Radio has become hot property as a medium of communication, a fact further consolidated by the number of activities around the medium – the recently held Radio Forum and the Promax India Radio Awards, and now the Radio Rocks 2 seminar in Mumbai.
In his first visit to India, Diarmid Moncrieff, Consultant, United Radio, London, negated any remaining doubts about radio being an ineffective medium and also proved through various experiences and examples that radio is the best medium for advertisers and brand owners. Moncrieff had introduced the theory of sonic branding in the UK and has worked with leading brands and agencies for the past 15 years doing what he does best – converting major brands to radio, resulting in brilliant sales.
Most of the best known French and American brands such as Kellogg’s and Coca-Cola were built through the radio. Who can forget the catchy ‘Always Coca-Cola’ jingle?
Radio is a medium that is purely based on sound, a fact that makes advertisers reluctant to use radio as a brand building medium as they say that it lacks visuals. However, radio is far more powerful for precisely this reason. Messages and information on radio work when they are concise and simple. This is because people do not sit and patiently listen to the radio.
People who watch TV, only watch TV, people who read newspapers, only read newspapers, people who surf the Internet, only surf the Internet. However, radio is consumed by busy people who are driving, cooking, working, or exercising. When brand owners and advertisers use radio to have simple and clear messages and support the message with the right sounds radio advertising works like a charm.
According to Moncrieff, the other important part about radio advertising was the power of sound. Unlike sight that only helps us see what is in front of us, sound is all about 360-degree vision. We can hear what is behind us or around us and that makes sounds powerful and human beings react very quickly to sound. Sounds drive action. When advertisers play to radio’s strengths, brand communication will turn more effective.
Radio uses all aspects of sound – voices, sound effects, and music – to communicate effectively. Moncrieff said that radio advertising should not be a clash of two voices, two music pieces or two sound effects simultaneously. However, a simultaneous mix of an engaging voice, an effective sound effect and a good piece of music are the basics of good radio advertising.
Radio advertising also should be consistent and repetitive as humans associate and relate to sounds when they hear one thing regularly. So, when there is a certain piece of music that always plays while advertising a brand on radio, people immediately know the brand’s name.
According to Moncrieff, “Radio advertising is about more bang per buck.” If your brand has been associated with a single piece of music and you think that this will surely bore the listeners and not make them notice your radio ad, have numerous variations of that one single piece of music that is associated with your brand.”
Effective radio advertising is when voice, music and brand characteristics fit perfectly to give you a wholesome and effective message. Moncrieff said, “People choose brands because they like their brands. Brands have less to do with tangible assets and are more about intangible assets.”
People love brands as they emotionally associate with brands and when you add effective radio advertising to a loveable brand, the effect is simply magical.