As audience behaviors expand, contract, and realign, much time is taken up with the search for the latest answer to age-old marketing questions. Namely, where are the consumers? How can we reach them? What are their lives like? How can we do more with less?

Potential customers are now living in a media consumption world of “and,” rather than “or.” In other words, don’t put all of your commercial messaging into one media. It’s finding the right “mix” that can mean success in reaching audiences effectively. Multi‐media is the smart answer and radio/audio is a substantial part of that mix. Depending on which recent studies you look at, at least 90% of Americans listen to radio every week! Whether it’s RADAR (247M weekly 12+ listeners), or Nielsen’s Q4 Total Audience Report (280M weekly 6+ listeners), marketers can’t go wrong when they look for consumers among a universe of HUNDREDS of MILLIONS. If we look at Adults 18+, 92.5% (222.2M) tune in to radio each week (Nielsen Comparable Metrics 3Q 16). Nielsen says that is a larger number than TV, larger than PCs, larger than smartphones, larger than tablets. Read that previous sentence again.

Against multiple metrics, radio can find and deliver the right audience at the right time of day to an advertiser’s message. Per Nielsen’s Consumer Mapping Study, 62% of shoppers listened to radio in the 13 minutes prior to making a purchase, and 90% of consumers are in their cars less than 6 minutes before shopping. And radio listeners stay tuned - 95% of the audience to a station remains during the commercial break. We can infer at least two things from this one “listeners stay tuned” piece of data:

  1. Stations are delivering content (news/weather/music/financial information/comedy, etc.) that their listeners really want;
  2. Advertisers’ commercials are heard.

The next big question is often: “Does radio advertising pay?” There are two recent Nielsen studies whose findings are a resounding YES.

An analysis of 15 advertisers found that the average Return On Investment (ROI) was $8.00 per dollar spent on radio across 4 major categories:

  1. Department Stores
  2. Mass Merchandisers
  3. Home Improvement
  4. QSR/Fast Food

Another analysis found that for CPG advertisers, a $6.00 ROI was delivered. These ROI results are very significant in such a cluttered media climate.

In addition to radio’s targeting capabilities, transparency and verification continue to be a key requirement for advertisers and media outlets alike. In both of these arenas, radio maintains its strength. Audience measurement data is readily available to all sides of the negotiation, which leads to clear and verifiable (and guaranteed) delivery. Not only is the radio audience measured by an accredited 3rd party (a KEY attribute), but vendor trust can come from such ongoing, verified, and stable audience measurement.

Marc Prichard - Chief Brand Officer/P&G spoke recently at the ANA Media Conference and said in part: “. . . great advertising that reaches people on a consistent basis has a huge impact on driving growth.” Those of us in radio, and specifically all of us on the team here at USRN, couldn’t agree with Marc more. That’s why we’re so passionate about radio…it’s targetable, delivering literally millions of consumers to our partner clients every week, it contributes to brand awareness and to purchase behavior. It’s consistent; it’s nimble with copy split capabilities in every market all over the U.S.. It’s fast on its feet with the ability to get on the air in a hurry and it provides full production capabilities to large and small advertisers alike. It’s efficient with CPMs that rival any national media. It’s both local and national, it’s the original social media, and it delivers serious ROI. So say it loud . . . We’re radio and we’re VERY proud!