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Radio waves don’t stop at the state line

—By Andy Dietrick
Public Relations Team

I’ve been getting calls lately from radio station account executives looking to sell airtime in 2013. That’s not all that unusual this time of year. They’re trying to lock in as much inventory as possible, and they know IFB is working on its budget.

What is unusual, however, is that these calls are coming from out of state.

When it comes to media buys we tend to think locally, and I strongly encourage county Farm Bureaus to work with local media outlets whenever possible. There is value in building relationships and keeping money in the community.

But some stations have footprints so large that their corporate offices and transmitters might be hundreds of miles away. Their call letters don’t come immediately to mind when you are thinking about purchasing radio time. Don’t discount them; they could be a real bargain.

The most recent call came from a large country station in central Illinois that has a very strong ag presence in our neighbor to the west. But it also trickles over into west-central Indiana with a listenership nearly twice that of any local station in the five counties they reach. They offered a two-week introductory package at a very reasonable price.

When we get these sales calls at the IFB home office, we politely decline because the station’s reach isn’t statewide. However, we then pull out our map to see if there is a cluster of county Farm Bureaus that might benefit from a joint purchase on this particular station. Radio is a great medium for spreading agricultural news and information, and for many of our members on the border, an out-of-state station might be your best buy.

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