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Armen Williams Announces Upcoming Departure From Sports Radio 610

“Williams is expected to spend the month or so wrapping up his duties with 610.”

Jason Barrett

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An unexpected change is on the horizon in Houston. Sports Radio 610 program director Armen Williams has announced he’ll be leaving the radio station to pursue interests outside of radio.

Since arriving in town in January 2019, Williams has led 610 to consistent ratings success. That followed a strong run in Denver where Williams helped 104.3 The Fan perform at an elite level. Williams’ career also includes stops in Albany, NY with 104.5 ESPN and 105.3 The Fan in Dallas.

In a note confirming his exit, Williams said “Our industry has deeply impacted my life, and I do believe in the innovative places that Audacy and others are taking it. This is an opportunity to try something different, outside of media, and make it on my own as a business owner. With prayerful consideration, now is the time that I take this risk. For the first time in 25 years, I will be a listener, consuming the product on the other side.”

Williams continued, “I will forever be thankful for the experiences and friendships that this industry has provided my family and I. There’s a long list of people who have helped me achieve my dreams that have brought me to where I am today, and for them I will forever remember and try to pay it forward. I have immense gratitude for Sarah Frazier, who brought me back to my home state of Texas and believed in me enough to run her heritage brand, SportsRadio 610. It’s because of her that Audacy Houston has an incredibly tight-knit group that works hard for each other. I will miss working alongside this team of talented individuals to whom I care for deeply.”

Williams is expected to spend the month or so wrapping up his duties with 610. The station will now begin searching for its next program director to lead the brand forward.

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Sports Radio News

What Can the iPhone Teach us About the Future of Radio Sales?

“Jobs gave a masterclass in salesmanship. He didn’t just sell a product; he sold a vision of the future.”

Jeff Caves

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Steve Jobs Original iPhone
Courtesy: AP Photo

Have you ever tried to sell a new show, promotion, or event out of the box? Have you ever done it before a skeptical buyer looking for the negatives in what you are selling? Read on. 

In 2007, smartphones could access the internet, type messages, and still act like a phone. Many of us used Blackberries and carried iPods for music. It was a little clunky, but the combination worked. 

One person thought to change the world forever and combine all this technology into one device. His pitch sold us on ditching multiple devices. He explained why Nokia phones were clunky and hard to hear and the expensive Blackberry had no integrated camera or audio player. It was also horrible for lefties. 

Sixteen years ago, he sold a picture of a world where his smartphone would simplify life and change how we communicated, worked, and played. The audience he was presenting to was in Silicon Valley and was loaded with techies, journalists, industry insiders, and hustlers. He told a compelling story. He didn’t give some lackluster demo. He showed off how sleek the product was, its intuitive touch-based surface, and how easily it could surf the web. He even called a person in the audience and showed off the quality of the phone with an impromptu call. The audience roared with laughter. 

He knew he was getting the audience to invest in the product emotionally. He spoke about how his company had reinvented the phone, emphasizing their commitment to design and innovation. He created a sense of anticipation and excitement that captured the room. As he reached the climax of his presentation, he uttered the now-famous words, “Today, we are going to reinvent the phone.” 

The audience erupted in applause and the anticipation was everywhere in the room. Then, Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone, and the crowd was in awe. 

More than 1 billion consumers currently use iPhones. 

Jobs gave a masterclass in salesmanship. He didn’t just sell a product; he sold a vision of the future. He made people believe they needed something they didn’t even know they wanted. It all started with Jobs’ ability to sell innovation like no one else. If you are still on the fence about selling the future of radio- get on board the digital train. Start selling the future of radio and make money right alongside it. Digital revenue is skyrocketing. Revenues will increase by 6.5% in 2023, 6% in 2024 and over 5% per year from 2025 until 2028. So, for every $10,000 of digital you sold in 2022, you will sell $13,720 in 2028. That’s a 37% jump in 5 years. The future is now! Get on The Energy Bus for Digital Radio sales. Sell the future. 

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Sports Radio News

Matt Jones Places Kentucky’s 1st Legal Bet on Wildcats to Win NCAA Tournament

“I think it’s going to be great for the state and give us money into the state, rather than giving it over to the other states that are around us.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Matt Jones
Courtesy: Simon & Schuster

Online sports betting is now officially live in Kentucky, and Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones had the honors of placing one of the first legal wagers in the commonwealth on Thursday.

Jones hosted his show from The Mint Gaming Hall in Williamsburg where he bet $100 on the University of Kentucky winning the 2024 college basketball national championship.

He told WYMT-TV that now that online betting is live, Kentuckians everywhere can get in on the fun of having an added incentive to watch games.

“It’ll be added revenue for the state and it’s something fun for people when they want to watch games outside of just a Kentucky game that they’re interested in,” he said. “And the fact that you can do it from your phone makes it easy.”

Up until Thursday, betting was legal in neighboring states Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois.

Jones added that legal betting in Kentucky keeps that money within state borders.

“I think it’s going to be great for the state and give us money into the state, rather than giving it over to the other states that are around us,” he said.

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Toronto Blue Jays to allow Radio Crew to Travel to Road Playoff Games

“Wagner had been calling road games for the Blue Jays remotely all season.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Toronto Blue Jays Vintage Logo

The Toronto Blue Jays aren’t officially back to the postseason yet, but by weekend’s end Toronto will know whether or not they’re headed to either Tampa or Minnesota for the wild card round. When the Jays do hit the road for October baseball, the team’s radio crew will also be making the trip.

The Toronto Sun reported on Thursday that allowing radio play-by-play voice Ben Wagner and analyst Chris Leroux to travel for the best of three series is part of Sportsnet’s all-in approach to the playoffs.

Wagner had been calling road games for the Blue Jays remotely all season. Grounding the radio broadcast crews was originally a measure taken due to COVID restrictions and the U.S./Canada border being closed during the pandemic. The team abandoned radio broadcasts of games in the shortened 2020 season and for more than half the 2021 season.

But since Wagner was brought back, Sportsnet has continued to keep him calling road games from a Toronto-based studio. The company has viewed it as a cost-cutting measure.

The Blue Jays crew isn’t the only one that was held back from road games. Earlier this year the Toronto Maple Leafs radio crew didn’t travel with the team for its first round Stanley Cup playoff series. It wasn’t until a mistake was made in the call of the series-clinching goal that the company decided to send Joe Bowen and Jim Ralph on the road for the second round.

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