Streaming audio still hotter with listeners than with marketers, and that's an opportunity, says Forrester report

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 1:00pm

A new Forrester Research report touts "in-stream audio" as a powerful and still under-utilized advertising vehicle. Report author Anthony Mullen encourages marketers to take advantage of the "unique user experience, targeted reach, and guaranteed impressions" that services like Internet radio afford.

The growing popularity of mobile usage actually enhances this advantage. Display ads won't work as well on mobile's small screen, but an audio ad delivered to a mobile device (and through headphones) is (at least) as functional as through computer speakers. Even more, audio ads come one at a time, and avoid the cluttering of visual advertising.

Internet radio (and other ad-supported online audio) fell victim to being neither a purely traditional nor purely digital medium -- and often didn't get a share of campaign budgets divvied up in this way. As such, even today, advertising growth hasn't kept pace with consumers' embrace of the medium, and the full opportunity for markets remains unmet.

The report, called "In-Stream Audio Advertising," describes the maturing of the ad-delivery technology segment, including ad exchanged and real-time bidding platforms.

Inside Radio, which covered the report, wrote: "The Forrester report may not break any new ground in the minds of broadcasters. But as an objective research firm coming to many of the same conclusions as radio has presented to advertisers, it’s sure to help convince some brands to take a second look at in-stream audio ads."

Report author Anthony Mullen blogged about the report here. Purchase the report here, and read Inside Radio's coverage here.

Survey shows Pandora sets the pace for music services in online marketing, social media, and SEO

Tuesday, January 22, 2013 - 1:20pm

In a new round-up of various music platforms' marketing effectiveness, Pandora topped competitors like Spotify,, Deezer, and Grooveshark. Given Pandora's long lead in audience size over the other services, this is probably little surprise.

"While they do have an unfair advantage (they’ve been around for 13 years, have ~1,000 employees and $56.3m funding) it’s worth pointing out that they’re far from having a monopoly," wrote Marcus Taylor, director of online marketing firm VentureHarbour. "Spotify,, Deezer and Grooveshark all give Pandora a serious run for their money."

In categories Social Media, Brand Awareness, Website Traffic / SEO, and (as mentioned) Number of Users, Pandora came out on top. For in Online PR category, however, Pandora's streak ends at the hands of (with Spotify in second place).

Taylor wrote, " receives an impressive amount of search engine traffic to their website, which appears to be attributed to building a vast quantity of backlinks and the creation of 48 million or so user generated pages."

Read about Taylor's sources and other findings in Hypebot here.

Katz 360 going global, will be re-branded; Triton hires rep to market services to UK, Ireland

Thursday, November 15, 2012 - 12:25pm

Online audio ad rep firm Katz 360 Sales is going global. Katz Media Group announced yesterday that its digital division is expanding to be a "global interactive ad network" offering "local" and "location-based" audio and video capabilities across "all platforms."

The division will be completely rebranded and rebuilt, according to Katz, over the next few months, with a new brand name and an international sales team. Mort Greenberg, who was recently appointed to President of Katz 360 Sales, will head up the transition.

Meanwhile, Triton Digital announced a new partnership with OXIS Media, who will represent Triton to market its streaming, measurement, loyalty and ad-insertion products to media in the UK and Ireland. OXIS Media has engaged leading radio futurologist James Cridland for the task.

Pick a color

One of the big lessons I picked up from the marketing books of Al Ries and Jack Trout -- "Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind," "Marketing Warfare," "The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing," and several others -- is the importance of having a color associated with your brand.

A great example is the world of rent-a-cars. The original leading firm in the space, Hertz, has used yellow (with black highlights) for decades. The "#2" firm (and I'm using quotation marks because they're actually #3, but their marketing angle is that they're #2 (so they try harder)) is Avis, which picked red. National picked green -- and aggressively and effectively features it in its marketing. Next, Budget: Orange (with blue). Less effectively, Thrifty and Alamo went after blue, the former with white highlights and the latter with yellow highlights. Dollar is not very well-positioned in my mind, but maybe that's because they use all three primary colors (along with black), which is not very memorable.

Off-pattern is Enterprise, which is actually nowadays the #1 firm, because it focused on a different target market (the insurance replacement vehicle market) and also uses green. I'm thinking that since they were entering a new market, any color would work, and "green," being associated with money, works in that context. But maybe I'm rationalizing.

Let's look at the world of Internet radio: Pandora owns blue. Slacker has gone for black-and-gold. is red. I Heart Radio has also selected red, but their listeners are presumably pretty mainstream, so they may not be familiar with the hipster brand of (and vice versa). Regarding AccuRadio, we're really not practicing what I am preaching: We were khaki in the early 2000s, then switched to blue (with yellow highlights) prior to Pandora's arrival on the scene, and now are vacillating between blue and (on our iOS apps) maroon.

At any rate, to quote Ries & Trout: Picking a corporate color for your brand can be an effective marketing tool.

Presslaff Interactive Revenue white paper explains why collecting user ZIP codes is key for marketing and revenue

Monday, October 1, 2012 - 4:55pm

Database and e-mail marketing firm Presslaff Interative Revenue has published a new white paper demonstrating the importance of collecting user ZIP codes for online media properties.

"In addition to e-mail address and permission, we believe the single most lucrative piece of data is a user's ZIP code," the paper, called "Finding Gold in ZIP Code Data," opens.

According to the paper, being able to associate a user ID with that user's ZIP code provides three unique benefits: methods to generate revenue, the ability to improve your marketing and promotional efforts, and an enhanced way to drive audience engagement with your brand and content.

Presslaff Interactive Revenue works with more than a thousand radio stations, television stations, and newspapers in the U.S. and Canada. Download "Finding Gold in ZIP Code Data" for free here.

Inside Radio covers radio's potential windfall in mobile advertising

Monday, September 10, 2012 - 2:00pm

Some great coverage in Inside Radio today on what mobile advertising can do for radio, if broadcasters are ready for it.

Consider that more than 234 million Americans (13+) use mobile devices, but advertisers have yet to spend more than 1% of their media budgets on mobile. The Mobile Marketing Association says mobile's share should grow to 10% over the next four years, and eMarketer says U.S. mobile ad spending will double this year alone. It's obvious a big change should be coming.

"BIA/Kelsey VP Mark Fratrick says radio is poised to do well in mobile because of it offers unique content and has cross-promotional opportunities and armies of local sellers," writes Inside Radio. "But to cash in on the mobile shift requires building out platforms, such as optimizing station websites for the mobile web in order to increase page views and impressions," as groups like Cox, CBS Radio, Entravision, and Emmis have.

Spanish-language radio is already seeing the windfall. An Entravision told Inside Radio that mobile is the company's fastest-growing revenue source, pacing 200% year-over-year, and is now 20% of Entravision and Spanish Broadcasting System interactive revenue. "Mobile will probably be our second biggest ad category outside of broadcasting within the next few years. Mobile is already showing signs that it will leap ahead of online display advertising with a 50% year-over year growth rate," Univision Radio EVP/Sales Lee Davis told the news source.

Subscribe to Inside Radio here.

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