Advertising media planning

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It could be argued that the digital revolution and the Internet changed all that— words, pictures, moving pictures, and interactivity are all just different kinds of digital media that have converged on the three screens of video: the television set, the personal computer, and the nearly ubiquitous mobile cell phone. The nature of the content has changed also. In addition to professionally produced material, usergenerated content populates YouTube, social networks, blogs, Wikipedia, Twitter, and new media forms are emerging every day. The Internet gives users the ability to search for and retrieve in seconds information about virtually any subject on earth, creating the opportunity to deliver advertising to people with a demonstrated interest in the product or service.But the digital world is constantly changing.


I. Introduction 3
II. Media planning 4
1. Traditional mass media 5
1.1 Nontraditional media 7 1.2Online media 7
1.3 Specialized media 8
1.4 General procedures in media planning 9
III. Problems in media planning 13
2. Insufficient media data 13
2.1 Time pressures 14
2.2 Institutional influence on media decisions 15
2.3 Lack of objectivity 15
2.4 Measuring advertising effectiveness 16
IV. The relationship among media, advertising, and
consumers 17 3. How consumers choose media: entertainment
and information 17
3.1 Strong feelings 17
3.2 Loyalty 17
3.3 Media usage and subsequent behavior 18
3.4 Interactive television 19
3.5 Varied relationships between audiences and media 19
3.6 Video consumer mapping study 20
3.7 How audiences process information from media 21
3.8 The media’s importance in the buying process 22
V. Conclusion 23
VI. Bibliography 24

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Advertising and Media planning





Written by: Samuilova Anastasia

Fourth-year student



























Moscow 2013



  1. Introduction                      3
  2. Media planning                                                               4 

1. Traditional mass media                                                                         5

1.1 Nontraditional media                                              7    1.2Online media                                                                         7   

1.3 Specialized media                                                                                8 

1.4 General procedures in media planning          9                 

  1. Problems in media planning                           13

2. Insufficient media data                                                                        13

2.1 Time pressures                                                                                  14

2.2 Institutional influence on media decisions                                         15

2.3 Lack of objectivity                                                                              15

2.4 Measuring advertising effectiveness                                                   16

  1. The relationship among media, advertising, and

consumers                                                                                         17   3. How consumers  choose media: entertainment

    and information                                                                                 17

3.1 Strong feelings                                                                                  17

3.2 Loyalty                                                                                              17

3.3 Media usage and subsequent behavior                                           18

3.4 Interactive television                                                                         19

3.5 Varied relationships between audiences and media                       19

3.6 Video consumer mapping study                                                     20

3.7 How audiences process information from media                            21

      3.8 The media’s importance in the buying process                               22

  1. Conclusion                                                                                     23
  2. Bibliography                                                                                  24


  1. Introduction.

Throughout history, the form of mass media has been determined and limited by the technology of the age. In 1439, Gutenberg’s printing press first delivered words to the masses on paper. Until the 1950s, short personal messages were printed on strips of paper that were pasted to forms and handed to recipients by Western Union delivery boys. The radio first delivered audio through a large piece of furniture in the living room, only to be eventually replaced by Sony’s Walkman delivering audio directly into the ear. Sight, sound, and motion used to be delivered primarily at the local movie theater or on a small black-and-white television screen in the living room. The technology limited each of these forms to a single type of content: printed words, sound, still pictures, and moving pictures, at first in unnatural black and white. Each was limited to one-way communication from the few who produced the content to the masses who received it. It could be argued that the digital revolution and the Internet changed all that— words, pictures, moving pictures, and interactivity are all just different kinds of digital media that have converged on the three screens of video: the television set, the personal computer, and the nearly ubiquitous mobile cell phone. The nature of the content has changed also. In addition to professionally produced material, usergenerated content populates YouTube, social networks, blogs, Wikipedia, Twitter, and new media forms are emerging every day. The Internet gives users the ability to search for and retrieve in seconds information about virtually any subject on earth, creating the opportunity to deliver advertising to people with a demonstrated interest in the product or service.But the digital world is constantly changing. Media that were new in 2003, such as MySpace, are already beginning to show their age, challenged by newer options like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Search engines like Google and Bing, now key drivers of online marketing, are vulnerable to start-ups that offer still further improvements. The list could go on and on. Furthermore, the research tools available to evaluate online media are evolving, with enhancements coming out seemingly every month.

