The world of linear broadcasting is embracing social media, but debate remains as to how engagement can drive the bottom line for traditional media. However, new research in both television and radio is showing that getting the crowd involved can impact the most important of all metrics for broadcasters: ratings.
As radio executives gathered alongside their television brethren this week at the National Association of Broadcasters conference in Las Vegas, more data was released that points to an opportunity for the $90 billion broadcasting industry to increase their appeal to both consumers and advertisers by leveraging social engagement.
Recently, cloud radio platform Jelli announced new data that shows a correlation between social engagement and ratings for radio stations, similar in nature to the recent Nielsen research about the impact of Twitter on television ratings.
The data shows that a 127% increase in engagement on their playlist crowdsourcing platform had a corresponding 30% increase in ratings during the measured period. The impact of synced display ads (on mobile and web side) to the audio creative was also studied, showing that 0.10% to 0.15% of the overall audience interacted with the ad, with a click through rate 1-3% for listeners that were logged in.
Is this a big deal? Even in the face of a growing array of channel options, advertisers continued to direct over 10% of all US media spend in 2012 towards radio for a reason- they are trying to capture the attention of 242 million listeners, primarily while driving. As millions start to engage with what was once just a one-way medium, brands can integrate more deeply and create a feedback loop adding ROI to a primarily "reach" advertising medium.
If the traditional radio broadcasters can seize the chance to leverage their airwave monopolies offline with technology that allows greater audience engagement and online measurement standards to be applied to their audio advertising, the fight for the dashboard will be one to follow with interest.