As radios became more prevalent in homes during the 1930's, businesses realized the potential to gain new customers using this medium for advertising. The networks realized that the man of the house would be working, the children at school and the housewife was in the home, listening to the radio, as she did her housework. The advertisers realized that the housewife could be a huge marketing force, therefore, these daytime radio shows and advertisements were produced with her in mind.
|National Photo Company Collection,|
Prints and Photographs Division.
The soap opera was most often defined by the sponsors, which mostly consisted of household products. These were geared towards the housewife. Soap operas are very often, associated with women and have a reputation of gaudiness. However, the listener needed a good deal of knowledge to follow some of these complex storylines.
Radio soap operas became a part of American culture, but in 1960, many of the radio soap operas were cancelled, as television became the new medium for the American public. Soap operas made the transition to daytime television and were successful for many more years.