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Only 2% of radio stations are dedicated to news

As kids we grew up listening to just one radio station – All India Radio. The tone of every news bulletin, every jockey was the same – monotonous. It wasn’t even clear if the news item was good news or bad news.

With the air waves opening up in India we finally got many radio stations. Bangalore got India’s first private FM station, Radio City on July 3, 2001. Arun Katiyar was the station director of Radio City, a good friend of mine from his India Today days.

An educative article about radio media in India (Jarring Notes, Businessworld, 25 April 2011) talks about the current scene of radio in India,

Advertising in Radio

As an advertising platform, Indian FM stations are still not the preferred choice of ‘local’ advertisers. They continue to be bit players in the national media plans of large advertisers. That makes it two of us – radio and internet!

World over, local advertisers form the majority of the advertising chunk on radio stations.  But in India, only 30% of the advertisers are local, the rest are national. I guess national advertisers have deeper pockets.

The largest chunk of advertising revenue goes to print, TV & OOH. Internet in India still gets miniscule share of the total ad pie. In 2010, the total ad spend was Rs 25,000 crore and the two poor cousins – internet got a mere Rs 1000 crore, radio got Rs 810 crore.