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Vietnam’s VOV holds World Radio Day conference

To celebrate World Radio Day, Voice of Vietnam held a wide-ranging conference about radio for VOV staff all across Vietnam.

The ABU’s Media Academy Head, Steve Ahern, was one of two international speakers. Steve is an internationally recognised expert on radio and was delighted to contribute to the conference. Last year, the ABU’s Head of Radio, Olya Boyar, was a speaker at the same event.

Asked to comment on the role of radio now, compared with other platforms, Steve outlined the strengths that radio still has in the modern media landscape:

  • The pictures are personal because we create them individually in our heads
  • Presenters are trusted friends and keep us company
  • Radio stimulates the imagination, it is the only media without a screen
  • We can do other things while listening
  • Radio has a fast response time
  • Listening to free to air radio is anonymous, you cannot be tracked like you can when using other connected devices
  • Radio has a robust transmission infrastructure and usually remains on air after other media fail, it is essential in emergencies

But of course radio is changing in the face of new media consumption patterns and modern devices.

“New forms of delivery such as phone apps, streams, smart speakers and digital radio all bring new opportunities for radio to expand its offerings to the audience,” he said.

Other elements to consider when developing strategies for radio to evolve into the future include ensuring that staff recognise content convergence and expand beyond audio to include pictures and text.

He also pointed out that content should recognise new consumption patterns on phones and smart devices and that content should adapt to provide additional benefits for users on these platforms.