On January 7, 2024, Audacy, Inc. announced important actions to bolster its financial and competitive position and enhance the Company’s future growth. For more information, visit the Audacy Restructuring Website.

How to Drive In-Store Visits with Broadcast and Streaming Radio: A Case Study

By Jon Blum, SVP, Strategy Partnerships & Analytics, Audacy

Audio Campaign Drives 20% Boost in Restaurant Chain Visits

One of Audio’s superpowers is driving customers to brick-and-mortar locations. New advanced measurement capabilities, such as location-based analytics, are helping to prove precisely how impactful Audio advertising can be. 

With first-party data and strategic measurement partners, we can detail how Audio helps increase foot traffic, builds customer loyalty, and — ultimately — boosts sales. 

The Case Study: Audio Ads Tempt Diners to Visit—and Become Return Customers 

When a Detroit-area chain of restaurants set out to attract more customers, the company turned to Audacy to build a campaign and measure the results. The family-owned chain, which operates in 16 locations across Southeastern Michigan, wanted to boost traffic during happy hour, increase customer loyalty, and attract repeat customers.  

Together with our measurement partner Placer.ai, Audacy reported that, during the six-week campaign, visits jumped an average of 20% year-over-year during the 2 – 6 pm window. At some sites, foot traffic surged as much as 40%. 

+20%

Increase in customer visits to restaurants

In general, providing attribution is hard, but our radio campaign, combined with Placer’s reporting, showed the direct impact of our marketing when no other marketing occurred, and it was unbelievable. You just can’t argue with a 20% increase in foot traffic over 6 weeks. Our customer was blown away by the depth of insights we’re able to share using Placer.ai, making it easier to prove our ability to generate real-world results.

Jennifer Killeen
SVP of Search, Social, and Performance Digital, Audacy

Foot Traffic Analysis: How Audio Campaigns Deliver Results

Audacy created a six-week custom campaign with 15- and 30-second spots that ran on digital streaming and local radio stations during the morning drive to reach the diner’s targeted audience. The diner’s logo also appeared on digital in-car Audio displays to add a visual element. The company held off on other marketing during those six weeks.

From sit-down and quick-serve restaurants to retailers and entertainment brands, advertisers with physical locations are more focused than ever on attribution and proving return on investment. We work with several third-party data specialists to provide the latest in data analytics and demonstrate that Audio gets results.

Placer.ai is our premier location analytics partner. Combining privacy-safe foot traffic data from tens of millions of mobile devices with dozens of complementary data types, including consumer psychographics, spending patterns, and media consumption, it uses machine learning to form an aggregated view of physical locations, the consumers and businesses that interact with them, and the markets they inhabit.

The Detroit-area restaurant client needed a customized approach. Working with Placer.ai, we analyzed the nitty gritty of foot traffic during the six-week run: How many customers visited after hearing the Audio ads, how many times they visited, and how much time they spent there. These data points provide crucial intel into a brand’s customers and offer insight into how Radio can grow business. 

The Placer.ai study reported that visitations were up in almost every daypart, including the competitive morning and dinnertime periods. Foot traffic increased significantly during the targeted afternoon hours, too.

Shown right: With the Hourly Visits report, Audacy showed that in-store foot traffic increased during the campaign (blue) compared to the previous year, with a noticeable boost for the promotional hours of the campaign (2-6 p.m.)

Targeting Casual and Loyal Customers

Customers visited more frequently and stayed longer, according to the report. When diners are frequent visitors and linger, that equals more orders for coffee, entrees, and dessert. 

On average, the 16 locations attracted more first-time customers, and some regular customers became super-diners, visiting more than 20 times in a single location, compared to the same period a year ago. Visits were up among both loyal and casual customers. Notably, the diners stayed longer, with customers lingering for 10 minutes longer.

Shown right: The Placer.ai Loyalty report shows an influx of customers making at least one visit as well as an increase in new and loyal customers, with some customers visiting 20+ during the campaign period (blue) versus the prior year (red).

Audio is highly effective for building brand awareness and driving consumers to action. Location-based studies can now help connect the dots between ad exposure, foot traffic, and the cash register. It’s just one example of our growing toolbox to provide our clients with measurement and analytics. We can provide our clients with data-driven results.

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