Radio advertising sales continued a slow, steady
growth pace during the month of June, according to the
latest report from the Radio Advertising Bureau.
Combined local and national revenues increased 3% when
compared to the same month a year ago. Local dollars
grew 2%, while national sales registered a 7% gain.
For the first six months of 2002, national revenues
were up 5% and local numbers were flat. Together,
local and national sales ran 1% ahead of the first
half of last year. That number is exactly what the
most recent Nielsen report showed for radio revenue
growth for the first half of the year.
While the news is welcome for the radio business,
national ad sales fell of its torrid pace of 11% for
May. To put radio’s growth into perspective the RAB
introduced a Sales Index that equates base year 1998
to 100. The Index works similar to the Consumer Price
Index so that information can be monitored on a
monthly basis. The local sales index for June was
134.4, compared to a national index of 118.1. The
combined sales index for the month was 130.1. Through
the first half of this year, the local index stood at
133.5, while the national index was 133.9 and the
combined total was 133.6.
"Radio's strength as an advertising medium is
reflected in the industry's steadily improving revenue
figures, and bodes well for back-to-school sales and
the upcoming holiday season," said Gary Fries,
President and Chief Executive Officer of the RAB.
"Looking forward, we see signs that Radio's growth
will outperform the economy in general, resulting in a
steady and strong recovery in 2002."
Last year the radio business dropped 7%. The national
business was off 15%, so the recovery in that market
is particularly dramatic.