You’re ready to open the doors for your grand opening celebration. Your employees are hired and trained, product is ready to go, business cards are printed, and the “Opening Soon” sign is hanging in the front window. You’re excited beyond belief to launch your lifelong dream of being a small business owner.
Your billboard is going up and a direct mail piece is going out the week of your grand opening. You’ve made a buy with a local radio station. Yet, you feel like there’s something missing. What else is out there that can bring more pizzazz to your grand opening?
Then, you remember one of the radio stations in your town did a live broadcast on-location at another local business. Bingo!
The anecdote above is one simple example of dozens I encounter every year. Many business owners don’t realize the full scope of what their local radio station has to offer.
So, what can radio offer – other than that standard 30 or 60 second commercial?
Radio has oodles more to offer than your typical commercial break ads. Here are three types of things your business may want to promote, and how these “non-traditional” ways to bring in customers, fit the bill perfectly.
Since radio ads are all encompassing, they’ll work great for any of these too, so I won’t include them as here. Just know that you should always consider a radio schedule on top of anything else you’re doing for extra exposure.
1.) Ways to Promote Your Grand Opening ...
... and other events, too!
Whether you’re having a grand opening, special sale, or seasonal event at your business, your local radio station can help in these ways:
To get people to show up, use an on location broadcast, also called a live remote, with a local radio station. If your target audience is millennials, then consider using KCLD, Z947, or KG 95.3. If you’re going after the female buyer, perhaps 99.9 More FM, Wave 104.1, or 101.1 The River would be more suiting. For the male demographic, consider any of our talk radio stations like KNSI, or KDLM. Or, perhaps a rock format like Z103.3? It’s likely that multiple stations will cater to the audience you’re after.
For a general, all around demographic, country is the way to go. Because country is such a universal format in terms of audience, we have a country station in every single market we serve.
Online Banner Advertising
Radio stations drive listeners to their websites every day. Hearing your event message on-air and seeing the same thing online is a double dose of exposure. Most of our radio stations offer banner advertising on their websites. This is a great way to re-enforce your on-air event messages with coinciding online banners.
Imagine ads on the radio teasing your event, and then listeners go to that station’s website and see banners for the same event. Then, the day of your live broadcast, the call-to-action on your website banners change to say “Stop out Today for Our Grand Opening Event!”
2.) Ways to Promote Your Products
Here’s how radio can help get your products or services in the hands of consumers:
Whether you have a physical product, or offer a service – like massages or tanning – the best way to get folks interested is to let them try it out first hand. A great way to do this is to give products or services away as prizes on-air or online. People love free stuff, and people love listening to the radio. That’s why you’ll hear any radio station in the world giving away free stuff constantly. Those giveaways are win/win for all parties involved: the radio station, the listener, and – most importantly - your business.
Booths at Local Events
Our radio stations, in particular, host events all year long. From the Craft Beer Tour, to the First Steps Baby Expo, to the Wine Knot, we have events to fit any business. It’s easy to purchase a booth at these events and then sample your wares to the folks who attend.
In most cases, we’ll handle the on-air promotion of the event to get people there. All you have to do is get a booth and show up. Start handing out your goods, and you’ll quickly have hundreds – if not thousands - of potential customers trying your products or services first hand.
3.) Ways to Just “Get Your Name Out There”
Sometimes, you need a little creativity when it comes to marketing your business. Here are some non-traditional radio tactics to consider:
Sponsoring an on-air contest or program is a great way to get your name out there. Not only will your business name be broadcast outside of the commercial breaks, the station’s on-air talent will say your name as they talk about the contest or during the program. We have several examples from our own radio stations.
Every year, KCLD does the “Party Plane to Paradise” where they take listeners on vacation to Cancun, Mexico. Guess what? We partnered with local businesses to make that trip happen. Those business get mentioned every time the DJ opens the mic about it on-air or the station runs a promo to talk about the contest.
If you’ve ever heard “Brought to you by…” then you just heard a sponsorship.
For an example of a long standing program sponsorship, look no further than 99.9 More FM’s “A Better Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta” It airs every day during the morning show, and is sponsored by a local business. With their sponsorship, they get their name mentioned whenever the program is talked about, and they also get a 30 second commercial after the program each time it runs.
Pretty much anything can be sponsored. From the weather forecast, to the broadcast studios, to individual programs.
Want to be involved with a local event on bigger scale than just setting up a booth? Ask about sponsorship opportunities. Many events will have a “title sponsor.” St. Cloud Cider Fest, for example, is title sponsored by Smith & Forge Hard Cider.
Depending on the event size, various activities at the event can be sponsored as well.
More than Just Radio Ads
As you can see, radio has so much more to offer than just 30 and 60 second ads during commercial breaks. Any radio station can offer your business a package to suit both your needs and your budget. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with all the various marketing services available, just ask for help.
Radio reps have experience being creative by customizing our services to make the best fit for their clients. Got an idea you’d like to try? We’d love to hear it.
Whether you’ve got a grand opening, product to sample, or just want to get your name out there in more creative ways, radio can help.