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Radio station WNTR-FM launches interactive format

December 29, 2009

Indianapolis radio station WNTR-FM 107.9 launched a new format Monday that its says puts an emphasis on interactivity with its audience.

The station formerly known as The Track scrapped its previous format of adult-contemporary music in mid-November and began playing all Christmas music in anticipation of the switch. The new format will feature a wider variety of music from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s as well as some current hits.

“We have a team of listener advocates available at all times, responding to calls, e-mails and texts,” said Scott Sands, the locally based director of operations and programming for WNTR’s parent company, Philadelphia-based Entercom Communications Corp.

Social media such as Twitter and Facebook also will be key in the station's attempt to reach out to listeners.

“We think we’ve identified a segment of music that is not being played here in this market,” Sands said. “So far, we’ve had an extremely positive reaction from advertisers and listeners. We’re already building a strong following on Twitter and Facebook.”

The station is now known as My 107.9, and will have a younger target audience (ages 30-54) than The Track, which targeted listeners 45 plus.

The station ranked 13th in the local market in audience share of listeners ages 25-54 during the summer 2009 ratings period. It ranked 11th among local stations in revenue in 2008, with about $3 million in sales.

WNTR hired Scott Roddy to handle day-to-day operations at the station. Roddy previously worked at WKLU-FM 101.9 and also spent 10 years working for Susquehanna Radio Corp. in Indianapolis.

In addition to its aggressive interactive campaign, Sands said WNTR will advertise its format change through a variety of traditional media.

“You’ll hear all kinds of music on My 107.9, and one thing is certain, you won’t be able to listen without hearing caller requests,” Roddy said. “In all my years in radio, I’ve never seen an effort like this to reach out to listeners, to actually have full-time employees devoted to taking listener input and requests.”

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