Sponsorship Blog

Michigan Radio Delivers to YOUR Target Audience

By Christa Quinn, Account Executive

“We’ve never been a media brand that’s been about one side, being left or being right. Our side is the truth. We’ve always felt that by getting to the truth and the facts behind something, that allows people to be better informed, be better citizens and make better decisions on their own.” These aren’t my words, they are the words of Steve Smith, Chief Marketing Officer of NPR, stated in a recent article about NPR’s continued rise in audience numbers.

Never before has truth been more important, but telling the truth has been the mission of NPR and Michigan Radio all along. The public radio audience continues to hear more balanced information. From broadcast to digital, through the pandemic and now our global crisis of racial inequality, reaching Michigan Radio’s audience is of the utmost importance. The most frequent question a corporate sponsor asks of me when we are discussing potential campaigns: who will I reach? The basic demographic information is displayed in the following image:

NPR listeners aren’t only tuning in; they’re making NPR part of their lives – 80% agree that NPR is personally important to them. The unwavering commitment to high-quality journalism and storytelling is what sets NPR apart, attracting a loyal, curious and influential audience. And listener engagement extends to sponsors – 66% of NPR listeners prefer to buy products from companies that support NPR Stations.

If you want to reach this super keyed-in audience across multiple platforms contact us for additional details.

Healthcare and the NPR Audience: The Data Narrative for Industry Leaders

By Chelsea Roberts, Account Executive

Facts and Feelings, Demographics and Trust. This post shares data for healthcare leaders in communications, marketing, and business development.

Key Takeaways:

  1. NPR is the most trusted brand partner in America among agency and marketing executives (The Myers Report, 2019). As your healthcare organization works to maintain public trust, transparency, accessibility, and compassionate care in the Covid-19 era, Michigan Radio(NPR) is optimally positioned to do this work with you through corporate sponsorship campaigns.

  2. The NPR listener is concerned about their health and well-being, both inside and out. 81% of our listeners say they are “always looking for ways to live a healthier life.”

  3. NPR listeners are early adopters of technology. Combine this with their commitment to health and the likelihood (81%) that they will have insurance, the NPR listener is a strong demographic for organizations looking to market telehealth services.

  4. The NPR listener is 53% more likely than the average American to carry Point-of-Service health insurance, which allows for greater flexibility in visiting specialists. NPR listeners are 67% more likely than the average American to have a traditional fee-for-service health plan. They are half as likely to have Medicaid.

  5. NPR listeners are 98% more likely than the average American to be purchasers of health insurance policies at their place of work.

