This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Table of Contents
EXECUTVE SUMMARY I. II. III. IV. V. MISSION and VISION STATEMENT ......................................... HISTORY and SERVICE AREA ................................................ ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE ............................................. PROGRAMMING ..................................................................... MARKET ANALYSIS ................................................................ CURRENT MARKET ...................................................... OTHER PUBLICS .......................................................... MAJOR COMPETITORS ................................................ VI. PROBLEMS, CHALLENGES and OPPORTUNITIES .................. VII. STRENGTHS .......................................................................... Personnel ...................................................................... University Support ........................................................ Student Personnel ......................................................... Quality Programming .................................................... Time Spent Listening .................................................... Associate Board ............................................................ VIII. MARKETING STRATEGY ........................................................ IX. OPERATIONAL PLAN .............................................................. Increase Sources of Revenue ......................................... CPB Support ................................................................. Individual Listener (Membership) Support ..................... Underwriting Support ................................................... Fundraising Support and Methodologies ....................... Staffing ......................................................................... Facilities ....................................................................... Delivering the Service ................................................... HD (Digital) Radio ......................................................... X. CONCLUSION ......................................................................... Appendix A – Coverage Map Appendix B – Organizational Chart Appendix C – Program Schedule Appendix D – Facilities Plan 1 1 1 2 3 3 4 5 6 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 9 9 9 10 11 11 11 12 12 13 14 15
WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Executive Summary
WCBU provides a valued and trusted public radio service to every listener in Central Illinois. WCBU is Bradley University’s noncommercial public radio station serving the people of Central Illinois. Our vision is to be the public radio station most admired for its staff, performance, innovation and integrity.
PROGRAMMING WCBU’s programming concentrates on news and public affairs and classical music. Programs of superior value generate listener contributions. There are opportunities to expand programming and potential audience diversity. Single vs. Multiple Program Services – There is an abundance of public radio programming available, but limited delivery vehicles. Audiences are demanding full time program streams, such NPR News/Talk, Classical Music, Jazz, Adult Acoustic (AAA) and others. It is important that WCBU and Bradley University remain positioned as the single local public radio service provider. Being the dominant public radio operator in the region assures strong listener and underwriting support. Digital radio presents a significant opportunity for WCBU to address some of the programming needs currently unmet in the community. Podcasting of news and feature programming is a low cost method of distributing local programs to a larger audience.
MARKETING STRATEGY It is necessary for WCBU to put in place a marketing and promotion plan to achieve the following goals: • • • First Choice in Public Radio, appealing to an expanding audience base. First Choice in Promotion, appeal to potential underwriters. First in Audience Growth appealing to potential new listeners.
REVENUE Increase Sources of Revenue - There are six primary sources of revenue for WCBU: Bradley University support, 14%; Corporation for Public Broadcasting, 14%; Other Grants (Illinois Arts Council, RIS, etc.), 11%; Underwriting, 9%; Membership/Listener Contributions, 48%. WCBU proposes to increase money in areas where it has direct control or influence: underwriting support to 25 % of total revenue over a two year period through the addition of revenue
A purchased station is a working asset. HD Radio – WCBU is in the process of converting to digital transmission. portability. costs will inevitably rise. improving listener support by increasing quality and value of programming. and has the ability and opportunity to expand its service and possibly its coverage area. four commercial stations were sold recently. Backup generators at the studio and transmitter are a high priority. The station can be resold as a commercial station. The station’s asset resource value is retained and will appreciate. revenue and value for Bradley University. In central Illinois. The only option is to purchase an existing station. Fortunately. This presents opportunities for public broadcasters. increasing the number of major donors with gifts of $500 or more. As the audience grows. low unit cost. and growing the endowment fund. FACILITIES The station’s facilities need upgrading. NPR and other content providers are making programming available at low cost. HVAC and access problems that must be addressed by major renovation or relocation. HD Radio will allow the delivery of multiple programming streams. audience. public radio is experiencing continued growth in audience. The purchased station is future collateral. There is an opportunity to roll purchase of a station into Bradley University’s larger capital campaign.producing staff. and it is imperative that WCBU is the public broadcaster positioned to control all of the full power public radio translators in this region. There are serious acoustical. The concern is that there will be public radio growth in Peoria. In Peoria. EXPANSION OPPORTUNITIES Since the FM band is crowded. This expansion will produce increased. . there are no frequencies left on which to build new stations. The reason for this growth is the nature of the medium: localism. Frequent power outages are causing problems in reliability and the station’s role as a disseminator of emergency information. speed and efficiency. The WCBU management and staff look forward to taking advantage of these opportunities. CONCLUSION Nationally. WCBU is poised to do great things. service and ideas in a changing media environment.
See coverage map. regional. and recognizes the importance of responsible stewardship.000 people in a 12 county area. humanities and civic responsibility. Our vision is to be the public radio station most admired for its staff. WCBU seeks to create an informed public with a better understanding and appreciation of local. performance. innovation and integrity. WCBU maintains strong relationships with listeners and donors. II. The station has been in this location for most of its history. Illinois. and global events. and cultures. VISION STATEMENT WCBU is Bradley University’s noncommercial public radio station serving the people of Central Illinois. The signal covers approximately 615.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN I. ideas. WCBU contributes to the daily lives in the region by providing educational. licensed by the Federal Communications Commission to operate on an assigned frequency of 89. 1970 and became a member of the National Public Radio Network. The station began operation in January. MISSION STATEMENT WCBU provides a valued and trusted public radio service to every listener in Central Illinois. and entertainment programming that develops an appreciation of the arts. ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE WCBU’s Executive Director reports to the Associate Provost for Information Resources and Technology. Appendix A WCBU’s studios and offices are located on the second floor of Jobst Hall. informational. HISTORY AND SERVICE AREA WCBU is a full power noncommercial educational station. III.9 mHz from Peoria. The WCBU staff consists of the following positions: • Program Director .
