Radio Messaging By Product Categories

New Survey of Radio Listeners Helps Marketers Understand Which Messaging Tactics Have The Most Impact

NEW HAVEN, CT – Radio listeners who indicate use of four specific product categories are raising questions about the impact of traditional radio commercials and have overwhelmingly endorsed custom content as the marketing method most likely to influence a purchasing decision.

Those are some highlights from an online research poll of 525 consumers conducted by radio marketing company CRN International. The research is now available in four product categories, isolating the results of respondents who indicated they have purchased or considered purchase in the product category over the last 12 months. The categories are:

CRN’s intent in doing the research was to get a better handle on what marketing tactics work the best with the listening audience, defined by a wide range of demographics including gender, age, education, income, frequency of radio listening, and use of particular product categories.

The findings suggest that some of the more traditional methods of messaging are not necessarily the strongest strategies for brands to employ to meet their marketing objectives.

For example, of the brand messaging strategies considered overall in the survey, 77 percent of the respondents said they are most interested in listening to useful or entertaining information about an area of interest to them, far surpassing the second most popular response, which was hearing about and participating in contests or sweepstakes (11 percent). Less than 2 percent said their top choice would be listening to traditional commercials.

Regarding how each tactic would affect consideration of a purchase decision, again custom content was the pacesetter, with 41 percent of survey respondents saying that would be the messaging form most likely to increase their purchase decision. Testimonials from everyday consumers like themselves came in second as a purchasing influencer at 20 percent, with traditional commercials finishing third at 18 percent.

More than 80 percent of the total respondents confirmed that they pay little attention to radio spot commercials. Those ads, they said, have little chance of influencing a buying decision.

The survey ran counter to past research that suggested most radio listeners stay tuned in through entire lengthy commercial stop sets. In the CRN research, 67 percent of the consumers said they don’t make it past the second advertisement during a commercial break.

“The survey results confirm a lot of what we had suspected about which marketing tactics truly motivate consumers to take action,’ said CRN Marketing Director Jim Alkon. “We also believe some of the data could be relevant to other media as well, based on the nature of the tactics.”

To access the full research report with more detailed findings, please CLICK HERE.

About CRN International
CRN International ( uses radio differently to solve marketing challenges for major brands. It is based in New Haven, CT, and has offices in New York; Minneapolis; Detroit; Houston; and Hershey, PA.

For more information, contact:

Jim Alkon
Marketing Director
CRN International