Radio As Part Of Your Advertising Plan

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(By Bob McCurdy) Advertisers and agencies are increasingly engaging us in search of marketing insights beyond Nielsen ratings. Providing these insights as to where, why, and how radio fits into a media plan is challenging and requires us to know our marketing “stuff” beyond simple statistics and surface clichés. What follows are marketing tenets I’ve reviewed with clients the past few weeks that enabled me to elevate our conversations. Reflect on your own personal ad experiences.

Market inclusively. All current customers, as well as other consumers who do not currently buy but have the wherewithal to purchase, need to be reached. As non-users become users, light users become heavy users, and heavy users become lighter users, the future revenue potential of any consumer will differ from their current revenue potential as economic and personal circumstances change. Over-targeting is the enemy of inclusive messaging. Relevance, not frequency leads to consumer action.

Takeaway: Reach never preach.

Advertising reinforces and refreshes memories that make a brand more likely to come to mind in buying situations. Competitive advertising neutralizes this, as do fading memories. This is why share of voice, maintaining a relative ad spend advantage, and consistency of advertising is critical.

Takeaway: “Being visible and on the shelf” contributes to share of market.

The limitations of demographics will continue to grow as gender roles continue to evolve and Boomers age.

Takeaway: Men account for an increasingly large percentage of shopping and Boomers (outside the 25-54 demo), have money.

Advertising’s impact does not end when the flight ends. Sometimes it takes time for “life” to generate the need for the product advertised.

Takeaway:  A “hard stop” exists on conference calls and does not exist when it comes to advertising’s impact.

A campaign that is deemed ineffective short term, can be effective long term, as newly acquired customers repurchase.

Takeaway:  “Conquested” customers who purchase long after the flight has ended have a considerable customer lifetime value.

“Flat” sales does not mean that advertising had no impact. It could well have insulated the client from competitive messaging.

Takeaway:  Maintaining sales in the face of a competitive ad onslaught is a “win.”

It’ll take longer to generate results for an advertiser who has been on hiatus. Consider heavying up media weight the first few weeks of the campaign with these advertisers. If a client has been advertising consistently, consider rotating in shorter-length commercials. Having meaningful marketing conversations with clients in 2017 is table stakes.

Takeaway:  Advertising is not like turning on the lights, and there does reach a point when shorter-length commercials can serve to extend an advertiser’s “visibility.”

There are great benefits to utilizing a media mix- reaching the heaviest users of multiple media instead of generating mounds of frequency against the heavy users of one.

Takeaway: The same number of impressions distributed across multiple media is more effective than the same number of impressions in a single medium.

There comes a point when the next ad dollar would be more productive spent on another medium.

Takeaway: Surpassing the point of diminishing returns is wasteful. The second exposure costs as much as the first but delivers less value than the first, the third exposure costs as much as the second but delivers less value than the second, etc.

The “challenger” needs to be nimbler, more creative, and command a larger share of ad voice to gain share.

Takeaway: The burden of proof lies with the challenger.

A 10% share brand that wants to remain a 10% share brand needs to “close” 10% of all new category buyers.

Takeaway: Only targeting current customers prevents this. Extend reach.

Advertising is not a result of sales, rather sales are a result of advertising. Budgeting advertising as a percent of sales is risky.

Takeaway: Budgeting in this manner is akin to looking through the wrong end of a telescope.

The first place to look for a client’s growth barriers is their current marketing strategy.

Takeaway: Look within before looking outside. Who are they not inviting in?

Bob McCurdy is The Vice President of Sales for The Beasley Media Group and can be reached at [email protected]

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