We’ve all heard the radio ads before. The audio reads like a lifeless brochure. How much sales material can be crammed into thirty or sixty seconds? Radio advertising is different than print advertising, yet many advertisers, ad agencies and radio stations treat it the same. Keep in mind that radio listeners are preoccupied with other tasks – driving, working, etc. Why make your message more difficult to absorb than it needs to be. Want your radio commercial to be more effective? Stick to a singular focus.
First, you need to know what the focus of your radio campaign is. Many ad campaigns are built upon price offers and special deals. If that’s what makes you unique, and your campaign is singularly focused around offers, that’s great! Most of the radio advertising on the air is not focused on offers, but on products, services and their respective businesses. Branding is a term that many advertisers hear all the time, but seem to only reserve for the big boys. As a small or midsized business taking advantage of radio advertising, branding is just as important. To define branding in its most elemental form, it is essentially what people PRIMARILY think of when they think of you. Many times, the business owner is not able to answer that question. To find out what your brand is, you should talk to your customers. If you are a service based business, what is it that people really value about your service? If you sell goods, what is the core reason people buy those goods…and why from you? The idea is to find out what really makes people feel comfortable buying from you. Find out what customers think about you overall. You should see a pattern develop here. This is basically your brand. Once you nail down what it is that makes customers want to come to your business, its time to exploit it in your radio advertising.
Next, your radio ad should not do anything else but communicate your brand. The commercial should be centered on that one key element that makes you special. If quick turnaround is your specialty, don’t fill your radio ad with extra garbage. No mentions of low price, no radio cliché phrases about superior service, etc. Just focus on the quick turnaround. Pound that singularly focused message over and over with frequency and you will start to be branded as the “quick turnaround” company. When people need your service, and quick turnaround is important, you will be top of mind. Reinforce the brand in your radio commercial and make it easy for potential customers to reach you. Of course this is just one example. You and your customers will determine what is important.
Lastly, find creative ways to communicate that singular focus. In today’s media saturated, over-marketed society, attention is the first step toward awareness. Humor works well (if it’s funny), testimonials (if they’re real and not poorly acted sales copy) and thought provoking stories also work well. You must do something that captures the attention of the radio listener. If your radio commercial is ever going to make that singularly focused impression, it must connect.
Radio advertising can be powerful. You must understand how to properly use it. Know what is important to your customers. Keep the message focused, and make it attention getting. These tips will increase your chances of a more effective radio advertising campaign.