Readers: We see a bright future for digital radio
Upbeat on its prospects for growth among listeners and advertisers
December 1, 2016
By the editors of Media Life
This is one in a number of stories on digital radio in Media Life’s ongoing series.
Digital radio has been around since the earliest days of the internet, but now it appears to have reached a tipping point.
It’s gained critical mass as medium, directly challenging traditional radio for listeners and increasingly for ad dollars.
Digital radio is never going to replace traditional radio as the medium of choice for listeners and advertisers. But it will find its place alongside it and see steady, solid growth as a companion media buy for advertisers.
Perhaps more importantly, digital radio will greatly expand our very definition of radio well beyond what it is now: talk and music, mostly listened to in cars.
It will become all things audio, listened to on a range of devices and in all sorts of locations–car, couch, sidewalk, hiking trail–and providing listeners a far wider range of content, music and talk, of course, but also the best storytelling of TV and movies, the dramas and comedies, tailored to the ear.
Those are some of the findings of a recent Media Life survey of media planners and buyers on the future of digital radio.
Here are some of the top findings. We’ll be publishing more in the coming weeks.
Our first question to readers was just how much growth they expected to see for digital radio. They were given three answers to choose from:
Over two thirds, 68 percent, chose: “I see solid to healthy growth. There is a place for digital alongside traditional radio as yet another set of options to reach listeners. But it’s not going to replace traditional radio anytime soon.”
Ten percent chose: “Very big. Spending will surge as advertisers come to appreciate its effectiveness in driving sales.”
The remaining 21 percent chose: “I see little growth, and far less than the hype would have you believe. We’ve been through all this before with other media that were supposed to be the next big thing and became the next small thing.”
Forms of digital radio that will see the most growth
We saw no surprises. Tops was streaming by radio stations at 67 percent, followed by music services like Spotify and Apple Music at 59 percent.
Right behind came podcasts at 53 percent, then internet radio (Pandora) at 49 percent.
Attitudes of clients toward digital radio
But among the most interesting findings of the survey was how clients regarded digital radio.
Here was the question we posed: “When you are talking with clients about digital radio versus traditional radio, what reasons do they give for not shifting ad dollars to digital? Feel free to choose more than one answer. ”
The top choice by far was: “General lack of knowledge of the various digital offerings” at 55 percent.
Next, at 37 percent, came: “Don’t believe digital options are as effective in reaching their target audiences.”
Then “Don’t believe any digital options are as effective as traditional radio in driving sales” at 32 percent.
Other options saw much lower response rates.
How media people view podcasts as an advertising vehicle
We asked whether podcasts held any appeal with clients.
Just over 27 percent said they were actively exploring podcast advertising with their clients.
The largest share, 41 percent, said they were not doing any podcast advertising but thought it held promise.
Just 21 percent felt podcast advertising held little promise as an advertising medium.
What’s growing in the era of cord cutting: Broadcast
Academy Awards viewership falls to a nine-year low
The Oscars’ big advertising winner: NY Times
How that big gaffe could ultimately help the Oscars
Hispanic media upbeat, even in the face of roundups
Donald Trump troops on down to the U.S. Capitol
Whoa: People watch YouTube 1 billion hours a day
Another Oscars mistake: Wrong photo for ‘In Memorium’
NBC’s ‘Timeless’ shows huge DVR growth
Oscars dominate an otherwise slow Sunday night
‘Late Show’ wins third straight week in total viewers
This week’s top-rated movies, songs and books
Cable news spending keeps pumping post-election
- Jeffrey L. Cohen becomes director of strategy at Pace
- Keith Miller becomes VP of the Americas at Saffron
- Jane Gross becomes on-air creative director at Crown Media
- Mark Risis becomes VP of partnerships at The Weather Co.
- Walter Cade rises to SVP at NBC Sports Regional Networks
- Geraldson 'Gino' Chua becomes art director at Real Simple
- Lindsay Silberman becomes senior digital editor at Town & Country
- Alicia Eler and Richard Chin join The Star Tribune
- Soumya Sriraman becomes North America president at BritBox
- Marla Kaplowitz becomes president and CEO at the 4As
- Eden Brolin rises to series regular on Freeform's 'Beyond'
- Miami Herald photographer Héctor Gabino dies at age 51
- Newspaperman Stanley Dearman dies at age 84
- Longtime Texas Monthly writer Gary Cartwright dies at 82
- New Yorker cartoonist James Stevenson dies at 87
This week’s top-rated movies, songs and books
This week’s broadcast ratings
This week’s cable ratings
This week’s daypart ratings
This month’s digital traffic data: December 2016
Opening for a media planner at a top OOH agency
Orlando agency looking for a media planner/buyer
Freelance media planner/buyer available
Junior media planner/buyer position in Minneapolis-St. Paul
Media sales coordinator opening in New York