The Eight Ways Direct Response Radio Enhances DRTV Advertising Campaigns

Written By

SMI Staff

Published On

Thursday, Mar 13

Direct response television (DRTV) advertising can be very effective at driving profitable sales. However the high cost of creating and modifying the ads and the lead times associated with DRTV leave room for another more nimble medium to serve a significant purpose. Radio fills that void extremely well, and done right it can significantly enhance the profitability of any DRTV effort.

DRTV is the bread and butter of any huge success. Why? Because you can make the most money the fastest via TV. It’s also the most expensive and risky channel – so one has to consider the risk/reward tradeoff. As you’ll learn, radio plays the role of “risk minimizer” – that’s why including radio in your marketing efforts is such a smart business move.

We routinely work with DRTV agencies to craft a strategy that allows radio to provide the most strategic value to a DRTV campaign. Below you’ll find out why the most successful, most profitable DRTV campaigns also include radio advertising.

Before You Launch – How Radio Will Boost Profits

1. Radio will create a profit stream that can fund DRTV development efforts
DRTV development and media testing is costly and requires a long timeline. In contrast, radio ad development and testing is inexpensive and quick. What costs $100,000 in TV costs $1000 in radio. What takes 3-6 months in TV takes 2-4 weeks in radio. With these advantages, you can build a radio campaign that delivers profits that can finance the TV development.

2. Radio will provide a source of testimonials. Almost without exception, infomercials and DRTV spot ads are more effective if they contain real testimonials from real customers. Initiating a radio campaign prior to launching in DRTV provides a source of qualified, legitimate, authentic testimonials – and as every DRTV creative agency will tell you, those characteristics will make for very compelling stories that sell your product.

3. Learn about customers with real data, and gather insights inexpensively
The radio ad development process will push your creative team to uncover the core customer insights that will drive the campaign, regardless of media channel. Therefore creative efforts in radio can be a valuable input into the TV ad development – not that they will transfer exactly, but the core elements of the psychology behind the appeal of the product will become clearer. This will greatly enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the TV ad development.

4. Refine the “back-end” of your campaign. There are many moving pieces to a successful direct response advertising campaign. The creative and the media are “front end”. The “back end” is comprised of areas such as sales, customer service, fulfillment. It can also include manufacturing and merchant processing. Leveraging radio allows you to refine many of the back-end details that go into making a campaign successful without the pressure that comes with a large ad development budget and large media buys. Refine the sales scripting, the offer path, pricing, and upsells so your close rate and average revenue per order are strong. Establish and improve the “save the sale” efforts in your customer service area. And fix any product or packaging issues that would drive a high return rate and therefore impede a rapid TV roll-out.

Already Running a DRTV Campaign? Here’s How Radio Will Boost Your Profits:

1. Acquire incremental new customers. It is commonly known that Radio and TV audiences don’t overlap very much. That means when you advertise with radio, you aren’t cannibalizing your TV sales. You are reaching a whole new group of customers. Nearly all TV campaigns reach a point where their results begin to fall off. If you want to maximize the profit of your campaign, and build the strongest brand, you can’t do it without radio.

2. Establish a strong competitive position in the market. You’ve spent a lot of time and money building your DRTV campaign and you’re finally reaping the profits from it. Your media spend has grown and you know you’re one of the top advertisers. So does the competition. If you want to establish a strong position in the marketplace verses the competition, leaving radio out of the mix is a terrible mistake. Many new entrants will look for that weakness, establish a profitable radio campaign and fund their competitive entry into TV. The next thing you know, your entry into retail is threatened.

3. Minimize call abandonment through efficient call center scheduling. This is particularly true for soft-offer campaigns which typically go to “smaller” call centers where staffing is a science based on the call forecast. Basic math says that radio will produce smaller call spikes. As a result, radio can “smooth out” the call volume and allow the call centers to effectively staff so they don’t abandon the calls coming in off of TV.

4. Inexpensive means of ongoing creative testing. Fresh creative appeals are the lifeblood of all successful advertising campaigns. Without them, you have a “flash in the pan” campaign. With them, you have a long-running success that becomes a brand. That’s why ongoing testing is so important. Radio provides a low cost way to ensure ongoing testing of different appeals, offers, pricing, or packaging on a smaller scale before rolling out. And while radio campaigns can be set up as mass appeal like TV, but they also can be highly targeted. If you find that you have a certain common profile target customer that you are – or are not – capturing with TV, radio’s ability to target can be of significant use. Developing that area will further enhance your profits.

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