Computerized INFO DELIVERY
To The Rescue
How much of the time you spend on the phone with record/promotion people is "quality time"? In other words, what percentage of time is devoted to the actual exchange of useful information, which helps you make musical selections for your station?
There's been a great deal of concern aver the increasing amount of time MDs are spending on the phone - many PD's and GM's think that time might be better spent in station matters. While you don't want to cut back truly valuable calls, perhaps there is a way to pare the volume. Many promotion people make two calls to stations each week. One is to promote record, the second is to obtain the latest data. also known as "tracking."
One step toward the elimination of some phone clutter has been taken by KTPK/ Topeka PD Jim Gibb. Along with a local computer store, he's established a computer bulletin board, which contains both his weekly rotations and chart numbers. Using his home computer each week, Jim puts the pertinent music information on a disk and takes it to Thoroughbred Computers of Topeka.
They load it into a bulletin board run by a Commodore 64 computer, which is accessible to record and promotion people who have been assigned a password and user ID number. Anybody with a computer can call and get the desired data in about two and a half minutes. (Most people spend longer than that on hold waiting for the MD.)
"We currently have about 20 people signed up to use the service," said Jim. "Ten Or so are calling on a weekly basis, while many more have been waiting for us to be able to deliver the information at 1200 BAUD in addition to 300 BAUD. That's something we're now able to do."
Explaining why he went to a computer system. Jim said, "I was spending too much time giving out rotations and numbers when I should have been talking about record and artist information. I want to know how accords are doing in other markets and the back-grounds of new artists. By having my data available on computer, I can take more calls that really mean something.
"A lot of record people are tracking 5-10 or more records. You can see how much time that means on the phone to just basically read them a list. This also saves them time. They can call and get the list without going through a secretary or waiting for me to complete another call or two."
To thank the computer store for its cooperation and assistance, Jim supplies the store with public access information. This is a service the store can provide to people calling the bulletin board. He lists the stations top 20 to assist consumer purchasing, puts up concert information. and also writes album reviews. This is for public use - anyone with a computer can call up the information. The music data, however, is only accessible to record/ promotion people with the correct code.
This system is actually a high-tech version of putting your station list an a code-a-phone and having promoters call a special number. 'With so many stations now using computers, Jim's idea is certainly within the capabilities of most stations. It's also the future. If you want information on how to set this up, call Jim Gibb at (913) 234-2627. Those who want to get the data should contact Jim at the same number for a password and ID code.
If you have found other uses for your computer, especially with regard to information dissemination, please let me know and I'll pass it along.
Friday August 2, 1985