Think Tank Express: Cumulus needs a lesson in customer relations


Once again, Cumulus is clueless on customer service

Usually on this blog, yours truly often laments the state of Chicago radio, with some of the stations run by clueless idiots who make managers at your local Arby’s more competent by comparison.

But when it involves Cumulus… no market – large or small – is safe.

Take what happened last week at a active rock station Cumulus owns in Saginaw, Mich. WKQZ-FM (branded as Z93) let twenty-year veteran Joe Volk of The Joe And The Poorboy Morning Show go on Friday without any explanation, according to On Monday and Tuesday of this week, the “Poorboy” (Adam Schilling) hosted solo, saying Monday the departure of Volk “were beyond circumstances beyond his control”. Volk declined to comment.

Saginaw is part of the overall Flint-Saginaw-Bay City DMA, with Cumulus tied with Alpha Media for the most radio stations in the market at four each.

Understandably, fans of the show were upset and wanted an explanation on what went down. WKQZ didn’t comment on the matter, but someone from the station did respond to listeners’ questions on Facebook – in the most perhaps asinine way possible. As documented by Radio Insight, this is what transpired:

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As you can see, one of those who asked was reportedly a station advertiser.

Who’s controlling the Facebook account? A 13-year old? While the station does have a right to reserve comment on personnel matters, acting like an ass toward those asking what’s going on isn’t beneficial. If the social media manager of my station pulled such crap, they would be unemployed faster than former Bears coach Marc Trestman (who would actually be an improvement over current Cumulus management.)

But then again, this is Cumulus we’re talking about – a company run into the ground by former CEOs John and Lew Dickey and continues to be by new management. This is the same company who rigged a morning show contest last year so past-his-prime jackass Mancow Mueller can be employed again this time via The Loop (WLUP-FM), a shitty, irrelevant past-its-prime classic rock station. Other past-their-prime acts employed by Cumulus locally include Steve Dahl and Jonathan Brandmeier.

Recently, the Cumulus cluster moved into state-of-the-art, renovated studios at NBC Tower in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. Interesting how a near-bankrupt company with NO MONEY can pull off such an effort. Are taxpayers footing the bill?

And speaking of efforts, how about Cumulus attempt to consolidate country music stations under NASH-FM? They should really drop the FM part of its name and just add the letters IT.

And let’s not forget their employment of the biggest asshole of them all, former WLS boss Jan Jeffries, a moron who wouldn’t know how to treat people even if his life depended on it.

So no wonder Cumulus employs a jackass to handle customer service in Saginaw. Their executives and much of their on-air personnel are ones. Being “rude and unprofessional” is the Cumulus way.

And you wonder why their stock is worth less than a Mars bar.