On the front line with radio

by Justin Williams

On the front line with radio

Dotsy Klei

October 31, 2017

“We all have our challenges,” Dotsy Klei told Putnam Rotary today. She has witnessed a multitude of changes in a short time with electronic media.

“We don’t have to stay up until 11:00 o’clock any more to watch the news. It’s on our phone. We don’t wait until 11:00 o’clock to learn the score. We can find it on line.

“Look at car dealers now: You went to a dealership. You walked around. You talked to them. You kicked the tires.

“Now you go online. You look it up and you figure, ‘This is what I want.’ You see this guy’s got this price and this guy’s got this price. And then you go.

“If you’re a car dealer today and someone walks on your lot, you’ve really got to do something wrong to mess that up.

“They come in knowing what they want to buy.

“In media, it’s really challenging to reach people and to cut through the clutter. We have all these channels — whether its television or radio or digital — and all these places to get our information. And we really have to strain and stretch and demand that they pay attention.

“That’s what I do to get people to sell their product. I want to get people to come to the car dealership. I want people to come to your lawn service. I want to get people to come to your insurance company. How do I cut through all that clutter?

It’s still very effective,” she said. We’re just struggling with our time.”

Klei is General Manager for the West Virginia radio cluster for LM Communications.

“I have six radio stations,” she continued. “I go from Summersville over to Grayson, up to Parkersburg down to Chapmanville. I can promote it.

“‘You use social media? You use Facebook?’

“Yes, I’m going to use Facebook. But you can’t put it out there on the digital spectrum and expect everyone to find it. You have to tell everybody that it’s there.

“Radio has had its ups and downs,” she said. You had AM and then FM. And then satellite radio. They were never going to have commercials, and now there’re commercials all the time.

“They said a few years ago that satellite was going to kill [local] radio. But it didn’t.

“I have a radio station at 1410 [AM]. It’s got a good signal, and I have a lot of people listening to it.

“AM is very good for sports and news. A lot of young people aren’t going to 1410 [WSCW AM] and listen for music. What do you format? What do you put out there?

“I’m going to promote Mix [WMXE 100.9 FM] or Rock 105 [WJLC FM], because that’s where my return is. That’s where people advertize.


“We are out in front of the people,” she said. “There’s a hurricane and your cable goes out. Television is tied to your cable.”

Electricity is out. Telephone service is interrupted. You can get radio in your car.

Radio Ink magazine did a survey of stations in the United States. There was an online poll, and WKLC [Rock 105] finished 13th in the country. For Charleston, that’s a big deal. We have Detroit, Miami, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Kansas City — and we finished 13th.”

In addition to popular listening, Klei may be keeping up with the media revolution through a focus on local news and local community outreach.

An upcoming outreach event sponsored by LM Communications includes a dance on Veterans Day, Saturday November 11th, at the Nitro Moose Lodge.

The celebration “In Honor of Our Veterans,” recognizes the centennial year of the Armistice at the end of World War One, with which Nitro was closely associated.

Dress for the dance is casual, but the disk jockeys will be in formal attire. To which Rotarian Dave Alan Gilpin responded, to audience laughter and agreement, “They might as well do my funeral then, because it’s as good as I’m ever going to look!”

There will be a live band for the dance and several prizes, including a trip for two to Hawaii.

And all proceeds from the dance will go for the Roark Sullivan Lifeway Center for veterans.


President Cyndee Adkins receives a souvenir banner from Rotarian Bill Goode for the Charleston Rotary. Shown (l to r) are Adkins, Goode, with guests Stephanie Taylor (Yeager Insurance) and Rotarian Que Stephens (St. Albans Rotary).

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Justin Williams

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