The Challenge

Introduced by Emmis, NextRadio is a smartphone app that connects over-the-air FM broadcasts with the internet to give users an enhanced radio listening experience including album art and program information as well as station feedback and other interactive features with the touch of a button. Introduced in August 2013 by an unprecedented deal between the radio industry and Sprint, it is now compatible on most Android phones in market.


Traditionally, radio broadcasters and advertisers have known relatively little about their audiences. The companies that provided this information did so with limited data and a small sample size. NextRadio has an installed base of several million devices which solved part of the equation, yet the challenge was making this data into actionable intelligence. Creating a data platform in the cloud to deliver this type of meaningful data was the goal.

Our Insight

The application creates a large amount of data during use, including:
  • Device information:
    • Device type
    • Carrier
    • Unique ID
  • Listening information by:
    • Genre
    • Station
    • Times of the day/week
  • Advertising information:
    • Which advertisements the listener heard
    • Any interactions with enhanced advertisements

The data being collected is extremely valuable, however NextRadio needed a platform to correlate the data into meaningful intelligence for broadcasters and advertisers.


As part of this Phase I solution, devices send data directly to NextRadio servers that live in AWS. A process parses this data and stores it in an Amazon RedShift database. An algorithm determines device, listening, advertising, and location data to be paired with demographic data for greater insights into listening populations.

Using Cloud-based technology for the platform & the dashboard results in a 99+% uptime, lower initial investment, and the ability for NextRadio to scale up and down as needed.


Additionally, some advertisers wanted to measure the success of campaigns by tracking whether a listener visited an advertised location. A process in the data transformation process was also created.

All of the information is gathered and presented to advertisers through the Dial ReportTM, a dashboard built in Tableau and hosted by Tableau Online. This interactive dashboard provides advertisers the ability to view listenership information and campaign data. Advanced mapping capabilities in the dashboard allow for viewing location information on listeners, advertisers, and broadcasters.


The solution provides Listener Intelligence data to brands, agencies and broadcasters and offers something new to the industry – Campaign Analytics.

This includes:

  • Campaign performance dashboard
  • Campaign insights by demographic category
  • Conversion and attribution
  • Companion ad lift

Brands, agencies and broadcasters gain significant value from this intelligence. It starts to show the power and effectiveness of radio by delivering it in a near real-time digital format.