Broadcasters step up during unbelievable times

In the News

What a tremendous job Wisconsin Broadcasters have done during the pandemic. I think it is safe to say virtually every radio and TV station participated in or produced their own community events to help residents.

Midwest Communications in central Wisconsin teamed up with WAOW-TV recognizing hometown heroes. Many stations assisted local businesses, some offering free advertising by encouraging businesses to call in to their morning shows to talk about what was going on at their business. That was just part of what WBEV and WXRO did in Dodge County. They also had a community dance party on March 28. Mid-West Family Broadcasting in Madison hosted a free webinar to help local businesses coping with the economic downturn. And of course, “Jump Around,” on Saturday afternoons had the entire state jumping in their driveways, patios, and yards. A brief respite from the times.

You will find a list of recent events and programs that Wisconsin broadcasters did to better their communities on page 7 and you can find the complete list here.

The Economics of Broadcasting

Unfortunately, many people were furloughed or terminated during the pandemic. Many of the broadcasters that I have talked with participated in the Payroll Protection Plan. If they had furloughed anybody, they have brought everybody back. Also, they all spoke very favorably about the PPP.

Hopefully, business will return to normal and there will be no new layoffs or terminations. When will the business return? It could be well into 2021. So many events have been canceled and will not return until next year, like fairs, concerts, and sporting events.

If you have ideas that have made up some of this lost revenue, please share with the WBA so we can pass them on to our members.

Chris Bernier, Chair, WBA Board of Directors