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Tuesday, 15 March 2016:  Smile 90.4FM celebrates a year under the leadership of Lois O’Brien as MD of Cape Town’s fastest growing radio station.

During her tenure, the station has seen a substantial increase in sales, listener growth of 100%+ year-on-year, plus a huge rise in social engagement (over 56% of the station’s audience engages with them on Facebook), listener loyalty and traffic online, mainly due to the great station on-air product, together with a huge increase in Marketing and Events.

In light of these achievements we wanted to delve deeper into what drives this strong woman.Lois started in advertising in Johannesburg, before moving to Cape Town with her family to work in publishing, managing various divisions and portfolios during her time there.  She also studied and obtained her MBA while in publishing, following which she launched her 3rd career working in radio; resulting in where she is today.

Not only a hard worker and career enthusiast, Lois is a keen and enthusiastic runner, gardener and reader, and loves to socialise with friends and family.

“My business expertise and experience has enabled me to, whilst relatively new to broadcasting, provide structure, guidance and mentorship to Smile 90.4FM,” says Lois.  “My focus has been on providing clear direction and a succinct business strategy with clear deliverables and deadlines, making it easier and more achievable for each team to reach their goals and objectives.”

Lois lists as the highlights of her past year at the station the acceleration of marketing and on-air activities including the very successful Bobby and Lindy Cash Call Back competition where cash prizes to the value of over R200k were given away, including one prize of R90 400 to a deserving listener.  This successful campaign achieved 1.07 entries per listener and 24% unique entries. In addition to this the introduction of radio events including the now annual Mother’s Day and Love-a-Child events.

When questioned about her biggest challenge, she mentions, “taking the reigns of a fairly young organisation and having a lot to learn – being out of your comfort zone.  I overcame this by being a sponge – continually listening, enquiring, learning, reflecting and not being afraid to admit I did not know all the answers.  I think this showed the team I was human and was not afraid to ask.”

If the last year is anything to go by, Lois is clearly a force to be reckoned with in broadcasting as she was in her previous careers, and it is certain that the future of Smile 90.4FM is looking bright with her at the helm.

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