Media sure has changed since I was child. Heck, it’s changed since last year. Inbound marketing, social media, mobile messaging has changed everything. But traditional media is still a very viable and beneficial way to reach your target audience. So, let’s delve into a bit more and how you can use it effectively to increase your awareness and sales.

What is Media Planning and Media Buying?

A media planner is the one who selects where to place the advertisements by analyzing the different media channels. A media buyer is the one who implements the plan and does the actual negotiation with the media channels. Sometimes the same person serves both functions.

Like anything else in advertising, there are a lot of details in media planning and buying but the definition above pretty much sums it up. This is where art and science collide. And with our MatchPoint market segmentation, we have the ability to even pinpoint with greater accuracy the key target market, which allows you to

Why hire a media planning and buying agency and not do it yourself?

The whole game of knowing where to place the ads, getting the best rate, getting the best times, and stuff like those are more complicated than you think. Remember that each medium can position themselves as the medium that is perfect for you and if you don’t know what information to look for or what questions to ask, you will most likely be blindsided.

Media planners and buyers are also able to negotiate for lower rates by packaging it with other clients and other placements. That is the biggest advantage you get if you go for an agency that buys media. We’re able to get lower rates, thus increasing the value of your media schedule.

Of course, I’m not saying you or someone in your organization cannot do it yourself, it’s just that you will need a lot of time to master the ins and outs of it. It’s easy to make the wrong decisions in the beginning, that we guarantee you. That means you might end up spending more than what you think you will save by not paying someone to do the job.

Media Planning is a fine art that has been lost amongst the saturated advertising agency, especially in the Dallas/Fort Worth market. An agency claiming to give you incredibly low rates for hundreds of spots is not going to be an agency you want to advertise with. Media planning must be well thought out with the goal not to reach a ton of eyes, but to reach the right eyes. That’s why we suggest develop a precision market research plan first using our MatchPoint Analytics.

Why not trust the professionals at media buying and planning – we’ve been at it for years!

Reach vs Frequency

When buying, you will hear the term reach and frequency a lot. But does it really matter? You bet it does! And if I had to say which one is more important, the easy answer is frequency.

Reach is the number of people an advertising message reaches. The more people who hear or see the message, the greater the reach and the higher the advertising rate will be. The reach rating formula is:

Number of people reached ÷ by population = reach rating

Reach should be very focused in terms of geography and demographics. You have to know if the people that are being reached are located in the places where your product is available and more importantly, you are reaching the people that your material is intended to talk with.

Frequency is the number of times the targeted audience sees or hears your message. A TV ad or print material is normally placed more than once and a billboard or a poster is placed for a specific period time which means some people will see/hear the message only one time while others will see/hear it a number of times.

Gross Rating Points (GRP) is the product of reach and frequency. Obviously, the higher your GRP, the stronger your media strategy.

Where to find market information of each medium:

Television. ACNielsen is the most reliable source of broadcast television audience measurement. They get a sample that will keep a viewing diary. They have been proven to be reliable and they release their findings publicly but if you want specifics findings, you will have to pay them for it.

Radio. Arbitron is the equivalent of AC Nielsen for radio. New technology (Portable People Meters) in reporting has allowed radio information to become more accurate than ever.

Newspaper. You can just check the circulation of the newspaper but keep in mind that a single issue might be read by different people or one person may read only one section.

Magazine – Same as Newspaper. Check to see the subscription and newsstand amount. Some publications have regional or local editions of national, well-known magazines.

Outdoor. This is the most tricky part. Companies just give the estimate of the traffic in the place where the billboard or poster is located but they cannot give you the exact number of the people who actually look at your billboard.

You can read about the pros and cons of the various mediums here. But if you want to know more about how you can pinpoint your message to the right audience at the right price, then let’s talk today. Our market segmentation provides in-depth media consumption reports. We will be able to tell you how, when and where to connect with the right audience. And, expertise in media planning and buying combined with our creativity in developing a message that gets people to act, will have your marketing dollars moving in the right direction, and most importantly, increase your sales.