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May 06, 2009

Pledge Week for Blog Comments Begins May 11th

I'm an National Public Radio Geek. I've answered phones at pledge drives. I've got the long-sleeve T-shirts and tchotchkes from years past. I've got the national map of NPR stations so that I can find NPR when I travel. In truth, it's been a long time since any radio of mine has been above 91.5 on the FM spectrum.

NPR pledge weekI believe that besides broadcasting, the thing NPR does best is fundraising via NPR pledge week. I believe this gets their best efforts because it's how they survive from year to year. They're superb fundraisers.

I admire NPR's Pledge Weeks and the way they drive NPR's lifeblood: membership. My blog needs lifeblood, too, but the blog needs Comments. Your Blogger depends on comments and feedback just like NPR depends on local listener support. I've made a study of Pledge Week.

They flatter and flirt, schmooze and noodge, hint that you're a cut above, promise a gift that cements your self-image - but we've got to get ten calls or clicks before the top of the hour, please call or pledge online, yada yada yada. They do it in a way that makes you happy to come back for more.

This article lists NPR's Top Ten Fundraising Techniques. I think their most effective technique is holding the content hostage. We'd like to get back to our normal programming, but first we need to get just six calls on the phone or web... This is brilliant (and time tested). You've heard it before: give me what I want, or you're cut off.

Lest you take me wrong, let me restate: I support Public Radio. I used to pledge to WDUQ at 90.5. On Saturday mornings, driving home from the midnight shift, I'd listen to The Commonwealth Club of California, and more times than not I'd have the "driveway moment" of sitting in my car and listening to the show, when I should be getting into bed after the mid.

The last few years I've supported WYEP at 91.3. My favorite YEP show is the Soul Show on Saturday, the hosts and music are excellent. I love "My 15 Minutes" weekday mornings. I admit I'm still grieving the loss of Dinah Denmark on Saturday mornings, although the replacement is great radio too. I seek out Fiona Ritchey. Say it loud: I'm an NPR Geek and I'm proud.

I'm an admirer. I think my blogging can learn from NPR's fundraising.

I'm having a WWVB Blog Pledge Week next week. I'm not fundraising, though - I'm seeking your comments. Starting Monday May 11th, I'm going to open with an intro of a story, then ask for some Comments. If I get a few, I'm going to begin the story, but I may need to abandon our local programming to garner a few more pledges/comments. We don't want to, but that's what it takes to keep this blog on the web. We know you understand.

I know the blogosphere's been there for you, and now it's time for you to do your part. We'll have some Nina Blogoburgh Tote Bags, or something virtually similar.

You don't have to wait for Pledge Week to make your pledge/comments. You can make your comments right now, at the bottom of this blog post. Every pledge/comment we get now, reduces the duration of our pledge drive and helps us ensure the availability of the programming that you value so much.

Remember, the Burgh Blogosphere is made possible by people like you. Our pledge volunteers are standing by at Blog Central assist you with your Comments. Won't you make a difference, today?

Please enter your Comments using the link below.

And if you'd really like to support local NPR, here's the Join/Membership links - - -
Pledge to WDUQ, 90.5          Pledge to WYEP, 91.3         Pledge to WQED, 89.3


Mark said...

I commented six months ago. I thought my comments were good for one year, and now I have to endure another pledge week?!!

Anonymous said...

Where's my tote bag? lol

If you really want people to comment you should offer stainless steel coffee mugs, people go nuts over those.

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