Podcasts & Columns

Senior Marketing Consultant Amber Ertelt on family, work and what defines her

Over the past 13 years Amber Ertelt has worked with hundreds of businesses to build a marketing plan, grow their business and consult when needed to bring additional customers into their location.

Amber Ertelt is a Senior Marketing Consultant at Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead

You may know Amber as a Senior Marketing Consultant at Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead but as we find out she is much more than that.  Amber has a degree in Broadcast Journalism from Minnesota State University Moorhead, (MSUM) worked as a TV reporter in Bismarck and is one of the more tenacious people you might meet.  

Contact Amber via e-mail amber.ertelt@KFGO.com, visit online at advertisefargomoorhead.com/amber


Fargo, ND (April 1, 2019) – Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead and the FM RedHawks announce a new 5-year-agreement for 740 The Fan to continue as the flagship radio station of the FM RedHawks. 

“With the power of Midwest Communications and 740/107.3 THE FAN, there is really no other place the RedHawks would want to be.  We are glad to continue our long-term relationship and are looking forward to big things in the future!  With the quality of broadcasters and the signal strength – we have the best setup in the American Association,” said Brad Thom, FM RedHawks president.

“Our relationship goes back to year one with the FM RedHawks and it continues to be strong.  It’s been a wonderful marriage between the region’s number one sports station and the area’s top summer attraction,” added Jack Michaels, 740 The Fan and Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead’s sports director. “Extending the broadcast contract with the FM RedHawks means we’ll be able to continue to deliver this fantastic baseball product to countless fans in the region.  It’s great to know Marge will be ‘trackin’’ it down’ for many years to come.”

“It’s so exciting that we have the privilege of being part of the RedHawks family, said Joel Heitkamp, Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead operations manager.  “Without a doubt, having a quality, professional baseball team on our family of stations is crucial and reiterates the long-standing commitment we have to our community and RedHawks fans all across North Dakota.” 

The region’s premiere baseball organization will be featured on the flagship radio station 740 The Fan throughout the season but will now be simulcast throughout the agreement on FM at 107.3 on the dial on The Fan’s additional signal.  


Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead & Gate City Bank Launch 3rd Annual Teddy Bear Posse

FARGO, ND (March 12th, 2019) Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead launches the 3rd annual Teddy Bear Posse, a campaign to collect new teddy bears and stuffed animals for area law enforcement agencies. Officers and Sheriff’s Deputies will use the teddy bears to comfort small children involved in traumatic situations. Residents throughout the Red River Valley will be encouraged to donate new teddy bears and stuffed animals at the donation boxes located at the following locations:

All Gate Cit Bank Locations
Red Wing Shoes
North Dakota Autism Center
Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead
Deke’s Pizza

The Teddy Bear Posse officially kicked off Tuesday, March 12th at the Teddy Bear Posse presenting partner Gate City Bank in downtown Fargo at 500 2nd Avenue N.

“Gate City Bank is committed to providing a better way of life in communities we serve. We are honored to have the opportunity to partner with the Teddy Bear Posse to comfort children during a vulnerable time,” said Steve Swiontek, President, Chairman & CEO of Gate City Bank.

On May 14th, the Teddy Bear Posse will end with a final donation event at Gate City Bank at 500 2nd Avenue N. in downtown Fargo.

“Law enforcement shares with us the value of these teddy bears throughout the year. We continue to be amazed at the outpouring of support from the Fargo-Moorhead community in donating over 4,000 bears in 2018,” said Dan Cash, VP, Market Manager at Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead. In 2019 we’re expanding to include rural communities, firefighters, Sanford Children’s Hospital and we are sharing some of the amazing stories impacted by bears on-the-radio.

A full list of all the Teddy Bear Posse drop-off locations can be found at KFGO.com or by text TEDDY to 35270.

Standing Around with Dan Cash – Episode 2: An Elaborate Introduction to Y94’s Amy Kaye

An elaborate introduction to Amy Kaye

The first episode of Standing Around with Dan Cash features the talented and extremely entertaining Amy Kaye from the #1 Hit Music Station Y94.  In this episode we break down Amy’s preperation for taking the test to earn a license in the state of Minnesota, Netflix raising their prices, her favorite person at work and a discussion about her cat.  

Jack Michaels named North Dakota Sportscaster of the Year

Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead is excited to announce that Jack Michaels of The Mighty 790 KFGO and 740 The Fan was voted the 2018 North Dakota Sportscaster of the Year.

