According to a report released by the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB), radio revenue from digital platforms hit an all-time high in 2015, with traditional radio revenue exceeding $1 billion for the first time in history. The president and CEO of the RAB cites changes in advertising practices as the main driver for this growth, as “more and more advertisers are extending the unmatched reach of broadcast radio by taking advantage of radio’s off-air and digital options.” With such showings of steady growth, traditional radio could emerge as a healthy competitor for non-interactive web-based streaming services like Pandora.
This state of affairs is interesting because traditional radio is not the only “old” technology that seems to be making a comeback despite the digital age. Recent news reports have highlighted the fact that, despite the dominance of digital music consumption, vinyl sales are on a significant rise, and that, despite the initial fanaticism over e-books, physical book retailers are once again starting to thrive. As these three examples show, our country’s entertainment consumption trends inevitably reflect the tension between the exciting and the nostalgic that are the driving characteristic of our modern society.
Read more about traditional radio’s digital comeback here.
Jennifer Marr is an Entertainment and Sports Highlight Contributor for the Harvard Journal of Sports and Entertainment Law and a current first year student at Harvard Law School (Class of 2018).