Six leading radio networks have formed a new industry organization, the Network Radio Compliance Council, to bring more precision and transparency to network radio ad buys.
The founding members of the NRCC include American Urban Radio Networks, Crystal Media Networks, Cumulus Media, Dial Global, Premiere Networks and United Stations, all of which are tracked by Arbitron’s Radar service. The networks are coming together to “promote effective, reliable reporting and stewardship of network radio audio commercials and programming,” stated the NRCC.
This includes establishing best practices and detailing more precise measurement methodologies to guide the placement and reporting of network radio ads. The NRCC will also host quarterly meetings with radio vendors, ad agencies and other radio networks, to discuss current issues.
Dial Global president for operations Charles Steinhauer said the organization should help “improve the standards, speed and effectiveness of scheduling and reporting of our client’s commercial audio.”
The NRCC membership is composed of the compliance heads of the six networks. At launch, the NRCC is being headed by Premiere Networks’ Meg Montury, who was elected chair, and Dial Global’s Chris Buehler, who was elected vice-chair.
The NRCC is launching as broadcast radio groups roll out new network radio products.
Last week CBS Radio revealed plans to launch a new CBS Sports Radio Network. Cumulus Media, its exclusive syndicator and sales partner, will help secure affiliate agreements and ad sales through Cumulus Media Networks.
Earlier this month, Univision revealed plans to launch a national, Spanish-language AM radio network featuring local, national and international news. The new network, Univision America, will include AM stations in nine major Univision markets: Miami, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, McAllen, TX, El Paso, San Antonio, Las Vegas and Los Angeles.
In March, NBC News and Dial Global partnered to create NBC News Radio, a round-the-clock radio news network with national distribution courtesy of Dial, which provides programming and services to more than 8,500 radio stations nationwide.
Network radio is currently one of the main growth areas for radio advertising revenue, according to the Radio Advertising Bureau. In the first quarter of 2012, network radio revenue increased 8% to $282 million, or about 7.4% of total radio revenues of $3.81 billion. That’s up from a 6.9% share in the first quarter of 2011 and 6.1% in the first quarter of 2008.