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News |  25 Mar 2009 19:05 |  By AnitaIyer

Radio advertisers' profile in north sees change

MUMBAI: The economic downturn appears to be impacting the FM radio sector in a positive way as well. If radio players are to be believed, there is a gradual change in advertising profile in the north markets with some traditional industries actively pursuing radio as an advertising medium. Big FM mentions that advertisers' profile is changing with sectors like agriculture, automobile and health industry hopping on to the bandwagon.

Advertisers from these sectors are utilising radio's strength to reach out to their target audiences in these areas. Confirms Big FM Regional Head (North & West) Himanshu Shekhar, Radio has gained critical mass in most markets in terms of advertising and listeners and is a relevant medium for any advertiser  As Punjab is an agricultural market, we have seen an increase in number of advertisers in that sector including tractor companies, pesticides,  agricultural equipments etc....

Big FM has advertisers like Joshi Hyundai, UPL Total, New Holland and Homeopathy Medical Care and Wellness Spa Centers utilising its network in local stations in the north.

Citing reasons for this advertising trend, Shekhar insists that it is because of activations and the audio appeal of radio that it has gained momentum in the market. Radio has local reach and the listenership in many local markets has increased exponentially....

Affirms Tadka FM programming head Vikas Tiwari, The advertising profile is changing slightly with health ads coming to our station. We had a tie up with Otrivin, the nasal drops and had activations across all mediums. Apart from that, we have many advertisers from health segment including local hospitals airing on our station...    Tadka operates in four cities - Jaipur, Kota, Udaipur, Raipur and Chhattisgarh.

The awareness for the effectiveness of radio does not remain restricted only to the metros and has reached the tier II markets as well. Although stations in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities benefit in obtaining corporate advertisers being a part of national network, the profile of advertisers is almost equally divided among the local and corporate ones. Corporate no longer rules the market, 50 per cent of our advertising comes from the local independent retailers,... he says.

Says an industry observer, Cost effectiveness and quality of radio to be a local medium has garnered its popularity among advertisers. Advertisers have realised the potential of the medium for reaching the interiors and many media planners are allocating budgets for radio....

But Shekhar echoes the thought adding that there are many national players who are opting for smaller radio stations to reach the grassroot consumers in smaller towns. And with radio being cost-effective, well-reached is appropriate for local players in Punjab.

After capturing these profiles, Big FM plans to target the NGOs and other untapped sectors