The second largest radio company in the U.S. is wooing marketers back to local radio with a multi-faceted campaign showing the medium’s reach.
In the U.S., local radio accounts for disproportionately low marketing spend, despite reaching 270 million listeners a week. Entercom, which became the second largest radio company in the U.S. (behind iHeartRadio) through its 2017 merger with CBS Radio, wants to change that, and is aggressively on the way to making that happen.
In December 2017, the company, which alone reaches 112 million listeners a month through its 235 locally focused stations, launched the radio industry’s first-ever advocacy campaign, built around the idea of promoting all things radio. Their first move involved hitting their target audience — advertisers and media buyers — through spreads in the top-tier publications those decision makers read, loudly and clearly letting them know that they could maximize their ad spend by adding radio to their media mix.
The second iteration came in May during the TV upfront presentations, when Entercom’s message read, “Lets’ be upfront. Your television campaign is not working. Add radio.” Entercom then encouraged media buyers to increase their spend on radio by just 2 to 3 percent, with the promise that they’d see immediate impact on their return on investment (ROI).
“Despite reaching more Americans than any other medium, radio has been challenged to overcome inaccurate perceptions,” said Entercom Chief Marketing Officer Ruth Gaviria. “We launched the industry’s first advocacy campaign to highlight that radio is the least disrupted of all media, offering unparalleled reach across all key demographics – on air and through digital – and providing superior ROI for advertising partners.”
Entercom’s message was heard. P&G, McDonalds, Home Depot and Comcast showed increased interest in radio because they are realizing there is ROI on the table. Right now, radio takes up about 7 percent of the total ad spend. Growing that to 10 percent of the ad spend would be good for everybody, Entercom said.