Radio and the Brain

Selling Radio Direct with Pat Bryson

Westwood One recently did a biometric study of how various forms of advertising affect the brain. What they found was that video produced the least amount of brain activity. Ads that were text-based elicited a bit more. Audio advertising elicited the most brain activity. Why?

Radio is a single-sense medium that allows you to build a picture in your mind.  Most of us would agree that the movie is NEVER as good as the book. That’s because we visualize the characters and places as we wish them to be: what’s attractive to us. The same phenomenon occurs with advertising as well. Potential customers who hear the ads picture the places and products the way they wish them to be. 

The study also found that radio is an accelerator for both video and print. It makes advertising in those mediums more effective and efficient.

Antonio Damsio’s research adds to the viability of radio. His study showed that 90% of human behavior and decision-making  are driven by emotions.  We then use logic to justify what our emotions told us to do. 

All of this research points to one thing: We should be writing ads that appeal to the emotions of the customer. We should be selling BENEFITS not FACTS. 

This is radio’s secret weapon: be sure we use it!


By the time you read this, I’ll be on my way to Radiodays Europe in Vienna. This meeting of minds occurs every March somewhere in Europe. I’ll be in Vienna 17-21 of March. I welcome the opportunity to meet with any of you who might be in attendance. You may reach me at [email protected] to schedule a time. 



About The Author 

Pat Bryson is the founder of Bryson Broadcasting International, a consulting firm that works with radio stations around the world to increase revenue by raising the skill level of their sales staffs. Her client list spans from the United States to Canada, Europe and Central Asia.

Pat has spent her entire career creating a culture of over-achievement for her stations. She began her career in radio sales, becoming one of the highest billing sales people in her market. Her career advanced to General Sales Manager, and then to Market Manager. Since starting BBI 7 years ago, she has helped hundreds of radio stations to find, train and grow great quality sales people and managers.

Pat was the recipient of two prestigious educational fellowships from the Educational Foundation of the National Association of Broadcasters: a fellowship to the Executive Development Program and a fellowship to the Broadcast Leadership Training Program.

She publishes the Bryson Broadcasting International Newsletter twice monthly and is a contributor to Valerie Geller’s latest book, Beyond Powerful Radio: A Communicator’s Guide To The Internet Age.

You may contact Pat at [email protected] or visit her website at