Talkers magazine reports conservative talk radio host Laura Ingraham has signed a new contract with Norm Pattiz' Courtside Entertainment and digital arm, Launchpad Digital Media:
Ingraham’s program will emanate from flagship WTNT, Washington, DC. Her three-hour talk radio show will return to the air on January 2, presumably in the same 9:00 am to 12:00 noon ET time slot. She will also distribute content digitally via Pattiz’s Launchpad Digital Media, a division of Courtside Entertainment Group. Launchpad will digitally stream the live three-hour program online, make it available as an on-demand podcast, and feature new original content from Ingraham’s own Dream in My Head Productions. The Laura Ingraham show will be produced by Dream in My Head Productions with ad representation managed by Courtside. Ingraham states, “I’m thrilled to partner with Norm Pattiz, who helped guide my show after its initial launch in 2001. I am humbled by the outpouring of affection from my listeners over the past few weeks. Courtside’s commitment to our team, our audience, and stations will broaden the national reach of the Laura Ingraham show to new radio markets. The exciting collaboration with Launchpad gives us the opportunity to establish a powerful digital presence — a place where our audience can always find their ‘Healthy Radio Addiction’ on demand. Via Dream in My Head Productions, my team and I are creating original digital programming and new television and multi-media content. I look forward to resuming the conversation with the greatest audience in radio and those who have never listened before — making news, creating laughs, and talking about the things that really matter. People need more laughter and fewer lectures; more fresh insights and fewer stale talking points.” On the deal with Ingraham, Pattiz says, “The wait is over. The most-listened-to woman in political talk is returning to the national airwaves and is making a major move into the on-demand digital space. Laura Ingraham is one of the most popular and well-known personalities in America today. Recognizing the rapidly growing demand for great on-demand digital content, we are honored that Laura has chosen Launchpad to share her wit and wisdom with the widening online audience. Launchpad is currently delivering over 90 million downloads per month, and we are excited to continue adding powerful radio personas like Laura Ingraham to the expanding roster of Launchpad podcast offerings.”
The extra emphasis on the digital component, including on-demand podcasts and original content, is a clear sign of the changing face of talk radio and the desire for syndicators to maximize revenues in the digital realm. Industry insiders say it might be challenging for Ingraham's show to gain clearance in major markets since Courtside, like Ingraham's prior syndicator Talk Radio Network, does not own any stations. Ingraham had been with Talk Radio Network for nine years, and her show was carried on 300 stations.