Digital media cannot replace the ability of traditional media to meet all these needs. They will supplement traditional media’s capabilities, and in a few cases may even replace them, but only for those products and services where it makes marketing sense. Quick-serve restaurants, automobiles, and hotels have different marketing needs that the planner must match to the capabilities of the different media, regardless of whether they are traditional or digital.

The goal of my term paper answer 2 main  questions: What is advertising and media planning? How has media planning changed? The paper is divided into two parts. The first part will be devoted to Media planning and the relationship among media, advertising, and consumers.


  1. Media planning

Media planning consists of the series of decisions made to answer the question, “What are the best means of delivering advertisements to prospective purchasers of my brand or service?” This definition is rather general, but it provides a broad picture of what media planning is all about. A media planner attempts to answer the following specific questions:

  • How many prospects (for purchasing a given brand of product) do I need or can I afford to reach?
  • In which media should I place ads?
  • How many times a month should prospects see each ad?
  • During which months should ads appear?
  • Where should the ads appear? In which markets and regions?
  • How much money should be spent in each medium?

When all the questions have been asked and the decisions made, the recommendations and rationales are organized into a presentation (usually PowerPoint) and a written document called a media plan. The plan, when approved by the advertiser, becomes a blueprint for the selection and use of media. Once the advertiser has approved the plan, it also serves as a guide for actually purchasing the media.

It would be a mistake, however, to think of media planning as nothing more than finding answers to a list of questions about media. Such a view is too narrow to provide the necessary perspective. Rather, it is better to assume that each question represents certain kinds of problems that need to be solved. Some problems are relatively simple, such as, “On which day of the week should television commercials be shown?” Other problems are much more difficult, such as, “In which media will ads most affect the prospect’s buying behavior, resulting in the most additional sales?”

Media planning should be thought of as a process or a series of decisions that provides the best possible answers to a set of problems. It is the planner’s recommended way to balance the many trade-offs within a given budget. A planner might find that a recommended solution to a given marketing problem does not make sense when other factors are considered. Finding the best solutions to a set of marketing problems represents the main task of planners. That is what makes media planning such an intellectually challenging activity. In a sense, media planners are marketing professionals with media expertise.






  1. Traditional mass media

Mass media such as newspapers, magazines, radio, and television are especially well suited for delivering advertisements—as well as news, entertainment, and educational content—to a widespread general (or mass) audience. Planners find mass media valuable because such media are able to quickly deliver large audiences at a relatively low cost, they can deliver advertisements to special kinds of audiences who are attracted to each medium’s editorial or programming, and they tend to develop strong loyalties among audiences who return to their favorite medium with a high degree of regularity. Over the years, traditional mass media have developed systems and practices that respond directly and efficiently to the marketing needs of advertisers. They get the bulk of the advertising dollars, and they are the meat and potatoes of media planning. Online and the new digital media are joining them, but as of this writing, they have a long way to go before they will replace traditional media.

Television is the traditional mass medium that most people think of first. The digital revolution has resulted in a convergence of platforms on which people watch their favorite programs. While we may still call it television, video is a more appropriate term, with the only difference being the platform on which it is displayed. Nielsen refers to the “Three Screens” of video: conventional television, streaming video displayed on a computer screen, and mobile that displays video content on a cell phone screen. Although there may be little difference to the viewers, there are substantial differences in the way their audiences are measured and in the way advertising is planned and bought.

