Deane got his start in radio in 1997 at WLEW-AM/FM in Bad Axe,
Michigan, which many refer to as the smallest town in America. In
his two years in Michigan's Thumb, Matt moved up from evening jock
to Music Director and Afternoon Drive jock. In 1999, Matt made the
move to the west side of the state and began his first Program
Director job while again handling Afternoon Drive duties at WYBR-FM/Big
Rapids. Keeping with the theme, 2 years later, in 2001 Matt left
Michigan for America's Dairyland and his current position as Program
Director and Afternoon guy at WCLQ-FM/Wausau.
Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”?
I have a card
with John 3:30 on my desk. "He must increase, but I must decrease."
This helps me to keep my focus where it should be. The things I do
each day are not about me, they are about the Lord and making him
known in this area.
Overall, how is Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?
overall is continuing to improve. I think our jocks and programmers
are getting better all the time, which improves all aspects of the
station. The quality of the music we receive is better than five
years ago as well.
3. What do
you think are the main characteristics of today's Christian radio
foremost, someone who desires to reach out to those who don't know
Jesus yet and encourage those who do. Creativity, vision for the
future, the ability to lead, serve, and multi-task all come in handy
criteria do you require for a song to be played on your station?
production is key. If it won't sound good on the air, it's not going
to be on the air. Are the lyrics compelling? We need songs that will
make a connection with our listeners.
kind of promotions work best for Christian radio?
Some of the
promotions that have worked best for us have been the ones that make
an emotional connection with our listeners. An example would be
Mother's or Father's Day contests that allow listeners to tell
everyone why their Mom or Dad is the best in the area with a big
prize going to our winner have gone over very well.
6. How do
you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian radio?
All the labels are doing a great job!
7. In your
opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?
For some of us,
just letting people know we exist. We can tend to fly under the
radar at times, and I truly believe there are many people who would
become listeners to our stations but they just don't know we're out
there. Finding a budget for billboards, direct mail or other forms
of marketing can be difficult these days, but what a benefit it can
provide. As a format, we still need to work on being more real, more
relevant to our listeners as well.
8. What do
you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air
listeners' best friend. Find a way to relate everything you talk
about to them. We need to remember as jocks that it's not about us,
it's about the listener!
(if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators
Rapids, KLTY, and WPOZ all come to mind as stations that are
innovating and making big impacts in their markets.
do you see Christian radio in 5 years?
I hope the
format continues to make bigger strides in our markets, to reach
more people for Jesus Christ. If we continue to work to make our
stations the best they can be, I believe we can accomplish this