DMG welcomes Clear Channel ad initiative: Keith Thomas

Following up the Clear Channel move to reduce radio advertising inventory, and Paul Thompson’s comments last week, radioinfo has also spoken to DMG’s Group Sales Director, Keith Thomas, for his insights into the advertising schedule debate.

He says US Broadcasters have been grappling with this issue for many years.

“In 1999, a major study was conducted in the US by the Edison Research Co, which concluded that radio listening among people – aged under 30 – was, on average, 30% lower than it was 10 years earlier.

This trend remains the same today,” says Thomas.

The primary reason given for this decline in listening is ‘too many ads.’

“When Nova launched in Sydney in 2001,” says Thomas, “our research clearly demonstrated that a new, media savvy, somewhat cynical consumer was emerging in Australia as well, and that a new form of communication strategy was needed to reach these people effectively.

“Nova’s unique in the world strategy of ‘never more than two ads in a row’ is our way of dealing with this problem, and we are enjoying a powerful response to the idea in all three markets that we operate.

“Other media companies and marketers are also looking to develop strategies to find a better way to ‘connect’ with the new consumer.”

Thomas’ discussion about connecting with the audience in new ways was echoed recently at the ABA conference by Paul Thompson (see earlier story).

Channel 7’s current ‘Super break’ concept is one of these ideas, as is the proliferation of product placement in shows such as The Block and Big Brother.

Thomas says: “We expect to see many more of these initiatives launched, as the ever evasive new consumer continues to search for and increasingly choose environments, designed specifically with their needs in mind.

“We welcome the Clear Channel initiative (albeit too little, and a little late) as a step in the right direction towards truly effective communication to this audience.

“Nova has successfully occupied this space for three and a half years and we’d encourage the rest of the industry to follow.”