What Pokemon Go & Snapchat Say to Radio

We’re right in the midst of getting the 8th NuVoodoo Ratings Prospect Study out of the field and starting data processing, tabulation and then the analysis – to see what’s changed since the beginning of the year and what new insights we can glean about radio’s lifeblood: PPM wearers and diarykeepers. We’ll be rolling out morsels from the new data here in the weeks ahead as we begin to share deeper insights with clients.

One of the things we keep close tabs on in these studies is the ranking of Social Media platforms. We rely on these data to help guide the Social component of digital advertising programs for client stations. A quick perusal of the unweighted data coming out of the field now shows that Snapchat has moved up prodigiously since the start of the year. Seeing these data on top of the amazing explosion of Pokemon Go in the past two weeks signals a change in the relationships we have with our smartphones.

As a population, we’re adept at using smartphones to email, text, get news/weather/traffic, shop, take and share pictures, get directions, keep our schedules, play music, play movies/shows/videos, play games, etc. (Knowing that likely ratings participants are avid game players, NuVoodoo has been placing client station advertising in game apps for quite some time.) So, it’s no surprise that as a population we’re ready for new things to do with our smartphones.

Snapchat allows us to play with pictures and video. Pokemon Go encourages us to take our phones out into the world and play. While it’s yet to be seen whether either will be around a few years down the road, they’re both expressions of growing comfort using our smartphones, sharing our information and digitally interacting with the world. Some radio operators have already developed smartphone apps that extend beyond the basic food groups of station streaming, displaying the playlist and sharing clips and podcasts from shows on the station.

It’s up to the creatives in the radio business to come up with ways to incorporate this new digital connection with listeners. Radio has a long tradition of seizing pop culture moments to its advantage. This latest turn in our digital lives should be no different. How and where best to seize the moment depends on your station, your personalities and your brands.

We know that PPM wearers and diarykeepers enjoy playing games more than those who would eschew the opportunity to wear a meter or keep a diary. We know that these likely ratings participants are more inclined to give up personal information. They’re also more likely to interact with stations online and in Social Media. They’re more likely to spend lots of time online with their smartphones. In short, this new type of online play will over-deliver in terms of attracting consumers who are ratings participants. And those are the consumers who matter most.