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Radio Interview


Todd Stach



Columbus, OH



Todd's Career Capsule
Todd began on-air at 104.3 WNLT and Young Country Y96 in Cincinnati.  Then, he accepted a position at WAY-FM Fort Myers as Station Manager.   In 2002, Todd and his family moved to Ohio so that they could be closer to family.  He found work at a station in Mansfield, Ohio  before joing 95.5 the Fish in Cleveland as Music Director and Middays.  An opportunity came at 104.9 the River in Columbus where he became a part of Todd and Sherry in the Morning.  Their morning show can be heard on the River Radio Network of stations in Ohio.


1. Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”? 

I used to struggle with trying to find a balance between the two.  Over the years, I've learned that effective ministry is the outcome of a successful business.  There's no doubt that ministry happens at work, but my personal ministry is just trying to be a good husband and father at home.


2. Overall, how is Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?

Christian radio doesn't have a "nationwide cookie-cutter" formula for success.  We're seeing that unfortunate outcome with Clear Channel selling hundreds of it's smaller market stations.  Recently, some Christian radio stations have really invested in their employees and have committed to their product from the listener's point of view.  More and more stations have implemented proven strategies to attract a much broader audience (e.g. every day people - not just Bible thumping Christians).  


3. What do you think are the main characteristics of today’s Christian radio PD?

Today's successful PDs seem to be team builders.  They rely on their own strengths and bring in staff who fill-in their weaknesses. They're also committed to learning and challenging others to be more than they ever thought they could become.  The good PDs seem to have tools like consultants, talent coaches and music tests - not to be trendy - but to grasp and understand what the listener really wants.


4. What criteria do you require for a song to be played on your station?

I can't answer that because I'm not the PD or Music Director... 


5. What kind of promotions work best for Christian radio?

Ones that involve stories.  Those kinds of promotions that share a story seem to dig into a deeper level than anything else. 


6. How do you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian radio?

I'm not really living in that world now.  But, I do think that radio and Nashville can better work together.  Every record company wants a hit single, but if the song is tanking in music tests the radio station shouldn't play it.  Artists can either be "artistic" and sell a couple of CDs or they can do their research to find out what the listener would buy.  That's our morning show's challenge every day - be relevant, be real and be today.  


7. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?

In this economy listener support is down nationwide.  We probably need to invest as much into our donor relations/sales departments as we do with our programming budget.  Finding out the difference between "listeners" and "donors" and deepening those relationships might attract more loyal donors.


8. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air personality?

Disclaimer:  these aren't my words.  These are the things that Tommy Kramer has been so patiently teaching me (I'm a work in progress).  Talk about something she cares about.  Say one thing and then shut up.  Be relevant, be real and be today.  Just be a friend.  Crack open your chest.  Be helpful.  Be humble.  Bring the listener into your short little scene (on-air break or up a song intro) - so that they can actually picture themselves there with you.  Choose one camera angle to keep it simple.  Take the first exit.  Do all of those things again the next time you open the mic.


9. What (if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators today?

The ones everyone else lists - you know - the stations winning awards and being recognized.


10. Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?

Hopefully, we'll be able to carve out a very loyal niche in each of our markets.  I hope that we don't fear the Internet, iPods and satellite radio.  Maybe our stations can embrace the listener's lifestyle in such a way that she's drawn to us like no other medium.



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