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Is That Radio Buy Balanced?

April 18, 2013

As sales people, we often look at an advertiser’s radio schedule and think, “Boy that mix of stations skews too”: Old, Young, Male, Female, Ethnic, or Non-Ethnic.

If a radio schedule over-delivers one segment of the market, then it will under-deliver another segment of the market. The ability to recognize, quantify, and objectively communicate how balanced a buy is can be a tremendous asset in sales.

It can help prove the value of you, as a consultant, to the advertisers, and can show the importance of your station to achieving their marketing goals.

GRPs are the secret to determining a balanced radio buy. Remember that GRPs are a schedule’s Gross Impressions (Spots AQH) divided by the demographic population. As the demo changes, the AQH and population change.

If a 100 Adults 25-54 GRP radio buy is perfectly balanced, it would deliver:

  • 100 GRPs Men 25-34
  • 100 GRPs Men 35-44
  • 100 GRPs Men 45-54
  • 100 GRPs Women 25-34
  • 100 GRPs Women 35-44
  • 100 GRPs Women 45-54

It is nearly impossible to make a realistic radio buy perfectly balanced. However, there are often cases when an advertiser may want to skew a buy. Depending on the consumer an advertiser wants to target, they may want a radio schedule to over-deliver a certain segment of the population. This might be by: Gender, Age or Ethnic Group.

Simply put, understand who the advertiser wants to reach beyond their broad demographic requests.

If they want to reach all portions of their target demographic group, then they should want a buy as close to perfectly balanced as possible.

Create a mock radio buy for Adults 25-54. Use the broad Mon-Fri 6a-7p & Sat-Sun 10a-7p daypart.  Select a series of stations and place enough spots to achieve 100 GRPs.

Change the demo to each of the following and write down the GRPs…

Men 25-54_____________GRPs

Women 25-54____________GRPs

Adults 25-34_____________GRPs

Adults 35-44_____________GRPs

Adults 45-54___________GRPs

How balanced is your buy?

How can it be better balanced?

How does removing your station from the buy affect its balance?

How well does your schedule deliver:

  • Ethnic groups
  • Geographic regions

Research Director, Inc. has created an interactive Balanced Buy Analysis tool, which allows you to put the buy together with your advertiser. For more information, please contact your RDI market specialist or Charlie Sislen.

The RDI team can be reached at 410-295-6619.

-Nakia Smith, Sr. Sales Research Consultant

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