Advertisers face many significant changes with how the media operates in today’s global market. Katz (2007) postulates that there are three major critical changes in how media executives plan, buy, and sell advertising. These can be referred to as the three C’s: consolidation, consumer control (technology enabled) and communication accountability (Katz, 2007). For instance, anyone that stays on top of business news can acknowledge that the media seems to find countless ways to consolidate their time and energy. Media domination is driven by demands for high profits resulting in more companies purchasing their competitors to create something even bigger and hopefully better. In addition, media planning has conformed into communications planning as it expands mediums to include everything from the internet, to sports arenas, to elevators, to TV screens in public places like at Madison Square Garden, as well as event sponsorship and promotions. In other words, today’s media buyers and sellers have a lot to consider when making the most effective advertising decisions that will reach their target audience and yield a return on the company’s investment.
Most studies agree that any communication to reach consumers is immediate exposure that offers some kind of value. Geskey (2013) suggests it is the job of the media team to think of all the many ways marketing can reach the right prospect that will create a memorable interaction to yield measurable returns. In addition, they also realize that the sole purpose of media sellers is to sell them time or space at the highest possible price. So marketers must learn about their industry and the company’s advertising needs to develop proposals that fall within their budgets and are supported by volumes of statistics and analyses to help them decide on the most effective and objective path that will satisfy their advertising strategies (Geskey, 2013). Furthermore, in today’s competitive market, the stakes are much higher because of the financial significance in allocating funds wisely. Big companies like General Motors or Kellogg’s, for example, stand to lose millions of dollars in lost revenue if ads are not developed and placed effectively to convey their messages to reach the relevant audience.
An advertiser’s objective is to reach their audience to invoke emotions that cause them to take action. To help marketers achieve their goals, deliver their message effectively, and yield the highest returns, they develop advertising campaigns that incorporate three significant rules to their strategies: (1) extensive media planning, (2) the use of effective media frequency and reach concepts, and (3) efficient selection approaches to help them determine the cost effective medium to deliver their advertising campaigns. Baack and Clow (2012) explain that media planning serves to help marketers formulate a program to effectively integrate their message across a wide range of media channels. This first step is the process of data collection and assimilation of that information that helps them identify and locate a target audience and develop a plan to deliver their message as well as help them decide when, where, and how often they place their ads. After creating and delivering a powerful message, the next step is to decide on the frequency their message is transmitted to assist with product recognition and building a brand name. Each marketer must decide where to place the ad in addition to determining the amount of times it takes before they achieve the desired outcome which causes consumers to act. The third step helps marketers determine the most effective form of medium (electronic or print) to transmit their messages to make sure they reach their relevant audience (Baack & Clow, 2012). For example, marketers will incorporate media plans to gather data and assess the information to determine their audience. Then, they decide on the most effective means to communicate their message to their target audience. Advertisers for a hair product, for instance, must consider whether they are more likely to reach a customer waiting in the reception area at a beauty salon or reach them more effectively by a TV commercial, magazine, newspaper ad, or use of these outlets. By developing a strategic plan marketers can locate their audience and create campaigns based on the best media available to them that fall within their budgets to reach intended consumers. Marketers who develop and incorporate strategies to include media planning, media reach, and media selection in the development of their campaigns, will increase their chances of achieving higher returns on their advertising investments.
Baack, D., & Clow, K. (2012). Integrated advertising, promotion, and marketing communications (Fifth ed.). Upper Saddle River, NY: Pearson Education, Inc.
Geskey, R. (2013). Media planning and buying in the 21st century (Second ed.). Washington, DC: CreateSpace Independent Publishing.
Katz, H. (2007). The media handbook: A complete guide to advertising, media selection, planning, research, and