Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Targeting Radio Adverts To An International Audience

If you are thinking about reaching overseas customers using radio adverts, there is a lot to consider to make sure what you put out is both relevant, and impactful. 

By taking the time to plan your campaign well, you have a great chance of not only reaching an international audience with great advertising, but also avoiding common mistakes that can be made when these kinds of outreach activities are not thought through well enough. 

Let’s take a closer look: 

Why Radio Advertising? 

There are a multitude of ways to reach an audience overseas including TV adverts, billboards and converting a website to a different language using professional translation services. So, why use radio advertising as well? 

You might be interested to know that radio advertising declined a little during the Covid-19 pandemic, but it’s actually predicted to bounce right back in the next few years, with global spending reaching a massive $30 billion dollars. The audience for radio adverts is high, with nearly 90% of Americans aged over 12 listening to radio at least once a week and listeners in the UK following a similar pattern. Worldwide, radio can actively trump TV viewership and could be the main form of entertainment in some areas, making it a highly impactful way to reach certain geographical locations in certain countries. 

How To Target Radio Adverts To An International Audience

Whether you use radio jingles, live reads, sponsorships, straight reads or other types of radio advertising to reach an international audience, the fact is that it could all be for nothing, if it is not properly tailored to those who will be hearing it. There are, in general, three main considerations to be made, which are: 

  • Exact location of play (accent/ localisation)
  • Dialogue translation
  • Performance

Exact Location Of Play

It is so important that a ‘one-size-fits-all’ advert is not made for an entire country, or even an entire state or area. Various dialects, accents and even languages spoken at home exist within various geographical locations, each with very specific words, pronunciation and even jokes and references. Recognising that and localising your content is the key to ensuring your radio advert is going to have a positive impact on your target international audience.

The only way to achieve a properly localised radio advert is to use a professional voice agency who has the ability to work with your script either by translating it with localisation in mind, or by ensuring the correct dialect and accent is used when the script is performed. 

Dialogue Translation

It is so tempting to translate a radio advert using low-cost means like an online translator or budget freelance services. There are two problems with doing this. One is that the translation could be inaccurate and cause you to put out an embarrassing, if not damaging radio advert as has happened with various international advertising campaigns in the past. The other problem is that the translation is, as we mentioned above, potentially a blanket translation for the country, which does not allow for the nuances of different areas and the language used in those places. 

Effectively translating the dialogue to work for the location where it will be played requires a little more investment in the process, using a professional translation company who can make sure the job is done right. 


A lot of energy and time can go into the words used in a radio advert, which can sometimes mean that an international advert lacks emotion, pace and punch. You can engage your target international audience so much more by ensuring that the script is pronounced clearly and crisply, and that the emotion and pace of the script is performed well. A professional voice agency can help you to achieve this, with both male and female voices able to choose from, so the exact tone and feel of the advert can be achieved. 

You’re Ready To Make A Real Impact Abroad

Whilst crafting an impactful and accurate international radio advert can take some time and detailed adjustments, the result is a precise and highly targeted campaign that achieves great results. Why not speak to a professional voice agency today for help creating an exceptional international radio advert for your business.