Many radio stations enjoy ratings success by manipulating their stop set strategy to allow for longer commercial free periods in the market’s most listened-to quarter hours.

I can tell you from experience that it works. It buys quarter hours and can spike specific commercial-free sweeps.

There’s a lot of programming theory that goes into building these clocks. And, there’s a long-term price to pay. You may not have to pay the price during your run at the station you program now. You may not even be in radio when the price must be paid. But know that there’s a penalty for what we’re doing. And it’s coming.

The ratings these stations build do nothing to enhance advertiser value or the effectiveness of the commercials your clients are paying to access the audience.

Since most of these stations are simply redistributing the commercial load, you’re probably driving commercial messages to less listened-to times and surrounding the ad message with even more commercial announcements. How does that impact the results advertisers get from their investment?

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I think you know.

Still, this isn’t a commentary on sales strategies or enhancing revenue streams. It’s about programming your station or radio show to build the biggest possible audience and attract the most attention for a personality.

So let’s keep it focused on programming.

Stop Set Strategy:Commercial Free Programming Has Pros and Cons

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