Radio Advertising in 2018

The assumption of the general public dating way back to the late 1950’s (with the introduction of TV in Australia) has been that radio advertising is on the decline. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth, with radio advertising still holding the crown for generating leads based off advertisements.

In today’s episode of The Marketing Strategy Show, Kym sits down with Brian Blacklock from Macquarie Media Limited to discuss Radio advertising in 2018 and what has changed in the industry.

Why Radio is still a great Medium

Listeners have a personal relationship with their radio station and their favourite radio presenters which makes it far more personal than any other advertising medium.

Additionally, radio has an increased audience in Australia consecutively for the last five years and even in the 10-17 age demographics where most businesses would assume the younger generations aren’t active.

Also in radios’ favour is the fact that 65% of all listening in Australia happens on radio compared to 9.2% for streaming audio and 3.5% for podcasting where most of the general population would assume streaming services such as Pandora, Spotify and IHeart Radio would account for a larger portion of the listener base.

Another thing to consider with radio is that you are active while you are listening. You are building an impression in your mind of what’s going on in the background. This is called theatre of the mind. So it is a bit like a book in the same ways that you imagine the characters and you put a face to them. 

What’s changed on Radio? 

The essential things in radio haven’t changed, that is:

  • You need to have sufficient reach
  • You need to have the right frequency
  • You need to have the right message

(In order to get a response back)

The main thing that has changed is that there are a lot more opportunities or options in terms of stations to choose from. Back in the 80’s there was say maybe 5 or 6 big broadcast stations that could reach a large portion whereas now there are hundreds of options with AM and FM and DAB+ (Digital Audio Broadcasting).

These fragments however have created strong niche audiences that still pull weekly audiences of around a million people.

4 keys to getting radio right

The four keys to getting radio right came from the Len Potts (a kiwi advertising guru, famous for several high profile ad campaigns ran in NZ and abroad) Here they are listed below, We at The Marketing Strategy Co have also developed a quick guide on 4 steps to improving your ads check it out here.

1. Who is my customer and what is their problem?

This isn’t about finding a group of people you think would want your product (e.g. 15-25-year-old males) you need to be much more specific and come up with a more robust impression of who your ideal customer is. Buyer Personas can help greatly with this.

Think about their age, their marital status, do they have kids? What industry do they work in? what is their income?

Then you need to identify their problem, Do they know they have this problem? Are they unsure of the positives and negatives of different providers? Do they know why they should choose you?

2. What is the one thing I can say that will solve that problem?

What is the key thing that your business or the key attribute or answer that you have that will solve the particular problem the customer has.

This must be unique to your business, company or organisation as this is what ultimately will be the difference between a prospect choosing your business or a competitors.

3. Why should they believe me?

At this point you need to ask yourself what it is that you offer that your other competitors can’t, is it market knowledge? Is it referrals or connections within the industry?

Whatever it may be you need to think of how you can implement your unique skill or quality into your marketing message or advertising.

Another factor influencing whether or not someone hearing your ad will believe you is your credibility. Are you positively reviewed online? Are there negative reviews online? Do you post regularly? 

4. What do I want them to feel after hearing my ad?

  • Do you want the person hearing the ad to feel relieved as you have a solution to their problem?
  • Do you want the person to feel anxious in that they need to take action?
    • If you want them to take action what is it? Is It calling in? Is it entering email info or buying a product?

Integrating Radio & Digital

For any business advertising today, using a single method of advertising is a grave mistake as single channel marketing and advertising campaigns are vastly less effective than multi-channel campaigns.

According to advertising on the radio led to an average uplift of leads of 17% while online had an average uplift of 14% and TV had 13% when advertised alone.

Compare this with the figures for multi-channel campaigns in that radio in conjunction with another media source led to a 23% uplift in leads. 

The Call-to-Action

The whole point of advertising is to get leads to your channels (Social media, website, etc.) and without an effective (or the right) call to action the leads will never get to you.

Take Harvey Norman for example, they are the biggest advertiser across all media channels in Australia and their advertising strategy focuses largely on calls to action. Things like “get 5 years interest free” or “get in store this weekend for great savings” these both have a clear action the ad wants you to take. 

Awareness and Credibility Planning

There is some automatic credibility associated with advertising, as people have favourite presenters and stations. I f you are advertising on the station that they like the programs on, there is some credibility attached there because the listener already trusts and has a relationship with the station.

Awareness is all about creating credibility and having a consistent message. If you have an ad or a promotion asking people to visit your website to claim their discount or gift and the promo isn’t prominently displayed on the homepage of the website people will click away so you need to be consistent with your messaging.

The Final Point 

If you are spending x amount of dollars on branding it has got to do a job for you.

So whether that be increasing your market share, increasing your web hits or your sales. It has to be measurable and you have to be able to sit down and say these are the parameters in which I’m going to judge this campaign and then you’ve got to be able to hold the media accountable.

All the advertisers can do is get leads to your door, they can’t make people want to buy your product but with most radio stations you should be able to work with an account manager to help you achieve your goals.

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