The Media Connection is a strategic partner to all media marketers and strategists that need to reach the "super" masses... the major spenders in the LSM 4 - 7 and 8-10 income brackets. Those 8.5 million listeners (RAMS May 2012) - almost 28% - of all radio listeners across the entire country!
The 140 community radio stations, in all nine of South Africa's provinces, are perfectly positioned to offer advertisers easy access to all population groups nationally, and also to definitive and niche geographical areas. They can reach male and female consumers, those with common interests, of different languages and various ages at fairly low rates, with very little wastage, when compared to commercial radio.
However, due to a lack of client education and reluctance by many agencies to utilise community radio, adspend has been low. In fact, just on 1% of radio adspend in South Africa is being spent on community radio even though it commands almost 28% of all radio listeners.
"These listeners hold as much disposable income and buying power as the commercial station listener. A large, powerful market that is being ignored at the peril of the advertiser," says Judy Milne, Director of The Media Connection.
The Media Connection's employees have many years of community radio understanding and experience. Long-term relationships have been built with almost every station, some dating back to the inception of community radio in the mid-90s. These relationships have been strengthened over the past 12 years as The Media Connection assists the stations to be financially sustainable, through national advertising procured on their behalf.
"The benefits of utilising community radio far outweigh some the perceived downfalls. Advertising campaigns on this medium can be intensely focused, easily managed and are not bound to as much red tape as most commercial stations are," says Milne.
For example, Alexandra, a suburb in North Eastern Johannesburg and home to some of our local South African icons, entered its centenary year in July 2012. Alx FM is the local community radio station that will be deeply involved in all of the activities and celebrations that will be held in Alexandra over the next year. In fact, 80% of all information that is given out in Alexandra is delivered through Alx FM, providing an incredible platform for advertisers to reach the approximately 750 000 people who live there and will be participating in the year-long festivities.
"Events held this year in Alexandra can be tailor-made to focus on community initiatives that can be sponsored by corporate clients and marketed by Alx FM in the form of dovetailed programmes, interviews or features that specifically enhance their enterprise development and corporate social investment interests," says Milne.
Community radio stations have always had a remarkably loyal listenership. At one point it was estimated that the average community radio listener only listened to 1.1 radio stations. This is because they speak directly to their listeners, in their home language, about pertinent issues which will directly affect their lives. Each station has a specific community built around it, whether it be music, religion or nationality that brings listeners together. Added to this, as many community stations are run by volunteers from the community they become 'mini celebs' within their own community, ensuring audience engagement.
The listenership of community radio has increased over the past 10 years, from 3 124 000 in 2000 to its current figure of 8 553 000. This is not due to the increase of community stations, but rather the increase in the quality of broadcasting and information coming from the stations.
Gauteng's basket of community radio stations alone would average the advertiser for the cost of 30sec ad a mere R517.00 (reaching 1 548 000 listeners - source RAMS May 2012).
"This is very impressive considering that advertisers can reach a highly-focussed market and that their reach and accuracy are a lot more cost-efficient and effective," says Milne.
For more information about The Media Connection, contact 086 137 2346 or visit www.themediaconnection.co.za
. The Media Connection DNA
The Media Connection provides a sales and administration function for radio and TV stations that have limited experience with, and access to, the national advertising industry in South Africa. There are 113 community radio stations on air, with which The Media Connection has representation agreements, as well as 15 sub-Saharan TV and radio stations that have appointed it to procure advertising for them. The Media Connection is a one-stop shop for advertisers aiming to reach a large and fruitful market simply by making one telephone call. For more information, contact 086 137 2346.