US Online Radio Ad Specialists To Merge

16 October 2008

NEW YORK: Online radio advertising network TargetSpot has announced the purchase of Ronning Lipset Radio – which represents web broadcasters including CBS Radio, AOL Radio, Yahoo Music and Live 365 – creating the biggest service of its kind in the US.

TargetSpot – founded by backers including CBS – operates a web portal that enables advertisers to buy audio and visual spots on online radio stations' portals, which can be targeted by age, location, gender and musical taste.

However, it has previously been mainly used by local companies, and the new tie up will enable it to tap into RLR's sizable advertising sales unit, and its established relationships with a number of major brands. 

TargetSpot ceo Doug Perlson says: "There are really only two businesses out there offering this type of service, and now we've come together and established ourselves as the leader in the space."

Online radio attracts some 54 million listeners daily in the US says Bridge Ratings, with adspend levels of around $500 million (€366m; £285m) expected this year, according to eMarketer. 

Some online radio stations do not feature audio ads, but one area TargetSpot is hoping to exploit is promoting audio spots on mobile phones.

Perlson adds: "I wouldn't be surprised if the audio ad is the most effective ad on a mobile device."

Data sourced from New York Times; additional content by WARC staff