WCBU BUSINESS PLAN • • • • • • • • News Director News Reporter News Announcer Director. the station won Edward R.” Much of the classical music is produced by WCBU professional staff. public radio news listening has seen a dramatic increase in the past five years. The program mix serves to inform. and Celtic music. The Public Radio News Directors and the Associated Press. Appendix B WCBU also employs 8 students on a part time basis serving as news. Murrow Awards from the Radio and Television News Directors Association. Likewise. For purposes of audience research. WCBU performs a significant public service with the weekly broadcasts of the Peoria City Council meetings and the pre-meeting public affairs program “Outside the Horseshoe. in an era when many have questioned the survival of the classical format. Radio Information Service Membership Manager Underwriting Manager Office Manager (University Support) Operations Manager Page 2 See organizational chart. production and office assistants. IV. public radio’s classical stations have generated a steady performance for six years in a row. WCBU is considered a news/classical “mixed format” station that is typical of smaller markets. entertain and enrich the lives of listeners. The weekly program . Recently. A small portion of the weekend schedule provides jazz. In a time of relentless news cycles and near abandonment of news by commercial stations. Programs of superior value generate listener contributions. and generates awards from professional news organizations nationwide. Other programs are acquired from network and regional sources. it has remained steady in time of overall decline in radio listening (source: Charting the Territory. PROGRAMMING WCBU’s programming concentrates on news and public affairs and classical music. Although WCBU’s classical audience has not shown dramatic growth. as put forth in the Mission and Vision Statements. including live performances featuring Bradley University music faculty. These awards are judged by peers. a multi year study by CPB and the Station Resources Group) WCBU’s news and public affairs programming is significant in that it is unique in the region.
25 Peoria City Council (WCBU) 3 (average duration) Weekend Edition (NPR) 4 Weekend All Things Considered (NPR) 2 Living on Earth (NPR) 1 State Week in Review/Illinois Edition (IPR) 1 Classical Music (Source) Performance Today (NPR) Morning Classical (WCBU) Afternoon Classical (WCBU) Opera (NPR/Met/WCBU) Concert Broadcasts (NPR/PRI/APM) Music From the Heartland (WCBU) From the Top (PRI) Overnight Classical (PRI) Hours/Week 10 5 15 3 6 2 1 53 Other – type (Source) Hours/Week Jazz From the Hilltop – Jazz (WCBU) 1 Jazz From Lincoln Center – Jazz (NPR) 1 Marion McPartland – Jazz (NPR) 1 Jazzset – (PRI) 1 Jazz Profiles (WFMT) 1 Rivewalk – (PRI) 1 Car Talk – comedy (NPR) 1 Wha’d Know – comedy (PRI) 2 Thistle and Shamrock – Celtic (NPR) 1 Prairie Home Companion – variety (APM) 4 See program schedule.000 persons 12 years of age or older tune in to WCBU for at least 15 minutes a week.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 3 “Music From the Heartland” features performances by the Peoria Symphony. . News Programs (Source) Hours/Week Morning Edition (NPR) 20 Day to Day (NPR) 5 All Things Considered (NPR) 15 Marketplace – business news (APM) 2 Outside the Horseshoe (WCBU) . MARKET ANALYSIS A. Bradley University faculty and other area musicians and ensembles. CURRENT MARKET Arbitron reports indicated a cumulative audience of 30. Appendix C V.
7. • • • • B. support and other job functions.3% are in McLean County.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 4 Demographically. Stark. an additional 24. Fall.9% 64. fundraising. Marshall.2% 18.4% o $50 .$74K 28.2% live in Tazwell County. Fulton. The remaining 16.000 or more o 54% view job as a “career” 61% vote* * These data are taken from national audience statistics from National Public Radio’s 2005 Audience Profile. Livingston.6% 12. Mason and Putnam Counties 51% are male Age Brackets: o 12-24 o 25-34 o 35-44 o 45-54 o 55-64 o 65 + • • 6.3% report “some college” education 61% are married* 74% employed * o 27% professional o 17% managerial o 20% influence business purchases of $1. the public radio audience is an upscale group of business decision makers and community leaders. Peoria Market.4% • 72% have household income of $50.4% live in Woodford. 2004). operations. Logan.1% live in Peoria County. WCBU provides valuable .5% 16% 21.2% 25. 23.$49K 19.9% o $25 . • 53. Knox. OTHER PUBLICS Bradley Students – Students majoring in Communications have the opportunities to assist in the production of news and music programming.000 or more o < $25K 8.5% are college graduates.7% o $75K + 42. The typical listener readily adapts to new technology (source: Arbitron.
