Chris Brauer speaks to the BBC on the future of local media
Filed under: Research
Smoothmedia Director Chris Brauer appeared on BBC Radio Suffolk on 2 September, 2010 to discuss the closure of a local commercial radio station and the broader future of local media.
As ever, the presenters and format on the BBC were outstanding and it is always a pleasure dealing with the smooth transatlantic presenters at the Beeb. The topic was a serious one as the worst advertising recession in years has hit local commercial radio very hard and with the coming transformation to digital radio by 2015, commercial radio in any form may only have 20 years or so left as a viable medium.
There are opportunities to thwart this trend but it requires real innovation in how to develop new opportunities from the digital transformation in media. Hobbyist models like podcasts or hyper-local niche Internet radio stations will undoubtably survive as essentially non-profit entities but new propositions must emerge built around intefactivity and increased choice for commercial radio to survive in the UK.
Of course around the world this is not a standard set of circumstances. Radio remains the dominant broadcast platform in many emerging economies around the world, particularly in Africa. The challenge in Europe and North America is not shrinking audiences but reluctance of advertisers to invest in the format.