Selling Through the Speaker Box: How Marketers Can Better Tune into Online Radio

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Let’s get right to the point. You want to reach people online to promote your product/services or your advertiser’s products/services. Online is obviously one of the best places to reach your target audience, but how many of you have considered online radio also known as audio streaming as a good place to reach your target audience?

There are several good reasons to consider this version of online media:

• More and more people are listening to their favorite radio stations online at work
• With online access, people are able to find radio stations outside of their hometown
• If they are listening online that means they have a computer and Internet access
• Listening to online radio at work means easy access to pen and paper to write down the product or website mentioned in the radio spot
• Listening to online radio at work means easy access to quickly check out the website mentioned in the radio spot
• Online radio/audio streaming is surprisingly inexpensive
• Online radio stations are being created for many demographics out there, such as: small business owners, webmaster, work at home moms and more…didn’t know that did you?

With all of that being said, let’s see some stats:

• Online radio has grown from 37 million users in 2005 to approximately 52 million users as of April 2006.
• Online radio reaches 19 percent of users 18-34 per week and 15 percent of users 25-54 per week. How can you not find your target audience?!
• AM/FM Radio online has a listening time of 2 hours and 45 minutes for the average consumer.
• The statistics are still coming out about online radio, it is after all a fairly un-explored media that needs more attention

There are several things to know about when buying online radio placements:

• 15 second spots, 30 second spots and 60 second spots (obviously one is longer than the other). This is the amount of time you have to say your promo (it’s longer than you think).
• Ask if their online radio is the same as their regular station. Some radio stations don’t have exact matching between their regular play lists and shows as online.
• Ask about the most popular times for their streaming audio, most likely it will be during work hours (which will be more expensive but worth it).
• Also ask if their audio streaming is broadcast locally or nationally.
• Ask who their parent company is. Chances are if you are already working with the parent company, you may be able to get some value-added placement for your spots. I.e., if you are working with CBS and have placements on the CBS website you may be able to place a few spots on Star 100.7 radio station.

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