B. Surender, Senior Vice-President and National Sales Head, 93.5 Red FM
How lucrative is radio as a medium for advertising?
It is very lucrative. But what we need to ensure is that it should be used properly. The intensity is what matters when it comes to advertising on radio. Whether you use it as a brand-builder or a multiplier along with other mediums such as television or the Internet, it works fantastically. The ROI always turns out to be better on radio as compared to other mediums. It is a value for money investment. There’s no doubt about it. But there are certain basic things that an advertiser should understand. There is a particular intensity of usage below which radio does not give required returns. So investment in radio should never be made in a casual way. Creative usage of this medium is also something that is very important. In some cases, you can use creatives that are being used on other mediums, say television. But in most cases, you have to change the creatives to suit the listening pattern of listeners.

How do you decide the placements of ads?
Usually, this is decided by the ad agency. Nevertheless, we do give suggestions on the placements. For example, if you want to catch the young office-going men and women, then we suggest the morning and evening driving time band. Similarly, if your target listener is a homemaker, then afternoons or late mornings should be the preferred time slot.

Which time band do you consider as prime time when it comes to radio?
For radio, I would not consider a particular time band as prime time. Radio definitely reaches a much broader listener base but unlike television, it doesn’t have a particular time band which could be labeled as prime time.

The creatives that you came up with for your clients are very interesting. Are they done by the in-house team or are they outsourced?
99% of the time, the creatives are done by the in-house team. We believe that creativity is at the heart of 93.5 Red FM. Infact, different companies outsource our services in the domain of creatives.

How important do you think are BTL activities for promotion of a radio station?
I think they are extremely critical, because radio as medium is a great multiplier and since this medium has a mass reach, BTL goes extremely well with it. Plus, BTL has live experiential element attached to it, which advertisers view as extremely important. For example, you can create a direct experience in front of a few thousand people using a BTL activity and if you put this on air, then you can share the experience with millions of people within a fraction of a minute.

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2011.

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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