Why Radio Gets Screwed, Part Two
By | October 16th, 2012

Yesterday, we looked at a Media Behavior Institute study that strongly suggested that the habits of advertising professionals don’t match those of the general population – especially when it comes to radio listening.

In fact, while only 42% of these Madison Avenue mavens listened to radio during the day-long test period, 80% of consumers spent time with AM or FM stations during the same period.  The MBI suggested this disconnect presents a real challenge because of the media usage disparity between real people and those responsible for spending advertising dollars.

And it’s hard to disagree with that premise.  You’re not going to be gung ho about – much less buy – a media product you don’t consume yourself.

Conversely, these advertising professionals spent an inordinate amount of time with print media, a possible explanation as to why we still see so much advertising in daily newspapers, despite their rapidly declining circulations.

So what’s radio to do?

Well, here’s an idea.  There was one area of the study where the habits of real people and ad media folks linked up – sort of.

And now we’re talking tablets.

While the media pros were three times more likely to own an iPad-like device than real people, each group used them about 7% of their overall waking time.

And that spurred a thought.

Even if you already own a tablet, you can always use another one.  So why wouldn’t the RAB get together with its membership and simply give away tablets to every key player in the advertising industry – buyers, planners, account supervisors, and even principles?  These devices are becoming high-end door prizes so why not speak to them in the language they speak?

Then monogram tablets cases with a pithy reminder about radio’s vitality (not “Radio is red hot!” but maybe “Radio’s Gone Mobile”) and load these tablets up with the very best mobile apps from some of America’s best and most diverse stations, shows, and personalities.  Just like I’ve done below:

Showing that radio belongs on the hottest devices of our time, and that the industry is leaning forward when it comes to embracing mobile should be Job One.  Radio is making the transition to digital, mobile, and social platforms, and that’s worthy of their attention.  There’s a story to be told to those who control the dollars.  If the industry sits back and assumes they will figure it out on their own, shame on us.

And besides, spending time with radio on an iPad beats reading the newspaper.  Even the online edition.

Radio apps featured:

Top row: WGR, KDND, WWL, C-Span Radio

Second row: Spartan Sports Network, Loveline, Michigan Radio, WSTR


Fourth row: WUFM (RadioU), WLNK, WBOS, iHeartRadio

Fifth row: WGN, WMMR, KPLU, TuneIn Radio


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