I know, consider the source and the flexibility of statistics. But there's no doubt in my mind that traditional radio has been too overlooked in the rush of online media.
The above charts show the incredible audience migration of the past decade, but notice where local radio still ranks. Much of the online audience is coming, not from converted broadcast listeners, but from the overall explosion of media consumption, says TargetSpot's Eyal Goldwerger.
52% of Internet radio listeners are listening at work, but 79% of that group are also listening at home, cites Goldwerger from his own study. That suggests "it’s a much longer day” than the traditional 6a-8p workday. The real news is that more total media hours are being created. Never has the ad community had a hungrier audience.
Significantly for me, Goldwerger admits that, while internet radio listening is still booming [just look at Pandora's astronomical recent growth], broadcast radio “still owns the drive time."
Even with the growth of mobile devices and satellite radio, people still reach for the dial.
"Radio is intrusive," points out my friend and longtime local media buyer Steve Fitz. "It creates awareness and interest...Without the use of traditional media at the early phases, the take off point, however defined, is bound to be further down the runway."
Well, intrusive, yes. We are less apt to fiddle with our audio sources when attempting to aim a vehicle down the Northway at rush hour. And many of us still like local content—online's remaining weakness—while driving. So, for local advertisers especially, broadcast gives a substantial kick start to any online media efforts, though the big national brands also claim to be getting their best returns on a mix of broadcast and online media.
It would be interesting to see some local case studies, any volunteers?