Media simply refers to a vehicle or means of message delivery system to carry an ad message to a targeted audience. Media like TV, Radio, Print, Outdoor and Internet are instruments to convey an advertising message to the public.
The main task of media planners is to select the most appropriate media channels that can effectively communicate the advertising message to a targeted audience. Hence, it is essential for media planners to:
Keep up with latest media trends
Keep up with New technological developments
Determine long and short term effects of different media
Analyse Strengths and Weaknesses of different media
Factors determining Media selection
Nature of product
Nature of message and appeal
Size and Nature of business
Types of Media / Media Classification
Media can be classified into four types:
Print Media (Newspapers, Magazines)
Broadcast Media (TV, Radio)
Outdoor or Out of Home (OOH) Media
Newspaper is a major source of information for a large number of readers.
It may be National or local, daily or weekly newspaper.
Newspapers allow presentation of detailed messages which can be read at reader’s conveyance.
It allows prompt delivery of detailed coverage of news and other information with interesting features for readers.
It is a high involvement media as readers are required to devote some effort in reading the message.
It is available to masses at a very low cost.
Classification of Newspapers
Daily newspapers (Local/Regional)
Special Audience newspapers
Types of Ads in Newspapers
Classified advertisement – Advertisements arranged according to product or service
Display advertisement – Ads that use illustrations, photos, visual elements, may be National or Local.
Special Inserts – Tender notices, Public notices, Shifting of office etc.
Free Standing Insert – Pre-printed ad inserted in newspapers folds that fall out when the reader opens it and attract immediate attention
Geographic and language selectivity
Cheap media with high frequency
High repetitive value and quick response
Poor Presentation and Quality
Short life span
Limited selectivity with regard to lifestyles
Hard to reach illiterate and poor people
A Magazine is a specialized advertising media that serves educational, informational, entertainment and other specialized needs of consumers, businesses, and industries.
A Magazine allows presentation of a detailed ad message along with photos, illustrations, colours etc.
It is a high involvement media as readers pay a premium price for it and magazines are not dumped after reading.
Magazines can be classified into Local/Regional/National or Weekly/Monthly/Quarterly Magazines.
Types of Magazines
Consumer magazines – Magazines bought by general public for information and entertainment. It can be used to reach a specific target audience. It may be a –
General Interest Magazine
Special Interest Magazine
Women Lifestyle Magazine
Business Publications – Business magazines includes publications such as trade journals for businesses, industries or occupations. It may be published weekly monthly or quarterly. Generally, readership includes business managers and executives, businessmen, business students etc. It may be categorized into –
Industrial and Institutional Publications
Highly selective, avoids waste of circulation
Can create image, prestige or reputation
Allows services like `split runs’
Can reach specialized groups
Limited reach and frequency
Long response time
May face competition
(i) Television Advertising
TV is a principal source of information and entertainment for people exposed to mass media.
It is believed to be the most authoritative, influential, exciting medium for reaching very large audience.
It combines visual images, sound, motion and colour to achieve viewer’s empathy.
It allows development of creative and imaginative ad messages in a unique way.
It is considered intrusive in nature as the audience have no control over the nature and pace of advertisements.
Powerful audio-visual media
Wide coverage with effective cost
Attention – intrusive in nature
High selectivity and flexibility
Short lived message
Limited attention by viewers
Zapping – changing channels
Zipping – fast-forwarding commercial to avoid commercials
Intrusive in nature
Radio is a premier mass medium for users and advertisers.
It has a wide spread reach.
It delivers the ad message to a large number of people across the length and breadth of a country.
Commercial broadcasting is undertaken in major cities even rural areas.
Radio time in India is usually sold in slots of 7, 10, 15, 20 or 30 seconds.
It is one of the most personal medium and offers selectivity, cost efficiency and flexibility advantages over other media.
Efficiency of a radio ad depends upon the precision of script, accompanying sounds and level of distortion
According to Rebecca Piirto: “In some ways radio listeners act more like magazine subscribers than television viewers. They tend to listen habitually, at predictable times, to stations with narrowly targeted formats. They are loyal, identifiable and much cheaper to reach than TV audience.”
Helps to reach lower income people, illiterate people
Mental imagery – encourages audience to use imagination
Offers high selectivity
Lack of visual elements
Short lived message
Limited research data
Clutter – Too many ad messages
(i) Outdoor advertising
It is usually used as a supportive medium by advertisers.
It includes bill boards, boarding, neon signs posters etc.
It can generate considerable reach and frequency level at low cost.
Useful when introducing a new product.
Helps to remind the customers.
Helps to generate sales at point of purchase/point of sale.
Point of Place (POP) Advantage
Efficient and cheap
Flexible and Creative impact
Wastage in terms of coverage
Message fades due to over exposure over time
(ii) Transit Advertising
Uses billboards, neon signs and electronic messages.
It is targeted at users of various modes of transportation.
Advertising rates depend on the amount of traffic which passes every day.
Image of advertiser – effect is difficult to measure
(iii) Cinema and Video Advertising
Cinema is a popular source of entertainment comprising of audience from all classes and socio-economic groups of society.
Films are watched by a significant number of people everyday.
It involves use of cinema halls and video tapes to deliver the ad message.
Commercials are shown before films and previews carrying ad message.
Advertisers may prepare a presentation for projection or 35mm ad films based on a script.
Similar to TV, it also combines sight, sound, colour and movement to deliver a creative message.
Video rentals include messages by local advertisers.
Advertisement can also be displayed by cable operators.
Lack of clutter
Internet is a worldwide medium that provides means of exchanging information through a series of interconnected computers.
It is a rapidly growing medium of advertising.
It is a future medium which offers limitless advertising opportunities.
It involves use of world wide web to showcase a website or e-commerce portal to the world.
Advertising through internet involves email marketing, social media marketing, online ads and mobile marketing.
It provides a sophisticated graphic user interface to users.
It is accessible to anyone with a computer and broadband connection.
Type of Internet Advertisements
Websites – Online Brochure of product/services, Virtual Office
Ad buttons – Icons which provide link to advertiser`s website
Ad banners – Creative & Dynamic Display ads
Sponsorship – Companies sponsor bloggers to write about them.
Classified ads – Similar to newspaper ads
E-mail – Electronic mails carrying ad message
Generates immediate response
Provides high selectivity and flexibility
Gives detailed information (in depth info and reviews)
Reaches B2B users easily
Lack mass media efficiency
Targeting and research costs are high
Cost of PC is high
Security is a primary concern
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