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The Comparative Buyer's Advantage

Recent conversations address the role of terrestrial radio as part of a multi-media campaign. Our own research points to a reduction of radio budgets throughout the last few years, so we would like to highlight some undervalued benefits of advertising through terrestrial radio.

  • Everyone can use terrestrial radio for free. Cars are already equipped with it, so there are no barriers to enjoying this media. This also means you can easily reach a larger population in a rather cost-effective manner.
  • Terrestrial radio is often enjoyed in groups. You may listen to it with friends in the car, family at home, coworkers in the office or in a waiting room. It has a more social component compared to digital radio.
  • This variety of locations of radio consumption can be used to diversify campaigns. You can implement a dozen digital ad campaigns on different platforms and still primarily reach people on their phone. Research shows messages experienced in different environments stick easier. Also, you may be on your way home from work and hear a commercial for a promotion at your favorite dinner place. Radio can be effective in driving immediate actions.
  • Radio campaigns can be set up quickly, so it works well for spontaneous event promotions or in cases of special sales. Most radio stations will even produce the commercial for you.
  • Many people developed a quasi-personal relationship with their favorite station Deejays. This bond seldom exists on other platforms and may even be used through sponsoring segments of these shows.
  • You cannot target specific audiences by checking certain boxes as you can with most digital platforms, but there are still ways to focus your budget on certain demographics. Focusing on certain dayparts allows you to reach commuters and focusing on certain stations allows you to target either more traditional or rural audiences versus younger urban listeners (classic rock station versus top hits). Your local NPR station certainly has a unique audience you may not even be able to reach through other platforms.

Since the focus of this article is on terrestrial radio, we do need to note digital radio has experienced substantial growth because of their targeting abilities and newly emerging self-serve platforms with low minimum spend requirements. Podcasts continue to have difficulty localizing their advertising, but are projected to resume their growth should we be permitted to return to commuting regularly anytime soon. Just because new toys have claimed a slice of the pie does not mean we can stop analyzing more traditional options which is why Media Link Software® was designed around a philosophy of cross media integrated campaigns.

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