Playing the top hits is a must for contemporary radio stations like George FM. The challenge is knowing exactly what listeners want to hear. To make sure the top hits are played, Auckland, New Zealand-based George FM uses Surveybot to test which songs their target listeners want to hear. We recently sat down with George FM’s Content Director, Willy Macalister, to talk about how using Surveybot has helped them effectively conduct market research and ultimately increase the number of listeners by more than 20%.
What has been your overall experience with Surveybot?
There is no doubt that doing music research via Surveybot put us in a stronger place. Surveybot has allowed us to make better decisions about the music we are playing and ensure that the songs we are playing are the ones that our audience wants to hear. We had a bit of a struggle with numbers before we started using Surveybot. We needed strong information about where we were going in the future. Surveybot helped us make those decisions and led to the station bouncing back from the hole it was in. Since we started using Surveybot, we have increased our audience by more than 20%.
What were you doing before using Surveybot?
We’ve been conducting music research for years. Music research, for us and for all commercial radio stations around the world, is pretty much the bedrock of what you do, especially if your station takes part in contemporary music formats. As an electronic and dance radio station, our target audience is males between the ages of 18-35. We used to email about 1,000 listeners a week, asking them to listen to songs and rate each one. The idea was that each week we would test 25 tracks and if we got about 100 responses, that’s a reasonable number to allow us to make a decision on whether people like a song or not. Unfortunately, even with large incentive prizes to get people to respond, we were struggling to get 40 people to do the survey, which is nowhere near a usable sample. Reaching our target market via email was close to impossible.
Why did you start using Surveybot?
To reach our target audience, we needed a more conversational method to conduct surveys. We started using Surveybot so we could conduct our surveys on Facebook Messenger. We found that our audience engages really well on Facebook Messenger, it is quite natural for them. Now, when respondents complete our surveys, they test 10 songs, and then the survey asks if they want to do 10 more. We’ve been able to test 40-50 tracks a week now. We also don’t really see many drop-offs during the survey. Respondents usually continue through the entire test, rating all 40-50 tracks.
We also use Facebook’s advertising solutions to get our survey in front of a wider audience, so we aren’t stuck surveying our core fans over and over again. This gives us a broader picture of the market. Because of this reach and the positive reaction to the surveys, we are finding that not only can we test our current tracks, but we can also test the older tracks in our database. This makes sure that all the songs we are playing are working for our audience.
How does the data you collect help you make decisions?
We base most of our music policy on the data. When we schedule songs, we make sure each 3-4 song run has a high scoring average. This ensures that we’re playing the music our listeners want to hear, not just songs we choose based on the mood or genre.
Before using Surveybot, we would be waiting an entire week to check survey results. With Surveybot, we have usable and actionable results within 24 hours of the survey going out. You watch it go out, and you get really excited watching the results come in. I check it all the time on my iPhone. We usually get 100 responses in the first day, and over the week get up to 220, which is more than we would ever need.
Could your business benefit from using Surveybot to conduct market research? Give it a try today. Your first 50 survey responses are free. Sign up now