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WNYC Launches #Smartbinge Campaign

New campaign highlights digital listenership to build a national brand for binge-listening

New York public radio station WNYC(FM) has launched a new digital, mobile and social media-driven campaign designed to further the growth of its digital listenership. Under the tagline #smartbinge, the campaign shines a light on how “bingeable” audio content is in the smartphone era.

“The tagline is, of course, a cheeky reference to and point of difference from the much-buzzed- about trend of TV bingeing,” said Noreen O’Loughlin, WNYC’s vice president of integrated marketing.

WNYC was among the first mainstream media organizations to embrace podcasting. Since 2004, WNYC’s originals like “Radiolab” and “Freakonomics Radio” have placed in the top 5 of the iTunes Podcast charts.

WNYC says that since the October 2013 release of its iPhone app, overall reach of its content has grown to places far from the station’s Big Apple homebase, with downloads for “Radiolab” and “Freakonomics Radio” each scoring averaging 3.5–5 million monthly. Eighty percent of this listening is from the archives of past episodes. WNYC’s digital listenership has been furthered with the March 2014 addition of the “Discover” feature to its app, a recommendation-based, on-demand service through which listeners can create playlists built upon their interests and the time they have and culled from WNYC, NPR, APM and other public radio producers, as well as third-party podcasts. Once a” Discover” playlist is created and downloaded, it is available for listening anytime, anywhere.

The primary focus of the campaign is to activate potential listeners by driving them to an interactive landing page at The page features sample shows and direct links to subscribe to podcasts and to download the WNYC app and partner apps featuring WNYC content. There will also be a live feed for the companion hashtag #smartbinge. WNYC will also herald the launch with messaging on its owned platforms, including on-air mentions, Web banners on and social media messaging from its personalities.

The paid advertising for the campaign will focus on digital, mobile and social media buys, geo-targeted to major metro areas and behaviors of likely listeners. That includes Facebook advertising, social discovery, hypertargeted mobile display advertising (on affinity websites and apps), paid search, social narrowcasting and influencer marketing through blogger networks.

In July 2014, WNYC will release “how-to smartbinge” videos from comedian Eugene Mirman, a WNYC fan known for his standup and acting. He will also record some 30-second promo spots to air on WNYC.

WNYC’s #smartbinge campaign was created with support from Cataldi Public Relations and Eyeball.