santaCRA RELEASE: The next phase in Commercial Radio Australia’s $10 million digital radio awareness campaign begins this week with a series of radio and online advertisements pitching a digital radio as the perfect gift for Christmas.

Going to air across more than 40 commercial radio stations in the five digital radio metropolitan markets of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, the campaign will support all retailers selling digital radios and complement the extensive catalogue, in store promotion and radio advertising by larger retail outlets in the lead up to Christmas.

“With now more than 42 different DAB+ radio models available on the market, in around 600 stores across Australia, the digital radio Christmas campaign is designed to highlight the benefits of digital radio and drive listeners in store for Christmas, said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia.

Commercial Radio Australia and digital radio retailers and manufacturers have been working together to ensure the Christmas retail cycle will boost the sales of digital radios across all markets.

Harvey Norman National Marketing Manager – Electrical, Haydon Myers said: “Digital Radio has certainly created a buzz with consumers regarding purchases of radio product. Consumers are very interested in the features and benefits of digital radio.”

Dave MacKenzie, Audio Buyer at Dick Smith said; “Consumer awareness of digital radio is high. Since the radios hit the stores in May, sales have exceeded our expectations and we’re already seeing another peak in unit sales in the lead up to Christmas.

“Most of the interest has been in digital radios at lower price points. With digital radios now a similar price to a standard FM radio, they make a great gift option this year. For example, Dick Smith is the only retailer stocking the kaiser baas digital radio, which is less than $90 and we expect this will be a popular choice this Christmas.”

Matt Wagner-Smith, Clive Peeters National AV/IT Product Manager said: “There has been a raft of new DAB+ radios released since the consumer launch in August, from high end multifunction products through to entry level radios. We’re positive that this Christmas will be a strong one for DAB+ as more and more people get radios into their homes and begin to tell their friends and family about the brilliant sound quality and extra channels they can now receive.”

Commercial Radio Australia announced it will release a digital radio industry report in early 2010, tracking who’s listening, how many digital radios have been sold and the overall awareness of digital radio.

Ms Warner said price and programming will drive the uptake of digital radio in Australia. The first digital radio under $100 is expected to encourage more listeners to try digital radio.

All the commercial radio stations in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Melbourne are simulcasting in analogue and digital. In addition, when you buy a new digital radio you get 13 new DAB+ stations - playing everything from dance music and unsigned artists - to chill out and choose your own music. Plus there are special event or pop up stations for sport, festivals and concerts – like the recently successful Pink radio. These run for a short period of time and then transform into another concept.

New DAB+ stations include; NovaNation, Koffee, Hot30 Jelli, Radar, Classic Plus, The EDGE , Gorilla Super Digi, MY Perth Digital, Hot Country Perth Digital, ABC Jazz, ABC Dig Music, ABC Country and Triple J Unearthed.

Retailers stocking digital radios include; Harvey Norman, Dick Smith, Clive Peeters, The Good Guys, Myer, David Jones, Big W, JB Hi Fi, Target, Retravision, Radio Rentals, Rick Hart and specialist audio retailers.

To listen to the new digital radio ads click here.