Radiodays Europe is fast approaching and as their programme nears completion, radioinfo’s Wayne Stamm talked to Anders Held about this year’s event
radioinfo: So it has been a couple of years since everyone has been able to get to get together at Radiodays Europe. You’ve got to be fairly excited about the fact that we’re finally all getting together again.
Anders: Well, in fact, we actually had the postponed event in Lisbon in October, so that was kind of a one and a half year without going out in-person events.
This has been very strange, difficult times, but of course you coming out of Australia, you would not be able to attend in October last year, but now this year in May we are having the 2022 version of Radiodays Europe.
It is the 12th edition and it’s happening in Malmö Sweden, which is very close to Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark. So up in the Nordic countries. But a good time of the year to go up north.
I think definitely there is a desire to go back to live events, to meet in person, especially after these two years of just meeting people on the screen. So there is a desire and is also desire to travel to meet again internationally.
On the other hand, I think we will also see some hesitation still for travelling and there are still some hurdles for international travel depending on where you come from, where you’re travelling to.
There are absolutely no restrictions in place in Sweden or Denmark at this point, or Switzerland, where I was earlier this week, so it’s very safe and it’s very comfortable, kind of normal normality.
But I think we’re still see companies, organisations hesitant to send their send their staff, and there’s also been a lot of budget cuts in the in the industry over the last two years because of COVID and the crisis.
So we’ll see how it goes up. But it’s it will be Radiodays Europe event as usual, maybe slightly less participants for this year.
radioinfo: The programme is really starting to come together quite nicely, what are you seeing is the highlights for this year.
Anders: Well, I think in general, it’s not just about radio anymore, even if we are still called Radiodays Europe because it’s an established brand, but it’s actually about radio, audio and podcasting, and that will affect the whole programme in many ways.
So the first day, which is actually the Sunday, is kind of a half day. We are now putting on what we call some summits, which is more a longer portion, concentrating on one main topic.
There will be one all about podcasting and another all about how to reach the younger generation on whatever platform and a third one which is more regional orientated.
So that’s the new thing happening already on the first day wher you can go more in-depth and follow one of those summits.
For the two main days we still have the four different tracks, so it’s a lot to choose from.
There will be some some really high ranking people within the radio and podcasting industry coming. Grant Blackley from SCA is coming, Caroline Beasley from the US and Aled Haydn Jones from the BBC Radio One and people from the Bauer Group and we also have all have the top thinkers within the industry from different parts of the world.
And also quite interesting talking about audio and podcasts, not just radio, Sweden is the birthplace of Spotify, among other things, not just Abba, but also Acast and a lot of other innovations.
We will have a fireside chat with one of the top directors of Spotify, listening and discussing their strategy and what it means for how people listen, not just to the radio, but to music in general and what platforms people want to listen to, and what role they think they will be playing in the future.
So just to tap into that more audio side of things, which is extremely important to radio as well, and lots of things about technology, innovation, content development, journalism.
I mean, the whole thing about the war against truth that’s happening when there is that conflict we have now in Eastern Europe, in Ukraine. So we will of course address that as well.
radioinfo: Audio is becoming all encompassing and there’s a whole lot of cross-pollination, if you like. You know, we’ve got radio people who are doing podcasting, podcasting people who are doing radio, but the whole thing is moving together nicely
Anders: Absolutely. And I think radio is learning from the podcasting experience, not just what others are doing, but also, but being podcast producers themselves, the radio companies, both commercial and public broadcasters.
So, I mean, there is a lot of experience and knowledge I know, coming back into how we do radio, and that’s very I think that’s very healthy, and a way to develop the experience for listeners. People are not just doing one thing, not just listening to radio and worst case, they might never be listening to radio, but there actually many touch points and we should be aware of that and have an approach to the listener that, you know, it’s always comfortable, depending whether it’s on one platform or another at one time or another.
It’s a new challenge in a way…it’s not just this is radio, this is talk radio, or music radio or this is podcasting.
radioinfo: The dates for this year’s event are the 15 – 17 May 2022 in Malmö Sweden, and this is a hybrid event isn’t it?
Anders: Yes, right, it is a hybrid event. I think hybrid is here to stay, and so we will offer that opportunity so then you can attend almost everything online as well if you are not able to travel.
For those that do travel to get the personal experience of going to a live event, we are trying to enhance that as well because, while I think people will attend fewer in-person events, if you go, it has to be a really genuine experience, a good meeting point for people and a good experience in total.
One of the things we will bring in Radiodays, of course, are some of the great contemporary artists that Sweden has actually also been the foster ground for breeding. Sweden is one of the biggest music export nations in the world in contemporary music and we’ll bring some of those as well. So there will be a lot of that in Malmö.