Radio Revenue Remains Strong

November 24, 2010

Radio advertising continued its upward trajectory in Q3 2010, maintaining its year-long 6% growth rate, according to [pdf] new figures from the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB).

Natl Revenue Jumps 10%

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National radio advertising revenue totaled $700 million in Q3 2010, up 10% from Q3 2009. During the first three quarters of 2010, national advertising revenue climbed an even higher 14% to $1.97 billion.

Although local radio advertising brings in much higher total revenue, its growth rates during the third quarter and year-to-date have been much lower. Local revenues grew 3% both quarterly and year-to-date, totaling $2.97 billion and $8.46 billion, respectively.

Combined, local and national radio advertising revenue equaled $3.67 billion for the quarter and $10.43 billion year-to-date, growing 5% in both time frames. Adding the relatively small revenues derived from network, digital and off-air advertising, all radio advertising revenue totaled $4.46 billion for the quarter (up 5%) and $12.7 billion year-to-date (up 6%, as it was in Q1 and Q2 2010).

Dept./Discount Stores Post Highest Quarterly Growth Rate

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Although department/discount stores and shopping centers only ranked sixth in quarterly revenue among leading local and national growth categories with $188.6 million, its growth rate of 34% topped all categories. Financial services, third in quarterly revenue with $335.5 million, closely followed with a 32% growth rate.

Financial services had the highest rate of year-to-date growth, 28%, and third-highest year-to-date revenue, $952.8 million. Auto dealers/dealer groups/manufacturers/rentals had the second-highest year-to-date growth rate, 24%, and revenue, $1.18 billion.
Communications/cellular was the highest-revenue category on both a quarterly ($380.6 billion, 6% growth) and year-to-date ($1.2 billion, 10% growth) basis.

Youth Turn to Radio for New Music

Findings from a recent Edison Research study show that except for friends, radio remains the leading source for learning about new music for Americans age 12-24, aiding its desirability to many advertisers. Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they learn about new music by listening to the radio, only trailing friends (90%) in popularity as a source of information about new music.

Significantly trailing radio were both established media such as music featured on TV shows (65%), music video channels and (62%) and TV appearances by artists (62%); and new media such as YouTube (72%), social networking websites (56%) and internet radio channels (42%).

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