The healthcare industry is undergoing a massive disruption. Whether your organization provides insurance, senior care, or mental health counseling, it’s likely that your work has been impacted by the upheaval of the Covid-19 pandemic.
In addition to delivering new services, like telehealth, your office may be working overtime to disseminate public information about your updated policies, the virus, how patients can continue to access your care, and more. During this time of immense change for healthcare professionals, putting your information in front of the right audience makes all the difference.
Maybe you’ve already thought about reaching the NPR audience in order to raise the profile of your organization. Or, maybe you’ve heard your competitor on our airwaves and wondered how they got there. In the midst of these dynamic times NPR sponsorship remains a trusted tool for elevating your brand while reaching your target audience. This article shares the data healthcare leaders need to know about the NPR audience.
NPR listeners are concerned about their health and well-being, both inside and out. 81% of our listeners say they are “always looking for ways to live a healthier life.”
They are more likely than the average American to visit a doctor on a more frequent basis. And if you’re a specialist, NPR listeners might already be some of your favorite patients. That’s because the NPR listener is 53% more likely than the average American to carry Point-of-Service health insurance, which allows them greater flexibility in visiting specialists. And they’re 60% more likely to have Gap or supplemental insurance.
If your practice focuses on holistic wellness, prioritizing exercise and meditation as components of a healthy lifestyle, our listeners share your values. 74% participate in some kind of regular exercise. The most popular fitness activities with our listeners are walking (31%), hiking (25%), swimming (21%), jogging/running (17%), road bicycling (17%) and yoga (15%).
And of course, telehealth. Can our listeners keep up with your new service, and will they access it? Yes. The NPR audience is tech-savvy and more likely than the general population to adopt the latest technologies. They use the internet to access information, and to shop. The NPR listener is 60% more likely than the average American to have purchased health/medical supplies and prescription drugs online.
Although data on how NPR listeners use telehealth is not available, signs point in the right direction. Our listeners are early adopters of technology, they are committed to their health, and they are more likely to carry insurance. When you combine these factors, the NPR audience is a strong target demographic for organizations looking to market new telehealth services.
Age, Income, and Education:
NPR is particularly popular among Baby Boomers (b. 1946-1964). The median age of the NPR listener is 53.
NPR’s audience is extraordinarily well-educated. Seven in ten listeners have at least a bachelor’s degree, compared to only 31% of the U.S. population. Also, they are more than 3 times as likely as the average American to have completed graduate school.
The median household income of an NPR News listener is about $103,000, compared to the national average of about $68,800.
Measuring Trust:
Next to data, the most important component of an NPR sponsorship is Trust.
Trust is built through consistency. For example: the sound of your favorite NPR host taking you through your morning, your afternoon, your evening, and your weekend. Trust is built through time and commitment. Trust is when someone hums the theme music to Morning Edition, or taps “M” in their search bar and it autocompletes to MichiganRadio.org.
Henry Ford Allegiance Health and Allergy and Immunology Associates of Michigan are two organizations who have proudly sponsored Michigan Radio(NPR) to reach our loyal, unduplicated audience. Their sponsorship cultivates trust and engagement with our listeners.
Harvey Leo, MD at Allergy and Immunology Associates, states, “There is no doubt that our relationship with Michigan Radio has nurtured the growth of this practice.”
In fact, NPR is the most trusted brand partner in America among agency and marketing executives (The Myers Report, 2019). When you sponsor our factual news and information, listeners report perceiving your brand as stable, trustworthy, and credible.
And as your organization pivots during the Covid-19 era, working to launch new programs while maintaining trust, accessibility, and compassionate care, Michigan Radio(NPR) is optimally positioned to share your message with our loyal, informed, health-conscious audience.
Now that you’ve seen the data, ask yourself: Should I be reaching the NPR audience?
Reach out to our corporate support professionals for a customized marketing consultation, or message me on LinkedIn. Michigan Radio’s corporate support team is pleased to partner with industry leaders in Michigan, and we thank our current sponsors for their on-going support.
Sources: https://www.mediavillage.com/article/hallmark-pbs-lead-industry-in-brand-safety-npr-hulu-lead-in-trust/ | SOURCE: MRI-Simmons Doublebase 2019 Base: Total U.S. Adults | SOURCE: comScore Plan Metrix, 3-month averages, Nov 2018 – Jan 2019 Base: Active Online Population (Adults 18+)

***RESTRICTED RIGHTS: NPR member stations, producers of NPR distributed programs, and customers of the Public Radio Satellite System have authorization to use this information in their underwriting materials and proposals, and for internal analysis. Any other usage requires permission from NPR Audience Insights.***

What Does a Cute Puppy Have to do with Underwriting?

By Christa Quinn, Account Executive

Nothing. Just a cute face to get your attention. We all need to see a cute puppy face every now and then, right?

I want to discuss the second most frequently asked question I get: how much does it cost? The answer, is kinda complicated. It really depends on what a business or organization wants. So, let’s group into two categories: events and long-term awareness.

Event campaigns on Michigan Radio usually run between one and four weeks. The messages are more frequent so that the repetition of the message has time to resonate with the listeners. Michigan Radio has a monthly cume (the total number of different persons who tune into a radio station during the course of a daypart for at least five minutes) audience of just over one million people, so trying to get to as many ears as possible in a short amount of time is key. Let’s say a local symphony orchestra would like to promote a concert that will feature a special guest artist. That organization would probably want to run 20 messages over the course of 10 days for around $2,000.

Ding! Ding! Ding! The magic formula to Michigan Radio pricing is $100/spot! Nope. That’s a general price for messages that are Run-of-Schedule or ROS. ROS messages are randomly placed during Michigan Radio’s broadcast schedule Monday through Sunday between 5am and 11pm. It’s in Michigan Radio’s best interest to give these messages the best possible placement so that the message can be heard by as many ears possible. It’s not uncommon for the operations manager to finagle the spot placement so that spots get the best placement. Our ops manager is pretty awesome like that.

