Radio Results Blog

Effective Radio Advertising On A Budget

Posted by Larry Julius on Sun, Jun 17, 2012 @ 12:58 PM

Advertising is critical for expanding the success of a business.  Most businesses, however, have limited resources for advertising. With careful planning and execution, radio can provide effective advertising solutions within any budget.  Here are 6 ways to buy a powerful campaign and not break the bank.

Effective Radio Advertising On A Budget1. Develop An Achievable Marketing Objective that is a reflection of your key business priorities. For example:

*Develop 6 new customers this month
*Increase Facebook "likes" by 10% this month
*Improve sales 20% this weekend vs. the same weekend   one year ago

Then, make sure every fiber of your radio advertising campaign is aligned with the marketing objective. This includes station selection, commercial message, and time of day.


2. Buy QUALITY not QUANTITY. Since you pay for a radio station's entire audience, it is critical to ensure that the station you choose has a high concentration of your target consumers, not just a large number of listeners. 

Suppose your marketing objective is to reach working-moms.  You are choosing between two radio stations for your campaign, WAAA and WXXX.  WAAA has 10,000 listeners of which of 2100 or 21% are working-moms.    WXXX has only 8,000 listeners and 1800 or 24% are working-moms. The budget minded advertiser should choose WXXX.  Remember, stations charge for ALL their listeners, not just the ones you want to reach.  When your commercials run on WXXX you are 14% more likely to reach working-moms for less money than if you advertised on WAAA.

When comparing radio stations, ask each of your account executive for research which demonstrates the quality of their audience.  We recommend research from Media Audit.  To learn more about Media Audit request a free copy of the Small Business Guide To Effective Radio Advertising


3. Consider Short Length Commercials. Advertisers can typically buy 10-second or 15-second commercials for about 25% of the cost of a standard length commercial.  A skilled copywriter can effectively communicate a marketing objective within these time confines. As a result, advertisers could extend their campaign by utilizing 4 times the number of commercials within the same budget parameters.


4. Advertise Outside of Prime Time. Most radio stations charge a premium for advertising during their prime time: Monday through Friday between 6:00am and 7:00pm and on Saturdays between 9:00am and 4:00pm.  Typically, 80% of a station's prime time audience also listens to the station outside of those times.  The cost for advertising in non-prime times can be 20% of the prime-time cost.  So, the budget minded business can buy a schedule that reaches 80% of the prime time audience for 20% of the price.


5. Make Every Word Of Your Commercial Count. A typical 60 second commercial comprises 150 words.  When you are on a budget, it is critical that every word helps to fulfill your marketing objective.  For instance, we recommend NOT including your phone number since each time your phone number is repeated, 7 of your 150 words are consumed.  More importantly, 90% of consumers forget a phone number within 5 seconds of hearing it. For additional tips for creating effective radio commercials click here.


6. Advertise Between Christmas and Valentine's Day. The demand for advertising across all media drops from late December through early February. Consequently, radio stations offer very attractive rates and packages during that time period. Advertisers can usually make their advertising budget go 30-40% further this time of year. Regardless of price, however, it remains essential, that advertising during this time of year is consistant with your marketing objective.


Effective Radio Advertising



Tags: Effective Radio Advertising, Tips