RDE24: Radio audiences are ready for AI

At the start of Erin Callaghan, the Director of Enterprise Partnerships for Futuri Media‘s talk at RadioDays Europe 2024 she spoke of people’s reticence the year previously to acknowledge AI due to its potential to replace sales, copywriting and on air talent. This year is different, with Callaghan speaking to the importance of “live and local”, not necessarily “alive and local”.

Futuri offers a selection of Audio AI solutions including Topic Pulse, which can create show prep and talking points based on what is trending on social media and even can predict future trending topics. They also have Spot On, which can create a commercial, to the length you require, AI voiced, in literally seconds – even creating A & B options for the client. They can additionally make AI voiced current news and weather spots for dayparts that might otherwise have no presenter, and the option of having it “voiced”, using the technology, by the familiar news presenter of the station.

Of course that has ethical implications, and Callaghan also spoke to the lessons Futuri have learned through progressing the options they are rolling out to US radio stations. Top was transparency about any AI being used. But Futuri’s position is that AI must be incorporated into radio scheduling as a net cost saving option, rather than replacing people with Callaghan saying:

“It is possible, and essential, to come out swinging and for us to claim AI.”

Callaghan mentioned the statistic that the top US influencers on social media have a bigger audience than TV and radio stations, and how that shows that we are still invested in what people are saying and doing. From that she said that no day part should be a throwaway, ie devoid of local voices and current news and information, as that is our ongoing point of difference.

What AI can do is shorten creation time, take over repetitive non human tasks and provide an immediate and current audio solution when a station is unmanned. Radio stations and audiences are ready for that now.

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