The other side of the coin is an awareness campaign. Awareness campaigns are longer term campaigns that last from six months to one year, and are often renewed. Let’s say a major corporation would like to support the fact-based independent journalism that Michigan Radio produces each and every day. This corporation is passionate about its customers knowing that it is invested into the intellectual health of the community. It wants to reach business owners, leaders and decision makers, so perhaps the focus of when people are driving to and from work (it WILL happen again) is an important time to air the messages. Let’s also say that this corporation wants to reach Saturday errand runners too. Together, the team at the corporation and I sit down and build an effective schedule that meets the needs of the purpose of the campaign and we build pricing from th


The dayparts on Michigan Radio are divided up in to MANY categories. For example, morning drive is from 5am-10am. That’s when Morning Edition and the BBC Newshour air, so it’s prime time. Mid-days are 10a-3p, and afternoon drive is 3p-7p. There are many more options, some of which combine into larger segments. All of the dayparts have different pricing, and it’s up to the corporations and me to come up with a schedule that fits the goals and budget of the corporation.

Contact us to learn more about getting your message in front of our audience.

Your Message Won’t Be Lost in a Sea of Political Ads on Michigan Radio

2020 is a federal and state election year.

As a listener, we’re sure you know that Michigan Radio is a reliable, unbiased news source for political and election coverage, so it may not surprise you that we see a significant increase in listener engagement and visits to our website in election years.

This is also a time when the flood of political ad spending can be heard on and seen in all commercial media. But Michigan Radio in different.

Michigan Radio does NOT air political ads

This means that YOUR message will not drown in the clutter of obtrusive and aggressive political messaging that you will hear and see elsewhere. Without the competition of such intrusive advertising your message will stand out and be heard by our appreciative audience.

When weighing your options for your marketing plans, mark that election year audience growth means your impressions and reach also increases, which means more bang for your buck!

Contact us to find out more about maximizing your exposure with our listeners and rise above the others in this election year!

Featured Sponsor: Tech Elevator

By Jeff Jeung, Campus Director at Tech Elevator Detroit

Tech Elevator is an intensive educational provider helping individuals and companies acquire in-demand technology skills for the modern workforce.

Through our 14-week, full-time and in-person coding bootcamps, we teach students with a variety of backgrounds to become software developers while helping them build necessary career readiness skills and career connections through our Pathway Program™ to land a meaningful job. Our Detroit campus is housed at TechTown and works with companies like GE Aviation, Accenture, Duo and Cengage to help connect them to qualified students to join their technical teams. 

Founded in 2015, we’re proud of our outcomes which have earned us a leading national bootcamp position based on our 91% job placement rate and nearly $60,000 average salary of our grads through CIRR, the Council on Integrity Results in Reporting (cirr.org).

We’re proud to partner with Michigan Radio to share information about our programs knowing that we’re reaching an audience that is committed to life-long-learning.

Learn more about Tech Elevator

Welcome Holli Eaton!

Please join us in welcoming Holli Eaton as our new Director of Corporate Support!

Holli Eaton

Holli has spent her entire career working with Fortune 500 brands in new business development and sales management. Her experience spans across a wide variety of industries having worked for Valassis, Coupons.com, University of Michigan Athletics, Domino’s and most recently Thomas Duke Commercial Real Estate.  She is most proud of her accomplishments as a Major Gift Officer during her time at University of Michigan Athletics where she had the privilege of working with many incredibly generous donors who helped renovate the South State Athletic Campus.

Holli’s success in corporate media sales includes winning major accounts such as Wal-Mart, Little Caesar’s, and ConAgra. Holli is an active and long-time citizen in the Ann Arbor community serving as a planning committee member of the University of Michigan Softball Academy, Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. She is an avid fan and season ticket holder in both the arts and sports circuits.

One of the first things we learned about Holli is that she is a dedicated Michigan Radio fan and donor; listening at home, in her car, and at work.  A little fun fact, Holli is a lifetime swimmer and a big fan of Katharine Hepburn (everything) movies and books.

Please feel free to reach out to Holli directly to welcome her to Michigan Radio!

Holli Eaton



Featured Sponsor: National Heritage Academies

Leah Nixon

By Leah Nixon, Director of Communications, National Heritage Academies

National Heritage Academies (NHA) was founded in 1995 when J.C. Huizenga opened Excel Charter Academy, the first of many NHA schools to come. He believed that every child should have the opportunity to receive a great education and schools should be held accountable to produce results. His belief continues to drive the NHA mission forward today.

National Heritage Academies now partners with 88 K-8 schools in nine states serving more than 60,000 students. Our schools are designed to eliminate the achievement gap and provide school choice to families so their children are prepared for success in high school, college, and beyond.

