Radiocentre News

How radio and audio are delivering impact, innovation and effectiveness

Impact, innovation and effectiveness. These were the key themes running through the agenda at Radiocentre’s Tuning In Midlands event yesterday.

Radio, media and advertising professionals from around the Midlands gathered at the Mailbox Everyman cinema in Birmingham for a morning of inspiring sessions. These included a look at the role of radio and podcasts when it comes to delivering news, how brands can bolster their presence on radio, and the latest Radiocentre research on advertising effectiveness.

After a year of significant milestones for commercial radio, Radiocentre’s Chief Executive Matt Payton opened the proceedings by reflecting on how the medium is stronger than it’s ever been with record audiences and revenues. He explained how Radiocentre’s remit has adapted to the growing audio landscape and now also includes representation of all kinds of broadcaster-owned and operated audio, including podcasts and on-demand streaming services provided by commercial radio. He finished with an update on important protections for radio that have been included in the Government’s Media Bill which is currently working its way through Parliament.

Lewis Goodall, co-host of The News Agents podcast and LBC presenter, reminisced about growing up in Birmingham before sharing his thoughts on the current political landscape and the complementary roles for news radio and podcasting in a year that will include elections in both the UK and the US. He cited an intersection between media and politics that has developed in recent times, which he believes means all media now need to be even more robust.

A session by Lucie Cave, Chief Creative Officer for Podcasts and Commercial Content at Bauer Media was titled ‘People: The superpower of audio’. Lucie explored case studies, insights and wisdom on how brands can give weight to audio’s human side as the media landscape becomes increasingly artificial. She touched on Bauer’s AI experiment with Fleur East which proved how important the human connection is to good radio.“There are huge opportunities for us with technology and AI but the human is our super power”.

Zoe Bruton, Sales Director at voice commerce consultancy Say It Now, examined the power of voice and verbal interaction in audio advertising. She proclaimed, “smart speakers aren’t the future, they are the now” and brought to life how actionable ads are working with insights and case studies from the likes of Onthebeach, McCain and EasyJet. “Voice offers a breadth of data points, giving us new and exciting ways to measure radio”.

Laurence Harrison, Automotive Partnerships Director, at Radioplayer, gave the audience a peek into the future of car dashboards following a recent trip to CES in Las Vegas. He shared details for the work Radioplayer is doing to ensure radio remains the star as space on dashboards become increasingly more crowded.

Radiocentre’s Planning Director Mark Barber showed the audience a new presentation which gave perspective and nuance to the ongoing attention debate. He outlined the reasons why radio needs different thinking than digital or TV advertising. Head of Insight Donna Burns complemented Mark’s session by taking the audience through Radiocentre’s latest joint research project with System 1, ListenUp!. Donna explained how the findings show radio ads with positive emotions dramatically change behaviour, while well-branded radio ads cause double the trust effects. A Haribo case study also demonstrated how the use of more “right-brain” audio features improved the overall effectiveness of a radio campaign.

In the final session of the event, Simon Forster, Regional Creative Director at Global, discussed learnings on creative best practice and the future of radio advertising. He spoke of the benefits of contextual relevance, dynamic creative and sonic branding, as well as sharing examples of brands who have got it both right and wrong in the past.

Tuning In Midlands was a chance to mingle, network and discuss the major issues of the day, all helping to boost the case for brands everywhere to rediscover the power of radio and audio.

Find out more about our past and future events here.

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