We work in a format that is inherently significant. And yet many stations sound more like a commodity, with little meaningful branding, content and personalities that help them stand out from the competition along the dial.

“Commodity is something that can be replaced, removed, exchanged for, or even ignored… for something that is better, faster, or cheaper. But community, that’s an entirely difference animal. A community is a sense of belonging. We all need it. We all need it now more than ever.”

Sangram Vajre

A couple of ideas on building community…

It seems that more and more radio stations are venturing into the world of podcasting. That can be a good thing providing the podcast strengthens the station brand, deepens the relationship with the listener, and provides a listening experience distinct from on air.

Carder and Rachelle at KSBJ in Houston have taken their podcast a step further. They record their podcast on location with fans in the room. One of the strongest affirmations of community is when a listener says, “It’s like being in a room with my friends.” Carder and Rachelle do that literally.

Social media is also a very effective tool for building community.

As my friend Matt Mundt posed recently on the Goodratings’ social media webinar: ask your listeners where the best Christmas lights are. Have your talent engage online with those comments. Invite listeners to post photos of the neighborhoods with the best lights. And remind them to listen to your station for Christmas music while adventuring out to see the lights.

Like any strong brand, all great radio stations convey a sense of community. Think Harley-Davidson, Chick-fil-A, or the Atlanta Braves as demonstrated by the hundreds of thousands that lined the streets to salute the World Series champions. Not all of them baseball fans; but all a part of a community.

*This Frost Advisory was inspired by The Andy Stanley Leadership podcast with Sangram Vajre, founder of the #FlipMyFunnel movement