Wednesday, September 9, 2009

5 Tips on Switching Dollars to Digital as Internet Radio Revs Up

Yippee. Your ad budget was increased to spend more on the web.

Or boohoo. Your marketing budget was cut and now you have to do more with less.

The shift to online marketing and advertising is being seen more and more. Having been in traditional radio, with the opportunity to sell online properties, I had a rare first-hand experience into seeing how advertisers are scrambling to get audiences to listen. I saw it everyday as advertisers would call up and want to buy a banner ad on a particular page on the radio station's website that they ALWAYS visit.

But is that really a good idea? Yeah, YOU listen to a particular program, or watch a show that is convenient for YOU or to your liking, It really gets my goat when an advertiser thinks they've got it all figured out before hand, and has already sold themselves on how they want to spend their bucks. (Or buck!) So, think these five tips first, and then see how you want to play your hand before jumping onto the digital media bandwagon - and use some online marketing savvy.


1. Who is your audience?
Knowing that you are reaching the right audience is KEY. Without that, you might as well buy a 30 second spot, broadcasting straight to a wall, or taking out an ad on a tv station that is dark 24/7. Hey, is your particular demographic online anyway? Are they 65+? Or are they children?

2. How does your audience use the medium?
You've got to how the audience is using the medium. If it's radio that you want to try out, is your traditional radio audience listening online?

If so, HOW - do they listen in another window to your internet stream, while working in another? Do they listen to podcasts? Make sure that you are expending the right amount of effort so that you can get the most return.

3. Are you in it for the long haul?
Is this marketing campaign that you want to undertake able to be sustainable? If so, how long? There are is so much competition for eyeballs - more than ever. If you want to sink your dollars in, make sure you have a clear goal in mind, but also how long you plan to get to that goal.

4. Do you have the ability to do a variety of online marketing efforts?
Multi-platform is the way to go - reach a variety of eyeballs (and ears!), however you can. Especially online, sinking all your eggs into the social media basket, or e-mail marketing is not going to be most efficient in reaching your target audience optimally. Even now through my own online marketing communications, I make sure that I spread them across a variety of mediums, and make sure I top it off with a friendly OPT-IN e-mail to my list.

5. Content is KING.
Because of the viral nature of the online space, and how people can share things with others in their own sphere, you've got to make sure that the content you provide is something more than just a message. Is it a social media site you've set up? Why are people going to congregate there? Probably because it's something real "buzz"-y that they can't get anywhere else. And because they WANT to be there. And that's going to come from some amazing content efforts and thought on your part.

If you've got the beans to spend on digital content more power to ya! But, not all of us have that capability, and we have to rely on YouTube and CGC (Consumer Generated Content), which btw has the ability to be broadcast during Super Bowls!! So, what does that say about what people want?? It's great news for us, we just need to get those creative juices flowing.

Again, just like taking out a radio ad will NOT guarantee that your audience will hear you (especially since with radio, repetition is a MUST), taking out an ad just because it's online doesn't mean it will work either. It is shown that that is where advertisers are having the most success (see the graph above from eMarketer), but just like traditional advertising/marketing relied on knowing your audience, make sure you are prepared to make the shift to digital! There's alot more to it than meets the eyeball. (somehow, that just doesn't have the same ring to it as with competition...)

Posted via web from vickie_smith's posterous

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