Research Director: Stay Bullish In A Bearish World
March 17, 2009 at 10:36 AM (PT)
RESEARCH DIR. INC.Partner CHARLIE SISLEN sees a light at the end of radio's current economic tunnel. In an "open letter to the industry," SISLEN asserted that radio still offers the biggest audience and if the industry accentuates the positive, will best be able to capitalize on an economic rebound.
"Nothing is wrong with this industry," he wrote. "Radio continues to perform exceptionally well with its consumer group, listeners. According to the latest RAB Marketing Guide, 93% of the U.S. population 12+ tunes to radio every week ... Even with more entertainment choices, the average person is pending 18.5 hours a week with radio. That's over 2.5 hours a day."
When the demand for U.S. advertising returns, we will stand stronger than ever before
After citing radio's versatile portability as "a distinct advantage over other traditional advertising media, SISLEN places most of the blame for radio's economic predicament on
"the global economy. Advertising rates are based on supply and demand. Unfortunately, the global economic meltdown has resulted in lower demand, with little short-term change in supply. The result is a large decline in U.S. advertising rates."
He even found some good news from the incidence of newspapers going out of business. "As major newspapers go dark, the local supply of advertising will be reduced. One hopes this will have a positive effect on radio advertising rates.
I do not want to diminish the difficulties we are all experiencing," he continued. "However, what we as an industry must remember is that consumers are still flocking to radio, and we offer numerous advantages over other advertising choices. By promoting radio and focusing on the positive aspects of our industry, we will survive this economic downturn. When the demand for U.S. advertising returns, we will stand stronger than ever before."