As of this writing. are all competitors. The University – The Bradley community goes beyond the students. but is becoming the fastest growing portion of the station’s revenue picture. Multiple channels of music and talk programming in various formats are delivered by satellite to subscribers who purchase special receivers. usually limited to the popular formats of Rock. so in the event of a merger or acquisition. Easy Listening. One or two other public stations can be heard.S. News/Talk or Christian. There is high subscriber churn. C. television. staff. The station also applies for competitive equipment funding from the U. Nearly all of them are commercial. Bradley University is a public trustee. Industry pundits predict that only one will survive. and serves as an asset for students as they seek employment upon graduation. While both companies are experiencing subscriber growth. This license allows the institution to carry out the University’s work providing quality educational programming to a wide area of central Illinois. satellite radio and portable record/playback systems such as iPods.000. Country. Underwriters – Corporate and business support of WCBU has been modest in past years. Sirius and XM use different technologies to deliver their programming. and both companies are still borrowing operating capital. including parents. Most WCBU listeners can receive 10 to 20 other stations. There are two satellite providers. XM and Sirius. extending to the faculty. other stations. they are investing heavily in promotion and the acquisition of high profile personalities (Howard Stern and others). it is difficult to gage the impact of satellite radio on WCBU. which concentrates on Jazz or WIUM. which is an advantage for WCBU. including WGLT. Other Media – Any medium that vies for the listener’s attention should be considered as competition to varying degrees. videos. The WCBU donor base includes all of the above. WCBU is the only classical station easily received in this area. MAJOR COMPETITORS Other Stations – The largest competitor group for any radio station is of course. broadcasting an eclectic format. Podcasting will be examined in detail more below. Interestingly. In addition to other radio stations. administration and off campus constituents. Federal Government – As a radio licensee. Oldies. Satellite radio is national.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 5 experience in a highly professional environment. operating a radio station in the public interest. alumni and friends. Department of Commerce (NTIA/PTFP). The station receives an annual community service grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in the amount of $128. . combining operations could pose major challenges. Sirius and XM are prohibited by law from providing local programs. internet.
although the quality will be high. The Engineering staff does an excellent job keeping old equipment in service. Although the FCC is examining the issue of allowing higher digital power levels in the composite . especially in the spring and fall cause problems that can be harmful to equipment and reduce staff productivity. A capital campaign is underway to replace the transmitter and studio-transmitter link with equipment capable of carrying multiple. C. audiences and support. Facilities – The WCBU studios and offices are housed on the second floor of Jobst Hall. high quality streams. Appendix D. Security is a concern. labs and high traffic areas. This allows the development of diversity in programming. The digital signal will not cover as large an area as the primary analog signal. the Jobst Hall HVAC system is plagued with problems. See facilities plan. mixers. Vibration and noise are constant problems. These problems can be addressed with the addition of standby generators at the studio and the transmitter. WCBU has experienced several power outages due to weather and CILCO equipment malfunctions. but adequate funding to replace recorders. Severe weather occurrences such as hurricanes in the south. CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES Page 6 A. Classical Music. along with the fact that the station is built over the concrete lab and automotive lab. such NPR News/Talk. Jazz. WCBU shares the concern of other Jobst Hall departments in the need for addressing heating and air conditioning. Digital Radio – Digital radio presents a significant opportunity for WCBU to relieve some of the single program service dilemma described above. Extremes in temperature. The station occupies about 3. players. In addition to weather information. Single vs. Power Outages – In the last year. and tornadoes in central Illinois underscore the need for the ability to reliably serve the public interest and provide emergency information. In many markets a public radio licensee has been able to acquire a second and even third transmitter to provide more programming. The best way to meet this goal is to expand program services and coverage areas as the opportunities to do so present themselves. B. Multiple Program Services – There is an abundance of public radio programming available. Staff members are scattered throughout the building creating additional challenges. In addition to the above.000 square feet. but it will take 12-24 months before new receivers able to pick up the second channels will penetrate the local market to the extent that WCBU will see significant new audience growth. the ability to remain on the air during emergencies such as civil unrest or terrorist activities is especially critical. D. It is important that WCBU and Bradley University remain positioned as the single local public radio service provider. but limited delivery vehicles. laid out with classrooms. PROBLEMS. E. Being the dominant public radio operator in the region assures strong listener and underwriting support. Adult Acoustic (AAA) and others. Obsolete Equipment – Much of the equipment in use is well past its design life. computers and digital storage/automation gear must be identified and maintained through a deferred maintenance program. Implementation is anticipated in mid 2006.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN VI. Audiences are demanding full time program streams.
podcasting was an arcane activity. Providing the best and brightest of Bradley’s Communications students with experience that will benefit them and ultimately the reputation of the University as the students enter and advance in the work force is a top priority." will be added to the next online update of the New Oxford American Dictionary. Only a year ago. or it may become a significant technology. F. Podcast devices allow the user to “subscribe” and automatically download individual songs or full programs. Personnel – WCBU has a dedicated staff that is passionate about public radio. Podcasting may go the way of the Eight Track tape. STRENGTHS A." Now one can hear everything from NASCAR coverage to NPR's All Things Considered in downloadable audio podcasts files. defined as "a digital recording of a radio broadcast or similar program. G. Podcasting and Internet – Portable mp3 players such as the iPod and others are the newest form of portable record/playback equipment in use today. additional transmitters appear to be the best method of providing diverse services. due in early 2006. the domain of a few techies and selfadmitted "geeks. made available on the Internet for downloading to a personal audio player. Podcast. The advantage is that WCBU programming can be heard wherever an internet connection is available. WCBU’s web site was recently overhauled and relaunched. . more must be invested in personnel and software to make the web site a source of added value to listeners. New forms of internet program streaming are being explored. Despite this. and to keep it fresh and relevant. Student Wages – Finding and keeping good students is difficult when the budget only allows for starting employees at minimum wage when they can earn more money in off campus part time jobs. Unlike earlier recorders such as the Walkman and others. the staff remains focused and continues to stage record setting fundraisers. Streaming of audio programs on the internet is common in that nearly every radio station is doing it. Ideally. Thousands of podcasts are available on the web. WCBU can take advantage of this trend at very low cost by making Podcasts of news and feature programming available to listeners through the station web site.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 7 analog/digital radio signal. VII. It is necessary to continue to improve the local news and program resource content. This allows listeners to “tune in” to every station in the world. They are creative professionals who take pride in their work and rise to the challenges presented to them as a result of inadequate production funding and aging equipment.