Michaels is sports director of Midwest Radio Fargo-Moorhead and current play-by-play voice of University of North Dakota football and UND women’s basketball along with the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks.  He also hosts the ‘Jack Michaels Show’ weekdays on 740 The Fan.

His career has spanned over 26-years of sports broadcasting in the region.  Michaels has been behind the mic for UND Football and women’s basketball, NDSU men’s and women’s basketball.  Michaels is a former play-by-play voice of Moorhead State Dragons football and was the original voice of professional baseballs Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, a position he continues to hold.  Michaels has called professional basketball in the CBA, IBA and D-League.

Michaels got his start in radio at his hometown station KEYZ-Williston, North Dakota.

Brad Anderson won the 2017 award for Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead last year, while the late Scott Miller won in 2010.

Michaels will be honored during the 60th annual NSMA Awards Weekend, June 22-24, 2019 in Winston-Salem, N.C.


Mark Rosen, WCCO-TV, Minneapolis


Jon Krawczynski, The Athletic, Minneapolis

Nine Reasons your Advertising is Complicated

  • The amount of options are overwhelming 

It used to be that each radio station had a sales team, same for TV and for newspaper.  The average business owner would be working with 5-10 media salespeople on their advertising.  Over the past 15 years that number has gone up astronomically and it’s one of the number one complaint I hear. 

It’s not my opinion that meeting with great advertising sales people is a problem.  It is my opinion that there is an abundance of products that are the “next great thing” and there are many untrained people pushing the products. 

From coupons to polygons so many more options mean it can be incredibly difficult to sift through it all. 

In the 2019 business economy none of us want to miss out on the next great thing that’s going to solve all the issues with our business.

So, what do we do? 

 This isn’t a knock on traditional, digital, print or any other advertising medium, I am simply telling you to find marketing people that you get along with and trust.  Trust that they will steer you in the right direction because they care about your business, not because they need to make their goal in that month’s next hottest product. 

  • You are taking all of the requested meetings

This goes along with the number 1 reason.  In our effort to want to stay connected, network and keep up with the latest and the greatest business owners are taking more meetings than ever before.  That’s a good thing for salespeople but it’s not always the best thing for your business. 

If someone requests a meeting and hasn’t impressed you with their elevator speech or their initial cold call…it’s okay to say no thank you.  I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it when a business owner is up front and tells me they just aren’t able to meet.  It saves both them and I from a wasted hour that neither of us will get back. 

If I have earned the meeting, let’s meet!  If I haven’t…let me know why I didn’t and we can both be on our way. 

It’s okay to say NO when the person hasn’t earned the meeting!

  • You have allowed to many cooks in your advertising kitchen

I might sound like a broken record here but seriously look at the amount of people you are allowing into your decision-making process.  Committees are great when dealing with taxpayer money or a non-profit organization but in a for-profit business they can slow down progress, halt your ability to think on your toes and in many cases, they can crush your chances at receiving the correct proposal to grow your business.  Keep your decision-making kitchen to a minimum number of cooks and focus on your core beliefs and goals as a business when deciding to proceed with your advertising partner. 

  • You think you need to be on social but aren’t willing to dedicate the time

You know you have to be in the space so you made a Facebook page in 2010.  The problem is that you haven’t updated it since 2011.  I can’t tell you how often I hear from business owners that they simply “don’t have the time” to update their social media.  You are complicating the process by putting up a barrier. 

Time becomes available when you make it a priority. Build 30 minutes into your week and schedule out some relevant, important posts that can be taken live throughout the week.  This allows you to think through what you want to say, post it when social users are most active, and it keeps your brand in line with what you want it to look and feel like. 

  • You say yes because someone gives you free stuff

Every business has heard some form of this comment: “I just need some sort of a deal to justify the expense”.  In media, it comes in the form of added value requests such as inclusion in station promotions, no charge commercials, free ads on the station website, etc. 

Everyone likes to get something for free and I am not discounting the importance of a strong negotiation for your business. You need to be the business owner that makes the right decision based on your trust and relationship in the marketing consultant and not because of the number of free commercials or promotions you receive. 

There are many companies that simply let your added value air overnights, barely include you in a promotion or simply bump the added value altogether.  Some don’t even tell you it didn’t run since you didn’t pay for it. 

In short?  Added value is great, but it can’t be the reason you choose the platform you are advertising your business on.  Choose because of the relationship, the size of the audience and the delivery of your creative.  If they choose to give you some additional promotion as a result of your financial commitment to the station, that’s a win-win!

