Is Radio Worth It? Cutting Through the Static

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You have to hand it to commercial radio – still chugging along after nearly 100 years. But even if it has survived the birth of television, the rise and fall of VHS and today’s vast palette of online connectivity, is radio still an effective way to get your branding/sales message heard?


The variety of content delivery technology (electronic media, press, social media, YouTube, streaming TV, podcasts etc) has definitely fragmenting the potential commercial audience. But this is not such a bad thing for advertisers. In a lot of cases it actually translates into the opportunity to economically deliver an advertising campaign onto niche areas based on consumer demographics, location, spending habits and much more. And in spite of delivering commercial content with the same technical platform as it did in 1920s, radio still fits into this mix.

Radio provides the opportunity to appeal to an audience on an intimate level, working with the ‘theatre of the mind’. It’s also a chance to achieve powerful frequency for a reasonable price and to stimulate an audience toward a purchase decision at the right time and place (eg. in the car, heading to the shops).

Consumers are still comfortable with the medium. It’s free, easily accessible, reliable and immediate. And we’re still listening in big numbers. For example; the cumulative weekly audience for Australian metropolitan radio last year was 10.3 million people* and the figure continues to grow. Advertisers, including the big ‘nationals’, are cashing in on this popularity too, with a recent study finding that ‘each dollar of ‘ad-spend’ generated an average sales return of $6. Some cases were as high as $23’! **

So, whether it’s ‘saturation’ airplay, as a support medium in a mixed-media campaign or a branding ‘long game’, if it’s the right audience then it’s worth considering the good old wireless in your next advertising strategy?

*Commercial Radio Australia said
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