All business owners, including we who are marketing on the Internet, are sooner or later confronted with a considerable dilemma — how do I advertise, what is my best medium, and which will be the best deal for each dollar I spend?

Even online, there is much talk about the effectiveness of land-based promotional methods, and we are admonished to not forget the power of snail mail, as people respond so well to postcard messages, for instance. Do newspaper ads snag more attention than radio spots — or is the muscle of television the superior way to go? And what about the high tech World Wide Web? For those of us in Net Marketing, the latter will feel more comfortable, but does that make it the best choice, every time? The answer is different for each business, each circumstance, each locale, and each service or product.

For years, people have tuned into radio talk shows, radio morning shows, as well as all their favorite broadcasters and their homey local styles. If you are like most of us, you are flipping on the radio along with the wake-me-up and where?s-my-coffee world. From a marketing standpoint, however, do you comprehend the worth of regular, terrestrial (land-based) radio advertising? While many still say that your marketing dollars should be parted out into various categories, you will find that radio is an exceptional place to start. What does radio advertising have to offer you, especially as your business is online?

Consider this recent data for the November 2006 Elections:

?More than a third of Americans are turning to the Internet
for information about the elections next week, according to
a poll released by the Associated Press and America Online
last Friday.

?It found that more voters (26.8 percent) picked the Net as
the best place to learn about a candidate's position on
election issues or to research general election issues,
compared to television (20.5 percent); newspapers
(17.8 percent); radio (6.6 percent); pamphlets, brochures
and direct mail (5.4 percent); and magazines (2.8 percent).?

Resource: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/54012.html

There are a multitude of reasons for Net Marketers to choose to augment their advertising program with radio:

? Radio offers a wide selection of formats which will help
with targeted markets, with specific advertising messages.
It can be successfully targeted to consumer segments, such
as teen-agers versus retirees, or men versus women

? Radio spots can be repeated often, thereby driving the
message home. Once again, repetition is the heart of
effective advertising, and actually is the core of any
?learning? activity

? Radio ads are broadcast and heard 24 hours per day

? Radio can be heard by people as they are driving to the store;
messages that people hear just prior to their actual
shopping experience are very powerful

? Radio tends to be cheaper per broadcast than either TV or
print, and as a matter of fact, it is probably the most
cost-effective of all the media

? Radio uses a form of "theater of the mind." It uses voice
and sound effects to create images in the listener's mind —
which is highly appealing to the human imagination. This can
be more potent than any pre-developed television image or
printed photograph

? Radio reaches people who do not like to read magazines or
newspapers, as well as people who do not have the opportunity
to view outdoor items such as billboards, and those who do not
watch TV or use computers

Radio is quite versatile and will allow you to tell your own unique marketing story for a smaller portion of your budget — and with excellent results. Are you beginning to see that there are many incentives to head to the radio advertising market with your next killer product? You can advertise on specific radio programs in order to target your exact audiences.

So, what is the whole story about Internet radio? Every day, millions of people listen to Internet radio. Unlike conventional radio, online radio stations are easily reached by listeners anywhere, worldwide, by simply using a computer connected to the Internet. Today, thousands of ?terrestrial? radio stations are streaming their content all over the Internet.

Yahoo! representatives have stated that the audience IS there:

?All of a sudden you had Mr. Mainstream America, who isn't
advanced technologically, trying out radio on their computers…
Suddenly AM/FM stations seem very old-fashioned… The consumer
demand is tremendous. Now it's really kind of figuring out how
to make it work from the advertisers' perspective.?

Source: http://www.forbes.com/services/2004/06/03/cz_pk_0603radio.html

Right now, old-fashioned AM/FM stations are where businesses prefer to spend their advertising dollars — to the tune of some $20 billion each year. The Internet radio advertising market, by contrast, is much smaller. But, somewhere in the foreseeable future, think single-digit millions. Given the opportunity and the right timing, Internet radio will soon be a major online advertising preference in the not-too-distant future.

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