Media Planning / Buying
Producing great content is only half the battle. Whether it’s online or on television, it is vital to get your content seen by as many people as possible. Here at Hightower we specialise in both.
Getting content seen
Your content has been produced with loving care by the production company, it looks terrific and you’re sure it will make all the difference to visibility for your company. But then nobody sees it. What do you do?
For TV adverts, it is vital to have a rock solid media campaign to back a strong commercial. We specialise in getting the best rates for media on every TV channel in the UK. We’ve been marketing TV ads and getting great results for many years on ITV, Channel 4, Sky and every other major station.
For online content it is equally important to get content seen, the methods are different but we’ve been doing it successfully for many years, with YouTube seeding and blogger outreach among our specialties.
Media planning and buying
Media planning is the process of choosing channels and time slots to achieve the best return on investment for showing your TV advert on television. Planning really is an art into itself, as there are hundreds of channels to choose from – each with their own benefits and drawbacks. The skill of a TV buyer is to find the best mix of channels to ensure the best return on investment possible.
Buying is the second part of the deal, the process of buying the spots in particular shows and channels. The rest of the process is down to analytics and seeing which channels work for the particular channel and which don’t.
At Hightower, we work with a team of media planners with decades of experience in the business. We’re still amazed that clients will have a TV advert produced and then do the media planning themselves. It is a specialised skill set in just the way as being a content producer, plumber airline pilot or carpenter.
Coverage, frequency and TVRs.
It is critical for the success of your TV advert campaign to get the sums right. You need to know how many punters need to see your advert to achieve critical mass. With the help of a TV buyer, you need to find out the percentage of audience seeing the ad (the coverage) and how often the ad is seen (frequency). This will determine how many Television Ratings (TVRs) are needed for the campaign.
Phasing the TV advert campaign
With brand advertising, there are various ways of phasing the campaign, depending what the requirement is. Burst is the process of putting the advert on air a lot in a short period of time. This is a great coverage builder. Burst is perfect for a new brand, product or seasonal offers. A drip campaign is fairly self explanatory, the campaign runs a lot longer but with fewer showings on TV.. This allows a constant coverage presence over a long period of time. Finally pulse is intermittent – perhaps a week on and a week off – allowing the campaign to run on TV for a long time. People tend to remember adverts for a long period of time.
Can’t people just fast forward through TV ads now?
It’s true that with solid state TV recorders like Sky Q, viewers are able to fast forward through TV adverts. However TV advertising has been proven to be the most memorable form of advertising. From Media Guardian – “The research by YouGov for Deloitte was carried out for the MediaGuardian Edinburgh international television festival, which begins on Friday.
“Questions over the relevance of the traditional television advert have been raised for years, yet when asked about their most favoured video format, respondents voted for the standard 30-second commercial,” said James Bates, media partner at Deloitte.
“Online advertising’s poor showing relative to television may surprise, given that the former has often been portrayed as television’s nemesis.
“What television does best – display and brand building – is what online struggles with. Online advertising is best at search, which previously newspapers, particularly for classified, had excelled at.”
Where should the campaign run?
The three biggest deciding factors for this are age, gender and class. Each of the 500+ channels in the UK follow these three measurements and allow a campaign to fit into specific niches easily.
Launching a new brand? TV has been the clear favorite for 50 years. No other medium can provide such visual, compelling campaigns with the immediate reach of TV.
Repositioning a brand? TV works incredibly well at subtly adjusting preconceptions about a brand with clever advertising or sponsorship of particular shows.
Changing behaviors is another favorite of TV advertisers. Think about anti-smoking or drink awareness campaigns Also charitable campaigns can pull on more heart strings more quickly than any other medium.
Retaining your hard earned customer works very well on TV. That feeling of being a fan on the brand and having that fandom reiterated by a fantastic TV advert works. Look at Apple, Guiness or BMW.
Generating a response directly is a specialism of Hightower, DRTV uses phone numbers or website addresses as a call to action to compel your customer to get in touch directly and purchase, without the need for a brand orientated build up.
The ability to use visuals to demonstrate your product is another killer sell for TV adverts. Showing how the Dyson vacuum oscillates or the intuitive way the iPhone works is a very compelling way to sell.
One of the biggest advantages of advertising on ITV1 is the ability to focus on individual regions and areas of the country. This creates potential for highly specific campaigns targeting individual geographic areas. Channel 4 allow regional broadcast to any of 6 areas of the United Kingdom.
When to advertise?
Seasonality is a huge factor when it comes to all advertising. We work with a lot of home improvement and outdoor products and weather is a massive factor. There’s little point in advertising wicker furniture or lawnmowers mid winter! Television airtime costs vary depending on time of month and year also. Christmas naturally forces prices up and the immediate period after Christmas is a lot more reasonable. Summer, when people are outside enjoying themselves or going on holiday makes airtime less expensive. Major sporting events and Easter can also be influencing factors.
How much does TV advertising cost?
There are TV advertising campaigns to suit most budgets. It’s important to be realistic also and not be tempted by agencies that promise you the Earth for next to no money. As is the way with production, it is critical to work with an established, experienced media buyer who will guide you through the pitfalls of the industry.
Why would you advertise on one of the minor channels with little viewership?
The spread of TV channels – currently over 600 – means that advertisers can achieve exposure over lots more potential markets than was possible 10 years ago. The viewership of these channels may be much smaller, but the channel will cater for a specific audience that may be perfect for you.