Home Columns Anantha Narayan Missions and a mic

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    The potential that radio, as a medium, has as a driving force is yet to be experienced. Yes, we know that it can provide non-stop music, content-driven concepts, game shows and the like, but when it comes to fund raising or creating awareness on a social issue, thata��s when radio can be heard well above the rest.

    Radio stations in the country havena��t really embraced the idea of fund raising. Ia��ve spoken to a few (who hold good positions at radio units) on why it wasna��t on their agenda and their reply was that it was too much paper work and, most importantly, what if their target listener didna��t responda��it would throw bad light on the stationsa�� ability to drive its listeners to contribute towards a cause.
    Most of us want to contribute towards a good cause, but finding the time has always been the obstacle. If there was a fundraiser on radio, it makes it easy for the listener to participate as you are involuntarily on a platform where you can helpa��be it while driving or even at home.

    Fund raisers have been a practice in many stations around the world. A radio unit in the UK raised more than a million pounds for children in need. That is what the medium can achieve and, let me also tell you, that if there was an on-air marathon that ran for a week then the amount would increase tenfold.

    In India, where radio stations are formatted and want to believe that a particular segment is their target group, the idea of fund raising gets a little complicated. Would the listeners reciprocate, would they contribute, would they even tune in are the questions the station would have to answer if they had to get a charity going on-air.

    Radio units shouldna��t fear the feeling of rejection if a fundraiser flops. It is up to them to get back to their drawing boards and re-figure their design. That will make us listeners reach out. See you next week!

    a�� Niladri (talkingradio@gmail.com)
    The writera��s views expressed here are entirely in his personal capacity.


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