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Radio ga ga

Radio ga ga

Author | Source: Business Standard | Friday, Mar 24,2006 7:15 AM

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Radio ga ga

RADIO: Vibrancy on FM airwaves is boosting radio's ad worthiness.

“We’re taking dollars directly out of television,” Dave Burwick, chief marketing officer, Pepsi is reported to have said recently.

And it’s not just advertisers in the US who are beginning to believe that there is life beyond the 30-second spot. With television viewership so amazingly fragmented and expensive, advertisers are tuning in to a medium that holds quite another sort of promise: radio.

Consider:

At an average of 526 commercials a week, the clutter on television is increasing;

Average time spent by youth on watching television is down from 151 minutes in 2002 to 127 minutes in 2005;

A survey recorded “ad avoidance” of as much as 71 per cent in cable television, 61 per cent for magazines, versus just 24 per cent on radio.

What’s more, according to Raj Gupta, president, MediaFutures, Lintas, there appears to be higher ad avoidance on television among younger people and SEC A class consumers.

Since that’s the demographic bloc where discretionary spending power is getting concentrated, marketers are beginning to sit up and take notice. The youth seems to be developing an “affinity” for radio, to use Gupta’s term.

Besides, it’s a more mobile medium, and FM’s reach too is increasing. “The reach will only increase,” says A P Parigi, CEO, Entertainment Network India, “with another 200 radio stations expected in the next couple of years and the number of cities that will have FM stations going up from 12 to 50.”

“With regional language stations,” adds Gautam Radia, CEO, Win Radio, “the listening population will go up.”

Radio advertising revenues, currently in the region of a rather low Rs 300 crore, could hit the Rs 1,000 crore mark by 2010. “Categories such as local retailers will find radio a far more cost-effective medium than TV,” says a media analyst.

Another advantage: you have to make the time for TV, since it requires you to sit down (or at least pay unidirectional attention). Radio can play while you’re up to just about anything else.

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