Let’s say you just invented something that puts sliced bread to shame. Something that will improve lives by the million.
You have a website and a logo. You even have a few ideas for commercials.
There’s just one problem: Nobody knows you exist… and your industry is stacked with competitors.
In short, you need a media buying strategy — pronto.
Let’s dig into the whats, whys and benefits, shall we?
Spending Your Media Budget Smartly.
A couple hundred years ago, there was really just one medium: The newspaper. So, anyone could buy space in the local rag for a few pennies.
Not much strategy involved there, right?
But then came magazines. Then billboards. And radio followed by TV and trade magazines. Then the internet and wearable internet. Each of those mediums has hundreds — or hundreds of millions — of advertising placement options.
# TV stations:
# Radio stations:
# of US websites:
# of magazines:
And since the general rule of thumb is that you should spend around 7% of your budget on marketing, you need to be mindful of how — and where — you deploy your resources.
That’s a major reason to have a media buying strategy. But not the only one.
Media Buying Strategy Benefit #1: Achieving Communication Goals
What’s one thing that every company has, but is different for every company?
Your company might be a shiny new startup that’s scrounging pennies to get your brand out to the masses (or niche).
Your business could be a century old, searching for more leads (not sales) with millions of dollars to spend.
Yes, everyone has a different goal by which they measure success — but success rarely happens without a solid strategy in place.
Media strategy agencies like Stealth Creative move businesses forward by zooming in on your priorities first, then zoom out to generate a plan for desired results. This is an important distinction.
Because some media is more conducive to certain goals than others.
Digital is Best Suited For:
Specific targeting Generating real-time data Fine-tuning performance
TV Works For:
Creating effective consumer connections Broad reach Telling stories
Radio is Perfect For:
Efficiency Large audiences Driving online brand searches
Out of Home Enhances:
Broad-reach appeal (billboards on highways)
Niche messaging (individual screens at gyms)
Use Social Media For:
Engaging with customers
Print is Ideal For:
Making lasting impressions through physical interaction (holding, turning pages) A more “hands-on” interaction
Your media team will help figure out the right mix based on your goals.
Benefit 2: Data-Driven Delivery
Media planners and strategists are nerds — and they aren’t ashamed to embrace it. Excel is to them what water is to fish. They view data in all its forms as the missing element that makes any strategy really sing.
In fact, media teams make every decision by running the numbers ragged. And a
mathematically-based plan of attack is one of the main reasons why you need a media strategy:
Since media planners put data and analytics under a microscope, they shine at:
Segmenting your audience
Optimizing campaign or spend for constantly improving results
Determining return on ad spend (ROAS) effectiveness
Plotting share of voice, brand recall and other key metrics
Stealth Creative’s media team understands the strengths and weaknesses of each medium and knows which best aligns with the results clients want within their budget.
And our media buyers also understand the nuances between different platforms. For example, different OTT vendors can serve “similar” ad experiences, but they vary on who can be targeted, when and how impressions are delivered and other variables that must be weighed.
Everything is factored to create a plan that has the highest likelihood to achieve — or exceed — the stated goals.
Benefit #3: Right Place, Right Time, Right Message
Pretend for a moment that you sell mattresses and your media team has a strategy to run two different spots: One late at night and one early in the morning.
Why would they do that?
Because the messaging can be different. If a commercial is running at 1 am and an insomniac sees your ad (commercial or banner), the takeaway should be about how your mattress is an instant lights out miracle.
But if someone doesn’t get a deep sleep, the messaging they see or hear on their way to work could be about how they’d feel wide awake if they gave your product a try.
Working with a media planning team not only helps ensure your ideal audience receives your message, they help guide the strategy to help make sure the message makes sense in the context it appears. This 360° thinking is more likely to happen with a full-service marketing agency like Stealth Creative.
Benefit 4: More Bang For Your Bucks
In business, just about everything is negotiable — and that includes media pricing.
As we noted in our marketing myths blog, media buyers can leverage their expertise and connections to negotiate buys at lower rates. Why? Because certain mediums can be like the Costco of marketing; when you buy in bulk, you get better rates. And when you plan media for multiple companies, you are more likely buying multiple time slots, issues, etc.
But there are other ways media buyers can sweeten the deal for you:
Digital elements like banner ads or site takeovers
These are just some examples of what can be negotiated or included in a well-rounded media buy. And your strategist won’t be afraid to play a little hardball to get the best possible deal to achieve your goals.
Benefit 5: Monitoring Your Marketing
Just like any stock market investor will check their 401(K) balance from time to time, it’s natural for companies to want to know how their media investments are doing. Good media planners hold scheduled meetings with clients to discuss performance, tweaks, reconciliations and recommendations pertaining to the strategy.
During these calls, certain data will also likely be discussed:
- Bonus deliveries
- Impact on leads/sales
In certain circumstances — especially digital — you might be able to log in to your own dashboard to see the number of views, clicks and other metrics for a more-or-less real time idea of your campaign’s performance.
Here’s the bottom line: You should expect and trust your media team to make the entirety of your relationship turnkey so you can focus on other things. And they should always be available to communicate the status of your strategy.
Benefit 6: Fresh Ideas, New Opportunities
Media evolves. New competitors and technology come to market. Most importantly, though, opportunities arise.
Just because an annual plan is made at the onset, that doesn’t mean your media team will be sitting on their hands.
Not at all.
Instead, they will (or should) be paying close attention to the national and local landscape in search of the latest and greatest developments, eager to bring these to your attention. Similarly, they should be eyeing consumer sentiment shifts and other measures to proactively modify your strategy and set you up for however you define success.
For example, although the NFL broadcast schedule was set during the summer, ABC and Disney made a deal in mid-September to air an additional eight Monday Night Football games on ABC. Your media team is paid to be on top of these breaking opportunities.
Media Buying Strategies Have Even More Benefits
Indeed, there are literal books on this topic. And while we could make this page infinitely long, you’ve got things to do… like maybe finetuning the strategy for your media buy.
Why not get in touch with the Stealth Creative media specialists? You’ll save time, money and give your business the best shot at achieving its marketing goals.