27 Sep

The Perfectly Paced Piece

Here at Kalua, whenever we are working on radio advertising campaigns, the “P” words are never far from our thoughts. ”Pace, please.”

Sadly, it is still something of a rarity to hear a perfectly paced radio commercial on air. All too often ads are packed to the rafters with copy, overloaded with information, bursting with multiple calls-to-action. And for the copywriters, it is a delicate balancing act. They, of course, have to respect the client’s wishes in terms of what goes in the scripts. But at the same time, they have to be realistic and candid about what will work best. When a client says to us “We want to say x, y, and z”, our response is always “Well, no, that’s not strictly true – what you really want is an effective campaign.”

And when it comes to creating effective radio advertising, pace is paramount. For many reasons. On a very basic level, getting the pace right is important because it has two simple impacts: what people will hear and how they will feel. The first point is pretty obvious. If the pace is too fast, listeners won’t hear what you want them to. And as for how pace changes how people “feel”, research shows that, generally speaking, a faster paced commercial will create a sense of excitement in the listener. A slower pace tends to connect emotionally with them. So it’s all about what kind of impact you want to create.

The Radiocentre’s “RadioGAUGE” is a fantastic tool. It is the radio effectiveness analyser. And having studied hundreds of campaigns, the results are clear. Ads that create the best impression are straightforward and respect the listener. Strong ads have a clear, single-minded message. If you want to give the listener more than one message, make more than one ad. And these findings lead back to getting the pace spot on.

A recent radio campaign for National Express was, according to the RadioGAUGE research, the best performing commercial in the travel sector. And when you hear it, it’s easy to understand why. It is perfectly paced; there is plenty of time for the creative to work and to draw in the listener; there’s a simple, single message and it’s very easy on the ear. It has plenty of time to “breathe”. It employs one of our Kalua mantras: low word count = high effectiveness.

So when thinking about your next radio campaign, don’t just focus on what information needs to go in the scripts, focus on how the end result will sound, focus on the pace.

To listen to the National Express commercial click here. If you would like to talk more about how perfectly paced scripts will create more effective campaigns for you, then call the team at Kalua on 0161 933 7800.

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