1 July 2016
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R-Force: radio strikes back

A new study from IP Radio – a first of its kind for the southern part of Belgium – offers compelling evidence of radio’s effectiveness as an advertising medium.

Conducted between September 2015 and February 2016, the new methodology was designed to isolate the impact of radio spots on brand awareness (top-of-mind, spontaneous and aided), appreciation, recommendation and purchase intent. Overall, radio campaigns boost these brand KPIs by about 20%.

The study also compared radio’s effectiveness in three groups of people – regular listeners, non-regular listeners and occasional/non listeners. As might be expected, the KPI impact was shown to be significantly higher among those who listen regularly to the radio.

Radio ads stick in the memory

IP selected a range of radio campaigns, representing different sectors, categories of advertiser, media plans and types of spot. When asked whether they remembered hearing a spot that had recently aired on the radio (with the name of the advertiser beeped out), 42% responded in the affirmative. This increased to 48% among people who listen to the radio every day.

The results demonstrate some of radio’s strengths: radio spots fit naturally alongside the audio content, causing minimal disturbance for the audience, and listeners rarely avoid radio advertising as a consequence.

Good creative is crucial to achieve high impact

Regular listeners participating in the study judged radio commercials to be “dynamic, fun and entertaining” (23%), “original, creative” (20%) and “familiar, close” (20%). Supporting the point above regarding high levels of tolerance towards radio, few listeners rated these spots as “irritating, disturbing, unpleasant”.

The analysis therefore gives valuable insights into which emotional drivers could be better exploited by radio advertising as a whole.

The R-Force index

The study calculated the R-Force index, which is a mechanism to compare traditional advertising KPIs – awareness, consideration, etc. – between regular listeners, non-regular listeners and non/occasional listeners. The R-Force quantifies the impact of radio advertising by measuring the ratio between listeners who have with certainty been exposed with casual or non-listeners. An index higher than 100 indicates radio’s positive effect on the KPI in question.

For example, spontaneous awareness of the studied brands averaged 28.1% among non/occasional listeners, 32.7% for non-regular listeners and 35.6% for regular listeners. This gives an R-Force index of 127 (35.6% / 28.1% x 100).

The same calculation leads to the following R-Force impact scores across each of the KPIs:

Helping brands deliver better and more effective radio campaigns

The R-Force indices were found to be consistently positive across all target groups, regardless of age, gender or socio-demographic group. IP notes that the methodology probably even underestimates the true impact of radio when it forms part of a media mix: when mono-media radio campaigns were measured, the impact of radio nearly doubled!

IP’s new study allows advertisers to understand the creative elements that make radio advertising work better, thus allowing the sales house to add another tool to its portfolio of resources, which include the database of spots and its Power of Sound presentation.

Why this matters for egta members

Not only does IP’s new research prove and quantify the positive impact of radio advertising across a range of KPIs, it also sheds light on the creative elements that contribute to ad effectiveness. It also – for the first time – provides a benchmark for the radio industry in the south of the country. In an advertising environment sometimes characterised by questionable data, smoke and mirrors and uncertainty, R-Force offers brands the one thing they really need to inform their marketing decisions – proof that radio advertising works.

Target: Radio
Background info

Please click on the links below to access the relevant documents:

» IP Belgium website (please click here)

» R-Force case study (in French; please click here)

Download in PDF

Please click here download the PDF version

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