Welcome to the Website of the Traffic Director's Guild of America
TDGA is a non-union association dedicated to serving Revenue Management Scheduling professionals, Accounts Receivable, Continuity, Operations and Business Management personnel. Our members are from staffs of the world's leading Radio, Television, Cable, Website and Mobile service providers from more than 5,000 Broadcast facilities in the United States, Canada and 15 other nations. They exchange news, information, tips and techniques involving one of the most unique professions.
Membership dues are modest, and available to continuously enhance their skills and use of highly sophisticated multi-media software. It has properly been described as an association that elevates members from a "position" to a true "profession." The initial year's membership dues are $45.00 Then $30.00 per year for each one-year period thereafter. Below we offer the opportunity to join online, via credit card or check if you prefer to mail your application.
Current members have access to our hundreds of pages by entering their Log-In ID and Password. Non-members may receive a complimentary weekly emailing, offering a very condensed summary of new articles, features and downloads made available in the preceding week to our current association members.
What's instantly available for TDGA Members ? Here's a condensed grouping of highlights on the hundreds of website sections, links, special reports and ongoing projects all aimed at helping our members make the move from a "position" to a "profession:"
1. A One-Fee Membership - There are no hidden extras, no surprise fees and absolutely, positively no nickel and dime surcharges. $45.00 covers it all for the entire first year, followed by your second and subsequent years dues going down to a flat rate of $30.00. We've held that $30 renewal rate for the past 12 years. So your ROI begins on day one when compared to what many associations pass on at renewal time. We're member-driven and member-controlled and member-responsive. Over 93% of our members have renewed for multiple years, which is a strong indication that "value." is built-in to your TDGA Membership.
2. Free Classified Listings - Whether you're looking for a new position in Broadcasting? Or seeking new employees to work in your department? TDGA Employment Classifieds are guaranteed free to all members in good standing. And our Classifieds work, if and when a change is in your future.
3. Q&A, Consultations & Guidance - Have a technical question, or simply in search of advice about a perplexing problem or concern? TDGA Membership gives you access to other Radio, Television, Internet, Satellite or Mobile Professionals with hundreds of years of combined experience and expertise. And, if you ask for anonymity-- we'll seek the answers for you with our network including over some 5,000 stations in the U.S. Canada and around the world.
4. Reduced Seminar, Meeting and Conference Fees - Whether it's a session to learn new software, certification introduction courses, or reduced-fee participation in vendor programs, TDGA will use the sheer numbers of our association to garner you cost reductions at third-party functions. If its from TDGA itself- it's free. If it's outside our loop, we'll do our best to get all members an added value price concession.
5. Group Membership Discounts - Information, Education, Interaction, Discounts, Research Resources and more are all included in your TDGA Membership. We offer special 2-year membership discounts; as well as "Multiple Membership" Discounts. A "multiple membership" discount involves more than one member at a single Station or group location. We'll save on mailing and shipping costs -- and we pass those savings on to your staff via "multiple memberships." The "primary" membership is $45.00 per year, $30.00 per year thereafter (or 2 years for $60.00. .
6. Inclusion In All TDGA Annual Projects - These vary from year to year, but among the most popular items are the annual TDGA Traffic Personnel Salary Surveys for Radio & TV, the Annual Traffic Software Satisfaction Surveys that gathers your input and rankings of Software features, service and support for the specific product you use on a regular basis. When searching for new software, you have instant access to the opinions of the respondents that use a wide variety of other products to compare it with your current system.
7. 24/7 Access To The Members Resource Library - Archived Q&A articles. Special Reports FCC Rules & Regs., Booklets, Sample Forms used by other Members for Traffic, Time Orders, Production, etc. It's literally a treasure chest- and it's all yours to download as needed or to answer concerns on a wide variety of topics. The Library also includes our many TDGA Publications - All 100% free to all current TDGA Members. Most are in PDF formats to insure a virus-free transfer to your own computers.
