Clutters in the air


Dotcom advertising has been boosting radio revenue, but it has done so by increasingly cluttering the radio airwaves, according to Empower MediaMarketing.

While the number of commercial units in 16 radio markets grew by 6% from 1998 to 1999, it jumped 20% in San Francisco, the anchor of California's Silicon Valley, Empower said in a study released last Wednesday. The study analyzed data from Nielsen Media Research.

The greatest commercial increase among formats-13%-was recorded by alternative-rock stations. That may be because listeners of those stations comprise a demographic that dotcom advertisers are looking for, said Julie Pahutski, a senior vice president at the Cincinnati-based media researcher and buyer. Urban AC stations increased their spots by 9%, while the number of ad units on classical stations fell 6%.

Double-digit increases in ad units also were recorded in Miami/Fort Lauderdale, where the number of units grew 16%; Detroit, 12%; and Chicago, Washington and Philadelphia, each 11%. The only markets where declines were registered were San Antonio and Indianapolis; units there were down 7% and 2%, respectively, Empower said.

The 6% overall growth represents a significant drop from the 13% year-to-year increase in ad units that Empower reported last August.

Empower's studies do not detail the number of minutes of advertising that run each hour.