Media planners, however, also know that mass media have their limitations in delivering advertising messages. The most serious is that mass media audiences do not see, hear, or read a medium solely because of the advertising content. Media vary in their ability to expose both editorial and advertising material. Broadcast media, such as radio and television, are seldom sought out by consumers for the advertisements alone. Broadcast commercials have an intrusive character, breaking into the play or action of a program and compelling some attention to the advertising message. Whether any given viewer will or will not watch a particular commercial is determined more by the ingenuity and value of the message than by its appearance on an interesting program. As of March 2010, 36 percent of U.S. homes have a digital video recorder (DVR), and on playback, most viewers skip the commercials of programs they have recorded. However, this negative consequence on ad exposure affects primarily scripted high-rated prime-time programs, daytime soaps, and late-night entertainment. Very few people record news, sports, most cable channels, and syndicated programs like “Oprah” and “Access Hollywood.” And even for the highly recorded prime-time programs, the impact of DVRs has been greatly mitigated by the industry shift to the C3 rating, which reports the audience to the average commercial minute watched at normal speed live or within three days of telecast. Much more about this later on.

Newspapers have news, entertainment, information, and catalog values for their readers. A newspaper generally has excellent readership of local news editorial and advertising material, serving as a buying guide for readers who are looking for many different kinds of products. People often check newspaper ads immediately before their regular food shopping day to find the best grocery bargains. For frequently purchased products, where prices are prominently displayed, newspapers can be a very effective selling medium.

However, advertising revenue is down dramatically due to the shift of classified advertising to the Internet. As of summer 2009, ad revenue to local newspapers was 12.0 billion, down 2 percent from $12.2 billion in 2000, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Flat revenue after 10 years of rising costs has forced bankruptcies, led to editorial staff cutbacks, reduced publishing days, and other problems. Despite this severe challenge to its business model, the newspaper remains a viable media option that continues to offer good value to advertisers. The medium will be presented in this book with the same capabilities as it has in the past.

Newspapers are relatively untargeted mass media. Magazines, on the other hand, are much more selective in their ability to precisely target advertising exposures. Some, such as fashion, home, and special-interest publications, are bought as much for their advertising as for their editorial matter. Other more general-interest publications, such as newsweeklies and personality and sports magazines, appeal to readers who are looking for interesting articles and stories rather than product information.

Billboards are the oldest form of traditional media. They offer the opportunity to reach consumers immediately before they enter a retail store, provide reminder advertising, and have been proven to create broad, immediate brand awareness of new products. Unfortunately, the medium has long suffered from inadequate measurement. The Traffic Audit Bureau, using GPS technology, aims to replace the old traffic count with modern measurement that they hope will allow the medium to be planned in a way similar to broadcast. We’ll discuss this topic in more detail later. Obviously, the creative quality of the commercial or advertisement affects its impact on the consumer and the numbers of consumers who will read, see, or hear it. This is true regardless of which medium is used.






    1. Nontraditional media

Traditional mass media all engage in one-way communication—from the source to great numbers of viewers, listeners, and readers using technology that has been around for decades. Almost any other innovative way of delivering ad messages to consumers is considered a nontraditional medium. These media disseminate advertising messages through means not usually called media. For example, the combination of magazines and sales promotion is sometimes called nontraditional media, even though sales promotion has not historically been categorized as a medium. Digital advertising, though certainly not traditional, is generally viewed in its own category.

Nontraditional media include the vast array of out-of-home venues where the advertising will stand out from its competition. In addition to providing a place for advertising, they also satisfy the need for additional revenue from companies that have exposure to the public and feel that their unique location offers an opportunity to sell advertising. The most commonly used nontraditional media include television screens in airport waiting areas, elevators, the top of gas pumps, in doctor’s offices, and any other place where a video screen will display content to the public. Nontraditional media also include posters in health clubs, signage on a golf course, and banners at public events. Some locations, such as the walls of public restrooms, the floor of grocery stores, and overhead luggage bins of commercial airliners may be driven more by a proprietor’s desire for additional income than by the advertiser’s need for an alternative venue.