All board members are contributors. Continued attention to program quality will increase TSL and resulting contribution revenue. daily program service is an advantage for Bradley University. The fulfillment rate (pledge payment ratio) is 94%. NPR’s major news programs “Morning Edition. Bradley University must assure that employees are adequately and fairly compensated. they turn to WCBU because of the integrity of its news. F. As a sole source of this quality programming. regional and local level. WCBU news staff have won and continue to win awards for significant reporting on the state. As a result. The high quality and desirability of the programming as outlined above contributes to the number of hours spent with the station. the board is actively engaged in the WCBU Digital Conversion capital campaign. As representatives of the community. Fall 2004). the station’s value to the listener grows. the more valuable the station becomes to that individual. Care must be taken to continuously monitor and compare WCBU pay levels with the CPB benchmark and maintain salary parity.” “Day to Day” and “All Things Considered” have won and continue to win every major journalism award in broadcasting. E. Quality Programming – Public Radio has a reputation for quality. Recently.46. balanced news. the average gift is higher. Experience gained here is important for acquiring the competitive edge required in a tight job market. student employees bring to the job a desire to succeed. In addition. Time Spent Listening (TSL) – A key to successful fundraising is the number of hours a listener spends tuned in to the station. Associate Board – The WCBU Associate Board was established in order to meet the Corporation for Public Broadcasting requirement for stations licensed to entities other than universities with open governing board meetings. Currently. Translated to dollars. D. WCBU has one of the largest TSL ratios of public radio stations in Illinois: seven hours per week (source: Arbitron . the average pledge amount is $115. .000 Tower Society level. This funding has helped the station operate with a standard of excellence that results in additional listener and underwriting dollars. Association and identification with this quality. When listeners want informative. C. University Support – Bradley University has provided WCBU with direct and indirect financial support. B.Peoria Market.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 8 To maintain a high level of local program service. Student Personnel – In spite of low pay. This strategy will help the station attract and retain talented and productive staff. the Board assists in promotion of the station within the community and in fundraising. many at the $1. which is very close to the national average. pay was adjusted to bring WCBU within levels of fair market compensation as determined by studies of similar stations qualified by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Past success raises the bar for continued quality reporting and production. this body serves in an advisory capacity for programming. The greater number of hours spent listening each week.
). 1. Student Opportunities – WCBU will make more opportunities available to students for employment and experience. 48%. WCBU must be ready to capitalize on these changes. First in Audience Growth – Continuous monitoring of the ever changing regional market requires ongoing analysis. Bradley University – The strategy for maintaining a consistent level of support from the University includes building and securing ties to the academic mission of the university. Underwriting. but more can be done. and providing value to faculty. RIS. faculty and staff grows. The demographic profile public radio can deliver should be equated the best value for potential business promotion. By doing this. Using full time staff as supervisors. Broadcasting is an interdisciplinary business. Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Membership/Listener Contributions. In the past.There are six primary sources of revenue for WCBU: Bradley University support. It is recommended that ways to increase this Board’s involvement and value should be studied. a. C. Miscellaneous revenue makes up about 4%. As use of the on-air and off-air services of the station in context with the WCBU Mission and Values. WCBU is the first choice. OPERATIONAL PLAN A. the station’s intrinsic value increases. 9%. including commercial radio. etc. MARKETING STRATEGY A. when potential listeners think about public radio or think of high quality radio programming.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 9 The Associate Board is a valuable resource for WCBU and the University. First Choice in Promotion – WCBU must be positioned in the market as a first choice among potential underwriters over other advertising options. 14%. 14%. Constant attention to detail in programming will keep the station’s sound fresh and appealing to potential new listeners. The station has always projected a positive image of the university through quality programming and news reporting. With steady regional population growth. surveys and investment in research materials and services to allow management to update marketing strategy. New businesses moving into the coverage area will create new and lucrative opportunities. IX. VIII. B. First Choice in Public Radio – WCBU should be the station by which others are compared. television or print. 11%. Other Grants (Illinois Arts Council. . the station has drifted from academic integration in terms of making student jobs available. Increase Sources of Revenue . by students.
Access to the University – WCBU’s ties to the University waned over the years. which will have a negative impact on the WCBU . marketing and management will gain valuable experience that is difficult to find off campus. Funding for these levels of student activity must also be sought. Department of Communications and WCBU – Although WCBU and the Department of Communications carry out two distinct and necessarily separate functions. students majoring in communications. c. Input on basic qualification criteria required by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting will assure continued annual grants. assistantships and increases in the number of student employees at the station to provide another level of professional experience for students. Faculty access to WCBU’s audience will increase the station’s value to this important constituency. Faculty Access – Faculty will gain from WCBU’s involvement with the University. The regular program schedule. and facilities in carrying out of its work. political science. will increase the University’s value as a first choice among potential students. business. Funds to cover student payroll must be secured. a rescission is expected. CPB funding and ancillary facilities funding is under review and will most likely be reduced. b. news and public affairs programming and the electronic arts are available resources as supplemental materials for nearly every academic discipline. Effective communication of WCBU’s program offerings to the university community is the first step in implementing this strategy. As congress looks for ways to pay for hurricane relief. CPB Support – WCBU participates with other stations in the process of influencing the formulation of public telecommunications policy on a regular basis. Dialogs have taken place to establish practicum. Other program vehicles can be developed to bring in faculty members from diverse disciplines to publicize their creative and research endeavors. which in turn.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 10 instructors and mentors. The weekly “Jazz from the Hilltop” program is of benefit to Ed Kaiser of the music faculty. accounting. At present. internships. 2. they can work together to provide important professional experiences for students. d. music. including music. The station and its professional staff will provide faculty with sources of expertise for use in the classroom and in laboratory settings. Changes in WCBU’s management philosophy is reversing this trend and policies are being instituted to make sure that the University can take full advantage of WCBU’s audience. Common sense dictates that involvement with the University’s academic mission and public service mission must be restored. As of this writing. faculty benefit from WCBU broadcasts of recitals throughout the academic year.
