Hubbard stations have rolled out a rewards program that unlocks prizes when digital audiences hit listening milestones.


Hubbard’s listeners rewards program has increased traffic to the group’s individual radio stations’ streams and apps

Propelling terrestrial radio into the digital world, Hubbard Radio has launched a series of initiatives aimed at getting listeners to tune into the group’s stations online and via mobile apps and rewarding them to do so.

Hubbard, which has 30 stations in eight markets from Seattle to Washington, has rolled out contests and prizes that unlock when audiences hit listening milestones on the stations’ live streams online. An hour of listening in a single day, for instance, could get you a ticket to a movie, whereas five hours may mean lunch at Subway on Hubbard’s dime. Spend 99 hours streaming over the course of a month and you could be the proud owner of an Amazon Echo Show.

“This simple concept, which is complicated to execute, has helped fuel phenomenal growth on our online streams,” said Jeremy Sinon, Hubbard Radio’s vice president of Digital Strategy.

Hubbard also is using increasingly popular voice skills to further its rewards program. Amazon Alexa users can enter to win prizes by installing Hubbard stations’ Alexa offerings and simply say, “Alexa ask [station name] to enter me to win.”

The rewards program is part of the group’s larger effort to keep its stations in front of and accessible to listeners at a time when traditional radio is facing stiff competition from streaming platforms. Stations are encouraging listeners to download station apps by promoting them as a platform for podcasts, contests and two-way engagements as well as live streams. “I think the apps will become an ecosystem of their own for our brands,” said Greg Strassell, senior vice president of Programming.

Next up is furthering Hubbard’s play on connected devices, a major opportunity to grow in-home listening. The group’s stations already are teaching listeners to use smart speakers through videos on their websites.