The potential of digital to help radio grow is exploding and it is indeed critical for the industry’s continued success. As a broadcaster, you need to be doing everything that you can to take advantage of this trend. This recent article from Inside Radio highlights a PwC study stating that digital’s total share of radio ad sales will increase from 8.2% today to 10.7% in 2021, reinforcing the importance of digital to our industry.
The study also calls out that mobile will be the driving force behind the growth in digital. Mobile accounted for half of all digital ad revenue in 2016, with a 31.2% annual growth rate projected through 2021.
With this in mind, how can you optimize your mobile experience to capitalize on this growth? Below, we’ve outlined three tips to help you do just that.
We must also note that it is important that your website is mobile-optimized, in addition to having a fully-featured mobile app. This will ensure that your audience has a strong mobile experience regardless of whether they are accessing your content via your website or your mobile app.
1. Boost engagement with meaningful audience interactions
In addition to allowing your audience to access your station’s live stream while on the go, mobile provides many other opportunities to increase audience engagement.
Member comments and song voting allow your audience to give their opinions. This is valuable feedback for your programming and increases the interaction between your audience and your stations. By enabling commenting and song voting via your mobile app, people can more easily interact with your brands.
Live member conversations on your mobile app can also help. By integrating SMS chat on your mobile app, your audience can have 1-on-1 conversations with your radio personalities, providing a more intimate experience and increasing the attachment to your brand.
You can also use push notifications to provide relevant updates to your audience, like 620 CKRM does with grain price updates and local sports scores. These push notifications encourage people to come back to your app. They also enable you to provide relevant information such as traffic and weather updates as it happens to improve the timeliness of your content and increase your value as an information source to your local community.
2. Amplify the reach of your content with greater accessibility
Your mobile app is also a great place to host your website’s content, allowing your audience to access it when they are not sitting in front of a desktop computer.
Enabling widgets for your news and blogs allows your audience to access your content at any time or any place. This is especially important radio stations in smaller towns which may be the main source for local news, weather and traffic. For instance, Vandalia Radio acts as the local news source for the town as it is one hour away from the closest city. The station sees 79% of its web traffic from mobile devices, meaning that it needs to provide an excellent mobile experience and allow its audience to access its content via mobile.
Your mobile app is also a great place to host content such as podcasts and video, further increasing the reach of these channels and allowing your audience access whenever it is convenient for them.
3. Grow revenue with additional opportunities for monetization
With increased traffic and engagement comes increased opportunities for monetization. Here are some specific things you can implement to improve monetization on your mobile app:
- Welcome mat ads: when someone opens your mobile app, have an ad that they see quickly upon loading. Everyone who opens your app will see the ad, thus providing high value to advertisers.
- Synchronized digital ads: complement your on-air ads by adding synchronized digital ads to your mobile stream. This shows people listening to your mobile streams digital ads related to the on-air ads that they can click on to receive an offer, thus increasing engagement and providing more value to ad partners.
- Audio/video pre-roll ads: enable your app to play a sponsored video when listeners tune in to your live stream, podcasts or other content on your mobile apps.
For more advice on how to monetize your radio station’s mobile apps, check out this article.
Digital is essential to radio’s evolution and mobile is a key component of this growth. As a radio broadcaster, you need to be grabbing the bull by the horns and doing everything that you can in mobile to connect with your audience and provide value to your advertising partners. SoCast provides you with the technology that you need to do this. Talk to a SoCast Specialist to learn how you can use our integrated platform to build a robust mobile app for your radio station that will increase digital engagement and revenue.