Why Radio Works for Home Improvement Businesses (Even in the Off-Season)


A recent study from Nielsen has reaffirmed the power of radio in 2017. Yet as we close in on the holidays and prepare to close out the year, it’s safe to say many home improvement business owners aren’t thinking about radio advertising’s effectiveness. It may even seem like the time to take a break from marketing altogether.

After all, it’s the off-season—with little daylight yet so much on people’s lists outside of home improvement, and greater risk for bad weather. Chicago homeowners may be unlikely to start new projects, right?

In this post, we’ll talk about the three biggest reasons your Chicago home improvement company should be advertising through the winter, as well as why to include radio as part of your year-round strategy.

3 Reasons Not to Take a Marketing “Off-Season”

We’re not denying that home improvement business slows during the winter. With less daylight to work with, frigid temperatures, and unpredictable elements, project work just isn’t the same as it is in the spring and summer months.

But just because project work may slow, that doesn’t mean there’s no reason to take advantage of advertising opportunities throughout the season.

1. Less Competition

Home improvement companies that treat winter as an advertising off-season are opening the door for your brand to step in and claim mental real estate among Chicago homeowners.

2. Some Homeowners Do Take on Winter Projects

Winter projects happen—whether planned or unplanned. Some homeowners may want to take advantage of time off around the holidays to tackle indoor updates or (weather-permitting) exterior improvements. Others may be put into a position where they have to address a problem or change immediately. Don’t miss out on these potential customers!

3. Spring Gets Closer Every Day

Even if most of your potential customers won’t want to start a project during the winter, that doesn’t mean they’re not thinking about future projects. While it’s true that the busy home improvement season is a ways off, it will still be here before we know it. Advertising through winter gives you a unique chance to build brand awareness during early consideration phases and stay top-of-mind when the regular season blooms.

3 Reasons to Build in Radio Advertising

According to Nielsen’s latest study, radio advertising provides solid ROI for home improvement business marketing. For every $1 spent, home improvement companies see $9 of incremental sales. Radio campaigns drive a 4% increase in overall sales, a 2% increase in the total spent per buyer, and an 8% increase in the total number of buyers. What’s more, two of the most recognizable names in the industry—Home Depot Inc. and Lowe’s—are among the top 100 spenders for radio advertising. Why is that?

1. Radio Supports Storytelling

Radio provides the opportunity to grab attention, tap into the imagination, and move listeners emotionally. What better industry for storytelling than home improvement? Every project has a story—from a disaster handled or averted, to a complete transformation, to personal touches, innovative measures, and custom solutions to fit homeowners needs and wants. The off-season is the perfect time to share these stories and nurture emotional connections with your brand.

2. Radio Builds Trust

Among the most trusted advertising media, radio is in the top five. Trust is critical when it comes to a homeowner’s evaluation of their home improvement options. Radio advertising presents an opportunity to enhance consumer trust by selecting the stations your target audience trusts most. Another approach to leveraging consumer trust in radio is to examine if a radio endorsement from a trusted on-air personality makes sense and would align with your brand.

3. Radio Provides Year-Round Reach

Radio has incredible reach—225 million consumers weekly, or between 92% and 95% of each age group—which remains steady throughout the year. It also gives businesses the ability to target their audience through the right format, station, and specific programming.

If you’re planning to decrease or cut your home improvement advertising as the temperatures drop, consider the points above. It’s the slow season for projects, but can you afford to not be top-of-mind when spring rounds the corner? Take advantage of the winter months to get a leg up on competition and fill your project calendar through 2018.

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