Ontario broadcasters

Ontario broadcasters
plan a great day
by Doug Kirk
he biggest day of the year for the Ontario
Association of Broadcasters (OAB) is fast approaching—our annual conference October 30
at the Marriott Toronto Airport Hotel.
The hard working board and executive of the
OAB challenge themselves annually to organize a
conference that will outdo that of the previous year.
CONNECTION 2014 promises to do just that.
Our conventional radio and TV businesses are
facing ongoing and unprecedented competition from
largely unregulated new services delivered through
on-line platforms. The 2014 CONNECTION conference will provide valuable sessions offering ways to
build upon new opportunities available using digital
The opening session will see media analyst Scott
Cuthbertson back for his third year to set the scene
with a big-picture look at trends affecting our business. Cuthbertson coined the phrase “flat is the new
up” when predicting revenue growth and we’ve certainly lived through this accurate prediction over the
past couple of years.
Next up is Tracy Johnson, a hugely successful
radio programmer whose focus is on integrating digital features and strategies (one to one) with the mass
appeal of conventional media, a must for all programmers and managers.
Wrapping up the morning will see a session on
audience research moderated by Jeff Vidler of
Audience Insights. Taking part will be David Huszar
BROADCAST DIALOGUE WEEKLY BRIEFING — Essential Reading • October 2, 20141
Top Row (left to right):
Scott Cuthbertson
Jeff Vidler
Catherine Kelly
Matt Sunshine
of Leanstream Media, Catherine Kelly of Numeris (formerly
BBM) and Steve Parsons of Newcap Radio in Toronto. The session’s focus is the use of research on conventional and on-line
data to improve revenue generation from the audiences we
Throughout the morning a simultaneous sales training session on selling digital products will take place led by Matt
Sunshine. While year after year the questions are the same,
the answers are different. Sunshine will delve into the
changes and offer solutions.
Those attending the sessions and those in for the sales
training will gather in the same room for a content-rich
lunch. After FACTOR artist Julie C opens the luncheon, keynote speaker Erica Farber, president/CEO of the U.S. Radio
Advertising Bureau (RAB), will address the crucial question:
How do we retain and grow revenue?
First up in the afternoon will be John Meyer, the director
of digital media at Hubbard Broadcasting and responsible for
all digital, online and mobile initiatives of the top billing radio
station in the U.S., WTOP AM/FM Washington DC. For insight
on how WTOP does it, it’s a must-attend session.
Following Meyer will be Sean Ross of Edison Research. For
those wanting the big picture concisely laid out for them,
take in his presentation: “Radio in an Audio World”.
BROADCAST DIALOGUE WEEKLY BRIEFING — Essential Reading • October 2, 20142
Two pertinent sessions for Ontario broadcasters will
close out the afternoon. First, with the recent CRTC decision regarding emergency alerting, it is timely to recap our
timelines to implement the National Alert Aggregation &
Dissemination System (NAAD) and our responsibilities for
emergency communications to the communities we serve.
The final session is an industry town hall featuring RAB
President Erica Farber; David Murray, COO, Newcap Radio;
Geoff Poulton, president, Vista Radio; CRTC Commissioner
Raj Shoan; and Paul Ski, SVP and CEO radio & regional broadcast operations. It will be moderated by industry consultant
and former CRTC Ontario Commissioner Rita Cugini.
CONNECTION 2014 concludes with the Awards Gala that
includes a performance by FACTOR singer/songwriter Luke
McMaster. In addition to Community Service and Broadcast
Order of Achievement Awards, the gala will feature the induction into the Ontario Broadcast Hall of Fame of John
Hinnen, former VP News at Rogers Broadcasting.
Valuable content and connection with our industry friends,
packed into a single day! I’ll see you October 30 at the Toronto
Airport Marriott Hotel. Details and registration are available
at www.oab.ca or contact Val Skivington at 905-554-2730
or [email protected]
Doug Kirk is president of the Ontario Association of Broadcasters.
Geoff Poulton
Paul Ski
BROADCAST DIALOGUE WEEKLY BRIEFING — Essential Reading • October 2, 20143