Westwood One 2018

To help establish its brand against a number of competitors, a new entertainment streaming service used AM/FM radio to build awareness and usage. Westwood One commissioned a brand tracking study with MARU/Matchbox to understand the impact that AM/FM radio has on brand growth and adoption—and found that the streamer’s top of mind awareness grew faster than all key competitors.

In a post on its “Everyone’s Listening” blog, Westwood One explains that in November 2017, before its investment in AM/FM radio, 17% of consumers were able to name the entertainment streaming service (which it does not reveal) on an unaided basis. After a year of investment in AM/FM radio, awareness grew to 28% of the study’s sample for a 65% lift in top of mind awareness.

“AM/FM radio was a primary contributing factor in driving top of mind awareness for the brand,” writes Doug Hyde, Senior Director, National & Local Insights at Cumulus Media and Westwood One. In addition, heavy radio listeners were more likely to be able to name the entertainment streaming service on an unaided basis.

The top takeaway: Increased top of mind awareness of the entertainment streaming service “naturally translates into adoption. Brand building creates mental brand equity that influences future sales via broad reach media like TV and AM/FM radio,” the post offers.

In fact, weekly usage of the entertainment streaming service grew by +81% between November 2017 and November 2018. Within a year, the brand achieved the largest weekly usage increase of any entertainment streaming platform, while achieving weekly usage levels close to leading competitors. In November 2017, the average association with a positive brand image for the entertainment streaming service was 7%, ranking in the middle in comparison to its key competitors. A year later, the average brand image for the service more than doubled to 15%. After that year of investment, recall of AM/FM radio advertising grew from 14% to 19%, a +36% increase.

“AM/FM radio works for entertainment streaming platforms with the power to reach streaming platform users,” Hyde writes, while turning them into customers, and converting them into fans.