Depending on the station you’re working with, you might be able to leverage some “added value” with your media buy. This is especially true with radio, and not as likely with television stations.
Radio stations will often give an advertiser promotional elements that equal as much as 10% of media purchased. Be aware, though, because the station will usually inflate the value of the promotion it’s offering you.
Here’s some common added value you might get with your media buy:
Bonus Spots – extra commercial air time at no charge. These are Run Of Station (ROS) and typically air Monday through Sunday, 6am-midnight.
News/Traffic Sponsorships – 5 to 10-second billboards saying you are sponsoring that news or traffic report. For example: “This traffic report is brought to you by (your name here, and sometimes your tagline).”
Morning Show Giveaways – Prizes or gift certificates from your business to be given away during the radio station’s morning show games. If you have a large prize, something noteworthy such as a trip for two to a popular destination or jewelry, you may request a custom giveaway designed to highlight this prize all week, or all month, long.
Typically, these giveaways just consist of you offering a prize valued around $25 in exchange for a live mention on the morning show. If you sell a product or service that lends itself to a morning show giveaway, this can be a good way to get additional exposure outside of your spot schedule.
On-Air Promotion – If you are planning to spend a lot of money with any particular station, you can negotiate for a special on-air promotion that will last for a week or longer to highlight your business. For example, a furniture store might giveaway $1,000 in furniture to one lucky winner, in exchange for having the store and contest mentioned as much as every hour for an entire month—a great prize for listeners to hope for, and a great way to increase your air time.
Remote – Ask for a remote with your media buy at no extra charge. It sounds almost like the station is broadcasting live from your place of business. You pay the hard costs to the station, such as fees to the DJ who emcees the event, and spend a significant part of your budget with that station. The sales manager just might say yes, if she/he thinks it’s worth their while. These remotes usually are one to two hours, and include live appearances by the station’s personalities, on-air mentions the week prior, prize giveaways at the event, and live call-ins to the station to encourage listeners to attend. To get the maximum impact, make sure you have something special going on during the time they are there to create a sense of urgency.
On-air Interview- If you have something newsworthy to share with the station’s audience, you can sometimes get interviewed on the air. For instance, you could talk about a charity fundraiser you’re doing or share free information or tips that the station’s listeners would be interested in. Most radio and TV stations these days keep the line between programming and sales very separate so your sales person’s hands may be tied on this one. But if you’re buying airtime with the station, you may have a better chance than someone who isn’t spending money with them.
Television Added Value – not every TV station will consider giving Added Value, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. TV added value might consist of a credit toward producing your commercial, if you contract with that station for production. The credit might be 5-10% of your media buy. So if you spend $10,000 with that station, they might give you a $1,000 credit toward getting your commercial produced.
There are many variables involved in how much added value you receive from the station. Some of them are: the amount of your contract, the share of your advertising dollars the station receives, time of year and competitive environment. But, the bottom line is, it doesn’t hurt to ask.