“I want my website in my radio ad…”

Yesterday the client sent back their re-written script. They were trying to drive ticket sales through about three outlets. Not a massive problem. But then they added the seemingly compulsory website address… “for more information”.

What more information do you need! The ad gave the event, the prices, and where to buy tickets, you COULDN’T buy them online. The web address was just a waste of time… and lessened the impact because now I was confused… am I supposed to go and buy tickets or go to the website? I now had less time in the scripts to sell the BENEFITS of going to the event.
The client just lessened the impact of their radio spots.

Oh… but that wasn’t the end of it. They wanted a SECOND web address! And on both they wanted to say www dot! There is a convention in radio advertising that you can drop the www because a) it’s assumed and b) it’s long and adds 2 seconds to an ad! Unfortunately in this instance we were separated from the client by an Advertising Agency. Not Creatives, or people interested in helping the client get campaigns that work… but in this case by an Account Handler that was just interested in the short term commission.

Dear Mr. or Ms. Client…. Just because you HAVE a web address, doesn’t mean it should be in your radio ad. What EXACTLY are you trying to get people to do? If I’m selling hotdogs I want people to come and buy hot dogs, not to visit my hotdog website, or even to “like” my hotdog Facebook page.

If you DO need a web address is… and you’re selling something there… and that’s your objective… them make sure you have a radio friendly web address. Don’t use hyphens, underscore or ambiguous words.

If I say “Rushton too be creative dot com” is that http://www.rushton2beecreative.com? Or http://www.rushton2Bcreative.com?

If you have a complicated address, think about buying another address where you can just forward to your existing one. For example http://www.simonrushton.com just forwards to this blog. I had a client who had an address that was a bit like this… (I have changed some of the exact details )


Their offer was on their famous steaks. They bought the address which was something like

Much better for radio AND their campaign! We were able to say… “to print out your 2 for 1 voucher visit “I want a big fat juicy steak dot com””.

Web addresses can be great for radio, after all radio is the medium that internet consumers use while they are surfing the net. But think about what you want people to do. If you want them to visit your site, why should they? What is in it for them? Think about web offers, printable vouchers, or money off coupons sent to their mobile phone. Think about making your site usable for e-commerce, for online catalogues and ordering tools… not just some fancy graphics and flash animations put together by your nephew to “look cool”.

And please, please, please don’t try to put TWO web addresses into your ads!

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