That’s a very tricky one to answer, and there are several ways to look at it:
Our mission is to communicate the essentials of the Christian faith to those who have never understood. There are two parts to that: a) communicating the faith and b) to people who are not already convinced believers. We believe we’re doing the first part – to varying degrees of ‘overt-ness’, depending on the programme – and in many different ways through our range of programmes. As for the second part – there are vast numbers of people listening, and the survey results indicate that over 85% of the people listening are not already Christians.
Our programmes rate very well with the audience, which means they are in fact listening.
We receive anecdotal feedback from listeners – Christians and non-Christians. These are usually callers to the programmes, on air and off air. We also receive text messages, emails and the occasional letter. The feedback is generally positive and indicates that the Christian message is coming through clearly.
The radio station managers feel that we’re providing good radio. That’s crucial to retaining our place on the station, and keeping the ear of the listeners.
We think we’re getting better at our ‘craft’ of communicating the faith. Year after year, we’re gaining experience of what works and what doesn’t. We make mistakes, we take risks and we learn. Surveys break down listening habits in to 15-minute blocks, which gives us a good picture of how we rate with our weekly programmes.
Finally, but most importantly, we pray. As a ‘seed sowing’ ministry, we don’t expect to get loads of listener feedback. Most people don’t phone radio stations to say ‘thanks for the programme’, and in fact, listeners wouldn’t know the show has been produced by CBA anyway, because we don’t ‘brand’ our programmes on air. As they say – ‘it’s amazing what you can achieve if you don’t mind who gets the credit’. Instead, we place a huge emphasis on prayer. We pray that God will use our broadcasts to touch hearts and water the seed. CBA’s Prayer Task Force has more than 900 people, and we seek to grow that all the time. If you’d like to join you can sign up by clicking here.