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Feeling Shifty posted on June 29th, 2020

Feeling Shifty, Anyone?

By Brian Wheeler

Most MusicMaster users are familiar with the shift rotation option, found under the Hour Rotation rules in the MusicMaster rule tree. The traditional use of the shift rotation rule is to establish what the shifts are for your database and set up a suitable shift rotation setting, if that’s a protection you wish to activate.

In the spirit of thinking outside the box, we’re going to address a couple of thoughts you may not have entertained when using shift rotation. For example, do you really have to use your actual shift parameters when considering shift rotation? The answer is, No. You can use the shift rotation rule to protect in ranges that do not reflect the actual on-air shifts you currently maintain. In this grid, you’ll see several shifts, none of which are actual shifts for the station in question. Here we are simply using the shift rotation to ensure MusicMaster is finding a different part of the day to play a song.

Another trick I’ve shared with my clients is the drive time shift protection. It’s certainly true that most listeners are creatures of habit. They have their routines and one of the biggest parts of a radio listener’s routine is their commute to and from work. If you serve a listening area that has an appreciable drive time, you can consider creating a daypart that covers both drivetime shifts. As a listener, I appreciate not hearing the same songs I heard coming home from work as I did driving to work earlier that day.

You can take steps to ensure some exclusivity by establishing a drive time shift and requiring those songs stay out of the drive time if they just appeared in one recently. That might look something like this:

As you can see, the 7 and 8am hours Monday-Friday share the same shift number as the afternoon drive window of 4 and 5pm. The idea is to ensure those songs hit other dayparts before they hit that drive time window again.

What are other creative ways you’ve used shift rotation rules to your advantage? We’d love to hear your ideas! As always, if you have any further questions regarding this or any other hour rotation settings, reach out to your MusicMaster Scheduling Consultant.