A Selected Guide To TDGA Membership Privileges, Features, Programs & Projects
Whether you’re brand new to TDGA - The Traffic Director’s Guild of America or a longtime member, we’ve prepared this “Guide To Membership” to provide a summary of the features, programs and projects that accrue to all of our members. It’s an overview of what you’ll find on our website at www.tdga.org.
What Are The Differences Between The Member & Non-Member TDGA Websites?
That's kind of like asking "Is there a difference between day and night, or a mini-teaser headline versus an in-depth full scale report. The differences are many and here's a brief attempt at pointing out the differences. Perhaps the easiest way to describe the contents of the two websites is to explain that the Non-Member Website offers News Headline Teasers, no charts or graphs or detailed photographs. Non-Members also do not have links to our expanded Executive Summaries or direct hyperlinks to source articles or in-depth special reports
TDGA provides two websites. One is for Members Only; the other is a headline only area for “Non-Members.” The “Members Only” Website is accessed using a member LogIn and password and requires once a year membership dues.
Log In or Renew for Member Only Website Access - That's the reminder that you're viewing the Non-Member Website. Once you Log In (Or Join if necessary) you gain 100% access to one of the most informative websites ever developed for members of the Traffic Profession. One easy annual payment covers everything we’ll discuss in this document. Unlike many businesses, we do not use what’s often called a “nickel ‘n dime” concept (charging extra fees for every item we add to our member resources). By setting the fee and guaranteeing not to keep increasing it, Your Member-Only Website appears and you go from access to a handfull of services to literally hundreds of items, reports, booklets, brochures, reference journals and access to Q&A exchanges with thoysands of our profession's top experts. It is the modest one-fee dues structure that makes it all possible. We often increases the services, but never the price to be a member. New members and enewing members literally provide the revenue for added projects and programs. Everyone pays the same dues amount - $45.00 per member for the first year- then an automatic reduction to $30.00 for each year’s renewal thereafter. Access ends, obviously, when your membership period ends.
By the way, the member dues are for each individual member – not for the entire station’s staff. Should you ever change jobs- the membership goes with you. Membership is an individual benefit, whether you fund it personally or by the station. (Yes, we do have “Group” plans if your company might appreciate the economy of scale by enrolling all traffic-related staff members to the benefits of TDGA. We’re pleased to have several major groups, State Broadcast Associations and even a major traffic software company that participate in these “member alliance” programs.
The Home Pages of the two websites we maintain look nearly identical- but the content is dramatically different. The Member’s Website provides a Home Page that provides the most recent headlines, each hyperlinked for easy “point ‘n click” access to detailed articles, downloads, reports, and helpful frequently photographs or graphs to supplement the content. TDGA scans scores of publications to provide Members with credible experts addressing issues of importance to Traffic, Continuity, inner-office and Business Management personnel for both Commercial and Non-Commercial Radio & Television stations and networks. We’ve developed an excellent working relationship with a diverse field of experts including Software suppliers, attorneys specializing in Broadcast Law, FCC officials and a “who’s who” of news sources, both online and printed publications. Just as leading publications reach out to TDGA for opinions and quotes regarding the concerns of our members, we don’t hesitate to seek their expertise when it comes to items of interest to you. Like you, we rely on the very best sources to keep Members “ahead of the curve.”
“Non-Members” or other broadcasters have extremely limited access to services. These include our “Links” page, classified job opportunities, Friday Morning Wrap Emails and widely distributed reminders such as Changes in Daylight Times, and occasional alerts when we update our Traffic Digest website.
The TDGA Mission: To foster pride in our unique profession, and to promote the contributions we provide to the Radio and Television Broadcasting Industry. The Traffic Directors Guild seeks to enhance our member careers through information, cooperative services and education.
To clarify our name and goals: The words “Traffic” and “Traffic Directors” used in our name is an excellent starting point. These are all-inclusive titles that covers Traffic Managers, Revenue Managers, Inventory Control Specialists or the more than 35 other terms used to describe those in the profession we refer to as Traffic personnel. We also proudly include closely associated broadcast positions in our worldwide membership ranks. This would include Continuity, Office, Operations, Business Manager, Controllers, Accounts Receivable/Billing and the other positions inextricably linked to Traffic, whether as Managers, Coordinators, Supervisors, Clerks, Assistants; or any of the other creative work-related job descriptions.
