NYF Open Mic: Radio on Radio with Matt Lissack

Radio on Radio features New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards Grand Jury’s insights and observations on the transformation taking place in the industry today, their opinions on the importance of free speech, their thoughts on creating their dream show and where imagination comes into play.

Matt Lissack 97.4 /103.2 Capital FM

NYF’s Grand Jury of award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are actively involved in creating the innovative radio programs heard on radio today. Who better to share their insider information on the wonderful world of radio than this respected group of prominent industry thought leaders?

This week NYF’s Radio on Radio will explore the evolution taking place in the world of radio with 2017 Grand Jury member, Matt Lissack, Presenter, for Capital Breakfast on 97.4/103.2 Capital FM.

Matt started his career on stations, such as: South Hams Radio, Plymouth Sound and Gemini FM. During the time he was hosting mid-mornings on Plymouth Sound,  and GWR FM snapped him up.

His career has also seen him present programmes on Capital 95.8 in London and The Capital Network – broadcasting to many major radio markets such as: London, Birmingham and Manchester. His show has won him the title of ‘Best Breakfast Show’ at the Arqiva Radio Awards, both in 2014 and 2016.

Keep reading to find out more about Matt’s thoughts on the challenges for radio programmers, the shift in online/video content in radio,  his dream show to create and the art of storytelling on radio.

New York Festivals: How will radio transform in the coming years? What is the biggest shift you’ve noticed this past year?

Matt Lissack: We’ve seen a huge shift in digital strategies over the last few years.  I think the use of social media, online video content and online advertising will grow and become radio’s ‘bread and butter’.  Whilst we’ll never forget what radio has always been about – entertainment for the ears – I think that radio will use visuals to compliment content much more in the years to come.  After all, online platforms are becoming where our audience spends much more of its time, so why miss out on the opportunity to engage with them this way?! The challenge for programmers now though is to coach new talent to remember that, despite these additional visual platforms, ‘theatre of the mind’ in radio has and will always be key.

I’m convinced in-car wifi will be a radio game changer in the not too distant future too!

New York Festivals: Is there a revolution going on today in radio content?

Matt Lissack: We’re seeing a huge shift in online/video content to complement radio at the moment.  Groups are heavily investing in the tech to deliver this to our audience. We’ve noticed what the audience wants and we’re delivering it to them.  Take Capital London, for example – there’s been some heavy investment recently on a studio refurb. The result is fantastic – a radio studio that rivals some TV studios!

New York Festivals: What would be your dream show to create, budget no object?

Matt Lissack: OK, if I had a radio station to play with and I could do anything with it, I’d firstly look at getting the best talent on.  For me, content is why I listen to radio.  Sure, music is a massive part of our business, but if I want a USP over services like Apple Music or Spotify, I’ll need more than a good song to keep me listening for longer. If I want funny and engaging content to lift me up, emotionally affect me and tell my friends about, radio wins every time.  For that reason, I’d get my cheque book out and hire Kyle and Jackie O from Sydney’s KIIS.  I listen most days from the UK and they are just simply the best at breakfast radio – not to mention what they’ve done for that radio station’s audience reach since moving from 2DAY FM! I’m just not sure my old boss (now ARN Group Programme Director) Duncan Campbell would allow me to take them off him!

Kyle and Jackie O from Sydney’s KIIS

New York Festivals: Audio landscapes, theater of the mind, how does imagination come into play?

Matt Lissack: Storytelling on radio is an art. As a species, humans respond to emotions and pictures much better than just words on their own. Theatre of the mind is crucial when it comes to engaging a radio audience because they have no pictures to see, just audio to listen to.  I try to bring stories to life as much as possible when talking about them.  What did I see? What did I smell? What did I feel? We’re taking the listener on that journey with us.  The more they can picture elements of your story, the more they’re going to engage with it and relate to it (and most importantly, you as a personality).

When it comes to theatre of the mind, there’s a big difference between “I went to watch the football in the freezing cold last night” to “so there I was, in my huge duffle coat, watching the football in the freezing cold stands, with my hands wrapped around a steaming cup of coffee to keep me warm.”

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Join New York Festivals Monday, June 19, 2017 as we honor the World’s Best Radio Programs at an awards ceremony at in New York City. To view the 2016 World’s Best Radio Program Ceremony Gala, please visit: http://www.newyorkfestivals.com/media/rp/2016/

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