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From Podcasts To ‘Streaming Wars,’ Marketers Using Radio’s Reach To Drive Tune In.

Free podcast promos airing on iHeartMedia radio stations accumulated more occurrences in the week of July 27-Aug. 2 than any paid advertiser did across the entire radio industry. Promos for “Forgotten Women Of Juárez,” a podcast that explores the mysterious death of hundreds of women along the Mexican border city of Juárez, topped the weekly Media Monitors tally with 71,630 airings. Those outnumbered the 53,260 paid ads for insurance company Progressive which ranked second for the week.

Having a large broadcast megaphone to promote its podcast network is a competitive advantage iHeart is making the most of as “The Daily Zeitgest” podcast also places in the top 5 with 42,994 detections. Further down the list at No. 61 with 9,906 promos is “True Romance,” a new show from the broadcaster's alliance with Will Ferrell’s Big Money Players Network.

Using the reach of radio to drive tune-in is nothing new. TV networks have for years relied on the strategy to create buzz and drive eyeballs to new shows. Or in the case of NBCUniversal this past week, to help launch a new streaming platform. The media giant ran 10,243 spots during the week for its fledgling Peacock over the top service to rank at No. 59. Competitor Walt Disney Co.’s Disney + service also had radio in its media mix with 9,858 spots, clocking in at No. 63.

And NBCU parent company Comcast is using the airwaves to push both its internet-phone-TV bundle (No. 50 with 11,676 airings) and its internet service provider Xfinity (No. 60 with 120,075 spots).

McDonald’s is increasing its marketing spend over the rest of the year by $200 million across the U.S. and its top international markets to take advantage of the opportunity to grow market share. But so far that hasn’t manifested itself in a big way at radio, although the fast food chain’s spot count rose this week to 23,984 spots (No. 17), up from 20,168 (No. 22) the week prior. However both are below its No. 4 ranking for all of 2019, according to Media Monitors, which tracks advertising in 85 markets.

For the week of July 27-Aug 2, 2020 the top 10 on the Media Monitors list are Forgotten Women Of Juárez at 1, Progressive at 2, Babbel at 3, GEICO at 4, The Daily Zeitgest at 5, iHeartRadio at 6, Cricket at 7, AutoZone at 8, Staples at 9 and Allstate at 10.

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