The main challenge with the launch of Karson & Kennedy? Four words: Matty in the Morning, the longtime dominant market leader for morning show listening on KISS. How do we take him on, given his success? The second challenge was having patience, since Boston listeners are famous for being slow to accept something new.
We focused on creating disparity between Matty’s show and ours. We developed the plot “Real Life, Real Friends, Real Fun.” Our goal was to position ourselves as younger and with a cast of characters who actually liked one another. This also helped differentiate us from the previous morning show on MIX with John Lander. We also developed a benchmark called “Can’t Beat Kennedy” as our effort to both define her and create a different way of doing pop culture content.
“Can’t Beat Kennedy” has become iconic (check out the audio clip further down). While the show’s content is very relatable, this feature drove initial interest in the program and remains a popular staple today. As for wooing Boston listeners, the process involved taking many deep breaths in an effort to not overreact to the bumps felt along the way. Today, over eleven years later, this show is consistently #2 in P25-54 and W25-54 in the market.
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from Karson & Kennedy
“If you want a hit record, you hire Clive Davis. If you want to win college football games, you hire Nick Saban. If you want a winning morning show, you hire Steve Reynolds. Steve has become a friend and a mentor who continues to push our show to new levels of creativity and ratings success.”
“My experience with Steve has been nothing short of amazing. As a brand new show in a market bigger than I ever thought I would work in, Steve was able to give us the tools and the understanding to launch the show in the best possible light. In this PPM world, expectations have changed, and Steve is right there to help you decipher what is and isn’t important and simply allow you to do good radio. Steve has become not only our first call when we are in need of an ear, but someone I consider a friend. We have an open line of communication and he is the first to jump in if we need a mediator. He is the cooler head that prevails, the wiser man who can help you when you are at an impasse with a PD and need a third opinion, and always the guy in your corner. Simply put, without Steve, I don’t believe we would be 1/8th as successful as we are now.”
“Steve has helped evolve our content strategy over his time with us, continuing to hear the show as a listener. His outsider perspective keeps us honest to the strategy while continuing to challenge our team in ways that helps them grow to deepen the relationship with the audience so their loyalty gets them addicted to our cast and they return every day so our ratings go up.”
AC Format Captain Entercom