Digital Media Planning: Some evidence based guidelines


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When planning your media campaign it is important to understand the strengths of each format, how audiences respond to them and how they can work together.

Millward Brown has created some simple guidelines for marketers who want to make the most effective use of all forms of digital media - from websites to online video, social media and mobile - as part of an integrated campaign.

Published in: Business

Digital Media Planning: Some evidence based guidelines

  1. 1. DigitalMediaPlanning :some evidencebased guidelines
  2. 2. When planning your media campaign it is important to understand the strengths of each format, how audiences respond to them and how they can work together. Millward Brown has analysed the evidence ns from several key studies to create some ig pa m simple guidelines for marketers who want ca ia to make the most effective use of all forms ed s m ge ti- pa of digital media - from websites to online ul n m o fa de e video, social media and mobile - as part in iv ia vi ct ia ed e fe ed lin lm of an integrated campaign. ef lm on e ia or ta oc h sm gi ug fs y di la ro to te sp of th si os di ile le eb m ct e ro ob w lin pa e e th e m im onth ak e of ak m er of e liv m to us ct pa de w st ho im be to w e e th th ho e ng ak si m ea cr in
  3. 3. 01 The role of digital media in multi-media campaigns
  4. 4. evidenceDigital media, like other ‘targeted’ media, evidence In general, digital media reach the same people evidence Digital media (VOD) can improve the efficiency guidelinehave low reach but potentially high impact. as TV (as most campaigns also use TV). The majority of TV. To drive reach and frequency, it can be of campaigns use digital to increase frequency, more efficient to use digital rather thancomment although some campaigns also use it to increase comment more TV. reach.Digital media operate as part of a media portfolio to deliver By using YouTube you can reach lighter TV viewershigh impact, rather than reach. The high impact is a result more frequently and cheaply than by relyingof precise targeting and/or more engaging creative. comment on TV alone. The role of digital media depends on the size of the TV part of the campaign. Digital is not an independentguideline element. evidence evidence There is a limit to the potential reach guideline Online makes a small contribution to the overall Increasing investment in digital media does of digital campaigns. It is therefore very campaign effect, but its share of effect is higher not guarantee better performance. important to focus on improving targeting than its share of spend - especially on activation For TV-dominated campaigns, digital media and creative development. metrics. There is some evidence that online comment should be planned as though everybody has drives preference harder among the narrower already seen the TV. If investment is a measure of weight, then this target audiences. suggests that the effect of digital is not driven by unique reach, but by the quality of creative comment and degree of integration with the other elements Online display is efficient but this cost-efficiency in the plan. is probably delivered on the back of an implicit synergy with TV. guideline guideline Maximise the effect of digital by focusing on the quality of creative and its Scalability and synergy need to be taken integration into the overall media plan, into account when planning. rather than increased spend.
  5. 5. evidenceAll media are capable of delivering against all kinds of evidence TV is better at driving salience than communicating evidence Static display is better at communicating key guidelinecommunications objectives, though video is better at key messages or driving engagement or recruitment. messages, or driving engagement or recruitment, Always enlist display to complementdriving salience and static display marginally better at than driving salience. video; if video defaults to driving saliencydriving recruitment. comment then display should compensate. This is true of most media, particularly video, but more so commentcomment of TV. When people are exposed to TV they are less likely When people are exposed to static display they areMedia roles are flexible. Variations in performance are to absorb key messages. more likely to absorb key messages, converting todriven by quality of creative, levels of attention and reach. recruitment.guideline guideline Don’t take for granted that TV will do Quality of creative should be considered anything more than drive salience. Other when assigning roles. media should compensate for lack of evidence Non-TV video and display media can either reinforce guideline attention paid to TV. TV or compensate for its inability to deliver against Think beyond efficiency when planning non-saliency objectives. non-TV media. comment Roles of non-TV media are often not explicit. Most often the roles of these media are cited as delivering reach and/or frequency against light TV viewers. We would expect all media in a campaign to deliver against the same communications objectives. However non-TV media can deliver against different objectives and are probably being consumed by the audience with greater attention. This is evidence of the lean forward versus lean back consumption.
