Regardless of if your business is new or has been in the community for decades, businesses of all sizes need brand awareness.

There are traditional methods like direct mail, radio, television, outdoor, and print, as well as digital methods like display ads, pay-per-click on search engines, and mobile advertising via text message or mobile couponing.

Building local brand awareness requires going beyond the traditional tactics within the methods. Let’s review ways your local radio station can help get your name out there. 

1. Feature Sponsorships

Radio Advertising with Leighton Broadcasting

A feature is an on-air or online segment of content. For example, the news you hear on talk stations is a feature. The weather you hear on any station is another feature. As are countdown shows on music stations and community calendars. 

Feature sponsorships allow businesses to associate themselves with well-known radio programs catering to their target audience. Whether it's a morning talk show, a music countdown, or a local community segment, feature sponsorships allow you to integrate your brand into content that resonates with listeners. As a feature sponsor, your brand name, jingles, or customized messages can be included within the program, amplifying your business's exposure.

Examples of Radio Features

On our news and talk station, KNSI in St. Cloud, the headlines are sponsored by El-Jay Plumbing. Their sponsorship includes their name and logo positioned prominently on the website's news section; their name is also mentioned during each on-air newscast. Their logo is added to the news headlines that KNSI emails out daily. None of this runs during a commercial break.

Each St. Cloud radio station has a weather forecast, and Andy's Towing sponsors it. They also get their name and banner on each of our station websites. Our live radar and school cancellations are also included. Andy's Towing is an ideal weather sponsor as towing is highly utilized during severe weather, like heavy rain and blizzards.

2. Contest Sponsorships


Contest sponsorships provide an interactive and participatory way to connect with your target audience. By teaming up with a local radio station, you can collaborate to design contests that resonate with listeners and align with your brand's objectives. Contests can take various forms, such as call-in contests, social media challenges, or in-person events, providing multiple touchpoints for engagement.

Contesting also drives appointment listening, when they tease an upcoming contest or feature at a specific time so the listener makes an “appointment” to tune in at that time. If your business is part of the contest being teased, your name will also be mentioned during the tease.

Examples of Contest Sponsorships

Derek Lee Breaks Format on KCLD is a longstanding contest sponsored by Papa Murphy's Pizza. The concept is simple: Each weekday, Derek gives listeners a chance to help him break format by offering a chance to vote for one of two songs that KCLD typically wouldn't play but are fan favorites. 

Then, Derek randomly grabs one of the texters and rewards them with a free pizza from Papa Murphy's as the song that won plays on the radio. Papa Murphy's receives name mentions throughout the segment in Derek's show daily, building strong brand awareness as listeners decide "what's for dinner" that evening. 

3. Featured News, Sports, and Weather Spots

Radio Advertising with Leighton Broadcasting

Local radio stations play a crucial role in delivering up-to-date news, sports highlights, and weather forecasts. Being featured in these spots makes your brand an integral part of listeners' daily routines. Whether it's sponsoring the weather report, sports analysis, or news updates, your brand will be associated with information that listeners trust and depend on.

Since your message is read by one of the radio station’s on-air personalities during their show, it’ll feel more naturally woven into their show content, not part of the standard commercial break. These short messages are great if you have an event coming up, like a grand opening or anniversary sale. They’re also ideal if you have a smaller budget but still want the frequency to have an impact.

Examples of News, Sports, and Weather Spots

These sponsorships increase brand exposure and foster trust and relevance within the community. For instance, a roofing company could sponsor the weather forecast, positioning themselves as weather-related experts and the go-to solution for roofing needs. Additionally, a healthcare clinic could support news updates to associate its brand with vital health-related information and appeal to listeners who prioritize wellness.

Sponsor an On-Air Segment

Most things you hear on a radio station or view on their website can be sponsored. Thinking outside the box on things like this will keep your brand in consumers' minds. The more places you can get your business name out there, the better off you'll be, and the quicker you'll saturate the medium you're on.

If you’re ready to turn your business into a household name and grow brand exposure, Leighton Media is here to help! Let’s get your business on the radio today. 

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