Many media planners recommend using nontraditional media, but there have been some problems in determining what the advertiser receives for the money. The problems are caused by the lack of continuing measurements of the audience delivered by these less-established media. In addition, what information does exist is typically provided by the media themselves, raising questions about its accuracy and objectivity. In most instances, planners have to guesstimate the sizes of audiences. The Digital Place-based Advertising Association ( has developed measurement standards that are intended to resolve or at least mitigate these problems.

    1. Online media

The proliferation of online media options in the last 10 years justifies its own classification. It includes any communications medium where there is a real-time interaction between the user and the content producer via the Internet. The content is accessed with a Web browser or device functioning as a Web browser. So this includes conventional websites viewed on a personal computer; streaming video; social media such as Facebook or LinkedIn; search engine marketing (SEM) with Google, Bing, or others; Web-enabled cell phones; long-form high-definition video delivered to a television set functioning as a computer monitor; and other online forms that are sure to be developed after this book has gone to press.

The fundamental principles of online planning are the same as for traditional media, but there are two schools of thought regarding where it fits in the media department organization. One approach is to think of online as simply another medium to be planned by the traditional media planning group. This has the advantage of consolidating all media planning in the hands of a single person or group, allowing them to choose whatever media make the most sense for the advertiser (sometimes referred to as “media agnostic” planning). The downside of this approach is that online media and measurement tools change so rapidly that it takes full-time involvement to stay current. In the online world, six months is a long time.

The other approach is to create a separate online unit within the media department or even as an outside company specializing in online media planning and buying. Although this group might be organized by client, their day-to-day involvement with the medium and support from others in the group who can answer questions allow these specialists to do a better job of planning online display and search advertising than is possible by a generalist. On the other hand, specialists must guard against becoming narrow advocates of online in a world where advertisers are looking for the best media to meet their marketing objectives, regardless of which that turns out to be.

    1. Specialized media

Special-interest consumer magazines appeal to specific reader interests such as skiing, money management, photography, or antiques. These magazines are read as much for their advertising as they are for their editorial content. Therefore, these magazines often attract readers who purchase the magazine not only for the editorial material, but also for information on the kinds of products advertised. Such media are often referred to as niche media because of their special-interest focus.

A large category of media also exists to meet the specialized needs of industrial manufacturers, service companies, wholesalers, retailers, and professional workers such as physicians, attorneys, and teachers. These media take the form of publications that contain editorial matter as well as advertising pertaining to the specialized market, but they also include films, trade shows, convention exhibits, CDs, and even flash drives containing a file with the promotional message and stamped with the advertiser’s logo that can be used by the recipient long after the initial presentation. Business-to-business advertisers are typically the advertisers most interested in these forms of media.

Other specialized media exist exclusively for the purpose of delivering advertising messages. They carry no editorial matter and are not sought after by readers as are other forms of media. Such advertising-oriented media include handbills, direct mail, outdoor billboards, car cards that appear on buses or trucks, and freestanding inserts (FSIs) in newspapers.

Another specialized medium is the catalog. Although consumers often request catalogs, they look at catalogs less frequently than they do mass media. At the same time, many advertisers find catalogs productive because consumers use them as shopping guides. One form of catalog is the telephone book, which carries advertising but also carries editorial matter—telephone numbers. Plumbers, for example, might justifiably use telephone book advertising exclusively, because plumbers are not usually called until an emergency arises. On such occasions, the consumer will search ads in the Yellow Pages to find a plumber but probably will not notice such ads at any other time. Although still widely used today, the rise of the Internet and sources such as Craigslist have severely impacted the Yellow Pages and newspaper classified advertising, calling into question the long-term survivability of the medium.

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