(Bob McCurdy) Last week I made my annual trek to the dermatologist. Had never met this physician but my usual doctor was on vacation. He asked what I did for a living and I replied “radio ad sales” and his immediate next words were, “I’ve heard that radio is dead” — I am not kidding. Like it had been rehearsed. Upon hearing these six words uttered my rash got worse.
This is a skin doctor who is as far away from the media world as the earth is from the sun, telling me radio is “dead.” I responded, “Yeah Doc, it’s about as dead as the bad blood that exists between the Israelis and Palestinians, the Yankees and Red Sox, and Trump and the squad of four. Turns out he’s a big Sirius guy, so I asked if he knew that, “Only 12% of cars and trucks registered in the U.S. are capable of receiving Sirius programming” and peppered him with a few choice facts you can see below. He got the message and literally stood there corrected before I allowed him to touch me.
Many of us don’t like to take the time memorize stuff, but tip-of-the-tongue facts injected into conversations will not only move our “Why radio” story forward, but provide mental nutrients which are helpful to persevere in what often comes across as an uninformed and unenlightened radio-discouragement fraternity that exists in the ad world — and apparently in dermatology as well.
Each fact below, gathered from various sources, could also be an effective educational pre-sell email to both current and prospective clients, allowing us to simultaneously educate and maintain “visibility with value.” An advertiser who knows what we know is more likely to believe what we believe and ultimately do business with us. It’s all about improving the odds. Some topline “true or false” stuff:
– 272 million Americans 6+ listen to radio each week — Nielsen’s Audio Today 2019
– 98% of all U.S. adults across the U.S. tunes to radio each month, as do 99% of all A25-54s — Nielsen’s Audio Today 2019
– Radio reaches +53.6 million adults each month than search sites/apps defined as Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others — Nielsen Audio Today 2019
– Radio reaches +66.7 million adults each month than social media sites/apps defined as Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and others — Nielsen Audio Today 2019
– 69% of radio is consumed away from home, when the listener can take immediate action and when messaging can most influence a purchase — Nielsen National Regional Database Fall 2018 A18+
– Radio enjoys a 65% share of all in-car audio listening, with Sirius a distant second with a 17% share — Edison Share of Ear Q1 2019 P13+ in-car
– Five: The approximate number of days the average adult tunes to AM/FM radio each week — Nielsen Sept/Oct/Nov 2018, six-market PPM average
– AM/FM accounts for 80% of daily audio time spent with ad-supported audio –– Edison Share of Ear Q1-Q4 2018 A18+
– Radio dominates the daily reach of audio ad-supported listening options. Radio’s daily reach of 73% is 10x that of Pandora, 18x that of Spotify, and 24x that of Sirius — Edison Share of Ear 2019
– Radio dominates the audio landscape with a 46% share of all audio listening — Edison Share of Ear 2018 Americans 13+
– Radios daily TSL is flat Q1 2019 vs Q1 2018: 1:46 vs 1:42 — Nielsen Q1 2019 Total Audience Report
– Numerous single-source ROAS studies confirm the impact of radio generating, on average, a $10:$1 ROAS — Nielsen Single Source ROAS studies (2014-2016)
– Radio added to a TV only campaign increased ROI +20% — Analytic Partners 2016 for the Advertising Research Foundation
– Only 17.4% of U.S. adults 18+ tuned to Pandora in the past week and 10.4% tuned to Spotify — Scarborough USA Release 2 2018
– 44% of Americans are light TV viewers accounting for only 9% of total TV viewing with radio reaching 90% of these light TV viewers — Nielsen PPM March/April 2018 A18-49
– TV ads aren’t seen 61% of the time. Only 39% of the time were eyes on the screen. 40% of the time eyes were on a second screen. 21% of the time they were out of the room — Council for Research Excellence Nielsen Neuroscience Study “The Mind of a Viewer” March 2017
– TV viewing among young Americans is declining 3x faster than radio listening 2014-2018- Nielsen/Deloitte Insights
– The heaviest TV viewing quintile (20%) view TV an average of 10.1 hours/day. The lightest TV viewers tune in an average of only 12 minutes/day — Nielsen Q3 2016 Total Audience Report
– Radio’s P1s (heaviest listeners) are considerably more upscale than TV’s and are 74% more likely to reside in a home with a HHI of $100K+, 40% more likely to have graduate college, and 165% more likely to be full-time employed than TV’s P1 viewer — Scarborough (six-market average: Boston, Detroit, Charlotte, Las Vegas, Philadelphia, and Tampa)
All of the above happen to be true. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions but not their own facts. It’s better to have command of these facts than not — to know than not know — as you never know when you’ll run into a dermatologist, client, or prospect that needs a little educating.
Educating is camouflaged selling and good selling is never wasted, regardless who is being educated.
Bob McCurdy is Vice President of Sales for the Beasley Media Group and can be reached at email@example.com.