In addition, the word “guild” in our name serves to identify your occupation as being that of a skilled crafts person or artisan. It should not be interpreted as the alternative definition as an “organized labor Union.” TDGA is not a union, but rather a membership association. It is dedicated to the sole purposes of enhancing, informing, educating and providing a repository of services and reference materials, as outlined in our Mission (above).
TDGA Features, Projects and Programs: Almost everyone is surprised at the impressive list of features, projects and programs offered to TDGA Members, considering the modest annual due payment. The following list is not complete but does provide a quick overview explanation of those most frequently accessed online at our member’s website: www.tdga.org. (Items are listed in Alphabetical Order)
Business Briefs: We developed this sub-section a few years ago to allow vendors and equipment suppliers to “brag” a little about new products or new customers. We do our best to eliminate self-serving adjectives like worlds biggest, world’s best, the only solution provider for… etc. It’s amazing how brief and to the point these news releases can be when you delete the self-praise. You’re getting the basics without too much of the fluff.
Classifieds: We offer Classifieds in several broadcast categories. We attempt to use the titles or positions provided by those submitting the listings, add whether it applies to Radio, Television, Vendors, and then we add the geographical location. Classified listings are free to members. We also assign a Closing Date automatically if one is not stated, the purpose is to eliminate outdated or already filled listings. Our normal Closing date assignment runs about 30-45 days from submission date, unless specified by the station submitting the listing.
Feature Columns – Sometimes, it’s a top expert in her (or his) field, or noted leaders addressing items of interest and almost always some direct bearing on your Department or area of interest. Opinions are included both pro and con. This area includes the cream of the crop in legal counsel, job advice and etiquette, ideas to help broaden our horizons beyond the tedium of our day-to-day routines. If you’re looking for other points of view from credible experts- this is one category to regularly check out.
Friday Morning Wrap: We know other Departments claim to be very busy in your Radio or TV Stations, but we also know no one is quite as busy as the Traffic & Continuity Departments. To help you make the most of your day, week and month, we scan the leading trade papers, business journals and publications dealing with our industry to capture top stories you should be aware of… if you only had the time.Friday Morning Wrap is an Email feature that sends you a teaser list of the stories we’ve added to the website over the past week. We do the scanning so you’ll have time to zero-in on the articles that sound interesting when you do have time to check them out.
Links Page: Just as you might expect, we make it easy to contact hundreds of organizations via the TDGA Links Page. You can access the Links Page by clicking on the tab marked Links, which takes you to sub-categories such as Traffic Software Suppliers, State Broadcaster Associations, National Broadcast Organizations, etc. For many of our members, it’s the quick, easy way to find the key websites. It’s easier than “Google-ing” because we pre-categorize the listings. Looking for Traffic Software? One click shows you 20 or more possible contacts. Feel free to check out all the tabs on the TDGA website to see for yourself just how many areas of interest wait!
(The) Mailbag: As the name implies, this is a feature that publishes Questions, comments on almost any topic; and usually includes a TDGA Response if we can assist in providing direction or guidance. This is frequently similar to our Q&A Series (described below), except if there is a definite law, rule, regulation or straightforward answer- we save the Members time by attempting to provide it quickly. By publishing a copy of our e-mail exchange, it allows us to reach thousands with the answer in a single feature. Submit any Mailbag items to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and just insert the word “Mailbag” in the subject line.
