Howard vs. Opie and Anthony
Satellite radio has leapt to the forefront, as two of the major forces in the shock-jock arena have decided to pit themselves against each other. Opie and Anthony, known for their outrageous antics on a WNEW-FM show that was syndicated across the Infinity broadcasting network, were fired from the station about two years ago. Now they've found a new home on XM. And Howard Stern, known for his drive-time segments of prurient interests for the last quarter-century, is leaving FM for Sirius.
Whether these shows suit your tastes or not, it's a fact that the demographic listening to these two shows (males aged 18 to 49) is the same demographic purchasing car audio—especially satellite radio. When Howard makes the move to Sirius, a smart retailer will be co-promoting the event to make sure everyone who wants to go with Stern on the transition to satellite will be along for the ride. Do you have your "Howard is moving to Sirius—Get your equipment here so you don't miss any of the show!" sign ready for the window display?
Even smarter retailers will be transitioning traditional FM and AM customers to satellite radio today. Moreover, the wisest retailers will offer (and perhaps even close on) both satellite services to offer the customer the best of both worlds.
Sirius has been going through a major growth stage since the signing of Stern and the hiring of Mel Karmazin, who recently ran the Viacom empire, as its new CEO. Outgoing CEO Joe Clayton will remain chairman of Sirius; he had these comments on the events: "I have a vested interest in Sirius Satellite Radio to succeed, and retailers should be taking advantage of the margins we give the retailer on hardware and services. Besides Howard, we have the NFL, the NHL, basketball, and Eminem. Mel will lead us to the next phase of satellite radio programming, and I will be there to help him with receiver design and our expansion into Canada." I asked Clayton about Stern playing a role in this transitioning company, and he said, "Howard's show is about his life. And this is a big chunk of his life. We just had a rally in Union Square, N.Y., led by Stern with 10,000 people attending. Retailers should look for more events from Sirius to promote Stern."