Radio campaigns that win awards for creativity are a reflection of the greater spend advertisers are channelling into airtime on niche stations

It helps greatly when an advertiser new to radio – indeed to any media – debuts with stunning creative work. That is the case with two clients this month.

Dime Bar’s creative work, produced at Zoo, has already picked up one of the new monthly Aerial Awards for Creative Excellence, judged by James Fryer and Mike London of Duckworth Finn Grubb Waters.

The campaign was copywritten jointly by Paul Catmur at Young & Rubican and the main voice-over man, Harry Enfield.

Bobby McBrain, account director at Y&R, says: “The client really deserves every possible praise for this campaign. They had the courage to trust us, and that is a quality all too rare these days. According to our tracking, the radio ad is scoring very well.”

“We wanted to try some new ideas, and it was a opportunity to reach young people with Kiss and Capital. Radio has given us a chance to move the product into a different area.”

Dime started as a London-only campaign, with a promotion on Kiss 100 and spot ads on Capital, and was extended to cover Galaxy 101 in the South-west in support of a new trade listing.

The second impressive campaign is for AG Barr’s new product, Irn-Bru XS. It made its debut last month in Scotland, and AG Barr’s insisted that the launch used radio and 48-sheet posters – with radio taking the majority of the spend.

Account director at The Leith Agency in Edinburgh Phil Adams, says: “Given the great success we have had with Diet Irn-Bru – it recently won an Aerial Award for a second month running – it was logical that radio was an important part of the launch, with the posters taking the end-line from the radio ads.

“Much of the anecdotal response from the push has been to do with the radio, and that sort of research is difficult to ignore when you plan the next burst.”

But Dime Bar and Irn-Bru XS are not the only campaigns of note. Center Parcs is another newcomer to radio, using Capital, GWR, Trent and Essex to build traffic for the holiday club.

Patterson says: “We picked radio as adding an extra dimension to the campaign. Traditionally, we have been strictly TV, but I’ve worked extensively with radio and knew it would succeed. We are using radio to address the most common misunderstandings about what Center Parcs is all about. I would like to see radio in the mix in the long term.”

Collins Bridges used radio’s targeting ability for the Royal Horticultural Society, which was promoting the Hampton Court Flower Show.

Media group head at Collins Bridges Jenny Green, says: “An event such as this can be hard to target, due to the tight audience profiling – ABC1s and C2s who are over 35. But we found a match with Classic FM, which is essentially upmarket. The advent of stations, covering specific target audiences such as that for Classic, gives us more reasons to use commercial radio.”