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Back to school radio advertising

Jo Loup Sep 2, 2022 1:01:42 PM

With the prospect of a more normal school year ahead, advertisers have returned to radio to heavily promote their back-to-school offerings. Radtracker data shows that these back-to-school radio advertising campaigns are almost 5 times heavier than last year and even 14% higher than pre-pandemic levels over the same weeks in 2019.

Total back-to-school radio spots by market


A recent study from the Retail Council of Canada found that more than 85% of Canadians back-to-school purchases were on clothing followed by books and electronics. However, when we examine the Radtracker data, we see that clothing stores haven’t featured in the top 5 categories over the past few years. The categories have changed from office equipment stores being the heaviest in 2019 to smartphone and mobile services dominating this year.

Top 5 back-to-school radio categories by year


The same Retail Council of Canada study shows that 41.5% of respondents would prefer shopping in-store rather than online for their back-to-school supplies. This could explain why Amazon’s radio campaign is so heavy in all the markets measured by Radtracker.

Top 5 advertisers by market


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