IBJNews

Local firm making noise with app for radio stations

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A small downtown digital marketing firm has found a niche in the ever-changing world of technology by developing software applications for smart phones.

Indianapolis-based Boost Media & Entertainment has designed about a dozen apps within the past year. But its latest creation, one targeting independent radio stations, may catapult the company into the national spotlight.

The app lets users listen to live radio feeds and receive multimedia information from the station on their mobile phones.

Jason Zickler, Boost MobileBoost Media CEO Jason Zickler shows off the local firm's new radio station app.(IBJ Photo/ Perry Reichanadter)

Rock station WTTS-FM 92.3 in Bloomington signed on as the first client and racked up 1,500 downloads from listeners in one week. Boost also is in conversations with a radio station in New York City and with the owner of four independent stations in Colorado.

A formal nationwide media and marketing campaign for the product, called MyStationApp, is expected soon, said Boost Media CEO and co-founder Jason Zickler.

“It’s really cool that we’ve been able to do it with [WTTS] because they’re kind of a cult brand,” he said. “Hopefully it will be taking off for us.”

Zickler, 35, founded Boost Media in mid-2007. The firm has nine employees and moved Jan. 1 to larger space at 107 S. Pennsylvania St., where it occupies 4,000 square feet.

The company started as a website developer and online video producer, and is concentrating on building its mobile-app business.

An app it designed for the annual Rib America festival at Military Park in downtown Indianapolis caught the attention of WTTS Program Director Brad Holtz.

The two parties began collaborating in the fall and had a product finished around the first of the year.

WTTS approached Boost Media in part simply because few mobile apps are available for independent radio stations. Large corporations such as Clear Channel, which operates WFBQ-FM 94.7, WRZX-FM 103.3 and WNDE-AM 1260, dominate the radio dial and develop their own platforms that are used company wide.

Zickler thinks MyStationApp will appeal to smaller radio stations because it features a low implementation cost and a short development time—under a week in many cases—yet can be customized by each station.

“It gives listeners what they come to the website and the station for—the music, the concert listings and the social media interaction,” Holtz said. “It’s been a really good rollout.”

The next step for WTTS is to embed advertisements in the app in an attempt to generate additional revenue.

Clients pay Boost Media an annual fee to offer the app while listeners download it for free.

MyStationApp lets users tap into a multimedia stream that displays song titles and artist names for songs while they're playing, concert calendars and other exclusive content. The app can be used on Android and iPhone devices, as well as the iPad.

In addition, Boost Media recently finished an app for the annual Spirit and Place Festival at IUPUI, scheduled this year for Nov. 4-13. Another application, for the Indianapolis Colts fan club called Indy Blue Crew, should be unveiled within the next week.

Zickler, who graduated from the Purdue University School of Engineering and Technology, earned a master’s degree from the Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing.

He worked at locally based Aureate Media before the firm became Radiate and moved to Silicon Valley under co-founder Jeff Ready, who now leads  Indianapolis-based data-storage firm Scale Computing Inc. Zickler later became a vice president at now-defunct Pathway Productions Co. in Indianapolis.

He declined to divulge Boost Media’s annual revenue but said the company has grown modestly at a rate of about 35 percent a year. A booming app business could help grow the figure.

“I think we’re finding our niche,” Zickler said. “It seems like a good future for us.”

ADVERTISEMENT

  • RIB FEST COLLABORATION
    If anyone ever questions the value of festivals, they should read this article. If anyone is thinking of redesigning a festival (think July Expo) read this article--feature food, mix in business. Close before sundown.
  • apple accepts
    Apple accepts radio apps. The Apple Ap store is currently posting 3-4 new radio apps a day. Those news stories that hit a few months ago were incorrect. Apple rejects any program that is mass produced. This includes Radio, Financial, Game apps.
  • TuneInRadio
    I love and get lots of use out of the TuneInRadio app for my Android smartphone.
  • Will Apple reject?
    What is Boost's plan to get Apple to accept the apps. According to news stories, Apple is not accepting single radio station apps as they consider them spam and they are disabling current streaming apps. Our group of radio stations recently had our iPhone apps disabled.

    Post a comment to this story

    COMMENTS POLICY
    We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
     
    You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
     
    Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
     
    No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
     
    We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
     

    Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

    Sponsored by
    ADVERTISEMENT

    facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
     
    Subscribe to IBJ
    1. These liberals are out of control. They want to drive our economy into the ground and double and triple our electric bills. Sierra Club, stay out of Indy!

    2. These activist liberal judges have gotten out of control. Thankfully we have a sensible supreme court that overturns their absurd rulings!

    3. Maybe they shouldn't be throwing money at the IRL or whatever they call it now. Probably should save that money for actual operations.

    4. For you central Indiana folks that don't know what a good pizza is, Aurelio's will take care of that. There are some good pizza places in central Indiana but nothing like this!!!

    5. I am troubled with this whole string of comments as I am not sure anyone pointed out that many of the "high paying" positions have been eliminated identified by asterisks as of fiscal year 2012. That indicates to me that the hospitals are making responsible yet difficult decisions and eliminating heavy paying positions. To make this more problematic, we have created a society of "entitlement" where individuals believe they should receive free services at no cost to them. I have yet to get a house repair done at no cost nor have I taken my car that is out of warranty for repair for free repair expecting the government to pay for it even though it is the second largest investment one makes in their life besides purchasing a home. Yet, we continue to hear verbal and aggressive abuse from the consumer who expects free services and have to reward them as a result of HCAHPS surveys which we have no influence over as it is 3rd party required by CMS. Peel the onion and get to the root of the problem...you will find that society has created the problem and our current political landscape and not the people who were fortunate to lead healthcare in the right direction before becoming distorted. As a side note, I had a friend sit in an ED in Canada for nearly two days prior to being evaluated and then finally...3 months later got a CT of the head. You pay for what you get...

    ADVERTISEMENT