  • You are creating too many messages across too many platforms

There is only so much information the average person can consume.  As business owners we often fail to understand that.  We spend time and money constructing brilliant ideas to “capture the attention” of your prospective customer. Research, development, content, training…the list goes on and on. 

We have to wake up and understand that the average person isn’t always on for our product.  It’s simply about top of mind awareness and making sure that when they are on, they think of you first.

People consume content differently by platform for sure, but I often see advertisers attempting to run different creative on each platform they are advertising on.  That’s only complicating your message and making it more difficult for the average person to understand why your company is so great. 

Adjust your creative to the platform but keep the basic concept the same so it’s recognizable and you are reaching the customer at each step of the consumer purchase funnel. 

  • Streaming pureplays are lift increasers, not the driving force

Streaming pure plays offer customization of songs, playlists suited to your mood and algorithms designed to ensure the “perfect” music selection for you. 

They offer affordable commercials targeted geographically according to IP and GPS to your marketplace.  The problem is that just like with added value…affordable isn’t always what’s best for your business. 

Streaming pure plays account for somewhere between 2 and 4% of audio in the local marketplace.  AM/FM radio by comparison reaches 90-94% of the audience in a local market.  

Can streaming enhance your advertising?  Absolutely.  Should it replace the mass reach of radio or television? Probably not. 

Your business needs mass reach and the correct frequency to achieve success.  Streaming is an enhancer to your AM/FM radio, digital programmatic or your in-store events.  Increase your frequency and lift by using them, don’t replace what’s driving your community reach.    

  • Metrics like bounce rate, clicks and CTR don’t define a campaign’s success

Stop getting caught up in the clicks, click-through rate and the bounce rate of every single visit that comes to your website. Most people don’t click which means click-through rate from impressions will almost never feel like it’s the amazing number you want it to be and seriously unless you are running a website filled with brilliant content that you can read, watch, listen to and go page – to – page to see…bounce rate is overblown.  (especially since it’s not always accurately reported depending on the service you are using to track it)

Ask yourself the following things to measure the success of your analytics:

  1. Are you selling more product on your website?
  2. Are the things you are promoting in your advertising what people are visiting on your website, social, etc?
  3. Is your overall website traffic growing?
  4. Is my website simple to navigate?
  5. Am I tracking referrals to my site that I convert into sales?

Don’t get me wrong, numbers and tracking the success of your expense is important.  As a business owner you need to understand what is working, what is not and what you need to change. 

Just don’t overdue it. 

  • Your website is amazing but I can’t find a way to contact you

Your website does not need to understand nuclear fission or fuel the space shuttle.  It’s an exit point to a destination promoted from your advertising. 

Ask yourself the following:

  1. Is your website simple to navigate?
  2. Is your phone number, address and e-mail address on the front page?
  3. Do you have a careers section for hiring and recruitment?
  4. Can you be contacted through the website if needed?
  5. Are your core products and mission of your company on the site?

If these items are on your website, you are in a strong position. 

Lots of pictures are often fashionable and look nice but they take away the eye from important pieces of information about your business. Just don’t overdue it.

With 15,000 messages hitting consumers daily it’s vital to stand out.

It’s advertising.  It’s marketing.  It’s your business.  Be real, be yourself and in the creative your passion will come out. 

Standing Around with Dan Cash Podcast: Tracking Radio Advertising is an exciting reality

Donn and Amy talk with Dan Cash
Donn and Amy talk with Dan Cash

Over the years clients have remarked that it was difficult to track radio advertising. The old adage holding true that 50% is working and 50% isn’t, the problem is I don’t know which one is which.

Radio however has been a powerful advertising tool that uses frequency and large reach to effectively position your business. Reaching over 92% of America each week AM/FM radio is more powerful than it has ever been.

In this episode of Standing Around with Dan Cash we introduce Midwest Radio of Fargo-Moorhead Senior Marketing Consultant’s Amber Ertelt & Donn Groth as we discuss the impact that Midwest 360 Radio Analytics has had on their business.

This product is a “game changer” and it allows advertisers to see in a monthly report the response each of their commercials are receiving by time of day, type of creative, response each time a commercial airs and the LIFT your radio advertising is providing you.

If you have more interest in having your business connected to Midwest 360 Radio Analytics please contact us at dan.cash@mwcradio.com or call us at (701) 237-5346.

Click play below to listen to Amber, Donn & Dan discuss this groundbreaking technology.