It is best to develop and phase in other sources of revenue. two on-air fundraisers are conducted each year in April and October.In order to achieve success in individual giving and business support. then to 25% of total revenue the following fiscal year. it is important to implement a well planned marketing and programming effort. WCBU must program for and market to this age group to achieve revenue growth. this should be done by a full time staff member with expertise in promotions. with the intent of expanding the area covered to the other counties served by the station. Political issues surrounding the former chair of the CPB Board bring reliability of regular funding into question. underwriting (a noncommercial radio form of advertising) makes up 9% of WCBU’s revenue. and methods to use the bi-monthly program guide as a revenue generator will be explored. This is due in part to a high staff turnover rate in the WCBU fundraising areas. Affluent Boomers – In defiance of radio listening trends in general. A plan must be developed that focuses on the following: a. Individual Listener (Membership) Support – listener contributions have been relatively flat over the past five years.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 11 budget. Percentages used above are based on the presumption that there will be revenue growth. it is recommended that a second underwriting sales staff member be hired. The station development staff continues to learn about the capabilities and limitations of the Advance software system. 5. When the 15% total is approached. Investment in local programming. The incremental goal is to increase underwriting to 15% of total revenue next fiscal year. and to accelerate growth to the 25% of revenue goal. Promotion – renewed efforts in target promotion will attract new listeners who will be converted to new donors. Constant attention to rates and availabilities during high demand (drive time) day parts will help maximize underwriting revenue. especially news and public affairs will increase the station’s value to new and existing listeners resulting in new . Ideally. may be difficult to find and implement. Fundraising Support and Methodologies . During this learning process. 4. Direct mail at year end has been instituted. management is concerned that opportunities for target mailings. Underwriting Support – At present. The station has one full time staff member devoted to underwriting sales. public radio is gaining listeners as the population ages and the Baby Boomers pass through the 25 to 54 age group as well as the higher income bracket that fits public radio demographics. At present. Listener support must grow to reflect a minimum of 70% of the stations’ total revenue. etc. Other incentives such as reduced rates for late night and overnight programs as well as discounts for long term contracts will be explored. Efforts are in place to continue to learn about Advance and its capabilities. 3. donor retention.
with an endowment goal of at least $1 million. Production staff: A full time music director and full time production director will allow WCBU to add local non news programming and improve the overall presentation of classical music. internet. c. News: The WCBU News staff consists of a news director. improvement in the Fanfare Magazine and other publications. Marketing – New strategies will be developed for the aggressive marketing of the radio station. designed to attract and retain donors at the $1. Many stations in the WCBU budget category have double that number involved in this activity. the addition of a fourth full time news reporter will help expand the scope and geographic area covered. and efforts are underway to continue to promote increasing the numbers. 2. television (including cross promotion with WTVP). The corpus of the funds amount to $128. C. There has been growth in this group in the past year. Revenue producing staff: Increasing revenue is a top priority. Other Forms of Support – Other money raising opportunities under consideration include European music tours and cruises.000 level. Investments in advertising budgets and supplementary promotion staff may be an efficient way to attract and hold listeners and underwriters. Donors giving this amount can have their gift acknowledged on the air on a day of their choosing. Cultivating staff to assist the underwriting initiative as well as membership enhancement are critical. Endowments – WCBU has three endowed funds. 3. it will be necessary to increase the staff in certain key areas. and a second reporter with on-air anchor duties (Morning Edition). As the station undergoes changes to meet the media demands and opportunities of the 21st Century. Staffing – In order to implement the above outlined strategies. including print. To increase the value of local news. a full time reporter. Facilities – As explained in Section VI. Increasing Large Gifts – WCBU recently established the Tower Society. WCBU has two staff members devoted to fundraising revenue. 1.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 12 promotion opportunities and increased pledges and additional underwriting revenue. b. B. special events. such as talent searches. d. e. WCBU facilities need improvement.000 as of this writing. it is necessary to seriously consider remodeling and expanding or relocating . a large gift program. record sales and various affinity programs that will generate revenue and serve to promote WCBU. and efforts will be expended on achieving growth in this area. The Day Sponsor program was also established to move donors up to the $365 dollar level.
