Sales Results Have a Way of Ending Arguments

By Westwood One Archives
Cover image for  article: Sales Results Have a Way of Ending Arguments

Digital fraud.  TV audience erosion.  Rising search costs.  As media planners experience the evolution of the landscape, questions naturally arise.  "What does this mean for my plan?"  "Are there reliable media options left?"  "Can I defend this plan?"

Questions like these breed industry uncertainties.  Fortunately for media planners, at least one option remains stable and effective: AM/FM radio.  As the call for a trustworthy, healthy and affordable medium for advertisers becomes louder among media decision makers, AM/FM radio is the solve.

Westwood One has the first and only ROI guarantee in the audio space.  We created the guarantee to show brands proof of sales growth from AM/FM radio advertising.  "We have seen stunning radio ROI findings across the board and are so convinced of radio's ability to generate a positive return we are offering an ROI guarantee to our advertisers," says Suzanne Grimes, Executive Vice President of Corporate Marketing, Cumulus Media/President, Westwood One.

In the last few years, Westwood One has amassed case studies across multiple categories that prove AM/FM radio increases sales with a positive return on advertising spend.  Here are four in the TV, CPG, retail and QSR categories that prove the effectiveness of radio.

AM/FM radio works for TV tune-in.  In support of the premiere of the returning season of a scripted drama series, a major cable network included AM/FM radio as part of the TV-centric media plan.  Westwood One retained Nielsen to measure media campaign ROI.

  • With only 5% of paid media, AM/FM radio delivered 15% incremental reach to paid TV and 20% of campaign impressions.
  • AM/FM radio amplified paid TV 6+ frequency by 80%.
  • Compared to TV reach, AM/FM radio delivered a much younger audience.  Nearly half of TV deliveries were 55+ while 70% of AM/FM radio deliveries were 18-54.

AM/FM radio works for consumer-packaged goods.  Earlier this year, Westwood One released results from a first-ever radio sales effect study for a men's personal care brand.  Via a Nielsen Catalina ROI study using actual shopper card data matched to portable people meters, radio's impact was quantified.

  • Exposure to the AM/FM radio campaign generated an 8% lift in sales for the parent brand, driven by more spending per trip.
  • Even more significant, for every $1 invested in AM/FM radio the parent brand saw an $11.96 in return on advertising spend.

AM/FM radio works for retail.  In 2017, Westwood One released a ROI study with Nielsen which measured the sales effect of an AM/FM radio campaign for an auto aftermarket retailer.

  • The auto aftermarket retailer generated an astounding $21 of incremental sales for every dollar spent in radio.
  • The radio campaign drove a 64% increase in new customers.
  • In all, the radio campaign generated a 48% increase in total buyers.

AM/FM radio works for quick service restaurants.  Westwood One conducted an ROI study for a major national restaurant chain.

  • The AM/FM radio campaign grew new buyer penetration by 40% while the TV campaign grew new buyer penetration by 26%.
  • At only 20% of the budget, the AM/FM radio campaign generated a reach that was 72% of TV's reach delivery. The AM/FM radio campaign added 43% incremental reach to television. 
  • Light and medium exposure to the TV campaign generated the greatest sales effect.  The greater the exposure to the AM/FM radio campaign, the greater the sales effect.

Whether the goal is to drive purchase, tune-in or store traffic, AM/FM radio has a track record of delivering positive return for brands.  AM/FM radio's power as a medium that drives action is evident.

AM/FM radio's results are quantifiable. These case studies are examples of how brands can utilize the medium to its maximum potential and prove impact.

The Westwood One ROI Guarantee program has four steps:

  • Right consumer:  Westwood One will build a media campaign to target ideal consumers with sufficient reach
  • Right message:  As half of ROI is due to creative, Westwood One will pre-test the creative executions to ensure strong performance
  • Prove impact:  A Nielsen ROI study will measure campaign sales impact
  • Guaranteed:  If ROI is not positive, Westwood One will run no cost supplemental media weight to deliver the guaranteed ROI

Promising ROI takes the risk out of putting AM/FM radio, America's No. 1 mass reach media, into the plan.  "Marketers demand solutions to reach customers and generate results, and the Westwood One ROI Guarantee elevates radio as the measurable mass reach medium that, simply put, delivers," Grimes concluded.

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