Navigating the Turn

By Elliott Hurst Jun 21, 2023 | 10:14 AM

Licensed broadcasters are facing an increasingly difficult landscape in today’s digital age. 


The industry is at a tipping point, where traditional broadcasters are losing battlegrounds once previously owned, such as the automobile, the nightstand, and mobile phones. With the rise of digital media, broadcasters are now competing for dwindling on-air budgets, while digital advertising budgets continue to grow.


One of the key challenges facing licensed broadcasters is the need to replicate brand effectiveness across new and emerging digital channels. These channels include social media, podcasts, streaming services, and voice-activated devices. According to a recent report by eMarketer, podcast ad spending alone is expected to reach $2.7 billion by 2023. This is a huge opportunity for broadcasters to tap into a growing market, but it requires a shift in their approach to advertising and content creation.


To make matters worse, the fast-moving world of digital and programmatic advertising has left traditional media sales teams struggling to keep up. These sales teams are used to dealing with traditional ad buyers who are looking for radio and television spots. They are not familiar with the new world of programmatic buying, data-driven targeting, and real-time optimization. This creates a major obstacle for broadcasters who want to compete for digital ad dollars.


Local broadcasters also face a challenge in adopting a more consultative agency-type sales role with their clients. They need to understand their clients’ business objectives and how to create a customized advertising solution that will help them achieve those goals. This requires a shift away from a transactional sales approach to a more consultative one. Larger broadcasters, on the other hand, need to compete with big audio for the streaming audience and related advertisers.


Navigating the turn towards digital is not an easy feat, but it’s a necessary one for licensed broadcasters to remain relevant and successful. Here are some steps broadcasters can take to navigate the turn and stay ahead of the curve:


  • Embrace Digital Channels – Broadcasters need to expand their presence across new and emerging digital channels, such as social media, podcasts, and voice-activated devices. They need to create content that is optimized for each platform and engage with their audience across multiple touchpoints.  Today’s programmers need to retain their broadcaster DNA and inherent benefits, while adapting towards a “digital first” programming strategy.  SoCast Reach offers an innovative digital marketing software suite that can automate the proposal building process and assist sales teams in selling programmatic advertising and more.
  • Invest in Data and Analytics – Data is key to understanding the audience and delivering targeted advertising. Broadcasters need to invest in data and analytics tools that will allow them to collect and analyze data across all channels. This will help them make informed decisions about content creation and advertising strategies.  The issue to implement these strategies remains a challenge, hence the following points:
  • Train Sales Teams – Traditional media sales teams need to be trained on the latest digital advertising techniques, such as programmatic buying and data-driven targeting. They need to understand the new advertising landscape and how to deliver advertising solutions that meet the needs of modern advertisers.  Training shouldn’t come from within current legacy providers, but from newer digital providers who have successfully adapted their offering for broadcasters. Our specialists at SoCast Digital can help with that; contact us to learn more.
  • Adopt a Consultative Sales Approach – Broadcasters need to adopt a consultative sales approach, where they understand their clients’ business objectives and create customized advertising solutions that help them achieve those goals. This feels like a seismic shift for sales teams, and balancing this new strategy while retaining traditional media savvy is a give and take that will require some hard decision making for operators.


In conclusion, licensed broadcasters are facing a challenging landscape in today’s digital age. They need to navigate the turn towards digital to remain relevant and successful. This requires embracing new and emerging digital channels, investing in data and analytics, training sales teams, and adopting a consultative sales approach. By taking these steps, broadcasters can stay ahead of the curve and thrive in the digital age, and SoCast Digital is here to help. 


Visit us to learn more at www.socastdigital.com


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