Thursday, March 3, 2011

Radio penetration, 75+ years ago ...

Here's a CBS study of the radio market from 1936.
This is an advertising book and accompanying booklet from Columbia Broadcasting System, Inc. sent out to advertising companies in order to encourage them to use radio as place to advertise the products that they represent.  It includes a letter from Victor M. Ratner (later to be head of advertised at CBS) to Gerald Frisch.

From the enclosed letter: "As such, this booklet completes the CBS study: RADIO IN 1936. The two volumes combine into a reference service for any basic consideration of how to sell more merchandise to the people with money enough to pay."

From the booklet appendix: "A preliminary examination of this project indicated that in order to obtain a complete answer, it would probably be necessary to make a very extensive field survey, which would have meant delay and heavy expense. The Committee therefore decided that the interests of all parties concerned would be best served by making the best possible estimate, based on existing figures and on additional data that could be gathered in a reasonable length of time."

Thanks to outofthebiz for the lead, who notes correctly that this is very close to high speed web distribution today. What goes around ...