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Audio Can Save Lives

By Idil Cakim, SVP, Research & Insights, Audacy

We are not a public health organization. But we do care a heck of a lot about the communities we serve. And we recognize the power of connection we have with our audiences, and with it – the opportunity to truly make a difference. America, Audio can save lives. Really. This was the jaw-dropping finding from a survey we did among vaccine hesitant people.

We live and breathe audio. When we started hearing questions from our audience, friends and family about getting the COVID-19 vaccine, we knew we could offer guidance. People were fearful. They had doubt. How does it exactly work? What will it do to my body? What are the long-term effects? We had a powerful solution to a critical problem, in the race against time.

Our study showed that audio influencers can play an important role in getting vaccine-hesitant people to listen… and there is a high potential these listeners will then take action. Trust plays a key role. Vaccine hesitant listeners trust audio more so than TV news shows, friends and family — and certainly social.

chart

Here’s what vaccine hesitant listeners want to hear: Objective information delivered with a touch of empathy. They want the local/podcast hosts to interview medical experts and also share their own experience with COVID-19 vaccines. They want to know the good, the bad and the ugly. So, the conversations between hosts, experts and listeners need to address vaccine safety and side effects head-on. Such objective and bold reporting, delivered through authentic voices, would get nearly half (49%) of vaccine hesitant listeners to get their shots. Even more would talk to a medical professional (64%) or to their friends and family (51%).

Our Phoenix market stations have been doing just that. Our influencers across Top 40, Country and Classic Hits stations interviewed front-line nurses about the dangers of COVID-19, safe behaviors  and the vaccine.

KMLE-FM
KOOL-FM

They answered questions that were on the minds of so many. The KALV-FM team turned Jeana Shephard’s interview from the morning show into a PSA and shared it with the Arizona Broadcasters’ Association, cascading the messages further. Hear it from a pregnant, pediatric nurse who is sharing her knowledge and personal experience with the vaccine.

KALV-FM PSA

“It’s the personal perspective that is relatable. That’s what we wanted,” says Chris Hernandez, Brand Manager of KALV-FM and KOOL-FM. Indeed. As we continue the battle against COVID-19, our eyes are set on the horizon…where there is no fear or doubt.

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SOURCES

Study Source: S. Radoff Associates, Custom Survey of vaccine hesitant U.S. adults (n=363; P18+) conducted February 9-22, 2021.

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