Member Log In: At the very top of our Home Page, it’s a handy tab to help you with almost all of your membership needs.Want to check your current profile data, expiration date for membership, extend your membership, check for forgotten password? It’s all waiting for you in the tab marked “Joining TDGA >> Member LogIn
Q&A’s: You’ll find our very popular series of Member’s Questions & Answers in the Resource Library section. Q&A is a service inviting all members to send us Emails asking for guidance, clarification or just advice to see how others handle problems or concerns. We send those Questions to “Members Only” and ask for replies for the Inquirer, and create articles quoting our “panel of expert” responders. Archived, they become a treasure chest for Traffic personnel as they browse through multiple topics submitted over the years. As you might imagine, the creativity of the problem solvers provides for some highly effective solutions.
Radio-TV Headlines: Found on our Members Home Page, you can access headlines, executive summaries and URL links to in-depth articles covering all the top news items of the day affecting Radio and/or Television Broadcasting. The Home page lists the top current headlines, but allows you to click on expanded pages frequently numbering to nearly 100 recent stories. Think of the Headlines as the “Readers Digest” version of the expanded News Articles that are just a point ‘n click away.
Radio-TV Terms & Definitions: How many times do you hear terms in our business but need a credible source to fully understand? With over 1,000 terms and acronyms, our TDGA Broadcast Glossary has become our Industry’s standard for pinpointing definitions. You’ll know the “biz” from snipes to Cumes, from Windows to Windows to Windows. (Yes, there are several different definitions of Windows and our glossary has them all. It’s updated every singe month as new items come into common usage. Find it under the top row tab marked “Terms & Definitions.”
Resource Library - Another of the tabs along the top of your TDGA Website Screen, This is your personal library to anything and everything dealing with Traffic, FCC Law, Rules, Regulations and a wealth of useful resources like Broadcast Calendars, Arbitron and Nielsen Research Aids and many features available only to TDGA Members. There are literally over 100 hyperlinks, articles, tools and forms for your use. Inside the Member’s Resource Library, you’ll find the following categories, each with scores of helpful files:
- Booklets, Brochures & Handbooks
- Broadcast Calendars
- FCC Rules, Regulations & Related Guides
- Survey Research Tools (Radio & TV)
- Traffic Software Products Review
- Special Reports - Archived Articles
- Salary Surveys
- Sample Forms
- Software Applications
- TDGA Q&A's
TDGA Annual Salary Survey (for Traffic-related Departments): This uniquely aimed service for the traffic professions segment of the Radio & TV Industry is undertaken once each year, beginning in October-November and targeted for release in mid-January of each year. We admit Owners used to ask us not to do it. “Everyone” will realize there are major differences from Station to Station. It’s true; pay scales do fluctuate dramatically between Radio-TV, Public, Standalones and Networks. Of course, market-size plays a big role, too.
But now, Managers are among the biggest users of these Reports to be certain they’re remaining competitive and can hopefully retain the Traffic personnel that have developed into one of the highest priority key employees in many a Station office place. (27.3% of all requests about salary scales come from GM’s HR or Business Managers.)
Confidential and very in-depth as far as sampling size, we frequently end up pooling data from several thousand participants, telling us the answers we need to spot trends, workloads and satisfaction. It’s an excellent barometer and free to all TDGA Members in bother Overviews and individual State Breakout Reports. Non-Members can get the Overview only if they participate and fully complete the online survey. The full reports, of course, are for members only! The only irritating thing is how often we’ll remind you to fill out your confidential survey as each year draws to a close. (Better to be asked several times, than not at all—we believe.)
Self Improvement Features, Columns and Articles: Each month, we include several columns from experts in their fields about Human Relations items. This can range from Time Management, Overcoming Stress, Getting along with fellow employees, Writing a Better Resume, How to gain inner-office respect, etc. We’re delighted to include nationally syndicated contributors like Joan Lloyd and Dr. Donald Wetmore, as well as special guest contributors. We accept the fact – no one likes the category of Self Improvement, but the facts are these are visited faithfully as we all attempt to relate with those we come in contact with on a daily or regular basis.
Side Bars: TDGA doesn’t have a full staff of journalists, nor do we believe we are competing with many well-prepared trade papers that cover the entire aspects of our Broadcast Industry. We use this feature (TDGA’s Side Bars) to offer links to articles developed by the news services you may want to read. These are updated on a daily basis. Nearly all are copyrighted and we claim no rights other than to suggest these are stories worth knowing about.