but the station has significant membership with the potential for more. the maximum allowable power has been achieved. including those in the “commercial” or unreserved portion of the band. Like classical. four commercial stations were sold recently. This likewise presents opportunities. and are hungry for more space. Under the FCC Rules. WCBU was approached by brokers for Regent Broadcasting regarding the possible purchase of one or two of these stations. It is essential that a good signal is delivered to the population. these formats reside with public stations because they do not deliver the listener volume that commercial stations demand. but it brings to light the opportunities for growth in this market.000 to 6. The FCC is not accepting applications for translators at the present time. faculty and students. The only option is to purchase an existing station. yet the public wants more classical music. especially in the reserved portion of the band (88. The third option is to increase WCBU’s transmitter power. The second method is to install “translator” stations. Three areas have been identified for improvement of the WCBU signal. This presents opportunities for public broadcasters. and will not deliver any new territory to the coverage area. but these frequencies are all in use. Unfortunately. There are several ways to provide this service. They are the Galesburg area. “Triple A” (a blend of long form acoustic).WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 13 the studios and offices to a facility that is accessible to the general public. D. As pointed out above. At times. Delivering the Service .The most important strategy for maintaining a high level of listener support is assuring that the station’s program service can be received. and quite often sell off or trade stations. commercial broadcasters find it necessary to sell stations because they are not returning significant profits. Unfortunately. including anticipation of growth areas. public stations can operate on any frequency. Commercial operators are limited in the number of transmitters they can own in a particular market. there is public demand for more public radio service as well. In Peoria. but there is no more space to build. which are small 10 to 100 watt transmitters. At present.9 mHz) set aside for noncommercial educational broadcasting. Building was and still is the preferred method of expansion because it costs less than purchasing existing operations. The first is to build or purchase a low to medium power transmitter rebroadcasting the WCBU signal in the area to be served. WBEZ in Chicago . The concern is that there will be public radio growth in Peoria. and different music forms not currently available such as traditional/folk. the timing was not right. The FM band is very crowded and placement of a signal of 1. Options for service delivery are: 1. Religious broadcasters have filled up this part of the spectrum.000 watts of power is difficult. and it is not known when filing windows will be opened. as each denomination wants its own radio service. The Facilities Plan in Appendix D addresses these concerns in detail. the Lincoln area and the Bloomington Normal area.1 through 91. Acquiring Additional Local Stations – There is significant expansion in the FM radio band. All three regions can receive at least one other public station in addition to WCBU. WCBU broadcasts classical music and news.
HD Radio – WCBU is in the process of converting to digital transmission. It is imperative that WCBU is the public broadcaster positioned to control all of the full power public radio translators in this region. Revenue will help fund future expansion or technical innovation once the debt is retired. It will generate new listeners and underwriters to fund debt retirement and operational expenses. b. This system will become the standard for FM broadcasting in the United States and will allow FM stations to broadcast two or more simultaneous signals. HD Radio will allow the delivery of multiple programming streams. it is expected that there will be more than one full power public radio station here. program costs will be low due to low audience. There is an opportunity to roll purchase of a station into Bradley University’s larger capital campaign. Financing is available and should be explored in depth prior to the inevitable next opportunity. but new digital radio receivers will be necessary in order to hear the programs on the new digital channels. The typical 3. so maintaining the program service will not strain the budget. each with revenue generating capacity. public radio stations in order to preserve and expand public radio in a climate of scarce spectrum space. The station’s asset resource value is retained and will appreciate. but it will take at least two years before new receivers penetrate the market enough to influence audience or revenue growth. c. The purchased station is future collateral. d. The station can be resold as a commercial station.000 watt commercial station is valued at approximately $1.000 to 6. Operational expenses will be spread over more channels. There is a broker/financial agency that deals exclusively with non profit.000 capital campaign to purchase the transmitter and related equipment necessary to make this change and digital conversion is anticipated by the end of 2006. .5 million. The purchased station is a working asset. e. 2. Fortunately. WCBU is in the final stages of a $300.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN Page 14 showed interest in the Regent properties. The main channel will still be receivable on existing radios. and with the translator expansion of WGLT in Bloomington-Normal into this market recently. The business model for purchase of a station should include the following: a. Rapid acceptance of this technology is anticipated.
low unit cost. WCBU is poised to do great things. portability. CONCLUSION Page 15 Nationally. This expansion will produce increased. . The reason for this growth is the nature of the medium: localism. In central Illinois.WCBU BUSINESS PLAN X. public radio is experiencing continued growth in audience. service and ideas in a changing media environment. The WCBU management and staff look forward to taking advantage of these opportunities. revenue and value for Bradley University. speed and efficiency. audience. and has the ability and opportunity to expand its service and possibly its coverage area.
Appendix A WCBU Coverage Map Primary or strong signal listening area .
WCBU Organizational Chart 12/06/05 Executive Director: Thomas Hunt Office Manager (University Support): Lisa Polnitz Program Director: Nathan Irwin News Director: Jonathan Ahl RIS Director: Lee Wenger Underwriting Manager: Heather Binder Membership Manager: Betty Beard Operations Manager: (Vacant) News Producer: Tanya Koonce News Announcer: Denise Molina .Appendix B -.
Appendix C WCBU Program Schedule Monday mid. 1:00 2:00 3:00 4:00 5:00 6:00 7:00 8:00 9:00 10:00 11:00 noon 1:00 2:00 3:00 4:00 5:00 All Things Considered Classical Music NPR World of Opera Performance Today Whad'Ya Know? State Week Performance Today Prairie Home Companion (rpt) From the Top All Things Considered This American Prairie Life Home Companion Living on Earth Morning Edition Weekend Edition Classical Music Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Car Talk Sunday Baroque Classical Music Day to Day 6:00 ATC Peoria Marketplace City ATC Marketplace .
