Creating and launching a successful media campaign is akin to raising kids: it’s an overwhelming process with potential tantrums and sleepless nights. And at the end of the day, many marketers (and parents) hope they did a good enough job and that their campaign will flourish in the world.
But hope is not a strategy. Particularly in a fragmented digital landscape with new media options continually becoming available. Hope can’t help you gain a competitive advantage and grow your business to become a regional or even national brand. But proper planning and careful execution of a strategic media campaign can.
And this is where a professional media buyer can help. Media buyers have the experience, knowledge and publisher connections that can propel your marketing efforts and increase your bottom line.
But how do you choose the right media buyer? Experienced media buyers all share some best practices in common:
- They Conduct Market Analysis
Before implementing any buys, a media buyer worth their salt will complete a background analysis of your business and historical marketing track record. He or she will dive deep to understand your overall business objectives and environment, your previous ad programs, and the current climate of your specific industry.
- They “Get” Finances
Your media buyer is going to be handling your budget, as in spending it, so you need to make sure they understand some basic financial concepts. Do they know the lifetime value of a customer? Can they tell you the breakeven points of various programs? Do they understand lengths of sales cycles, profit margins, and seasonality of purchases?
Without understanding these basic concepts, your media buyer can’t possibly create a plan that will allocate resources in a way that generates a positive ROI.
- They Know How to Mix
Many media buyers focus solely on getting clients good deals. But it doesn’t really matter how much you save on an ad if that ad doesn’t get in front of the right audience at the right time. A wrong media mix will waste your ad dollars. A right media mix will target your ideal prospects at a time when they are most receptive.
When interviewing media buyers, ask how they construct a media mix and what specific tools they use for analysis. And don’t be shy asking for specific examples of mixed programs they have run for past clients.
- They Customize
Great media buyers believe in delivering quantifiable results. This requires customization, because a one-size-fits-all approach simply won’t work.
But here’s the kicker…
In order to put together a customized program, testing will be required. There are just too many media options available nowadays, with more and more coming onto the scene on an almost-monthly basis. Your media buyer should be testing various media combinations to gain actionable insights.
- They Negotiate Placement as Well as Price
At some point in the interview process your prospective media buyer will most likely tell you they will negotiate the best prices for you. Well, duh! If they can’t do that they should consider getting out of the business.
Negotiation is about placement as much as price. How much sense does it make to get you a great rate on a :30 spot, when that spot runs at 2AM and your target audience is sleeping? Unless you’re selling a sleep aid, that slot doesn’t make much sense!
The best media buyers negotiate with the goal of delivering both best price and best value for the price so your target customers can engage with your creative messaging.
Hiring a media buyer can make a lot of sense provided you work with someone who swears by market analysis, understands basic financial concepts, knows how to mix media, create customized programming, and negotiates price and placement.
Media Space does all of this and more for our clients. We’ll help you maximize your budget, improve creative execution, and expand your market presence to produce better consumer response. Get in touch with us today and let us help you with your next print, digital, or integrated campaign.