Maine small business owners have been using Portland radio to successfully market their goods and services for decades.
According to the trade publication Ad Age, radio delivers the best return-on-investment of any medium. More than 20 studies by Nielsen indicate that radio advertising can deliver up to $23 for every dollar invested.
But, sometimes, radio advertising does not work. One of the leading causes of failure occurs when the business owner invests in a campaign without having a concise, well-articulated marketing objective.
According to the Small Business Guide to Effective Radio Advertising, a well-defined marketing objective is the singular guiding force behind a successful radio advertising campaign. The marketing objective is used to determine the right radio stations to use; the times of day to advertise in; how long to advertise for; and what the commercials should say. Investing in a radio campaign without a marketing objective is like being lost in the woods without a compass and a map.
Too often, the reason a business owner is to create "exposure". In and of itself, exposure has never really helped anyone. Just ask The Donner Party or Pee Wee Herman. Saying the name of your business repeatedly on your favorite Portland radio station will, indeed, provide exposure but, sadly, not results.
If, however, you craft a well-defined marketing objective based on your top business priorities, then success will be more certain. Fortunately, there are only two real-types of marketing objectives to choose from:
- BRANDING OBJECTIVES are used when you want your target consumer to believe something about your product or service. An example of a branding objective could be: Make working mothers to believe that my daycare service is the safest place in town to entrust their children.
- PROMOTION OBJECTIVES are used when you want your target consumer to take specific action. An example of a promotion objective could be: Compel people who maintain their own cars to buy 3 quarts of motor oil at my store this weekend.
Besides "exposure", sometimes, an advertiser selects one of the following as a marketing objective. Both can be advertising suicide:
- Create awareness
- Build store traffic
Neither "objective" provides strong guidance to build an effective radio campaign. Can you convert awareness into cash register receipts? Will attracting traffic to your store that does not consist of qualified prospects result in a successful campaign? The answer to both questions is a loud, NO.
Target Customers By Lifestyles and Interests
A successful marketing objective includes a singular, well-articulated target consumer. Using gender and age alone is too broad to be effective. Instead, a marketing objective should target consumers by lifestyle and interests. Some examples could be:
- Working Moms
- Shoppers With Home Depot Credit Cards
- People Who Will Retire Within 5 Years
- College Graduates Who Are Under-employed
Once you determine a target consumers, a reputable media account executive can provide research on which radio stations are most likely to reach your best prospects. Remember each marketing objective should contain a single target. It is unlikely, for instance, that 'working moms' and 'People Who Will Retire Within Five Years' listen to the same station.
The reason for advertising your business on Portland radio, is not "exposure". It should be to deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time. A well-defined marketing objective is the key tool for success.
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