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  • Writer's pictureNina Franck

Treating media as an afterthought is a huge loss of value

No one wins if you keep fighting an internal competition. It derails from the actual challenge at hand.

Since I have been working in media and media agencies there was always this subtle rivalry between media and creative. Each seemingly working in silo, accusing the other of crossing the path into their territory.

The brand’s set-up often fosters this course. There is a brand team and there is a media team. How much they interact really varies heavily by the company culture and by the openness to work together. After all, both disciplines, both placed on marketing, serve the total overall goal, to drive the business forward.

So please talk to each other and more importantly listen to each other. This should not be an internal competition about which department is best but to compete in the market together to make your brand the best.

Each discipline has its strength. Otherwise this discipline would not or should not actually exist.

The brand side is deep in the psychological field of their market and their brand. They know well how the market is structured, what the target audience needs in the product or service offering and how the market is developing. Off the back of that they are building a plan to tackle changing needs and staying ahead of the curve.

The creative side, often led by the brand team, knows well how to translate the needs into the right messaging. What key features to focus on in order to stand out from the competition and being recognised as a favourable option. Which tone to pick and how to address the target audience.

Media complements, but shall not compete

Media comes in from a different angle. Media brings insights into the audience, which media they consume when and how.

But also, due the rich data media planners can have access they can get insights in to how the brand’s and competitor’s audiences behave, their values, consumption, intention to buy, what their pain points are and where are crossovers with other brands and categories that could complement each other.

These insights do not or shall not compete with the creative or brand insights but rather complement the insights gathered so far in order to draw a whole picture.

Media consumption varies by audience and channel. Getting attention is key in order to get the brand and creative across. Not every message can be simply cut down to the usual length of a channel. Insights into consumption will help inform the creative and formats and will provide guidance on what to look out for when designing the creative and when and how to place the message at the right timing.

Some ideas might sound great on paper but a reality check is needed if it can be translated into media. Is it a niche creative idea or an idea people get when not being fully involved.

As much as we marketers would love to believe that ads are watched just as much as the content in which we place the ads, this is far from the reality. We need to be mindful that there is clear and simple message that triggers attention and is relevant to the target audience.

Constant and concise messaging is key. Always tailored for the channel and target audience.

Just because there is a new trend don’t jump on the bandwagon for the sake of it. Does it make sense for the audience, product and message?

Leaving value on the table

If media only gets treated as a fulfiller of the brand’s team’s wishes and be seen a purely a buying function then you are missing out on so much value and you won’t get the best possible result for the campaign.

Treat people like they don’t matter and motivation will be low. It's as simple as that. Give everyone the credibility they deserve and everyone is adding their best possible value.

There are so many people involved in one campaign and I appreciate it is a lot to juggle so many stakeholders. However, it is in the brand’s best interest if each discipline sits together at the (maybe virtual) table and talk from the beginning.

Share what the challenge is and the rough idea to tackle this challenge. Everyone can do their research from their specific angle and bring in so much value from the beginning to help inform the process of the final output and ultimately outcome.

No one wins if you keep fighting an internal competition. It derails from the actual challenge at hand. Start talking and collaborating. You are working for the same brand and product.

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