Forecaster Upgrades Radio Forecast

BIA/Kelsey sees things improving
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BIA/Kelsey has tweaked its 2010 U.S. radio revenue forecast.

"Based on first-quarter results from a number of radio ownership groups, other market intelligence, and a renewed optimism for the industry as a whole, BIA/Kelsey now expects total radio industry revenues to hit $14.21 billion, an increase of 3.7% over last year," it stated.

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The forecast appears in its quarterly "Investing In Radio Market Report." The company said the update also "reflects radio's continued success in incorporating digital and mobile plans into its overall strategy."

VP Mark Fratrik says we shouldn't consider just one quarter, but expect "a slow and steady rise."

"The impact of this year's growth will be seen across many markets and is likely to reflect the areas around the country that have seen an economic upturn."

The company also made the point that radio's overall position in local advertising is notable compared to direct mail, newspapers, television and Yellow Pages.

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"According to BIA/Kelsey's Media Ad View reports, over-the-air radio ranks fourth in 2009 U.S. local media revenues, with 10.5% of the $130.2 billion total."

Fratrik says radio must continue to grow broadcast revenues along with online. "Returning to revenues that were last seen by the radio industry in the early part of the last decade will come from utilizing traditional over-the-air assets combined with mobile and other digital solutions."

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