The end result should bring more advertisers to network radio and make the medium even more competitive with national spot: Marketron and Counterpoint Software have unveiled “Network Connect” – a service delivered on the Marketron Exchange platform that enables radio groups to automate the entire process of network schedules from order placement through reporting and affidavit.
By automating the full lifecycle of network orders, media groups will be able to further reduce order errors, discrepancies and make goods, which will ultimately minimize labor costs. Dial Global and Premier Networks are participating in Network Connect, exclusively available from Marketron.
“This is another step towards fully integrating and automating the processes by which the Network Radio industry interacts with its station partners on behalf of our advertising clients,” Charles Steinhauer, President of Operations, Dial Global, tells RBR-TVBR. “By automating the delivery and input of traffic schedules and affidavits the potential for error is mitigated and the time by which schedules and clearance data can be communicated to all parties can be reduced. Advertisers are continually looking for reliable and timely information from their media vendor partners to make future purchasing decisions. Every time we are able to improve the capabilities and system integration across radio, we are able to better serve the needs of our advertising clients. This development helps both our advertising clients and our stations partners which means we are all ‘winning’.”
We asked Steve Minisini, CEO, Marketron, how Network Connect may bring more advertisers to network radio from the labor-saving/cost aspect, and how this makes network radio more competitive with national spot?:
“U.S. radio stations run approximately 230 million network spots per year. Stations give up an additional $300 million in airtime inventory because a significant percentage of these spots aren’t being placed properly and are later made good in prime dayparts,” he explained. “Compound this with the estimated 2.4 million hours per year that radio employees spend managing network spots and Marketron has unlocked astounding capacity for our industry to generate more revenue while making radio easy to buy, more efficient and immediately accountable to its advertisers.”
Prior to Network Connect, orders, copy instructions and revisions on network radio buys have been a complex process that cost stations labor/keystrokes, time and makegoods. Network Connect addresses these challenges and is exclusively available from Marketron.
Network Connect both minimizes network spot makegoods and increases sellable airtime by eliminating the manual work of entering network orders into the station traffic system and by electronically returning exact spot times to the networks.
By automating the process of managing network spot orders and providing a communication link between stations’ traffic systems and networks, media groups eliminate the manual process from network spot orders. It takes an estimated 12 minutes of station time for network order entry, one minute for each copy instruction application and forty seconds to populate the affidavit for each spot. Given the hundreds or even thousands of network orders a station airs per year, radio groups will save thousands of hours that can be shifted to focus on sales, advertiser accountability and delivery of high-performance campaigns.
Through Network Connect, spot schedules and copy instructions are directly imported from each network. As a result, network spots are more likely to air at the right time with the correct copy, ensuring network contract compliance.
A Marketron pilot program conducted with a large media group and Network Connect showed first-time compliance rates near 100%, virtually eliminating all makegoods associated with network spots. This increase ensures that station prime time inventory isn’t consumed by network makegoods but is always available to sell, increasing top line revenue.