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Pending Business: All Impressions Are Not Created Equal

| February 1, 2021

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp


PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Chances are at some point meeting CPM or CPP was a criteria to win business. Both metrics deal with impression levels. No, we will not waste valuable time debating each metric.

The digital, social media world is pushing the impressions metric to new heights. If you haven’t already, check out how Twitter works impressions into potential reach. Let’s look at how impressions as a sales tool can amplify a radio ad campaign.

For starters, learn from how calories work. Numbers are numbers. Therefore does 100 calories mean 100 calories no matter what the food source? Fact: Your body works differently with 100 calories of processed foods vs. 100 calories from a more natural food source. That large apple goes through a different path than the “low calorie” processed snack you may eat. One winds up around your waist a lot faster than the other. Conclusion: Not all calories are equal.

Take a simple sponsorship plan. How much impact is there in the sponsor ID, the produced (:30) commercial, the produced (:60) commercial, and the host live read? Each unit creates an impression, yet all impressions are not equal. If you’ve been selling for a while, you may be familiar with the technique of crediting a percentage to the length of an impression. The (:60) produced or host live read is at the 100% level on the top of the impressions ladder and the lonely sponsor ID on the bottom at 10% or 15% of a full impression, with the (:30) in the middle at 50%. Since radio advertising has been around since the 1920s (yes, 100 years) we’ve had a lot more time than the digital and social media world to value impressions. Now, take a minute to look at the broad-based goals of these same radio ads, no matter what the length:

  • Deliver a new market.
  • Reinforce the current customer base.
  • Motivate and build the confidence of employees.
  • Help build awareness to recruit potential employees.

Now, go back and connect an impression value to each of the four markets outlined. Next time you are on a local sales call remember those four markets and the value of delivering each. I’ve never heard a business owner downplay the value of customer retention, have you?

Not all calories are equal and neither are impressions.

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.  Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy.  Contact Steve Lapa via email at:

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Category: Sales