Radiocentre, the body which promotes the interests of the commercial radio industry as well as providing an advertising clearance service, is strengthening its data-driven approach with the appointment of its first head of insight.
Research consultant Tara Wilkinson will report to planning director Mark Barber, and has been briefed to boost the resources and strengths of the organisation’s insight team.
She started her career at Time magazine in 2000 and then held senior research roles at both Fox International and The Telegraph and before becoming associate director at research agency MindMover.
In 2019, Wilkinson switched to out-of-home media agency Kinetic WW as research director but most recently has been an insight consultant for media clients, mainly on advertising effectiveness projects.
Barber said: “We’ve created this role to reflect the growing importance of using research to inspire new ways of thinking about media and to complement learning from first party data. We are delighted Tara has joined us.
“She has rich experience in media research gained across a broad range of sectors which makes her perfectly placed to develop meaningful and insightful research projects. These will help marketers and agencies understand the enduring and adapting value of radio in the ever-evolving media planning landscape.”
Wilkinson added: “As a career media researcher, the chance to work on original and innovative projects which benefit an entire industry sector makes this an incredibly exciting opportunity. Radiocentre is home to specialists who are passionate about what they do, which creates an environment which breeds learning and ideas. I look forward to seeing what I can learn, but also what I can bring to the table.”
Her first project has been to commission Radiocentre’s latest Listening in Covid study, “Radio and The Road Ahead”, which will explore how listener confidence is being bolstered by the vaccination roll-out combined with, in many cases, better than expected personal finances.
The research will focus on what these factors mean in terms of spending intentions and leisure time plans as restrictions are relaxed further, in particular taking a closer look at the likely increase in car journeys across the summer and the opportunities these will create for advertisers. The report will be published later this month.
Radiocentre can trace its roots back to 1973 when it was founded by the first commercial radio companies as the Association of Independent Radio Companies (AIRC).
It now works on behalf of over 40 stakeholders, who operate more than 300 licensed radio stations across the UK and represent 90% of commercial radio in terms of listening and revenue.
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