Four Mobile Strategies To Optimize Radio Advertising For Local Businesses

It is an ongoing discussion for businesses large and small, local and national -- where are the best and most effective places to allocate advertising dollars? For many businesses, digital media like search, display (both desktop and mobile) and email marketing are appealing because of the tangible metrics produced, including click-through numbers, Web site visits and direct sales. However, these tactics limit the potential of a campaign, as they don't have the reach of other media channels.

Traditionally, local radio has only been able to offer the metrics associated with the size and diversity of its reach, which include more than 243 million people nationwide and 90 percent of all demographics. As a result, while radio has a large and loyal audience base, the medium has struggled to compete for digital ad dollars.

However, thanks to new technologies, advertisers are able to pair local radio with digital and mobile media to create interactive radio campaigns that will optimize results for local businesses. Mobile interactive radio campaigns use radio’s diverse, local audience and pair it with a radio station mobile app to enable listeners to access local business offers, download music or get more information about items discussed on the broadcast.

Here are four ways that local businesses can optimize their advertisements using interactive radio.

 1.  Pairing Engaging Radio Ads with Station Mobile Apps: By tying mobile ads to their radio spot counterpart, listeners can engage with the advertisement on their phone immediately, during and after the ad is heard on the radio. Look for radio stations that have embraced technology beyond the basic streaming mobile apps and can deliver a digital offer or additional information to the listener. Some of these applications can even collect opt-in email addresses and contact information for businesses to use as future sales leads.

 2.  Metrics, Metrics, Metrics: Optimizing local radio advertising with interactive radio allows businesses to see how many people are actually interested in their radio ads based on who is accessing additional content through the app. This provides valuable statistics like Web site visits, clicks to purchase a product, event ticket sales and lead generation through tools like email collection. Advertisers now receive the same metrics from a radio campaign that they would from a digital media buy.

 3.  Campaign Optimization: Now that advertisers can get listener engagement metrics on advertisement performance through interactive radio, they can test the advertisement’s message and design a call to action to see how many listeners are interested. The next week, the business can easily pivot to test another message and then compare the data to see which one is getting more traction. The same tests can be done with local business offers, events and other promotions.

 4.  Remarketing: Companies should continue to foster the relationship with those consumers who raised their hands and engaged with the ad through the interactive mobile radio apps. Developing post-campaign outreach will significantly aid in building confidence with potential customers and provide more personalized offers.

Radio stations in Portland, Atlanta, Indianapolis and San Diego are some of the first in the nation to offer interactive radio ads for local businesses. Many organizations are not aware of this and therefore continue to miss out on the opportunity to try these cross-platform advertisements, which can dramatically increase the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns.

As one of the first forms of mass media, radio continues to be the top vehicle to reach local audiences for stations and advertisers. Now, through interactive radio, businesses can utilize the significant reach of radio while optimizing their ads with a digital component to better deliver ROI and bring in new customers.
4 comments about "Four Mobile Strategies To Optimize Radio Advertising For Local Businesses".
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  1. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing, October 2, 2014 at 12:29 p.m.

    While these technologies exist as a consumer I do not listen to the radio while I have the station app on my phone going. In fact usually I am driving and my state has a hands free law. There would need to be a cost benefit analysis to see if the few you do engage with gives you a return on your money.

  2. Sara Sisenwein from Clip Interactive, October 2, 2014 at 3:54 p.m.

    Hi Howie,

    Thanks for your comment. For a local business or a radio station, using a mobile app to help optimize the radio programming can help in several different ways.

    As many states enforce hands-free laws, some station apps offer the listener the ability to look back at the content from the last hour, including ads, deals, music and more. That way, if you want to save a song that played while you driving or enter a contest, you can look it up on the station app at a later time.

    In our experience, integrating radio with mobile strategies helps solidify the ROI of ads that combine the two media. The unique partnership between the two capitalizes on the huge radio audience, then delivers a tangible call to action on the app so that this can be measured by clicks, downloads, email leads or purchases of the promoted product or service through the app. We have several case studies on our website that you can check out if you are interested:

    Thanks again for your comment!


  3. Bret Kinsella from XAPPmedia, October 2, 2014 at 4:29 p.m.

    Howie / Sara - another strategy for listener engagement in local advertising is to use XAPP Ads for hands free, voice interaction. When you are driving you can simply speak to interact with an audio ad. No hands required. This is available today for Internet radio as well as terrestrial radio stations with a mobile app. MediaPost covered the technology at our launch earlier in 2014: You can find out more and experience some examples at

  4. Sara Sisenwein from Clip Interactive, October 2, 2014 at 5:58 p.m.

    Hi Bret,

    Thanks for the comment about XAPP. There are many technologies emerging that provide innovative ways for radio listeners to easily get more information about businesses, enter polls or purchase the promoted product. We think it is great that this technology is helping to prove that radio is still a viable medium and advertising with such a platform can really make an impact on a business’ bottom line.



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