How is Radio Surviving in Today’s Economy?

A new report by the RAB (Radio Advertising Bureau) indicates that radio has now seen seven consecutive quarters of growth. In addition, digital, off-air, and network broadcasts are all now seeing strong gains in advertising revenue.

“The positive growth we’ve seen over the twenty-one month period is unprecedented since the late 1990’s. Once again, this underscores Radio’s strength during these unusual economic times,” says Jeff Haley, President and CEO of RAB.

Radio’s 2% Q3 increase to $4.527B caps seven consecutive quarters of upward momentum.  Revenue for year-to-date through September is also up 2% over the same period last year, to $12.891B.

Spot Revenue maintained its steady course, while Network spending grew 2%. Digital once again posted the largest increases for the quarter (+17%) and year-to-date (+18%), with other Off-Air up 10% and 8% for those periods, respectively.

“Advertisers’ expanding use of Digital and Off-Air platforms to complement their sustaining broadcast commitment strengthens Radio’s current and long term viability,” stated Haley.

“The live and local environment that Radio offers provides an ideal platform for a diverse group of advertisers to zero in on their target audiences,” adds Haley.  “This strong marketing mix affirms Radio’s position as a trusted partner to many, including this group representing the top ten for Q3.”

Read the Full Report Here (opens in new window as PDF)

Radio Adds Nearly 2 Million Listeners a Week

As Arbitron readies its full release of RADAR 109 on 6/20, it announced some of the data from the report. Broadcasters added more than 1.9 million weekly listeners in the past year.  Additionally, radio is attracting more young listeners, with the number of weekly listeners 18-34 and 12-17 rising.  Radio now reaches nearly 66.5 million Adults 18-34 and more than 22.8 million Persons 12-17 on a weekly basis.

The number of 12+ Persons listening to radio each week now reaches an estimated 241.5 million or 93.1% of all Persons twelve and older. As compared to the June 2010 report, the number of radio listeners increased across all major demos, with Adults aged 18-34 showing the biggest gains, adding nearly 350,000 weekly listeners in the age group in the past year.

Read More at Radio Business Report

4 Tips for Effective Radio Ads

Make your message RELEVANT and about THE LISTENER
By creating a message that’s relevant to your target demo’s life, they’ll create an interest in your commercial, and want to know more. Once you get a listener WANTING to learn about your product or service, their minds are open to absorb information, and you can brand your company’s name into their long term memory. Illustrate the experience of using your product, show how your service benefits them, and use terms and concepts that paint a picture. If listeners can see it in their life, they’ll create a need for it. If you start an ad only with information about your company, you may lose the listener before they even realize they want what you sell. Give them a relevant reason to care about you first.

Make your message INTERESTING and HARD TO IGNORE
A common ad is a common mistake. When creating, don’t fall into the trap of worrying about what a radio ad should or typically sounds like. Try to avoid being like others. If your commercial has unique elements, it’ll better stand out in the commercial clutter and make people curious to learn more. If it’s filled with common clichés and generalities, not many will remember it. Since today’s consumers are hit by over 5000 advertisements a day (signs, tv, online, etc), you really need to be different to make an impact. Find one or two really interesting and beneficial points, and don’t let people ignore the message, or even worse FORGET it. But how do you avoid being ignored? Be entertaining, make an interesting point, tell a story, be anything but the usual!

Read the rest at

3 Commandments of Radio Advertising

1. Don’t Underestimate The Power of Radio

The voice is a wonderful thing.

Used properly, it can move you to tears, unleash a fury of anger, sooth both physical and mental pain, irritate you like chalk on a blackboard, hypnotize you into the most embarrassing behavior, fire you up & motivate you to accomplish the most daunting tasks, fire up a nation to battle, seduce the most cold-hearted soul and yes, it can certainly convince you to happily part with your money.

In fact, the people who make radio production their livelihood, are paid quite handsomely to get you to do things that are not on your priority list.

Ever listen to a movie trailer? Listen to the announcer. His job is to get you to see that movie. Whether you realize it or not, the impact of that voice lasts longer than you may be aware of.

You may remember the visuals, but it is the EMOTIONAL AUDIO IMPRINT that leaves you with a “I’ve got to see this when it comes out!” memory.

It is the same subliminal effect that radio can create.

2. Get The Best Creative Production Possible

Why do you want the best creative possible? Well, there are several reasons.

1) it makes your advertising more effective

2) the cost of your campaign can actually be lower if more people respond to a better commercial, as fewer spots are necessary to make the same impact

3) better creative is more memorable.

4) strong creativity entertains and sells at the same time

5) powerful creative radio spots get people talking about the spot & consequently the product

“OK,” you’re saying, “but this sounds like it’s going to cost a fortune!”

Nothing could be further from the truth. What will cost you a fortune, is a radio advertising campaign that falls flat because the production was not up to scratch!

Remember, advertising is an investment if you eventually get back more than you paid. It’s a fortune if you don’t get back anything!

In order to make sure that there’s a payback, I highly recommend you look at all the variables and creative production is high on the list!

3. Develop A Strategy & Stick With It

There are many ways to use radio. Short campaigns, long campaigns, image building, promotions, product launches etc.

The first thing to be aware of is that new advertisers have to develop name recognition with a station’s audience. This isn’t as important for long time advertisers who have used other media, but it is crucial for first-timers.

Well known advertisers are seen as reliable and trustworthy. The longer you advertise, the more favor you win with listeners. It is like money in the bank.

I advise all new advertisers to start with an introduction campaign to highlight who they are, what their product is and the benefits of shopping at their store.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t break the rules and have a grand opening with a fantastic door crasher special. Certainly that will work. But ideally, the best results for that type of scenario come when a “teaser campaign” precedes the grand opening.

Let me state that much of the advice offered here is what I believe to be the “safe route” to effective radio advertising. Even under less optimal conditions, radio can be quite effective!

What you want to do, however, is not succeed by throwing tons of money into your advertising, but rather cover all the essentials so that you have an effective and cost efficient campaign.

Good planning can go a long way.

Click Here to Learn More With Radio Advertising 101

Source: Blog Universal

Why Radio Works

In the marketing world, radio has earned the reputation of being the odd step-cousin. You know the one. No one knows quite what to do with him. Especially at family gatherings when everyone tries hard to avoid sitting with him. (After all, who knows WHAT he’ll start talking about.)

Much of that reputation comes from radio being tough to track. On one hand, radio does work. Businesses do notice an increase in sales when they add radio to the mix. However, radio doesn’t test well. In surveys and other tracking methods, radio tends to be the one with the dismal scores.

A good friend of mine, who’s also a marketing consultant but before that she sold radio for many years, has a theory about that. She says radio works on a subconscious or unconscious level. People remember the ad, but not that they heard it on the radio. So, they tend to credit a different medium for the ad, like the yellow pages. Yellow pages gets a boost while radio drops a few points.

Regardless, radio should not be ignored because it does work. And many marketing consultants will probably tell you radio is an excellent medium to reach a local market.

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