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Internet Radio Stations Band Together
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:52 pm    Post subject: Internet Radio Stations Band Together Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Internet Radio Stations Band Together, Plan To Offer Industry-Wide Buy To One Forward-Thinking Advertiser

CHICAGO (9/23/03): Thousands of Internet radio stations and channels across America will band together this fall to offer one major national advertiser an advertising schedule across VIRTUALLY THE ENTIRE MEDIUM, Kurt Hanson, publisher of "RAIN: Radio And Internet Newsletter" (www.kurthanson.com), which is organizing the event, announced today.

The unprecedented media buy, called the "Gigabuy," will consist of a schedule of a radio commercial every two hours for eight weeks on the vast majority of Internet radio stations and channels in North America. It will generate 80 to 100 million impressions, Hanson said.

"The purpose of the Gigabuy is to highlight the fact that advertisers can now reach a unique new type of radio listening audience -- one that's almost 100% upscale, at work, and currently on-line," he explained.

"Webcasting's promotional power and marketing reach have been long underutilized by the advertising community," said Steve Vonder Haar, research director of Interactive Media Strategies, a research firm that tracks how corporations use online multimedia.

"Programs like the Gigabuy represent a golden opportunity for traditional marketers to begin experimenting with this venue to understand the dynamic role that webcasting can play in a company's overall marketing mix."

"One single advertiser has never purchased a schedule for every magazine in America or on every television program or every cable channel," said David Goldberg, vice president & general manager, Music at Yahoo!. "We believe the purchase of the 'Gigabuy' will be history-making and will net the advertiser significant exposure above and beyond the significant branding power of the buy itself."

Webcasters plan to make presentations to selected brand managers, advertising agencies, and buying services over the next four weeks and hope to run the "Gigabuy" campaign sometime in the fourth quarter.

Internet radio offers advertisers an attractive, upscale audience

In the past few years, the Internet radio audience has grown from almost nothing to an audience size in the middle of the day of OVER 500,000 SIMULTANEOUS LISTENERS, according to a RAIN analysis.

And according to a recent Arbitron study, over the course of a month, the medium attracts a total cumulative audience of over 30 million people.

Internet-delivered radio consists of thousands of channels of programming, consisting of two different types: Streams of TERRESTRIAL radio stations (including stations owned by Clear Channel, ABC, Cox, Bonneville, Susquehanna, and Salem) and INTERNET-ONLY radio properties owned by AOL, Yahoo!, Microsoft, Virgin, and numerous entrepreneurs.

The Internet-only channels tend to feature such diverse musical formats as electronica, pop standards, Eighties hits, Broadway, straight-ahead jazz, jambands, bluegrass, Celtic, folk, Hawaiian, blues, ambient music, world music, and classical music, Hanson observed.

"One characteristic of Internet radio's audience which should make the Gigabuy attractive to potential advertisers is that the vast majority of Internet radio listeners are UPSCALE, AT WORK, and ON-LINE with a browser window open," said Raghav Gupta, CEO of Live365.

Bill Rose, VP/General Manager of Arbitron Webcast Services, which provides ratings to the nascent industry of Internet radio, added, "Our studies have consistently shown that Internet radio listeners tend to be upscale, tech-savvy early adopters."

Internet radio's listeners have very attractive QUALITATIVE characteristics, according to Arbitron's studies: Internet radio listeners are 41% more likely than the general population to have a college degree. They are 70% more likely to have a household income of over $75K. They see almost twice as many movies as average consumers see and buy about 50% more CDs. They spend about 33% more money online than other Internet users do. And they have an index of 178 on past-week visits to Starbucks.

Kim Vasey, Senior VP/Director of Radio for mediaedge:cia, who currently heads the company's Integrated Radio division and co-ordinates activity across the 10 regional offices for accounts such as AT&T, Campbell's and Met Life, commented, "I was very disappointed that Internet radio was so hard hit by the DMCA and AFTRA issues three years ago, and I'm very excited that it's beginning to eke its way back into existence as a commercially viable property. Now that those issues have been settled, I believe that Internet radio is a unique opportunity that we can, once again, bring to our clients."

She added, "It's not just about the size of the audience but the composition as well. While the audience base on Internet radio may seem small today, I have every confidence that it will continue to grow and evolve over the coming years. The important factor is its strong qualitative base."

Most top-rated webcasters will participate in the "Gigabuy"

Top-rated webcasters today, most of whom have agreed to participate in the Gigabuy, include the "Radio @ AOL" network of over 120 channels of Internet-only radio, Yahoo!'s "LAUNCHcast," a user-customizable radio service; numerous "terrestrial" (i.e., broadcast) radio stations that offer their programming on the Internet (including many owned by the broadcasters named previously, plus many National Public Radio (NPR) affiliates); Live365.com, which streams over 15,000 listener-programmed stations; RadioFreeVirgin.com; Canadian webcasters including Moontaxi.com and TheIceberg.com; and smaller webcasters including such varied properties as RadioMargaritaville.com, BluegrassCountry.org, Beethoven.com, AccuBroadway.com, OnionRiverRadio.com, and hundreds of others.  "As an industry, we've got a large and loyal audience that has not yet managed to attract the interest of national advertisers," said Jennifer Lane, President of mvyradio.com, an eclectic rock-folk-blues broadcaster based on the island of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. "We think the Gigabuy will be an exciting way to draw attention to the medium —- and to help one advertiser have an incredible success story."

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