My mainstream radio career began in 1986 but I have been blessed
to operate in Christian radio since April 1988! God has shown me
incredible grace, favor and mercy over these 22 years! I spent
my first ten years in NC at 94.1 WWGL (now KLOVE) and from 1999
here at Virginiaís Positive Hits PER.
1. How has WPER evolved over
the last few years?
About four years ago our parent
company purchased WJYJ 90.5 in Fredericksburg, Virginia. As a
result Positive Hits PER covers most of Richmond to the beltway
of Washington DC! We like to say that God has strategically
placed us between our State Capital and the Nationís Capital!
2. Has WPER made any changes due
to economic situation, been affected in any way?
Because of the huge purchase
mentioned above we have always had to operate lean even before
the change in the economy! We operate with just 5 full time
employees and two part timers. This has been our biggest
challenge in tough economic times. We are poised for mayor
growth with lots of places we want to go and many people who
need a touch from Christ. Our small team is working lots of
extra hours and wearing lots of hats so we have had to do more
than think outside the box. We are working to create a new one!
3. How does WPER connect locally
We have many relationships with
organizations helping people in all walks of life! We call them
our community impact partners and give them air time to explain
their ministry or service. We have also been able to hold annual
community block parties that offer free family fun. Last
year we hosted a free event that included free food, games and a
concert with Francesca Battistelli! Over 5000 showed up for the
event! Wish I could connect like this once a month.
4. What criteria do you require
for a song to be played on your station?
Itís a delicate mix of art and
Find out what your listener expects from your station and give
it to them in abundance. Make sure you research and test your
music with a reliable source. Lower budget stations will have to
work harder but nothing is more important than having your music
5. What kind of promotions work
best for Christian radio?
I am looking for two key components.
What is the listener experience and what is the experience of
the 96% who just listen as a promotion unfolds! Question 1 what
is the purpose? Promotions with a purpose are about the listener
and very little to do with you. You win on the back end with
position of their mind.
6. How do you think Christian
Record labels can better serve Christian radio?
I think the record labels are
working extremely hard to understand all aspects of radioís roll
to their success plus the other way around too. I have been
thankful to see our industry come together in A unity thatís
awesome to watch unfold.
7. In your opinion what are the
biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?
I guess this is where I am supposed
to do the new technology rant. Truthfully I only think it will
help! The one thing that threatens Christian radio the most is
the farm of new fresh talent to take the torch and run with it.
Many of todayís leaders have been in radio for 20 plus years.
The people who have obsessed over radio details are becoming
more far and few between. Additionally there are far too few
outlets paying the right money to make a long term radio career
feasible! There are tons of talents who have been used and
abused and tossed to the side by mainstream radio that could
help revolutionize this industry on a wider scale. Itís time to
invest in the next twenty years!
8. What do you believe is the
primary role of the Christian radio air personality?
Be a real person that happens to be
a believer instead of a believer trying to be a real person!
9. What (if any) Christian radio
stations do you consider as innovators today?
I am delighted to say that the list
was short and becoming clichť at one time but now there are
dozens of stations who would not take no for an answer! They
have my respect and applause!
10. Where do you see Christian
radio in 5 years?
I guess the better question is where
I see media in 5 years. It will not look like it does today.
While many people are studying the success of facebook and the
like I have felt compelled to analyze My Space! Remember them?
The site you checked every day. Worked on for hours! A recent
survey showed that people forgot they even had an account. What
happened? There has got to be some real nuggets for our future
and remaining relevant there. May our radio stations never
become a My space who was left and forgotten for the next big
thing and May our strategies and tactics go beyond Facebook to
what is just around the corner!