The Media Buying and Planning Process – How It Works
A great ad doesn’t guarantee success in itself. Reaching the right audience through strategic placement is what differentiates a great ad from the rest. However, in many ways, we are living in a revolutionary time with amazing opportunities to be inventive, tactical and dynamic, but on the other hand, it is daunting, overwhelming and competitive.
What exactly is Media Planning?
Media Planning is a process that helps you create the ideal combination of media outlets to put across a message about your brand. It is all about selecting the right channel to reach the right audience. The media planning process usually involves researching, identifying, analyzing, comparing, planning, and working around a brand’s budget.
Media Planning Process –
Here is a step by step process through which you can nail the media planning game –
- Extensive Market Research : The initial stage in the market research process is to know your business in detail. This involves establishing key objectives, goals and identifying the target audience. Once all this is out in place, we move on external research. Here we gather insights on the market at large, along with industry trends and a greater understanding of the target audience, their preferences and their most engaged ad content.
- Determining Media Objects : Once the analysis of the market and the audience has been conducted we dive into the media space to determine the most effective channel for reaching your audience. We have traditional media like television, radio, print ads in magazines, billboards and newspapers. Then there are digital media like mobile, social media, video and SEM. The aim is to find the perfect mix for reaching your target audience across media channels.
- Budgeting : Along with determining how to make your message reach your audience, you need to keep in mind that you allocate funds cost-effectively. A proper media plan should clearly determine how to spend the budget. There needs to be a clear plan allocating adequate amounts of funds for each medium.
What does Media Buying mean?
Media Buying is the second stage after Media Planning, where the insights, information and decisions of media planning are put into action. Here, an individual or agency begins to negotiate and buy ad spaces across various media channels as per the media planning.
- Establishing Relationships : An important aspect of media buying is maintaining good relationships with media vendors. Although due to advancement in technology it is now possible to use automation tools for purchasing ad inventory. Therefore a media vendor relationship may not be as necessary but it is still an important skill to have.
- Negotiating : Now it’s time to negotiate the buying of ad space. There are multiple factors that contribute to the cost of particular ad space, most notably, traffic and exposure. The potential needs to justify the price tag. The aim to do the best in securing the ad space at a reasonable price under the budget.
- Monitoring performance : Once the ad is launched, the ad should be monitored closely. Analysing the performance deals with making a note of the following – How did your ad do? Did it achieve the goals that you set in place? If things are working as you planned, you can consider boosting your campaign with more ad placements, but if things are not working out, now is a good opportunity to assess the flaws and find new solutions.
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