By Adrienne Tallacksen
Commercial media has advertising; public radio has underwriting. Those of us who listen to public radio are all too familiar with the phrase “Support for this program comes to from…” Recently I heard the following underwriting message:
Scotts Miracle-Gro, supporter of the 'Gro Good pledge,’ asking backyard gardeners to plant extra vegetables to help feed the hungry—at GroGood.com.
Many advertisements today are focusing on a product’s price or value. Fewer are focusing on a message of altruism. This underwriting spot reminded listeners that even if they’re not feeling the impacts of the down economy, their neighbors may be suffering. The spot was also relevant to the product, which is used in many gardens. The only problem is that I had a lot of trouble finding the web site—GroGood.com. As a listener who isn’t very familiar with Scotts Miracle-Gro, I had assumed the name of the web site was GrowGood.com with the conventional spelling of the word “grow.” (I’ve often heard the URLs of web sites spelled out in underwriting spots, but that wasn’t the case here.) Nevertheless, it was nice to hear a message about helping your community instead of another ad focused on low, low prices or the down economy.