Software Satisfaction Survey – TDGA maintains a neutral stance when it comes to recommending one competitive product over another. Nearly all known Traffic Software suppliers are members of TDGA, and each supports the profession we serve. However, we continue to be asked where or how to find a good software system. So, as a means of maintaining our “no endorsement stance” and still trying to offer fair guidelines to potential software purchasers, we regularly provide online surveys wherein actual users of the products provide “their” views on support, meeting needs, and suitability of the systems they use.
We publish the findings semi-annually with the understanding the participants must be users of the product they are scoring; and all responses are confidential. No vendor knows who has participated. We purposely withhold all scoring of any product until a minimum number of completed surveys are submitted. That provides for the elimination of skewed results from relying on two or three handpicked users.The questions used are identical in every software product studied and we lease as many individual URL addresses as needed to include all products requested.
When we ask you to participate in our semi-annual satisfaction surveys, we’re not prying. We’re just adding another exceptional tool for our members to rely upon if and when they find themselves shopping for a new traffic software provider. Results are published (minus identity of participants) in our Resource Library for Members.
Special Reports – We strive for some In-depth research each month on timely topics. It might be something involving logs, EDI, changes in notarization or centralization of Traffic centers. It’s always a topic of top interest and covered from several perspectives, including direct input from our own “panel of experts”, (our term for your colleagues in the legal or government sector, traffic, continuity, or the business office). By the way, all Special Reports are also archived in our Library for quick, easy retrieval in PDF formats.
Traffic Directors Legal Calendar: When do we need to file, prepare Reports, submit NCSA, ASCAP, BMI forms? When does our State’s political Window begin for LUC/LUR in the Primaries, Caucuses, or General Elections? Do you know when the RAB, TVB or NAB Conventions are being held and where? We honestly believe our TDGA Traffic Directors Calendar (including Legal & Political dates and deadlines) is tops among the publications going for Traffic personnel, Office Managers, Business Managers, etc. It’s downloadable in PDF format; but we want to warn you- we update it at least once a month as events are scheduled or made known by States, other trades and the FCC. It’s a great tool, and it’s free in the Members Log-In section under the Booklets & Brochures category.
Username & Passwords: We ask you to select your own Username and Password in the hope you will select one easily remembered. All Usernames & Passwords are case-sensitive! Consequently, if you Capitalized or used Upper Case letters when you selected it originally- that’s the way our software knows you.
Website – www.tdga.org available 24/7, here’s your instant access to news, features, reports, downloadable archived articles, sample forms, classifieds, references, broadcast calendars, powerful information research from TDGA itself, plus RAB, TVB, Arbitron, Nielsen, OSHA and a growing list of valuable sources. Updated on a daily basis, there’s always something relevant to the traffic profession and the broadcasting industry.
TDGA Background Information:
TDGA was formed in June 2000 with the purpose of providing a focal point for one of the few broadcast professions not taught in schools, colleges or communication institutions. Initially, it was devoted to Radio traffic personnel.
By 2003, it was obvious the concepts, goals and benefits were just as applicable to Television traffic functions. It didn’t require too much study to realize that there were differences between the two media and the roles of Traffic personnel in each. But it was also just as apparent that there were far more areas of commonality than individuality
From scores of members, we grew rapidly to hundreds of members and then the count jumped to thousands. Radio, Public Radio, Television, Public Television, Cable networks and traffic software vendors all found the benefit of participation. To say “the rest is history” may be slightly premature after only 10 years, but the future points to a growing list of accomplishments on behalf of “our unique profession.”
Today, your TDGA is a much relied upon resource to trade news publications and other associations that focus on non-traffic perspectives. TDGA finds itself uniquely non-competitive and thus mutually beneficial to all of the broadcaster associations that primarily serve Management, Sales, Engineering, Programming or legislative efforts. We focus on Traffic, Continuity and directly associated fields in internal broadcast office operations.