Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Radio Advertising

It took a while for advertising to dominate radio. Initially sponsors felt they did not want to over saturate the listener with messages of various products so in an effort of minimizing radios intrusion into the home they came up with the idea of having companies sponsor different segments throughout the day. That would change very soon, as the two enormous powers were setting radio on their sights.

“Can you picture to yourself the horror of sitting down to listen to a good song or two, or perhaps a newsy chat on the events of the day, and being forced to listen to broadcasting programme that is nine tenths advertising matter?” Radio Broadcaster p. 75 Jackson, 1922

These two powers, political and commercial have their way of taking over most mediums of mass media and just as they did years ago, they are doing it again. Back in 2001, when satellite radio made its debut their strongest selling point was “commercial free radio”. Subscribers pay a monthly fee and purchase special receivers for this new medium and a great advantage is that you can listen to your favorite station coast to coast.

In 2005, the Clear Channel Communications Company, a large investor of XM radio, started including commercial advertising on the four channels they control. A few other music channels are getting initially four minutes of advertising per hour and all news, talk, and sports channels have advertising all the time. Not a large amount you might say, the point is that it is there and only bound to increase over time. Before, subscribers paid for commercial free radio, now they pay for less commercial radio and the political and commercial forces are stronger then ever.


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