Spend on direct response radio ads more than doubles

Spend on direct response radio advertising increased by 113 per cent over 1995/6 according to the 1997/8 Direct Marketing Association Census.

In 1996, DR radio accounted for 100m of advertising budgets compared with just 47m in 1995.

It still lags behind the 1996 DR TV spend of 551m. However, growth of DRTV slowed from 68 per cent in 1995 to 38 per cent in 1996.

The biggest growth in radio has come from service and financial service companies together with utilities.

The best response rates were achieved by financial service ads.

The DMA expects the growth in radio to continue as digital audio broadcasting develops.

Direct mail grew by 31 per cent in 1996, despite the series of postal strikes during that period. It remains the biggest medium within direct marketing. DM expenditure as a whole was 6.2m, an 11 per cent increase on the previous year’s figure of 5.6m.

In return for providing information to companies, customers expect free delivery of goods, discounts and to be “treated like individuals”, the census finds.

This is the third year the census has been carried out.

For the first time, the data separates true direct response advertising from campaigns, which are essentially brand-building ads with a telephone number. The majority of press advertisements – 61 per cent – are direct response.

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