An advertising guru once said, "the aim of radio advertising is to sell the 'sizzle' and not the ingredients".
Basically, what this means is that Radio is a wonderful advertising medium when you can communicate your message by promoting how it looks, tastes and will make your audience feel, rather than what is in the box.
However, the truth is that most marketers don't know how to get started and therefore are not taking the first step into radio advertising.
Before beginning a Radio Advertising Campaign, it is important to define the target audience and study what the competition is up to.
Make sure that you clarify your target markets before you start - there is no point aiming great radio advertising where no one has the need of your product. Plan the radio advertising strategy that best fits your overall marketing and communications plan and monitor the results very closely.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in Radio advertising is to produce an advertising spot just like everyone else. The key to a successful campaign is to create an angle and something very different from your competition. Can you offer free delivery? Is there a discount if they order before a certain date? How can you make it easy for them to buy?
Remember, creativity cuts through the white noise of radio advertising and you should therefore spend a considerable amount of time looking at your objectives, unique angle and overall content of the advertising message before you go any further.
Unlike print advertising where repetition can have a diminishing effect, Radio Advertising has the opposite effect with response rates building over time. Therefore, the most effective way to use radio advertising for a promotion is to have an annual or long contract with a local radio station.
One of the other important factors is that you must develop a good relationship with an advertising executive. This contact may be able to offer you prime placements and good prices for longer campaigns, so treat your contacts with respect and offer polite and friendly communications.
All radio advertising should be supported by a very user-friendly response service or website. If you are pointing people to a website, this has to be an easily found, easily navigated and simply designed page.
If you have a direct response hotline number, do make sure that a sufficient number of people are ready to take the calls.
One final point about your message is that it must have something that makes people act. A call to action is so important in Radio as the attention span of most people is very short. Unlike magazine advertising, there is nothing for people to see, so your message has to grab them before they leave and move onto something else.
There are masses of Radio stations and production companies that will be happy to help you with the planning and production areas of your campaign. Make sure you do your research and choose the appropriate Radio station after careful planning and consideration. Radio really can work better than most if your creative message can match the quality of your product or service.
Andrew Long is an advertising sales consultant and expert in the field of generating revenues from websites and other media. He offers media companies a bespoke solution to selling advertising and making money from their websites and other media.
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