  6. 6. 02 Make the most of social media fan pages
  7. 7. 01 using digital as part of a multi-media campaign
  8. 8. evidence evidence evidenceBigger is not automatically better for brands More frequent posts tend to result in a more The benefits of fan pages can be categorised intowhen it comes to fan bases. effective Fanpage. those which are considered basic or ‘expected’ by visitors, and those which are differentiators.comment comment ‘Expected’ attributes include: regular posts; trustworthy brand news; new product info; contests/Size is not important. Fan pages of all sizes The more effort you put in, the greater the return. giveaways; offers. Differentiator benefits include:can build brands strongly. variety, innovation, fun, interaction, community.guideline guideline comment These categories are likely to remain fixed for a while, Having fewer fans doesn’t necessarily Post regularly. In the Facebook environment but the type of content that best delivers these benefits mean that the fan page isn’t working well. we recommend at least 15 posts per month may evolve over time. Think of your overall fan page effectiveness to keep the page lively. The optimal as a multiplier: the impact per fan x the frequency will depend on the objectives for number of fans. the page and the content available. But don’t guideline overdo it. Over-posting can have a negative Stay on top of the latest Facebook page effect at very high frequencies, or if you are trends and check out what other fan pages posting for the sake of it. are doing to differentiate themselves.
  9. 9. 03 How to make websites more effective
  10. 10. 02 Make the most of social media fan pages
  11. 11. evidence evidence evidenceWebsites and microsites can impact brand measures Ease of use is the single most important driver New and innovative sites are best for communicatingvery strongly. of success. brand messages.comment comment commentAlthough they may not reach as many viewers as display Unlike Facebook fan pages which all share a common Provided it is easy to use, a site that is also innovative willcampaigns, website environments give online users layout, custom-designed websites can fail the ‘ease of encourage users to pay greater attention. If this innovationa greater chance to immerse themselves in the brand use’ test simply because they are complex to navigate. is designed skilfully around the brand message, it will beand this improves brand attitudes. Microsites in particular need to be intuitive and inviting absorbed more readily. for first time users.guideline guideline guideline Integrate some kind of immersion destination Design custom sites with simplicity and ease Your most interesting and innovative site into campaigns. Even when you are of use as a primary consideration. Always features should link directly to your intended using Facebook fan pages, websites and conduct usability testing whenever possible. brand message. Encourage content creativity campaign microsites may still be needed within an intuitive environment. Don’t settle to deliver customised engagement activities. for ordinary.
  12. 12. 04 How to deliver impact through online video
  13. 13. 03 How to make websites more effective
  14. 14. evidence evidence evidence evidenceViral video success on a major scale occurs Online video is more impactful than online display. In-stream online video (primarily pre-rolls) tend The theory that ‘made for TV’ ads are betterinfrequently but it is possible to predict with copy to impact on brand metrics more strongly than for message association and favourability whiletesting. Distinctiveness of content is the most comment autoplay video ads. ‘made for online’ ads are better for persuasionimportant factor. is unproven. Audio-visual ads have a greater tendency to engage online visitors than banners, and are more memorable commentcomment as a result. The act of selecting a video stream means the viewer commentViral success is difficult to achieve on a large scale is more engaged. They are more likely to notice and There is no simple answer to the question of whetherbecause consumers only have a limited interest in actively absorb than the ad while waiting for their content TV ads should simply be posted online. Higher scoresengaging with content. Good isn’t good enough; ads reallyneed to stand out from the crowd. Copy testing can help guideline to appear, whereas an autoplay may be ignored. for message association and favourability for TV ads used online may just be a result of the halo or synergyidentify the level of distinctiveness of the ad and its Identify appropriate opportunities to promote effects from TV. Meanwhile persuasion measures“talk worthy” elements which can be highlightedin a viral PR campaign. your video online. Test these alongside display banners to ensure you are paying guideline may be higher for customised creative because those messages are more tightly targeted at those who see appropriate CPM rates (higher CPMs may Provided you can secure sufficient them online. be justified for the right opportunity, but there appropriate inventory and are