The Audio Debate: Internet Radio Advertising vs. Terrestrial Advertising

todayOctober 25, 2017 117

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Think about the radio and the podcasts you listen to and when. Do you have the radio on at home? Do you listen to podcasts during your commute to and from work? Or is it the opposite with those two? Where do you hear the commercials? We ask that to mean where do the commercials that you actually consume and absorb come from, the television or the podcasts? More than likely, the commercials that capture your attention, even if briefly, come from where you’re actually listening–the Pandora, Spotify and YouTube apps on our phones and tablets. Still, the AM and FM radio commercials still seem to roll on incessantly. So if internet radio is flourishing, why do people bother with terrestrial radio advertising?

Terrestrial Radio Advertising

It’s still worth the advertisement from brands who have the funds to pay out. For the average small business who has a niche target market, it may not be worth it. We did some research to compare and holy moly! What it costs to run an advertisement on terrestrial AM or FM radio stations is astronomical. Allow us to shock you and you’ll understand why big companies pay. Keep in mind, there are various AM and FM markets around the country. Different locations mean different prices for commercials. Other parameters such as listeners, competition and the station’s own demographic play a role.

We’ll assume you care about your business’ reputation and image and won’t settle for something cheap and lacking in quality. Interested in promoting an advertisement on terrestrial FM or AM radio? Plan ahead to spend several thousands of dollars (between $3,000 and $5,000 JUST for the commercial spot). The spot does not include creating and producing the radio commercial as well as everything else tied in: copywriting, editing, post-production, etc.) According to our source, an example of a radio commercial in New York City would cost just under $5,000 WEEKLY … no joke!

The Changing Landscape of Advertising

The truth about beneficial advertising is that it’s going downhill. Better yet, it’s going to the extremes. Less and fewer people are watching television. Commercials don’t have an impact like they used to unless it’s the Superbowl commercials. (By the way, this classic one from the 2015 Superbowl still gets us every time).

As that once-innovative household necessity called the television becomes outdated, people are turning to their phones, tablets, and laptops. Tablets and laptops are taking the place of the television with streaming network services, while phones are becoming the remote control of our lives. With that said, our phones and some smart TVs are able to stream music.

If people are streaming music while they cook dinner with their significant other, they’ll be listening more as opposed to the television commercials in the other room. Be smart about where you advertise your business. Did you hear that Waze, the ever-popular navigation app, has an advertising platform? Check out their website to download the app and learn more about advertising through their GPS app.

Internet Radio Advertising

With the power of technology: geofencing, location services and all that wonderful tracking information, advertising can be more closely directed to you, the consumer, based on your location. Whether or not this is a privacy issue is up for debate; that’s another topic for another day. With the outrageous prices of terrestrial radio advertising, internet radio advertising could turn out to be a viable and cost-friendly solution. Still be prepared to pay, but know your advertising will be more targeted and better spent. You will have much stronger metrics to track the effectiveness of your ads.

Helium Radio Advertising

Let’s run through some options for advertising through the Helium Radio Network. Consider the cost-benefit savings as we go through them. Because of our new website and new radio player, we have multiple options to use for advertising. According to our custom-built infographic (below), you can insert audio, video, and banner pre-roll before the stream launches for individual listeners. Options to cycle links in the radio player buttons are available. Another great option is the … *drum roll* … commercial breaks before, during, and after shows. With the way our internet radio apps (both the website player and mobile app) are built, we have the ability to geotarget ads to certain listeners in certain locations and for certain, smaller periods of time. Comparatively, the tighter these parameters, the more cost-effective it can be for advertisers on our platform as opposed to the terrestrial advertising options. Read on for details:


Sponsorships are also available if you’d like to inquire more about them. For advertising and sponsorship opportunities to get in front of up to 4 million listeners, please reach out to us directly: [email protected].


Thank you for your attention! Click the eBook below to download this blog for your references.


Written by: #HeliumRadio

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