Knowing When You Should, or Shouldn't, Change Radio Stations


Are you considering switching your radio advertising from one station to another? Maybe you think your advertising isn’t working and you need to change things up. Perhaps you believe you’ve already dominated your current station and you need to get your message out to a new audience, one that isn’t familiar with your brand. Choosing a radio station for your advertising is an important decision, so before you make a move, think carefully about the best way to maximize your advertising results.

We live in an instant-gratification world. “On demand” is the standard to which we’ve become accustomed. Not surprisingly, our expectations often reflect this standard. We seek immediate results and view anything less as disappointing or even unacceptable. These expectations are not always supported by the facts, however, and are not tied to research or past results. The same can be true of our expectations for advertising results.

If your radio advertising results are not meeting your expectations, you might think that it’s time to switch radio stations. You could think that your advertising on a particular station is not working or that you’ve dominated your current radio station — all their listeners are already familiar with your brand — and it’s time to try something new. Maybe you’ve found a less-expensive option and think that, by switching stations, you can get more bang for your buck.

How do you decide whether you should or shouldn’t change radio stations?


First, consider whether you’ve really given your ads enough time to start working. The results from radio advertising build over time. So, while it may take some time to see results, the good news is that they will be lasting results, because repetition helps keep your brand top of mind with consumers.


Think about whether the goals and expectations you set for your advertising were realistic. If they weren’t, switching radio stations won’t help.


Reassess and evaluate your ad creative. Your radio ad creative should be visual so that it leverages the unique ability of radio to engage the mind of the listener. Your messaging should tell a story and include a clear CTA. Most importantly, ensure that your creative speaks to your target audience and goes along with the goals you set for the campaign.


Strategize and re-strategize. Particularly if you believe you have dominated the space with your current station, consider switching from an awareness campaign to an action campaign. Develop a strategy to drive lead generation or achieve a specific sales goal.

Target Audience

Ensure than any changes you are considering — including changing radio stations — align with the needs of your target audience. In addition, any adjustments you make to your advertising strategy should be driven by target audience research, data, and historical information from past campaigns.


Have an open dialogue with your media partner. Your media professional has the expertise and experience to guide you in making the best decisions to achieve the results you want.

Don’t risk diluting the effectiveness of your message by bailing out on your radio station too soon or spreading your marketing budget too thin. If you’re not getting your desired results, resist the temptation to chase instant gratification and instead consider ways you can improve your ad creative or advertising strategy, and consider whether your goals are realistic.


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