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Radio advertising sales represent the sale of airtime on local radio organizations, typically to local businesses and nonprofit organizations. This type of advertising is one of the oldest forms of business advertising. Different factors can affect radio advertising sales made to businesses, and many of these factors depend on the local market and radio station. These factors include time of advertisements, competition with other stations, types of advertisements available and cost of advertisements. Other economic factors might result in times of greater or lesser sales, just like with any other business.
Advertisements made on radio stations often fit a specific format. The most common lengths of radio advertisements are 30- or 60-second spots. Companies usually can select which length they desire, with 30-second spots often cheaper. Selling 30-second spots requires more sales for stations to fill their advertising slots.
Competition represents another factor that affects radio advertising sales. Many radio stations fit certain genres or styles of music. In other cases, radio stations might rely more on infomercials or talk shows as their main form of entertainment. The number of radio stations and types of formats or music styles are often a big factor, along with transmission on amplitude modulation (AM) or frequency modulation (FM) bands. Companies must often select which station and/or stations to use when choosing radio advertisement slots.
The types of radio advertisements often depends on the time of day that a company advertises. Radio advertising sales prices will often depend on the popularity of a station’s shows or music hours. For example, radio stations typically have morning, lunch-hour and drive-time advertisements available. The availability of slots during each of these specific times is often a major factor in radio advertising sales. A radio station with unpopular shows during any one of these times will often struggle to sell these advertising spots.
Cost is yet another — and often important — factor that alters radio advertising sales. A radio station must set prices for its advertising spots carefully to be competitive with other stations. Cost factors often depend on the time of day, the radio program during which the advertisement will play and the radio talent reading the advertisement. If a radio station has expensive radio advertisements, it might offer free spots to companies in order to induce sales. Free advertisements might include extra mentions on the radio or sponsorships to companies for paying the advertisement costs.