Media Planning and Researching

Just like the creation of advertisements, media planning is also increasingly vital and creative area of the advertising profession. All your creativity would be useless, unless what you produce is seen or heard and acted upon. This can be guaranteed only by the most effective exposure in the media. Even there is creativity and planning success of advertising campaigns can only be determined to a considerable extent by the media used. There is today greater integration of the creative function with media planning. One might say that this relationship between the media and the creative function is inherent in advertising or marketing communication. This is essential because a creation of advertisement is determined by market requirements and hence is result oriented. It is business related. The common objective of the business concerned and advertising is winning consumers’ confidence and support. Media make this possible by relating the advertisement to the consumer.

Let us start with trying to understand what the media is expected to do. What is the media objective in general? It is to ensure the widest and the most effective exposure of the advertising message in such a way as to help influence purchase and reduce wastage, thereby getting the best value for every rupee spent. The aim is to select the most effective media to reach the core target. The options are many, of course, related to the product or service and the target audience. Should you use a single medium to saturation level? Should you combine different media or opt for a media-mix? If so, what would be the distribution of the different media? Then you would come to each medium-print, TV, radio, video, outdoor, direct mail, point of purchase material, shop window display and so on. Starting with the print medium, you have to decide whether you would confine yourself only to daily newspapers or use magazines as well. Then more questions arise: Which newspapers? The general daily or the financial dailies and which of those? Similar questions would have to be answered with regard to magazines. Then you would have to decide how much space to use and how frequently the position of the advertisement on the page of the daily, even the particular page on which the advertisement would appear. These questions are no longer simple. The number of newspapers seems to be increasing every day. Then there are multiple issues of the same daily newspaper. There are special regular weekly features or supplements. You have to choose between English and other local language dailies, both nationally and regionally. With so many readership options and newspapers and magazines catering to so many different tastes and requirements, there is a tremendous fragmentation or segmentation of readership. General magazines, as distinct from those aimed at specific readership., contain a variety of articles. In positioning an advertisement one has to make a decision depending on the product or service and its core audience and the sections of the magazine that are likely to appeal to such an audience. It is a formidable task. Certainly with regard to the space to be used and even with frequency at times there has to be integration between the creative team and the media planner.

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