Forums » COVID-19 Roundtable

New Prospects, New Opportunities for Radio Advertising

    • 1111 posts
    March 29, 2020 7:43 PM PDT

    Businesses we should be calling on now:

    Senior living facilities - spokesperson encouraging listeners not to forget seniors, who thrive on socializing but are now on quarantine with no or limited visitation and social activities. Good message for listeners and good positioning for the advertiser.

    Florists - If ever there were a time to let loved ones know you're thinking about them and wishing them well, it's now. And "say it with flowers" is resonating with many. (By the way, GBS offers a free local florist commercial you're welcome to download and customize here.)

    Hospitals - Whether they're providing COVID-19 updates to local residents and families, offering testing for COVID-19, providing updates about their services, new restrictions and protocols, or needing to raise money for needed equipment and supplies, your station is their microphone to the community. Nothing online or in social media offers the kind of reach, intrusiveness, and repetition that radio does. And don't underestimate the unique power of the human voice and the spoken word during these challenging times. Remember the observation of Helen Keller: "Blindness separates us from things; deafness separates us from people."

    Business Offering Delivery - Restaurants and bars, obviously. But others are doing deliveries, as well. Gift shops, jewelers, grocery stores, home improvement and hardware stores, building supply stores, bakeries, optometrists (delivering contacts and eyewear), etc. The list is growing daily. Hint: Use your airwaves to invite businesses that are offering delivery service to add their names to your database of local businesses that are doing so. Make it easy and desirable for them to get in touch with you.

    Gun Shops - Folks in some places are concerned about personal protection and a defense against home invasion. No comment one way or another, just saying that they're prospects.

    Lawyers - People, particularly seniors, who have put off preparing their wills, health care directives, and durable power of attorney may feel motivated to get these things done, given the uncertainty they may be feeling about the future. (Even if everything were going well, these are still important documents for everyone to have in place.) This need not, and probably should not involve any kind of a hard sell. My two cents: The law firm that steps up simply to remind people of the need for these instruments is providing a valuable public service and will be remembered favorably for having done so.

    Home Improvement/Outdoor Stores - As the weather gets nice outside, it's only natural that folks tired of being cooped up in their homes will want to get some fresh air in their own yards and gardens. Think barbecue grills, outdoor seating, planters, yard and garden improvements, bird (including hummingbird) feeders, wind chimes, outdoor lighting, etc. It's not a violation of quarantine to enjoy one's yard and garden.

    Bike Shops -  Gyms and fitness facilities are closed, but people still need exercise and cycling along paths and trails affords not only exercise but a change of scenery, as well, without violating social distancing protocols. Business can be conducted online or over the phone and the bike delivered by the shop, with any necessary adjustments easily made while maintaining appropriate distances. [UPDATE: an article from this morning's local newspaper carried a front-page story on how our local bike shop is prospering. Assuming it's not yet behind a paywall, you can read it HERE.]

    Online Learning - With kids and parents at home, gathering around the speakers/screen to learn together - a new skill, new hobby, etc.  Libraries are closed in many places, but their online resources are available. Maybe they'll even sponsor commercials to let your listeners know about them.

    These categories just scratch the surface. Pay attention to what your listeners and consumers in the community are saying regarding their needs and think about the businesses who can meet them. Don't forget your local Chamber of Commerce, the official cheerleader for businesses and nonprofits in your community. 

    4/6/2020 - Good article from INSIDE RADIO on more timely prospect categories, including dog kennels, landscapers, home repairs, financial planners, clothing stores, jewelry, and real estate. 


    This post was edited by Rod Schwartz at April 6, 2020 3:04 PM PDT
    • 1 posts
    March 30, 2020 10:38 AM PDT
    These are perfect to call on, thank you!
    • 1111 posts
    April 2, 2020 3:27 PM PDT

    From today's county weekly: local grainery business in March up 4158%.

    While many businesses have had to limit business hours or close entirely due to the coronavirus, Joseph's Grainery has seen record-setting business these past few weeks.

    Joseph's Grainery sells whole grains and milled flours, as well as, cookie mixes, cracked wheat cereal, etc., and has seen a growth of 4,158 percent this month compared to March 2019.

    "Business is booming," said Jeff Geier, Joseph's Grainery employee. "You have to assume it's mostly virus-related things, but at the same time I think people are becoming more and more aware of where their food comes from and where it's available."

    Read the full story.