*CYBERTORIAL: SABC Radio is undergoing a number of exciting improvements to remain relevant to a changing audience and offer a more realistic value proposition to advertisers.
For some time now SABC Radio has been aware that its listeners are becoming increasingly sophisticated, have greater earning potential, are more financially savvy, and as a result, have far greater spending power than was the case historically. SABC has also registered significant audience growth in recent years with over two-million new listeners over the past year alone.
As a result, the broadcaster has recently undergone a process of internal change and improvement to remain relevant to its listeners and provide a targeted, improved service to its advertisers. The radio product has been refined through in-depth research and analysis, which has resulted in a balancing of audience and ad-spend; improvement of trade positioning and value proposition; and a review of price and inventory. To this end, and after considerable debate and deliberation, SABC Radio will increase its rates as of 1 November 2014.
“The SABC Radio audience profile (i.e. demographic, psychographic, economic value, spending power) has evolved over the last 10 years and historical pricing has not factored the evolved consumer into rate increases, in addition, SABC Radio inflation rates have been lower than competitors. SABC has now taken steps with the latest rate increase to get a fair market price in relation to its audience profile,” says Wanele Mngomezulu, general manager of Business Intelligence at SABC.
Despite the increase, SABC Radio’s rates remain comparatively lower than most industry averages for audiences of a similar profile, and advertisers are getting significantly better value for money in terms of audience loyalty, demographic and reach than they do with commercial stations. The advertising revenue value per listener for African Language Stations is on average R48 compared with the R500+ of commercial stations.
According to research, SABC Radio audiences have evolved in terms of their spending power and lifestyle. This is reflected in the Lifestyle Standards Measures (LSMs) in All Media Products Survey (Amps) and in lifestyle statements through Target Group Index (TGI). In the past 10 years, the adult population grew by about 20%. The growth comes from the Real Majority Market or LSM 5-8. There are now 22.8-million adults in LSM 5-8 compared with 11.4-million in 2003. When considering the total SABC Radio audience LSM 1-4 has decreased by 29%, LSM 5-8 has increased by 23%, and LSM 9-10 has increased by 6%.
This growth in the middle market (LSM 5-8 and 61% of all SABC listeners) shows that the SABC Radio audience has real spending power. More than five-million listeners (24%) earn more than R11 000 per month (household income), whereas 10 years ago only 538 000 listeners were in this income group. The middle-market is young (52% are under 34, 25% are 15-24 and 27% are 25-34), want to be educated, are hopeful, aspirational, mobile, social and engaging.
They are interested in financial services (72% are ‘banked’ versus 54% 10 years ago) and 99% have electricity at home. Although most still do a monthly bulk shop for food, their frequency of shopping has increased significantly. Twelve million of the Real Majority Group listened to an SABC ALS yesterday, that’s 53% of all LSM 5-8s.
SABC Radio caters to all socio-economic groups, with 61% of their listeners being from the middle market or LSM 5-8. There are no other radio groups that have even close to the same head count and reach. In addition, it is a myth that SABC Radio does not have wealthy listeners, a good portion (16%) are upper class or LSM 9-10.
SABC radio has an evolved, balanced and more mature audience than it did 10 years ago. This requires appropriate radio planning, relevant to the nuances of the evolved listener.
“The SABC has made a concerted effort to improve its radio product. We invested in improving the quality of sound, secured long term contracts for on-air talent, and invested in audience research that assisted us in keeping up with changed consumer patterns. Our investment in providing quality research programming that resonates with the audience has also contributed to our growing audience base,” says Zolisile Mapipa, general manager of SABC Public Broadcasting Service Radio.
SABC has segmented its radio portfolio based on the common psychographic thread and grouping. The MG5 portfolio (MetroFM, GoodHope FM, and 5FM) mainly speaks to the youthful market. Fortune4 (2000FM, Lotus FM, SAFM, and Radio Sonder Grense – RSG), speaks to the matured, rooted, legacy-driven, and settled B2B audience. The African Language Services (ALS) Stations portfolio has eleven stations in the bouquet (uKhoziFM, Lesedi FM, uMhlobo Wenene FM, Thobela FM, iKwekwezi FM, Phalaphala FM, Ligwalagwala FM, Munghana-Lonene FM, TruFM, XK-FM and Motsweding FM) and serves the highly aspirational, connected, rooted, relevant , and evolving dominant market.
To optimise its radio advertising offering the SABC is committed to facilitating more effective media planning across its portfolio of 18 stations. SABC Radio has invested in research that will allow for optimised strategic media planning by targeting clearly defined audiences. A bouquet of new advertising packages offered across SABC Radio’s stations allow advertisers to get maximum reach and impact.
*Cybertorial is paid-for content
IMAGE: Wanele Mngomezulu
About SABC: The SABC’s core business is to deliver a variety of high quality programmes and services through television and radio that informs, educates, entertains and supports the public at large.
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