Feature Interview

Brittney Hurley Interview 9-24-18

Brittney Hurley
Marketing Coordinator 
University of Northwestern | Northwestern Media 
St Paul

Career Capsule: In January 2015 I was hired on by 98.5 KTIS as an Audience Engagement Intern. My internship lasted 8 months until 98.5 KTIS hired me on full time as the Audience Engagement Coordinator in January of 2016 under the direction of Marianne Milano. In October of 2017, I began a split role partially as the Network Marketing Coordinator for Northwestern Media, and partially continuing my role as Audience Engagement Coordinator for Northwestern Media’s 98.5 KTIS.


Brittney, tell us what’s new at Northwestern Media … news, changes, & with YOU… etc?

Northwestern Media is in the midst of a very exciting change. Tuesday, August 7th, at 2pm, we officially launched the new 100.7 KGBI in Omaha, Nebraska. We are very excited to have the opportunity to reach more people for Christ this new market. It is incredible to see the successful expansion of Northwestern Media unfolding, all for God’s glory. We are currently looking for a focused Program Director and on-air talent for the new station. You can apply here: thttps://jobs.unwsp.edu/postings/4149


Christian Radio has become very competitive… what do you do to stand out from the crowd in social marketing?

I love this question. I think one thing we do really well at Northwestern Media to stand out from the crowd is we simply care. Each of our station managers genuinely care not only about each of their employees, but they care about our audience, so much so, that they are willing to put in the time, energy, and thought it takes to listen to what our audience is saying, and meet them where they are are at. Rather than just delivering the audience what they think they want or need, Northwestern Media employees are adding value to their feeds. Word of Mouth Marketing is the best social marketing, hands down. So when you care enough to listen, and respond accordingly, your followers will begin to promote you, simply because you cared.


What is the best social marketing advice you’ve been given? The worst?

Actually my co-worker, Joe Nyquist, put into words one of the best pieces of advice, in my opinion, for social marketing you could receive, “data tells a story.” I love this because often times we try to listen to our “gut feelings” on what we think people want to see in their feeds. Thankfully, we now live in a world where we have access and the opportunity to learn from our audience now more than ever, so we can better serve their needs. If we ignore the story that is being written by our audience and just keep posting/scheduling/blogging based on our gut, we are missing out on tapping into the beautiful gift our audience is giving us: the story they are writing for us to read. 

I think the worst advice I have gotten is, “when in doubt, just post it.” Although I am all for A/B testing, and 100% believe you have to start somewhere to get somewhere, I don’t think you ever have to mindlessly post anything. Each and every social media post should be well thought out, data driven, and march to the beat of your brand. Your building your brand, and while mistakes are good, and necessary, you should always have a filter you go through before posting anything. 


What is the ONE thing you must have everyday to do your job?

Probably space. I think if I look at my calendar and my entire day is booked up with meetings and tasks, its really hard for me to do my job in a way that isn’t frantic. I do my best to ensure I have at least a little space in my day in case last minute requests come in (which they always do), research the latest trends, and do each project/task to the best of my ability rather than zooming through them with little to no thought behind them. 


What are hottest trends you see in social marketing for radio?

I think right now if you aren’t already engaging your audience in live videos on FB and IG, you need to be. Pinterest is also huge. A lot of stations don’t think they need to be on Pinterest because it acts as more of a search engine rather than a social engagement platform. The reality is that Pinterest is a gold mine for driving more people to your website. If your stations website is putting out blog posts, or already has great content, why not Pin it to Pinterest to draw people there. From there you can get even more technical by adding a special pop up when they land on your page to ask them to “listen now,” or whatever action you want them to take. Essentially it is a significantly less cluttered version of searching google. I am grateful to have a director, Marianne Milano, who leads our team with excellence, and always encourages us to stay up to date on the latest social media marketing trends. 


Generally speaking to the industry what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio?

People have so many options nowadays to choose what they want to hear, when they want to hear it. Clearly that creates competition for anyone in the radio industry. Being in the Christian radio industry, I believe we have an edge. For many people, we are not just a radio station where they come to listen to music, we are their church. A place where they come to find out more about Jesus, more about how they can get involved in their community, and more about stories of lives changed. I think we have a lot more to offer.