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7 Questions All Advertisers Should Ask - And Media Should Be Prepared To Answer....



When going through the process of planning your campaign and deciding where to place your advertising investment there are some key questions all advertising buyers, marketers & sme's should ask media owners to ensure you are making the correct buying decision. 

You may consider creating a standard media briefing sheet or RFP (request for proposal) which you send to potential media partners where their replies can help form the basis of your buying decision.  MediaScope has developed a standard RFP template - see more information here 

Here's 7 questions you should ask your advertising sales representative.....

- Quantitative Traffic/Audience – what is your reach? Gathering accurate, up to date, sourced and preferably audited traffic or audience statistics to determine reach to your target market is vital.  Remember it is not necessarily the size of the audience, also consider the quality and engagement of the audience each media platform can offer - this is often reflected through the quality of the editorial environment.

See MediaScope's Guide to Online Audience Measurement Options

- Qualitative Audience Information – what demographic information can you provide to represent 'who' my advertising will reach?  This information may include insights such as gender, age breakdown, income, media habits and purchase intent.

MediaScope can help media owners develop qualitative survey questions for their audience - see more information here

- What is Your Geographic Reach? – if your target market is within a defined geographic area then exposing your advertising message to an audience outside of this area is not only a waste of your money but also irrelevant to that audience.  Please ask how much of the audience is within your geographic target.  This is particularly important when advertising on websites - if you are an Australian based business always ask how much of the audience is Australian verses overseas – you may be surprised by the answer.

- How Can You Match My Needs? – asking this question also means you have clearly defined exactly what your advertising needs are - it’s quite remarkable how many advertisers have not.  Is your campaign objective to generate awareness, promote certain features of your product or service or to attract response?  You should communicate exactly what your objectives are so your advertising sales representative can make recommendations to meet these needs.  Your creative execution should also be orientated to meet this need - as an example if your objective is to generate response then a clearly promoted call to action on your creative is required.  The success of your campaign is a two way street.

- What is Your Availability? - have logistical information about your campaign ready such as timing, budget and any creative guidelines.

- Reporting/Campaign Measurement – what results, campaign reporting or post analysis do you offer?  This will vary for each medium and publisher but some kind of campaign results should be forthcoming.  Again, this is a two way street - you should be asking any new customers how they heard about you and if you are a web based business you can monitor incoming traffic through your site analytics.

- What else can you offer me? – this may involve better placement for your advertisement, additional or bonus activity, a discount and/or an editorial presence.  You will be more likely to receive a positive response, even in a small way, to this question if you treat your advertising sales person with respect and as an external partner in your business.  The relationship between ad buyer and seller is not adversorial - simply put they will work hard for your business on an ongoing basis if you are good to work with. 

There may be some additional questions you should be asking depending on your business and specific objectives but these 7 highlighted questions can form the foundation of your brief to media and ensure you receive the best possible information to then make your buying decision.

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Further Resources

  • MediaScope offers a media candidate service where we use our deep market knowledge to identify new advertising options according to your specific brief - see more information here
  • Media Planning & Buying Campaign Checklist - a comprehensive check list which direct marketers and small to medium business can use to guide you through all steps of the advertising and media planning and buying process.

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