Personalities on radio are a long-standing form of influence. Abby Carvosso, Group MD, Advertising at Bauer Media, shares some insights about the radio company’s pairing of talent and brands.

The importance and influence of talent within the marketing landscape continues to grow, with truly authentic brands aligning with the right talent based on audience insight. The world of radio is no exception. When you have a premium brand and a talent who is able to tap into consumers’ emotions you are able to get people’s attention. We all know that attention these days is very hard to deliver, and even harder to keep.

With the media competing for a slice of people’s all important and increasingly precious time, the number of consumers believing in brands is at an all-time low. A report by Havas Media indicated that only 22% of consumers put their confidence in brands. This makes establishing trust with a target audience harder and more important than ever.

When it comes to radio, it’s the responsibility of our content creators and their brands to put the audience first, choosing the correct talent that will truly resonate with them based on deep audience insight. For younger audiences, this can get even harder as they can be even more critical and discerning about the brands they choose to engage with. According to Forbes, 43% of millennials rank authenticity over content when consuming news. And as a premium brand owner this is a priority.

Talent has a huge role to play within the radio landscape. True influencers bring a trust factor with them, but this is only the case within a trusted context, which in a world of fake news is more important than ever.

Radio provides a unique experience – the blending of curated music and relevant information is critical to create a lasting and loyal connection with audiences. We combine editorial instinct and audience insight to talk to listeners in an authentic way.

So the appointment of Ronan Keating at Magic was a careful one as we know that many of Magic’s listeners would feel that they have grown up with him since his Boyzone days. In July, as part of a launch sponsorship, Ronan was challenged to sing his hit ‘Life is a Rollercoaster’ whilst on an actual rollercoaster in the Universal Orlando Resort, which drove great results reaching more than 1.2 million people.

When it comes to the high-profile breakfast slot, there is an even deeper listener connection to be made. RAJAR’s recent results highlighted that the breakfast show continues to be one of the nation’s most loved traditions, with 77% of the population getting out of bed to it during the week.

The consumer’s decision to choose to wake up with an external voice in their house is a personal one and despite the growth of many streaming services, morning radio continues to play a key part in many people’s lives, with over 90% of the UK listening to radio each week. The presenters are integral to building this close rapport with listeners.

This relatability that personalities bring to consumers is a real plus for commercial partners too. Over on Absolute Radio, for example, Christian O’Connell and Richie Firth have brought the Wickes breakfast show partnership to life. Now in its seventh year, the partnership has created a host of rich content and weeks of talk-ability. Their relatable personalities mean they can seamlessly connect DIY-focused features with their listeners – physically, not just audibly.

A three-week feature, “DJs In PJs”, saw the winning family have the duo stay for Christmas dinner and broadcast the show live from their home the next morning. While Christian and Richie entertained the family, Wickes took care of some house renovations, installed £3,000 worth of Christmas lights and gave everyone Christmas gifts.

Our research has found that 59% of listeners feel more positively towards Wickes as a result of the partnership while qualitative results indicate that misconceptions about Wickes are being busted. The right combination of talent and brands can truly create a halo effect for advertisers.

Influencers have the power to deepen relationships between radio and audiences, but for broadcasters to see tangible results, understanding the audience is critical, along with the trusted environment of a premium media brand. Hype around talent simply won’t cut it with our listeners, unless they are true authentic and relatable personalities.