Inbound & Digital Marketing Blog

Inbound Marketing Versus Radio Advertising

October 6, 2015, Michael Karp

Today, I’m going to place Inbound Out marketing against an old-school, time-tested advertising technique:

Radio advertising.

Radio advertising has been around for decades, almost as long as radio itself. The first radio commercial aired almost 100 years ago.

That’s almost 100 years of testing, iterating, and optimizing.

Needless to say, radio advertisers have honed their craft. They use a combination of words and sounds to tickle our aural senses and influence our imaginations.

They can reach hundreds or thousands of people at one time, and have an entire local area buzzing about their business.

Radio advertising is powerful, but Inbound Out marketing is a tough opponent. Here’s how they compare:

  • Radio limits your prospects to receiving the ad aurally. With Inbound Out, your marketing can be received through any medium you want.
  • Targeting any metric except a local area through radio is a hassle and costly. Inbound Out marketing allows you to target individuals who have the highest likelihood of becoming customers.
  • Inbound Out marketing isn’t restricted by other costs, like the timing of your ad. It stays consistent over time, while your results compound in the long-term.

Inbound Marketing Versus Radio Advertising

Let’s get started!

Inbound Out Marketing Versus Radio Advertising — Receiving The Ad

The ways prospects can receive your advertising either limits or expands your options. More options means you have more opportunity to figure out what works best for your audience.

With radio advertising, you’re limited to delivering your ad aurally.

Granted, advertisers have become experts at combining words and sounds to elicit the thoughts and emotions they want their prospects to have. Instead of viewing or reading the ad, prospects use their imagination. As we all know, imagination can be very powerful.

Either way, you’re still limited to a combination of words and sounds.

With Inbound Out, your marketing can be received any way you want:

  • Aural
  • Written
  • Video
  • Infographic
  • Etc.

Inbound Out also supports podcasting, so your prospects can listen any time they want (such as during their commute or while working out). It’s just like radio, but targeted and inbound-friendly.

Blogging and other forms of written content are also a huge part of Inbound Out marketing. This means prospects can always come back, read your content, and get to know your business when it fits their schedule. Your marketing doesn’t come and go in 30-second sprints.

You can also employ videos, infographics, mindmaps, and other visual content to convey marketing messages in ways people are more receptive to.

All of this expands your options and gives you enough room to figure out what works best for your audience, so you can scale up from there.

Inbound Out Marketing Versus Radio Advertising — Targeting

Being able to target your ads to the right audience is crucial for any successful marketing campaign.

Radio advertising is particularly useful for one type of targeting:

Location.

If you’re focused in a local area, radio is the perfect medium to target a large amount of people in one area at the same time. Your message spreads quickly and effectively.

However, other types of targeting (such as demographics and interests) can be more difficult and costly.

For example, if you want to target a certain age range, you need to subscribe to a U.S. provider of ratings data (like Arbitron). You then use this data to try to purchase airtime when this demographic is most likely to be listening.

It’s a shotgun approach, but it can be hit-or-miss depending if the right people are listening at that particular time.

Inbound Out marketing allows you to target individuals who have the highest likelihood of becoming customers. The targeting is planned (through the Precise Prospect Profile) and specific, because you’re targeting individual people.

You know exactly who you’re trying to reach, and you can calculate your success rate in real time. This allows you to test, iterate, and improve your ROI as you conduct subsequent campaigns.

Inbound Out Marketing Versus Radio Advertising — Cost Constrictions

The cost of radio advertising is subject to two main things:

  1. How big an area the station serves (local, national, etc)
  2. How many people are listening at a particular time

So in order to reach your target demographic at the most ideal time for your business, your ad cost is subject to how many people tend to listen to the radio at a particular time.

“Driving times,” for instance, are for morning and evening commutes, and they’re the most popular/expensive times to book airtime. Other times are less expensive, but you reach less people.

Depending on your budget, this vastly constricts how effective your advertising will be.

With Inbound Out marketing, you aren't constricted by other costs. The cost stays consistent over time, whether you hire an inbound marketing agency or implement it in-house. And your results compound in the long-term, through word-of-mouth and social media.

This makes it easier to fit Inbound Out into your budget, and your ROI increases over time.

Wrap Up

Radio advertising can be an effective technique, especially for certain types of businesses.

It’s one of the best ways to target a local area, and you can use a combination of words and sounds to influence your audience’s imaginations.

However, Inbound Out marketing has some characteristics that can make it a valuable addition to your strategy. These include:

  • Being able to deliver your marketing any way you want to (aurally and visually).
  • Being able to target specific individuals who have the highest likelihood of becoming customers.
  • The cost of Inbound Out marketing stays consistent over time.

Traditional marketing no longer works well because buyers have changed. You must learn to adapt. Download the CEO's 2016 Guide to Marketing now and learn to execute your own 2016 marketing strategy today. 

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Takeaways

  • Radio advertising can be an effective technique, but Inbound Out gives you more options to deliver your marketing.
  • Inbound Out marketing offers diverse targeting options and your costs stay consistent over time.

Topics: Inbound Marketing

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