We believe children can reach their full potential with a great college-prep education and a strong moral focus program. Our goal is to see every child build the knowledge, skills, and character they need to excel in school and in life. We make expectations clear, we teach to the needs of each child, and we work hard to make sure our students succeed.

National Heritage Academies has been a proud underwriting sponsor of Michigan Radio since 2004!

Learn more about National Heritage Academies.



Featured Sponsor: Varnum Law

Matt Bower

by Matt Bower, Varnum Law

MiSpringboard, the Varnum program that provides free legal services to Michigan startup and second-stage businesses, reached a milestone recently when it surpassed the 500th client mark. The firm also recently committed a third tranche of $1 million to the program.

In the seven years since MiSpringboard was launched, Michigan entrepreneurs involved in industries ranging from biomedicine to beekeeping have used the program to get their businesses off to a solid start and ready for growth.

When we started MiSpringboard in 2011, in the midst of the recession, the idea was to support and grow Michigan’s economy in the way we are best equipped to do: by providing free legal services to new businesses, helping them start with a solid foundation and prepare them for growth.

Today, with over 500 clients served through the program, we are still amazed at the talent and technology being developed all across our state, and very proud to have a role in one of Michigan’s great success stories – the development of the entrepreneurial community.

Michigan Radio has been a great way for us to reach others who are committed to our state’s continued growth as a leader in innovation.

More at www.mispringboard.com

Your Sponsorship Reaches Michigan Radio Members Across the State

Michigan Radio has members across the state, from Houghton to Grand Rapids, from Detroit to Ann Arbor.

Click to Enlarge

Why does it matter that our sponsor’s messages reach members in addition to listeners?  Michigan Radio members contribute financially to the station, just like our sponsors do!  This means that they already have something in common with our sponsors – support for Michigan Radio!

Just as our members appreciate their pledge drive gifts, our sponsors value the messages we read on air to promote their organizations and events. While members enjoy bringing home their groceries in a Michigan Radio tote bag, sponsors enjoy increased revenue or awareness for their brand.

Not a sponsor yet? Contact us to get started today!

Believed Podcast wins Peabody Award

Michigan Radio’s Believed podcast was named a winner of a prestigious Peabody Award in the Radio & Podcast category. This is Michigan Radio’s first Peabody Award.

Hosted by Michigan Radio reporters Kate Wells and Lindsey Smith, Believed is a nine-part series that investigates how former sports doctor Larry Nassar was able to abuse hundreds of women and girls for more than 20 years.

“Michigan Radio is beyond proud to be able to bring the stories of these survivors to podcast listeners across the world,” said Zoe Clark, Michigan Radio Program Director. “We are grateful to the women who were willing to share their stories and hope this reporting will spark conversations aimed at preventing future abuse.”

The Peabody Awards are recognized as one of the highest honors in the field of journalism with the most powerful, enlightening and invigorating stories in television, radio and digital media being celebrated each year.

“To be recognized with a Peabody award for our team’s work on the Believed podcast is most gratifying and humbling,” said Steve Schram, Executive Director and General Manager of Michigan Radio. “We also appreciate the efforts of NPR who helped raise the profile of our work with the distribution of Believed on NPR programs and podcast providers.”

Believed was a first-of-its-kind collaboration between a member station and NPR, which distributed it.

“This is such well-deserved recognition for the team at Michigan Radio. They tackled a challenging investigation with tremendous tenacity and sensitivity,” said Anya Grundmann, SVP of programming and audience development at NPR. “Believed is a perfect example of how podcasting has extended public radio’s mission to give voice to people and ideas that help us see our world more clearly.”

In addition to winning a Peabody, the podcast has also been recognized with a Dart Award for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma from the Columbia School of Journalism, a Scripps Howard Award for Radio/Podcast In-Depth Coverage, and an Award for Excellence in Coverage of Youth Sports from Penn State University’s John Curley Center for Sports Journalism.

Michigan Radio has won dozens of awards in 2019 for our 2018 coverage, including Station of the Year from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters and Outstanding News Operation from the Associated Press.  A full list of the awards Michigan Radio and Believed has won can be found here.

As a sponsor, you’ve helped us bring high quality, investigative journalism and local news coverage to our audience across Michigan. In return, with your sponsorship messages read as part of our content, your organization and brand are associated with Michigan Radio, and the credibility that Michigan Radio has earned over the last 70 years.

If you’re not a sponsor yet, contact us to find out how you can become a supporter of our programming and upcoming projects.