12th of April 2024

By Professor Jenni Romaniuk Associate Director (International) Ehrenberg-Bass Institute
Published by MediaCat Magazine See original article

Media planning: An intervention

Dear Marketers,

It’s because I care about you, that I have to let you know that you aren’t making very good media choices right now. I understand, its challenging with so many platforms and changing algorithms that you naturally want to experiment and experience the thrill of a new media format. I get it, I do. But you keep making the same mistakes over and over again, blowing the budget, chasing the next ‘media’ high. Now I see you’re about to repeat these mistakes again with Artificial Intelligence (AI). This is my effort to intervene, get you back on the right path.

Due to my lack of experience in staging interventions, I asked ChatGPT to suggest some steps. So here it goes!

Step 1: Educate myself

You might ask, who am I to question your media choices? I don’t claim to be a media expert, but nonetheless have watched you struggle with your media planning choices over the past decades. For example I recall Super Bowls where you blew millions of dollars on a ‘user-generated’ ad, only to discover users can’t generate ads (if they could, they would work in advertising!) I was also there, holding your hand, when you discovered the real cost of ‘free’ viral views, and I listened as you justified the expensive foray into facial expression coding because it could tell you, without much doubt, that someone…smiled. It makes me sad to see you repeatedly heartbroken after the new medium, new technology or new toy you fall in love with fails to live up to your expectations.

Step 2: Gather a supportive team

Luckily, I have some media and advertising researchers to provide me with valuable empirical knowledge about media planning. Virginia, Rachel, Steve, Nicole, Nico and Aaron, are just some of the people in my ‘go to’ team for media knowledge. Examples of their work are at the end of this column. Who is your media knowledge support team? Is it knowledge from an independent source with no skin in the game, or MADAR (Media Advertising Disguised as Research)?

Step 3: Choose a right time and place for the discussion

This month’s theme is about whether ‘old’ media is back, so I feel that this is a timely discussion. It’s only when you realise how your decisions have distracted you from the bigger picture that you can understand why ‘old’ media went out of favour. ‘Old’ media has been the sacrificial lamb, paying the price for your addiction. You blamed the audience, the measurement, the inability to interact with viewers, but the issue doesn’t sit with the audience, but with you…. you forgot what’s important, metrics such as reach, branding and building useful brand memories, and instead got sucked into an engagement vortex…

Read the full article in MediaCat Magazine.


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