Paul Symphonythe Chamber 9:00 Jazz from Cast Heartland Orchestra Lincoln Piano Jazz Center 10:00 Jazz Jazzset Profiles Classical Music 11:00 Hearts of Space Green shaded programs: New additions to the schedule Yellow shaded programs: relocated programs .Council Reader Reader Reader Reader Thistle and WCBU 7:00 (Mon) (Wed) (Thu) (Fri) Shamrock Showcase Reader (Tue) Dialogue Soundprint State Week 8:00 Creators at Jazz from the Riverwalk Carnegie Hilltop Music from St.
raising security concerns. Studios and offices are all accessed from a common hall which is shared with classrooms. the station is not on the air. the staff of WCBU has struggled with the limitations of its existing physical plant. multi-channel broadcast service. weather or civil emergency. including the addition of staff. The Bradley campus is subject to power outages. Acoustical “tuning” is necessary. and the increased demands of delivering a digital. and squeezing desks and equipment into the existing space are the only options. WCBU occupies 2984 square feet on the second and fourth floors of Jobst Hall. The space allocated to WCBU is no longer sufficient. Proper HVAC air handling in on-air and production studio locations that provide high volume. The HVAC system is inadequate. Staff size is limited by facilities size. low velocity baffled venting should be included. There is vibration and/or engine noise which is easily transmitted through walls and floors. and does not meet the acoustic needs of even the most rudimentary broadcast operation. reducing reliability and value to contributing members. The following is recommended in order to meet basic needs: Studios The WCBU studios are not soundproofed. and high-1- . and existing studios are in need of acoustical treatment.Appendix D WCBU Facilities At present. Staff is separated by two floors. The office/studio floor plan was poorly designed. The ability to get information to the general public has become even more critical in the post 9-11 environment. but the rooms have large flat parallel surfaces that reflect sound and have a hollow effect on the air. In the event of a city wide blackout. Sounds from outside. increases in staff size are anticipated. doors. the station’s ability to provide all important emergency information to the public is severely compromised. Not only are the facilities crowded. stress and automotive labs. or at the change of seasons when it is necessary to switch from heating to cooling and back on the same day. engineering labs. especially during extremes in outdoor temperatures. but Jobst is a poor environment for radio studios. hallways and floors. For several years. When this happens. being located in an engineering facility above paving. With a progressive plan for growth. existing space cannot accommodate anticipated future needs. Proper climate control is essential to assure reliability and reduce costly repairs of expensive broadcast and automation equipment. allowing unwanted sound to leak in through windows. Moreover. Not only is outside noise and vibration present. Ideally. new space should be identified and renovations should be undertaken with structural acoustical isolation considerations. An emergency generator is absolutely necessary both at the WCBU studio complex and at the transmitter. is not properly configured for effective communication among the staff.
On-Air Studios: This room serves as a large space facility for interviews. Each of the rooms must be capable of serving as a backup control room if the Master Control room is taken out of service for maintenance or emergencies. and a mirror of the Master Control in size and equipment configuration. etc. RIS Studio: The Radio Information Service (RIS) space consists of a 60 square foot studio. The baby grand piano takes up quite a bit of room. Production Control Rooms: Currently. A second smaller interview studio of 150-200 square feet with similar acoustical and HVAC treatment would improve working conditions and productivity. Each area should have its own thermostat for proper temperature adjustment. A minimum of 600 square feet is absolutely necessary. The room should still be located adjacent to the Master Control room and close to the Operations Manager’s office. audio streaming encoders and network satellite equipment can be moved in with the rest of the network equipment. A minimum of 300 square feet is recommended. The studio’s acoustical properties are poor at best. a 60 square foot “control room” which doubles as an office for the RIS Director and a 100 square foot office/reception area for volunteers. Network/Record Control: Additional space is needed so that the AudioVault servers. manned by a program host with occasional guests. One room would be designed as an alternate Master Control Room for the second or third audio channel. transmitter controls. As noted above this room must have adequate HVAC which is nonexistent at the present time. live performance (Jazz from the Hilltop) and other functions. as required. intercom. cough buttons and headphone adjustment console is essential. similarly equipped is recommended as the station begins digital broadcasting. and likewise require acoustical isolation and proper HVAC design. A minimum of three rooms. The allocated space is not adequate to meet the needs of the dozens of volunteers who staff on operate the RIS facility. and may have several live microphones at any time. Each of the other rooms should be between 150 to 200 square feet at minimum. This room is also the primary on-air studio. etc. The room should be a minimum of 250 square feet with a large console desk and an interview desk for guests. Volunteers must deal with poor heating/air conditioning in the studio and there -2- . The room must be acoustically isolated and tuned for natural quiet sound. recorders. low velocity HVAC to eliminate air handling and fan noise. From this room the final radio product is produced and sent to the transmitter. fundraisers. The present space is only 175 square feet and can barely accommodate anything larger than a small jazz combo.traffic hallways “bleed” into the studios and are occasionally audible in the station’s onair sound. digital post production. Master Control Room: This is the “nerve center” of the radio station. A microphone desk with a timer. promotional announcements. Makeshift sound panels and baffles clutter the room. WCBU has two production facilities. These rooms are used to pre-produce programs. and requires high volume.
