I am sure each of the radio scripts looked great on paper, but when I heard them back-to-back-to back in the same commercial break on a Portland Maine radio station, it was more like a train wreck. Each of the six commercials started out with a variation of what I call JACD or "Just Around the Corner Disease." This horrible condition presents itself when a commercial starts out with a trite and hackneyed temporal reference such as "fall is just around the corner" or "Halloween is just around the corner" or "it's back to school time" or "Fall is here" or "colder days are on the way". This cacophony of the ho-hum is the hallmark of what George Carlin refers to as the "advertising lullaby...commercials designed to lull us to sleep". According to un-scientific research, 1-in-4 radio commercials for Maine small business suffer from JACD. Fortunately there is relief.Read More
Radio Results Blog
Four years before the first Portland, Maine radio station took to the air, a watershed moment in the history of broadcasting was taking place 325 miles away in Jersey City, New Jersey. On July 2, 1921, with a stolen transmitter from the navy yard in Hoboken (not the first time something went missing in Hoboken), radio station WJY would broadcast the first play-by-play sporting event ever. The event was a match between the heavyweight boxing champion-of-the-world, Jack Dempsey, and challenger Georges Carpentier. Although the fight only lasted 4 rounds and was heard by only 300,000 people throughout the Northeast, historian David Halbetsram called the event "an epochal success...a springboard to radio's enormous national growth."
More than 93 years after "the fight of the century" the audience for radio is still growing and that is good news for Maine small business. One year after that historic boxing match, the first radio commercial was broadcast. It was an advertisement for a real estate company in Queens, New York. Portland, Maine real estate Cathy Manchester continues the tradition today. She claims in a recent article that radio advertising doubled her sales in just one year. These results are not unusual. According to research firm Nielsen-Catalina, radio commercials, on average, produce a $6.00 sales lift for every $1.00 invested.Read More
Suppose you invested in a radio advertising campaign in Portland, Mane and you later found out that your commercial could only be heard on clock radios but not on counter-top radios in kitchens. Or that your commercial could only be heard by people in Buicks and Toyotas but not by people in Fords or Nissans. If that were the case, you would probably call your radio station account executive and insist on a refund. When a Maine small business buys commercials on a radio station, they should be heard by every listener.Read More
In-Car Listening Remains Awesome Marketing Opportunity For Maine Small Business
On July 24, 1925 WCSH, Portland, Maine's very first radio station, began broadcasting from its studio in the Congress Square Hotel. Just five years later, brothers Paul and Joseph Galvin, owners of the Galvin Manufacturing Corporation, introduced the first, commercially available car radio. The unit sold for about $120 (about $1700 in 2014 dollars). The radio was called the Motorola 5T71 (yes, it was the first Motorola). Mainers could then listen to WCSH in their sleek new Packards, Nashs, Studabakers and Pontiacs. Despite the disappearance of those automobile nameplates, Radio Remains King of The Road, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal.
According to the Journal, despite the proliferation of digital audio platforms, radio still rules the dashboard. The article quotes findings from Edison Research that indicates 86% of consumers choose to use radio while driving. No other medium comes close.
Americans spend almost 2 hours and 40 minutes per day in their cars. Since AM/FM radio is the preferred in-car medium, according to a study by Arbitron (now Nielsen Audio), Maine small business can seize this marketing opportunity to reach this captive audience.
Besides dominating the dashboard, radio also dominates at work listening. Read more:Radio Dominates The Office and The Dashboard
Meet 10 Maine Small Business Owners Who Successfully Use RadioRead More
Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote in one of his Tarzan books, “We are, all of us, creatures of habit." I am no exception. Every weekday morning at around 7:33am, with my radio blasting, I pull my car into the exact same space in front of the Starbucks in South Portland, Maine. I invariably always see the same cars parked next to me. So much so that I know their license plates by heart (I'm talking to you CDM 9126). When I go inside, I see the same people sitting at the same tables...only the headlines of their newspaper have changed from the day before. I walk up to the same barista who asks, "Your usual?" She doesn't really wait for my response before she rings it into the cash register and scrapes up the $5.13 that I already had waiting on the counter.
The "Happy Song: was composed and performed by Pharrell Williams. It seems to be oozing out of the pores of pop culture. The song began its trek into the public's collective consciousness in 2013 on the soundtrack of Despicable Me 2 and reached the number one slot on the Billboard charts on March 8th of this year having sold more than 5.6 million copies. You hear the song almost everywhere. But there is probably one place you'll never hear it: in radio commercials advertising Maine small businesses. But it's not from the lack of trying.
Radio Format Guide For Maine Small Business
Nobody In Portland, Maine Does Not Listen To the Radio
Maine small business owners and advertisers of all sizes take note: "Nobody listens to radio!" So says Merlin Aylesworth, President of NBC. According to Aylesworth, "Within three years [radio] will be wiped out." This view is supported by Bernard Smith of Harper's Magazine who said, "[Radio] may, for a brief period of time, maintain a marginal existence before being finally relegated to the storeroom."
Radio Reaches Maine's Largest Group of Consumers
Millennials are now the largest consumer market in America. Eighty million people who were born between 1980 and 1996 and came of age at the turn of the millennium. This is the generation that cannot remember a time without personal computers, mobile phones, iPods, email, text messaging, and iTunes. But guess what? Despite this cornucopia of technological marvels, millennials still tune-into traditional AM/FM radio in the same numbers at levels on par with Generation X, Generation Y, and Baby Boomers.
Maine Small Business Needs To Do The Unexpected To Stand Out
In a recent episode of the TV series Fargo on FX, the bad guy, played by Billy Bob Thornton asks the good guy, played by Colin Hanks, "Why can the human eye see more shades of green than any other color?" Not only did the answer save the lives of the show's heroes, it also provides great insight for Maine small business owners on how to create engaging and compelling radio commercials.