Earlier today, Clear Channel announced it was renaming its radio division as “Clear Channel Media & Entertainment“. While not surprising to see the company branch out, it is that it took this long.
At this point the radio stations are assets to promote Clear Channel’s other ventures, whether it be the IHeartRadio app (note that they have trimmed the domain name to just IHeart.com) or their music festival. The move comes just days after Clear Channel had a major presence a the Consumer Electronics Show, where the IHeartRadio app was announced for addition in additional automotive entertainment systems.
Clear Channel is now a media content creator and distributor. Right now their focus is on audio content, but online distribution is blurring the lines between forms of media. Clear Channel can now use its radio stations, apps, and other distribution methods to market and promote content of any kind. How long until we see some of its bigger personalities in video content for the company?
This is the world we live in. While it would be nice to see the smaller market radio stations freed and allowed to increase their local output while maintaining profitability, that is not going to happen. It may down the line as Clear Channel figures out whether it even needs the transmitters anymore. Building content around audio is still radio and the business needs a leader like Clear Channel to pave the way for others.