The Radio Advertising Bureau is welcoming the changes made by Ofcom to the Broadcasting Code, which allows presenters to promote and endorse brands and products live on-air.
The new rules are effective immediately and have been labelled "Brand Integration" by the RAB.
For the first time ever, within editorial airtime, presenters, celebrities and brand ambassadors will be free to endorse and promote brands and products – provided it is transparent to listeners that a commercial arrangement is in place. Signposting of commercial references on radio will not disrupt normal editorial flow, unlike on television which will be required to broadcast an interruptive visual logo to signal the use of product placement.
The liberation of the code will allow radio to develop its commercial offering, by granting advertisers a greater level of integration into station content, through the development of new and creative mechanics.
For example, radio will now be able to feature brand spokespeople in bespoke or existing programming, from Sainsbury’s and Jamie Oliver to Compare the Market’s Alexander Orlov. The changes have been labelled Brand Integration, and encompass Sponsorship, Promotions and Advertiser Funded Programming activity across all platforms.
Stuart Garvie, Media Purchasing Manager UK and Ireland for Danone says: “The new code is a game-changing opportunity for commercial radio and advertisers. It allows us the flexibility to redefine our on-air creative solutions, in order to make great radio content which appeals to the millions of our customers delivered by radio brands.”
Simon Redican, Managing Director of the RAB added: “Radio has always had high levels of trust, and these changes allow advertisers to benefit from the unique relationship radio stations enjoy with millions of listeners every day. Furthermore we can deliver unique and powerful partnerships in ways that no other broadcast medium can.”