections from Craigslist”. They take the drama that happens on social media and completely defuse the tension that comes with it by reading it in funny voices. It’s very engaging. The Ben and Kelly Show encourages their listeners to interact with them and comment on stories or entertainment bits they read on the air. But perhaps the best way of personalizing the experience is their all-request “Throw Back Thursday”. Listeners tweet their requests for ‘retro’ music and their tweets are read on the radio before their songs are played. It is a big event with their listeners every week and it is very fun. Making a morning talk show asychronous is a little challenging, but they manage to take steps towards that with the DJX app that allows you to stream even when you aren’t in Louisville or surrounding area. Will radio slowly go the way of the VCR and broadcast TV? Not if they can continue to create a personal experience within a mass media form of communication. The Ben and Kelly Show is doing that through Twitter and boy bands from the 90s.
Want to Throwback this Thursday? You can follow The Ben and Kelly Show‘s Twitter by clicking right here, download their app by going here, and don’t forget to tell me what you thought about this blog by leaving a comment below or tweeting me.