Our team at 98.3 The Dove knows that radio is a uniquely powerful advertising medium. And fortunately, the turnaround time (lead time for creating the ad(s)) on a radio advertising campaign is typically much faster than other mediums, giving you a fair amount of flexibility.
A short turnaround lead time like this means that you can adopt a plan that you’ve already developed for the year, maintaining your efficacy and freshness in the market. So at this point, the question becomes: Do you know what type of campaign best suits your needs? As with all major business decisions, developing a marketing strategy requires thorough analysis and planning. Before you decide the type of campaign you need to prioritize, here are some questions you might want to ask yourself starting out:
- How much am I willing to invest?
- Am I expecting ROI in the short term, or do I want to build brand awareness over time?
- When do I need to start seeing results?
- And what kind of results, specifically, am I looking for?
Now that you have considered these questions, you’ll be better prepared to determine the right kind of marketing campaign to consider. The two kinds of campaigns we will be covering are action and awareness campaigns. Each has its own benefit, but many times the best media strategy utilizes both at the right times. So, here are the definitions of each that you should know:
1. Awareness Campaigns
Awareness campaigns are intended to, as the name implies, make local consumers more aware of your business, thus improving brand authority and authenticity. Awareness campaigns are usually used over a long period of time and are meant to convert customers consistently over time while developing ongoing top-of-mind awareness and brand loyalty.
2. Action Campaigns
Awareness campaigns are meant to draw listeners to your business for a specific purpose using a clear and direct call to action. These types of campaigns must be compelling. In fact, our rule of thumb is that if the ad cannot make you, as the owner, want to turn around and head straight to your store, it’s not good enough. Action campaigns are usually used short-term and feature things like promotions, new products, and are generally aimed at immediately generating leads or sales for a specific timeframe and need.
Successful Implementation of Awareness Campaigns
What Should Your Ads Focus On?
This kind of radio campaign doesn’t necessarily require the audience to take action that very second, but rather focuses on being creative and making an impression or connection with listeners. You’ll want to take ownership of certain sounds, colors, and experiences to create a direct association with your brand in the buyer’s mind. And, because awareness campaigns are intended to be used over the long term, you want to craft ad content that offers staying power, or that is “evergreen”.
How Do You Determine Success?
It is important to understand that awareness campaigns are part of a long-term strategy. Building brand awareness takes time and patience. It is a campaign you commit to for the long haul and are resilient about staying consistent. The most successful awareness campaigns require a minimum of 25 ads per week – every week. Because they focus on branding, you might not see much, if any, ROI in the first three to six months.
Because the point of an awareness campaign is to make your business name the one listeners know and trust, you have to understand this doesn’t happen overnight. You should discuss what sort of expectations are realistic with your trusted media partner. Businesses that do choose to invest the time and money into a long-term branding and awareness campaign will definitely reap the benefits!
Successful Implementation of Action Campaigns
What Should Your Ads Focus On?
This kind of radio campaign requires a clear and compelling call to action. It is important to make it easy for the audience to understand what you want them to do, why they should do it, and finally how they should do it. To remember what specific elements MUST be present for an action campaign to get results, think UTOPIA: Urgency, Theme or Hook, Offer, Price, Item, Action. To help, download the Dove Utopia Quiz. to download a questionnaire that will help you If your CTA is muddled or confusing, the listener may simply not bother to follow up or even change the station they’re listening to. Action campaigns, because they are shorter and deadline-driven, require a different frequency in ads to get results. The most successful action campaigns require a minimum of 40-50 ads per week.
How Do You Determine Success?
Action campaign success can be much easier to practically measure compared to awareness campaigns due to their specificity. Because the goals are more clear and trackable, results typically include one or more of the following:
- Number of leads generated
- Number of new customers for a particular product or during a particular time frame
- Subscriber base growth
- Increased social media engagement
Avoid Key Mistakes
A few key mistakes we see people make with their action/awareness advertising campaigns include:
- The mistake of misplaced expectations. Chiefly, this involves doing an awareness campaign (low frequency and creative with no compelling offer) and expecting action campaign results. It won’t happen, and you’ll end up frustrated and disillusioned.
- The mistake of only running one or the other. By only running action campaigns, you create customers that only shop when they hear you are having a sale. By only running awareness campaigns, you never give your sales a needed boost by giving customers an incentive to come in “now.” The most successful campaigns implement both.
The Right Campaign = The Right Results
So, what are your business’s goals and intentions in running your radio ads? Whether you are launching a new campaign, or have never run a radio ad before, it will always be a good idea to consider the action vs. awareness methods as discussed before developing your ads. Your hard work and attention to detail will pay off in the end, and our team of marketing professionals would love to help you develop and perfect your ads in order to reach your business’s goals. Contact us today to see how we can help!