Radio Revenue Seen Steadily Growing

Advertisers continue to find growth in the radio format. After coming off of a strong year in 2011, radio revenue are still rising. Sales in digital and off-​air are fueling the channel’s growth. And, specific advertising sectors are responsible for much of the increased demand.

In 2011, radio revenue reach $17.4 billion. Most of that revenue came from local spot, $14.060 billion, while network at $1.136 billion, digital $709 million, and off-​air at $1.491 billion rounded out the balance. During the first half of 2012, spot radio ads totaled $6.807 billion, a rate of sales that analysts call flat. It’s the digital sector that is showing the most growth with sales through the end of June at $356 million which is a 7% increase over the first half of 2011.

The top companies with higher radio ad budgets this year include Coca-​Cola, PepsiCo, T‑Mobile and the Toyota Dealer Association. Industries that are expected to increase their radio ad budgets or remain leading radio advertisers range from automotive firms to restaurants. The other big advertisers in the top 5 are television/​networks/​cable providers, communications and beverages.

As the political campaigning heats up in the 3rd and 4th quarters, radio stations can expect a bump from both candidates and PACS. This is especially true in local markets where contested seats are up for grabs and heated issues are being heavily debated. As of August 16, $512 million had been spent on TV and radio ads in the political sector, a figure that bodes well for the rest of the year.

[Sources: NBC Nightly News. Msnbc​.com. 16 Aug. 2012. Web. 25 Sept. 2012; Q2 Upticks in Digital and Off-​Air. RAB​.com. 13 Sept. Web. 25 Sept. 2012] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.