Salem Communications has expanded its “Answer” Conservative Talk brand to seven additional markets.
The new stations making the transition to the brand are 860 WGUL Tampa, 920 WGKA Atlanta, 930 WLSS Sarasota, 970 WGTK Louisville, 1170 KCBQ San Diego, 1460 KZNT Colorado Springs, and 1590 KLFE Seattle. Of the 26 Conservative Talk stations operated by Salem, 19 now use the Answer branding.
Salem Communications Corporation (NASDAQ: SALM) announced that today it is converting 7 more of its News Talk stations to the Answer. It will bring the number to 20 Answer branded stations owned by Salem around the country.
Salem began using the Answer branding for AM 970 WNYM, its News Talker in New York City in April of 2012. The name caught on, and soon Salem stations in LA, Dallas, and Chicago had joined the crowd. “We discovered that our listeners are information seekers, always craving the answer to every possible question, from why am I stuck in Traffic to who won the November election,” said Salem Senior VP of Spoken Word Formats Phil Boyce. “This branding allows our stations to cut through in markets where they are competing with more established stations that only need their call letters as a brand. We needed something more, and this works,” said Boyce.
Boyce added that while some of Salem’s competitors have begun to shift away from either politics or hard news in favor of more fluff, his stations have stayed true to the course and many of them benefited in the fall with better audience numbers. In New York, where Salem completely re-vamped its lineup at the start of the year, online listening is up over 100%. “Shows like Piscopo, Gambling, and Walsh, added to the already strong Salem national lineup, resulted in huge audience gains. Other Salem stations also saw very strong performances,” according to Boyce.
“I have said this before, and nothing has emerged to change my mind,” said Boyce. “The NewsTalk format is alive and well, and if 2015 is anything like the past year, this will be another very strong year for the Salem stations that stick with this simple principle: give listeners what they want.”