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Mark Kordic
Advocace' Media

"Listenomics" is the New Community Building Practice



“You are asking me to pay for free radio? I have choices. I can access much of your content in many ways and discuss the music with my friends at the same time.”  

This was the response I received as I engaged Tim, a 20-something donor to a large listener-supported, Christian-formatted radio station. I had asked him to rejoin the support team for this vital community station. How would you answer his query?

Before I let you know what I said…consider the summary by Abraham & Harrison, a leading social media marketing company, highlighting Generation Y’s view on how media or digital content should be funded:

     “Generation Y’s…intellectual-property ethos — ‘All Content Wants to be Free’ — is
      stupid and criminal on the face of it. They truly believe that malarkey, and aren’t 
      apt to change their minds.” 

So if Generation Y wants all content to be free (to them) and therefore individuals should not be prompted to consider financial giving, I wondered how Tim related that to other non-profit organizations he supports? It seems that supporting organizations that feed the hungry or minister to special needs children did not seem to offer an ethical dilemma like supporting a non-profit radio station. We then discussed biblical generosity and he pondered whether or not the station fit into his top giving priorities. I encouraged him to continue this type of conversation with his peer groups and suggested web forums to explore.


My conversation with Tim was on my mind when I picked up the new book The Chaos Scenario: Amid the Ruins of Mass Media, The Choice for Business is Stark: Listen or Perish. Author Bob Garfield (feature writer for Advertising Age) does a masterful job of identifying the cataclysmic changes in the media landscape and reminding us of the vital importance of knowing our audience. He elevates this priority by coining a new science he calls “Listenomics” – the art and science of cultivating relationships with individuals in a connected, increasingly open-source environment.


Relationships unleashed

I believe your radio station is a powerful, relationship-building link to connect the body of Christ in your region. Why not accelerate connectivity opportunities for your listeners to interact with each other? “Live” call-ins? Ramp them up. Use Facebook? Sure. Twitter? Yes, what an instant medium to encourage viral conversations.LinkedIn? Absolutely, especially as a tool to facilitate the awareness of job openings and candidates.

Listenomics Helps You Monitor the Conversation…and Host the Conversation

Intentionally monitoring and participating in online forums, blogs and social networks is valuable for your station. You can harness critical intelligence and separate the meaningless noise from what many call the world’s largest focus group---the buzz on the internet. Applying Listenomics through your on-air and off-air communication forums may enable you and your staff to discover important information about your listeners you could not obtain through face-to-face dialogue. As Bob Garfield reminds us, “The internet is a word of mouth engine and the fuel of the digital age is the instinct to share information with hundreds of others”.

What ways have you found profitable to interact with listeners online?


E-mail Mark Kordic at 


With 24 years of experience in corporate and non-profit leadership positions and almost a generation of experience in listener supported Christian radio, Mark Kordic helps radio stations across the country grow income from major donors and pledges.

Before joining Advocace, Mark was the Director of Media Advancement for CDR Radio Network-The PATH®, the media division of Cedarville University in Cedarville, OH.  At The PATH® he successfully served in a number of marketing and executive positions, helping fund network expansion. Kordic also previously served as assistant pastor at Shawnee Hills Baptist Church in Jamestown, OH.







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