Can Radio Really Deliver A 21:1 R.O.I.?


Pierre Bouvard is the Chief Insights Officer at Cumulus and Westwood One. In his latest blog post Bouvard cites a brand new study Westwood One commissioned Nielsen to conduct on a radio campaign run by an auto aftermarket retailer. He says the study shows the (unnamed) retailer generated $21 of incremental sales for every $1 spent on radio.

Nielsen took a look at a three-month national radio campaign (March to June 2016) by matching the Portable People Meter panel with credit and debit card spending data and compared purchases of those exposed to the radio campaign with consumers who were not exposed. And the study concluded the retailer generated $21 of incremental sales for every one dollar that was spent on radio. Bouvard says, “This proves the tangible and concrete evidence of radio’s impact on sales.”

Nielsen says the radio campaign drove a 64% increase in new customers and in all the campaign resulted in a 48% increase in total buyers. Those that were exposed to the radio campaign the most represented nearly half (45%) of the total sales increase, according to the conclusions Nielsen came to. Nielsen also concluded that among consumers who heard the campaign, the auto aftermarket retailer had a 71% increase in the share of dollars spent in the auto aftermarket category. And, the advertiser had a 13.2% share of spend in the category versus only a 7.7% share among those not exposed.

To read Bouvard’s blog GO HERE


  1. As much as this is wonderful news, to grow our revenue by leaps and bounds, we need to document and attribute specific, measurable sales results for EACH of our advertisers, for each week that they advertise with us.

    This can be done several ways, of which Mr. Bouvard’s is an inspiring example. Other methods generate 7/8/9 figures in notarized advertiser sales results in markets small to large, that I am amazed our industry isn’t doing this across the board. This works so well, that it allows a small town station to become one of Canada’s most profitable stations (source: BDO), and in markets of a couple of hundred thousand people or more, documents over $100 million in advertiser sales from radio campaigns in a matter of weeks.


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