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KSJO Completes First Field Test of National Geo-Targeted Ads


GeoBroadcast Solutions
GeoBroadcast Solutions

KSJO-FM/San Jose, Ca has become the nation's first radio station to broadcast geo-targeted advertising, through the airing of several Jack in the Box breakfast promotions solely in the Livermore, CA and Pleasanton, CA areas along the I-680 corridor. The station began participating in an FCC experimental operation of GeoBroadcast Solutions' ZoneCasting FM booster system in October and will continue broadcasting localized weather, sponsored traffic, and news during short parts of the broadcast hour through February, 2022.

The spots airing in the zone area were coordinated by dentsu's Jennifer Hungerbuhler, EVP, Head of Local Video and Audio Investment. This is the first time Jack in the Box has advertised on KSJO but falls into the company's strategic initiative to reach multi-cultural audiences through hyperlocal advertising. The advertising geotargeted the towns of Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore.

"We see the airing of this first set of hyperlocal radio ads as just the beginning of how we hope to soon make targeted broadcast radio ad buys for our national advertisers," said Hungerbuhler. "Our clients have been anticipating the opportunity in the near future to use radio customers and potential customers in the areas around their retail locations."

"We are excited to activate this geotargeted radio test to ensure we are delivering highly-relevant offers to consumers based on their location. We are only scratching the surface with our first test, and we will continue to lean into the unpacked potential of geotargeted radio activations," added Jack in the Box CMO Ryan Ostrom

According to KSJO VP/COO Brad Behnke, the ads are part of the field testing of ZoneCasting that he hopes will soon be made available on a permanent basis to KSJO once the technology receives FCC approval.

In a recent letter to the FCC, Behnke said that as the first U.S. radio station to broadcast geotargeted content in daily operations, they were able to successfully adapt their workflows, staff training, and automation systems to accommodate geotargeting without a major effort.

"It is our expectation and early experience that the ability to provide geotargeted content makes our station more effective in reaching our rapidly-developing East Bay, South Asian listener base and local advertisers in the zoned area. In turn, this increases our ability to level the playing field to be a bit more competitive with other local media platforms," Behnke said in his letter.

Behnke also said that including zoned traffic, weather and news has benefited KSJO listeners with sole market and zone traffic reports, primarily twice an hour from 2-6pm during weekdays. The traffic reports began airing in July two-times an hour during the weekdays in the geo-targeted zones of San Jose, Oakland, and San Francisco, along Highways 101, 680 and 580.

In September, 2021 it was widely reported that field testing of GeoBroadcast Solutions' ZoneCasting technology conducted by Roberson and Associates at KSJO, and submitted to the FCC works with both analog and HD Radio systems and does not affect the performance of EAS system.

The KSJO signal reaches a broad section of the Bay Area, including San Francisco and San Jose.

The rule GeoBroadcast seeks to change relates to FM boosters and their ability to originate geo-targeted content; there would be no changes to the FCC's rules regarding interference or translators.

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