Further. a small kitchenette is needed. The facility must have proper acoustical treatment and the temperature made comfortable for volunteers. Music Library: The station “common area” is the Music Library. This area should be approximately 400 square feet. enough storage. A minimum of 570 square feet is needed. There is no privacy.. A well designed Conference Room that can double as a Break Room/Kitchenette and a Phone Room is needed. Additional space must be allocated for a third news producer and student -3- . Because the Music Library serves many functions. there is no place for volunteers between recording or reading sessions. there must be adequate office space for the RIS Director. In this space is the News Director’s office. phone room during membership drives and a lunchroom. Operations Manager and Program Host. When it is used for these secondary functions. and a reasonable reception/lounge area for volunteers. a small production booth (a converted audiology hearing test booth with no ventilation and poor lighting) and two news editing stations. Special radios are used in RIS operations that are given to print handicapped clients. including the area in which hospitality is provided for volunteers and guests during fundraisers and other functions. which also houses the satellite control and automation servers and open landscaped office space for three staff members. The music library must be located adjacent to the Master Control Room. and the crowded conditions cause difficulty. To relieve this congestion and to provide a productive work area for the Program Director. The WCBU Public File is also housed in this room.000 square feet. A professional’s first impression is amazement at the size of the News Room facility and wonderment as to how the award winning news output is ever achieved. The main access to the room is through a dark. two news production desks. At present a refrigerator. bulk mailing center. In addition. the use of the Music Library should be restricted daily programming activities only. These appliances are on one circuit which will trip a breaker if everything is used at one time. These radios are stored in a hallway area and take up additional space. It is necessary to at least triple the size of the News Room to no less than 1. with adequate office space for the News Director (120 square feet) and 100 square feet for each producer. narrow stairwell which gives a negative impression to visitors and guests. microwave and coffee maker are on a table between the Music Library and Network Control. Further.is no acoustical treatment. the work being done interferes with the duties and productivity of the staff members whose desks are in that space. News Room: The existing news operation occupies 347 square feet. This is also a food preparation area which is not in an ideal situation for such a function. the room serves as a conference room. especially during high stress times when multiple major stories break and on-air deadlines must be met. limiting special needs access to the studio. RIS space must be renovated to include a broadcast quality studio/control room that will allow pre recording and live reading of print material on the air.
The production/announce booth needs adequate soundproofing and appropriate HVAC. Student work space is virtually nonexistent. Premiums and promotional materials are stored on the fourth floor with the Membership and Underwriting Managers. The reception area is tiny. The fall of 2005 has been especially challenging for the staff. Target office space size should be 100 square feet for staff. These temperature extremes also stress the equipment. -4- . News Director. and would not necessarily solve the basic structural problems of vibration and noise. archives and other materials is absolutely necessary. Suitable work areas for students enhance the academic experience at Bradley University. and make it difficult for guests. There is no room for additional staff. It is necessary to add acoustic treatment to the on air and production facilities as soon as possible.staff. Finding or “trading” for more suitable closer office and storage space of about 400 square feet would help improve productivity. Since the HVAC system is tied into the entire building. There is not adequate space for the University Support staff who occupies a larger office that was used for Radio Operations. Membership Manager and Underwriting Manager and 200 square feet for the Executive Director. The Executive Director’s 200 square foot office is suitable. Storage is located wherever it can be found. 120 square feet for the Program Director. except when it is subject to vibration from the paving laboratory located on the floor below. It is recommended that offices be grouped by operational area and that each key area has facilities and furniture to allow for proper professional interaction. Acoustic treatment panels (which are expensive) are available and immediate installation is recommended. it is anticipated that resolving temperature control issues would be difficult to accomplish. and does not make a positive impression on visitors or prospective donors. Some staff members are in open areas as described above and the Membership Manager and Underwriting Manager are isolated from the rest of the staff in 100 square foot offices on the fourth floor of Jobst Hall. Offices: The WCBU office facilities vary from good to extremely poor. There are cabinets tucked away in every nook and cranny of the operation. premiums equipment. Adequate storage space for supplies. The News room must be located adjacent to the Master Control Room. The quality and size of the offices vary and privacy is always an issue. Short Term Solutions Remaining in the current Jobst Hall location would require significant reconfiguration. Wide fluctuations in the temperature between 60 and 85 degrees create an distracting and unhealthy work environment. and existing staff is still separated on different floors.
and an enlarged Network Control center which would house the station’s satellite receivers and automation systems. a smaller studio for one. An additional control room will enable more staff to work on production projects concurrently.or two-person interviews. and could act as a backup voice-tracking facility for the news room. Development: Development Director Membership Manager Underwriting Manager Future development staff office Development storage/Student work area Current 710 120 120 120 100 250 401 -5- . and the addition of meeting space. The primary production suite would be enlarged to function as a backup to Master Control. Broadcasting/Production: Master Control Large Studio (music and events) Small Studio (interviews) Production Control A/Alternate Master Control Production Control B Production Control C Network Control / Operations Current 1850 250 600 150 250 150 150 300 787 Includes the addition of a studio large enough to accommodate interviews and/or performances with a medium-size ensemble (up to 10 musicians).Anticipated Space Requirements Administrative: Executive Director Office Coordinator office/storage Reception/Lobby Conference/Meeting Current 1200 200 200 400 400 603 Includes a larger reception area. which would double as a phone center during WCBU’s membership drives and contain nominal facilities for providing volunteer hospitality. or as a primary control room for a second audio service.
The development offices should be located in close proximity to the Administrative are. and a larger area for development storage.Includes office space for one additional staff member. -6- .
Programming: Program Director Operations Manager Additional Office Music Library Storage (equipment and archives) Current 840 120 120 100 400 100 624 Includes an enclosed office for the Program Director. Total Current -76170 2984 . space for one new staff member. Ideally. student staff and news editing stations) Recording studio Current 1000 120 780 100 347 Includes an enclosed office for the News Director. and production rooms—would be centralized in a single location. Network Control. Equipment storage—currently spread out among the Music Library. the news department should be located as close as possible to Master Control and production facilities. A smaller Music Library would house the station’s CD collection. Also restores a recording studio (lost during the RIS relocation from the library to Jobst Hall) which will allow recording and voice-tracking while RIS is broadcasting live from the main studio. Radio Information Service: RIS Director Broadcast studio Recording studio Office/Reception area Radio storage Current 570 120 100 100 200 50 222 Includes an enclosed office for the RIS Director. and space for one new staff member.News: News Director Newsroom (includes space for up to three reporters/hosts. and an expanded reception area. these should be located as close as possible to the broadcast and production studios. Like the news room. and an enlarged studio for voice-tracking. reference materials and a small “prep” area for music hosts.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.