Yes, the US may be slipping into a recession, but Mike Mahone and John Potter of the RAB say that’s not really unusual, that recessions come along about every five years and typically last about 10 months. So, how do radio sales staffs get through it? They presented research from multiple studies showing that advertisers who cut back in a recession pay a price in the recovery, lagging behind competitors who maintained or increased ad spending during a recession. “It’s all about share,” said Mahone, noting that while an advertiser’s sales may be only flat by advertising heavily in a recession, that will lead to much faster growth in the recovery. Of course, that’s a tough message to get across to many business owners as they see tough times around them, so Mahone said it is critical to have new ideas to get advertisers over the fear factor.
One audience member drew heavy applause when he noted that one major broadcaster has announced a freeze on promotional spending for its radio stations. “We are doing the opposite of what you’re saying, and then tell our advertisers to spend more and be aggressive,” he lamented.