not payingguideline remains a risk of overpaying). excessive CPM rates, in-stream online video can be a very effective medium guideline Aim for viral success, but don’t bank on it. for brand messaging. Although some ads may work well online If an ad pre-tests strongly on the key without modification, all TV content attributes for a successful viral campaign, should be reviewed before it is promoted you may be able to invest more in viral online. On the whole, tailoring for the seeding/promotion and rein back on medium and the audience is likely traditional paid media. For most ads, to improve impact. Very long ads are promotion via owned and paid channels unlikely to work as pre-rolls but may work will also be needed. as virals. A “back story” (e.g. the making of) can also work well to supplement a TV ad used in this way.
  15. 15. 05 Make the best use of mobile
  16. 16. 04 How to deliver impact through online video
  17. 17. evidenceMobile ads are generally more impactful than onlinedisplay ads, although reach levels are typicallystill quite low. There is also a wide variation in howindividual ads perform - some ads do very well whileothers do very badly.commentThe mobile advertising space is still relatively uncluttered, guidelineso mobile ads tend to be noticed strongly. Impact is also Improve the reach of mobile ads bybeing aided by the emergence of new mobile advertising integrating them into the wider campaign.platforms such as Apple’s iAd which is designed for use When traffic is driven to mobile, the impactwithin mobile apps on iPhone, iPod Touch, is strong. There is now sufficient variationand iPad devices. in creativity varies to make it worthwhileAlthough the infrastructure for mobile advertising is now pre-testing mobile ads.largely in place, achieving high reach media plans is stilldifficult. The level of creativity in ads may vary becauseof differing attitudes to mobile. Sometimes it is considereda core element of the campaign, in other cases it maybe an afterthought.
  18. 18. 06 Increasing the impact of online display
  19. 19. 05 Make the best use of mobile
  20. 20. evidence evidence evidence evidenceThere is a wide variation in the impact of individual Brand impact is not strongly correlated to click Impact varies by audience and location. There are important differences in the way thatonline ads, but some patterns can be discerned. or interaction rates. viewers respond to TV and to online content. commentcomment comment Impact will vary based on the audience targeted, commentPeople rarely watch online creatives from beginning Campaign optimisation still tends to employ behavioural the relevance of the content, and the audience’s TV is a passive medium. Commercial contentto end, and the execution can therefore have a significant data ‘because it’s there’. This may result in incorrect receptivity to the brand in different environments. is therefore designed to be disruptive in orderimpact on results. optimisation decisions. Web portals (whether ‘horizontal’ such as AOL or MSN to grab viewers’ attention while relaxing on the or ‘vertical’ with a focus on specific sectors or interests) sofa. Unsurprisingly there no correlation between may work well because relatively tight demographic engagement and motivation - viewers are happyguideline guideline targeting is possible. Also, portals can project popularity. to be entertained by a car ad while having no intention of purchasing it. In contrast, the online environment is an active medium in which the viewer exerts more Show the brand prominently on all frames If you have a brand objective, don’t evaluate control. Consumers are drawn to content which is of the ad; each frame of the ad should be or optimise your campaign based on clicks. able to stand on its own. Don’t make people Brand and behavioural impact are different. guideline engaging but also seek out brands and categories that they are predisposed towards. This means there work for the message… they won’t! It is now easier than ever before to optimise is a much stronger positive relationship between Placing ads appropriately can make Keep the messaging very simple, and be based on brand effectiveness (either using engagement and motivation. a big difference to their performance. mindful of audience drop-off when using pre-testing or real-time in-market Pre-launch, you should consult normative ‘reveal’ ads. optimisation techniques). data for audience and brand-specific learning about historical campaign guideline performance. Once in market, While it is important to make online Image source | Photographer Johan Larsson consider using real-time in-market content engaging, it may not be sufficient research to optimise the ads across to grab attention by itself. There usually sites and creative units. has to be an additional motivation for consumers to seek it out and interact with it.
  21. 21. This paper is based on an analysisof the evidence provided by the followingMillward Brown research studies:• European CrossMedia• MarketNorms (AdIndex)• FanIndex• Website evaluations• Dynamic Logic Creative Best Practices
  22. 22. contact For further information, please contactJohn Svendsen, SVP Global Brand Director - Mediae: | t: +44 (0) 207 126 5061