04 Apr

Retail Loves Radio


When Radiocentre announced that 2016 was a record breaking year for UK radio revenues boosted by the retail sector, it was no surprise to the team here at Kalua. We’ve been lucky enough to work with some of the UK’s most exciting retail brands who embrace the radio medium by creating effective, impactful and targeted campaigns that deliver results.

The report published by Radiocentre in March showed that eBay increased its retail spend by 600% in 2016 to £5m, whilst Asda and Morrisons spent £9.8m and £7.1 respectively. Sky remains the UK’s largest retail radio spender with an impressive £19.4m. Spend from online retailers in 2016 jumped up by 90% from £6.5m to £12.4m.

But why this new-found love with radio?

Radio and the retail sector have always enjoyed a prosperous relationship thanks to a proven track record in helping retail marketers to achieve footfall and sales targets.

Thanks to technological developments, audio content can now be listened to on pretty much any device and taking into account the choice of stations available to listeners, advertisers are able to engage with those ‘hard to reach’ audiences more effectively than ever. Taking these points into consideration alone, it’s no wonder that marketers are reassessing the proportion of the advertising spend allocated to radio and increasing it.

This can be reinforced by a report published by Nielsen in Q4 2016, which stated that nearly half of UK online campaigns miss their target audience and that retail marketers are one of the most likely groups to struggle to hit their desired audience.

It’s not just UK retailers who are enjoying a reinvigorated love affair with radio, impressive results are being reported all over the world. In a study undertaken by Nielsen Catalina Solutions back in 2014, retail sales figures following radio and online campaigns were analysed. Of the 10 retail brands analysed, on average a sales lift of more than $6 for every $1 spent on radio ads was achieved. This was double the ROI digital campaigns managed to achieve for the same clients.

Despite these strong figures, radio is still struggling to attract the imagination of one or two of the UK’s biggest retail brands. The likes of Procter & Gamble and Unilever have historically spent small proportions of their budgets on radio and focused their efforts on TV and digital.

But why is this the case when the figures for radio are so good? It’s a challenge that Radiocentre, the trade body for commercial radio in the UK, has been tackling head-on with their ‘See Radio Differently’ campaign which targeted and challenged specific CMOs over their radio spend. The campaign acknowledges that some advertisers view the radio as less exciting than other channels despite the stats and research showing that when used properly, radio is proven to achieve fantastic results especially for retail marketers.

Radiocentre hopes that the campaign will lead to the few retail marketers who are yet to be wowed by radio, to reconsider the role radio has in future campaigns alongside some of the sexier and shiny new options available to them.

To hear more about how we’ve helped some of the UK’s most recognised retail brands achieve their targets, please feel free to give us a call.

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