Most local businesses are buying digital advertising — just not necessarily from you. In this year’s benchmarking report on radio digital sales, advertisers answered questions about what they buy and from whom. There is still much opportunity for local media sellers to win over these companies, as 55% of radio ad buyers didn’t purchase digital from their radio partner.

So, who’s your competition?

Who Are Local Companies Buying Digital From?

According to the report, here’s your competition:

  • Other local media companies
  • Social media companies
  • Google
  • Newspapers
  • Ad agencies

These are all different types of competitors, and what they offer may not be an apples-to-apples comparison. For example, buying directly from Google means businesses must have some advanced digital knowledge, which is less common for local businesses. So, they may be facing many questions about ROI.

If they work with an ad agency or social media company, they are likely to pay high fees. A comparable local media company may only be able to sell them limited tactics.

These are angles to find weaknesses in the competition. To unseat the competition, you’ll come out ahead if you have:

  • Strong knowledge of the market and the advertiser’s audience
  • The ability to provide a consolidated proposal, including multiple digital options and radio
  • An easy, compliant third-party digital platform with advanced targeting capabilities
  • Access to premium inventory for programmatic and OTT/CTV ads
  • Strategic recommendations for advertisers on what tactics to use to achieve their goals

These things put you in the best position to highlight the competition’s weaknesses and why buyers should trust you for their digital spending.

So, what else can you learn about these local businesses?

Insights About Those Not Buying Digital from You

The report also offers some information on the profile of these buyers that can be helpful in strategizing. They are more likely to be novices in digital advertising, so that’s an opportunity to gain trust by showing them how it works.

This cohort was twice as likely to have overspent their 2023 budget. Going over budget can occur for several reasons. Often, it may be because they didn’t get the ROI they expected or had to pay additional fees.

Local businesses in this group are often marginal radio buyers and spend more on broadcast TV spots. Maybe they aren’t aware of the reach and impact of radio ads. They may have misconceptions about its value and may overvalue TV spots.

These ad buyers care more about testimonials and case studies. In the survey, 90% said this content would influence their decisions.

Taking these points into account, you can plan to become their trusted digital expert.

6 Strategies to Consider to Get Radio Ad Buyers to Purchase Digital from You

  1. Educate these businesses: They aren’t experts, and you can take the time to explain tactics, how they work, what you measure, where they end up and more. They’ll appreciate that you want them to understand what happens. Use this resource to help: How to Explain Digital Advertising Tactics to Your Advertisers.
  2. Be transparent about pricing: With a detailed proposal, they’ll see the breakdown of all costs for each tactic. There won’t be any surprises later that cause them to go over budget. Additionally, they’ll know their campaigns delivered in full.
  3. Discuss diversification of spend from broadcast and cable TV to OTT/CTV: OTT/CTV is the fastest-growing local digital tactic, with many local companies spending more on it. Since consumers are leaving traditional TV to watch more on streaming, advertisers need to be where viewers are. Additionally, OTT/CTV has targeting capabilities, unlike legacy TV.
  4. Demonstrate results: Provide case studies or similar campaign profiles to these companies to illustrate the success of others. This will significantly impact their decision to switch.
  5. Discuss inventory quality for programmatic and OTT/CTV: Not all solutions are the same, and there are consequences of low-quality impressions, including poor performance.
  6. Review, if applicable, the ability to provide ads for restricted categories: These can include cannabis, alcohol, gambling and political.

With the knowledge you gain from the profile of these local advertisers and these strategies, you’ll be ready to overcome objections and plant seeds of doubt regarding the competition. Build trust and connections with these prospective customers by delivering facts and critical information.

5 Easy Ways to Grow Digital Advertising in 2024

For more tips on boosting digital ad sales, read our e-book, 5 Easy Ways to Grow Digital Advertising in 2024.

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