By Holland Cooke
BLOCK ISLAND, RI – While conservative radio talkers cheered on Ted Cruz’ Senate marathon, and other repeal-ObamaCare efforts, there’s a different conversation underway in the station manager’s office. Some 500 broadcasters recently sold out a Radio Advertising Bureau webinar on harvesting Affordable Care Act-related advertising.
I just watched the (archived) webinar, and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND it. Here’s the link, and it’ll be $49 well-invested: http://www.rab.com/webcasts/wod.cfm
Veteran broadcaster Dave Burke spent the last year immersed in studying ObamaCare’s impact on various stakeholders, and draws a road map to what shapes up as a major, long-term advertising revenue stream.
AP estimates that $684 million will be spent on the initial activation period; and Burke reckons that 2014-2015 and beyond will be even bigger than 2013-2014: “I believe that this category, all-in, could be the biggest category on your stations.”
We’re already hearing (and seeing on TV) ads for “The ObamaCare Survival Guide,” and help-us-repeal-it fund raising spots hosted by Senator Ted Cruz. But Burke says that’s nothin’ compared to what’s down the road.
Expect Help Wanted ads for call centers and other process-related job recruitment.
Beginning October 1, state Insurance Marketplaces (sometimes referred to as “Exchanges”) open, with coverage commencing January 1. Marketplaces close on March 31. Depending on the state, the Marketplace will be run by the state itself, or by the federal government, or a partnership between them. “Think ‘Travelocity’ or ‘Orbitz’ for insurance,” Burke says.
Forty-five million uninsured Americans = 45 million new prospects for insurance companies, which are taking a wait-and-see posture for now, since this is largely uncharted territory (most insurance advertising is for Casualty coverage, i.e., auto). Eventually, insurance companies will need branding in places they’re not well known.
And because people can change their coverage every year during Open Enrollment, “There are going to be years of sign-up.” This is not a “one-and-done” opportunity.
Follow @HollandCooke on Twitter, and at www.HollandCooke.com; and meet Holland at Talkers Los Angeles on Thursday, October 10.