Agency Life Cycle: Strategic Media Planning

Agency Social Revolution

After winning the client and getting to know their products, customers, and competitors, your agency’s media team must be prepared to pinpoint where and when your new advertising campaign will take place. While media planning used to be centered around print, followed by radio and television, it is now vital to pursue a a strategy to guide across media, including social media.

Targeting the Right Audience Segment

Consumers have become more involved in a wide variety of social media platforms, offering agencies the opportunity to investigate the entire customer experience as well as their audiences’ interests, passions, and tastes. Your team can take advantage of this plethora of data but only if you have the tools to reach your target audience.
In our prior Social Revolution posts, we dove into the world of makeup to find out what customers were saying in order to create a pitch for a major cosmetics brand, Covergirl.
Winning the account required creativity in bringing new consumer insights to the table, which we discovered using ForSight™ social media analysis. We found that lip products make up a significant portion of the makeup conversation, outweighing skin care and eye makeup. This surprising insight was then combined in ForSight with demographic data and statistics on customers’ favorite products, features, and reasons for purchase.
For the next step, research and designing strategy, we decided to dive into the lip care conversation. It was quickly apparent that Covergirl Smoochies was filling a popular demand, offering customers a reprieve from chapped lips with shiny lip balms.
Strategic media buying using Affinities
The next step of the agency life cycle, media planning, ForSight continues to be a vital source of data and insight to guide strategy. One of Crimson Hexagon’s latest tools, Affinities, plays a critical role in successful media planning.
Analyzing the entire conversation at Covergirl and one of their primary competitors, we see a variety of similarities. Over the past 6 months, fans have been busy tweeting about their favorite products. The Covergirl conversation consists of more than 93,000 Tweets and the competitor is not far behind with over 77,000 Tweets. Not surprisingly, women are the main contributors to these conversations making up 73% and 80% of the audiences respectively. Authors are also distributed similarly with the high posts per capita in New York and California and a presence in all 50 states. People discussing these two brands also share a variety of interests including health, fashion, and colleges and universities.
ForSight’s tool called Affinities highlights a variety of interests that distinguish people engaging with Covergirl on Twitter from fans of the competitor. For instance, the Covergirl audience is 4 times more interested in CNN, 2 times more interested in country music, and 2 times more interested in nutrition than the competitor audience. In contrast, the competitor audience is 43 times more interested in thrillers, 22 times more interested in filmmakers, and 8 times more interested in publishing than the Covergirl audience.
The two audiences are distinct, Covergirl fans are interested in news and media while the competitor’s fans are interested in writing and film. This insight can guide media planning when Affinities are used to match the Covergirl audience with like-minded television viewers.
First, we can compare the interests of Covergirl fans and people talking about the popular talent search competition, The X Factor. Common interests are represented by bubbles along the midline of the graph. It is clear that this is not the show for the Covergirl audience, because the brand’s audience does not share many interests with the show’s audience, suggesting that focusing advertising efforts here will be ineffective, reaching few makeup enthusiasts.
ASR Part 3 Strategic Media Planning Affinities X Factor
Focusing on programming with subject matter that appeals primarily to women, we look at the interests of viewers tweeting about America’s Next Top Model. This audience shares interests with both the Covergirl and competitor audiences. While we are getting closer to our target audience, a stronger alignment will maximize our return on investment.
ASR Part 3 Strategic Media Planning Affinities Top Model
Turning to programming that markets directly to women, we analyzed the interests of viewers tweeting about the TLC show, Four Weddings. The Covergirl audience shares a wide range of interests with Four Weddings viewers including interests in fashion, world news, and being a mom. While the competitor’s audience also shares interests with the show’s audience, they are more dispersed and many are significantly different. For instance, the competitor’s audience is 21 times more interested in filmmakers and 8 times more interested in self-improvement than the Four Weddings audience. While Covergirl fans are also more interested in makeup and cosmetics, these interests represent a much smaller percentage of their interests.
ASR Part 3 Strategic Media Planning Affinities Four Weddings
In addition to using ForSight(™) to determine television media planning and placement, we can also take a look at social and digital planning. As you see below, when comparing Covergirl to the general Twitter population, Affinities like, “Being a Mom”, “Parenting”, “Etsy”, “Cooking” and “New York Fashion Week” index towards Covergirl. These are all potential sources of keywords for Google AdWords purchases or guidance for new audience outreach for Facebook ads.
ASR Part 3 Strategic Media Planning Affinities Covergirl vs All of Twitter 3-9.14
When you begin the media planning process, you can maximize the success of your new campaign by tapping into social media conversation and audience characteristics. Consumers’ unadulterated comments on products, television shows, newspapers, and magazines provide invaluable insights into how you can reach potential customers.The next step is using these insights to learn about your audience and reach new clients with a impactful multi-media campaign.
Paying attention to your audience’s interests will help you design a social media campaign that maximizes your advertising efforts. Extending your campaign to people who share interests with your audience allows you to reach potential clients who may not talk about your brand or industry. Perhaps, they just haven’t found the right product yet.
With the right tools in place, your media planning team can select the best platforms and messages to frame your campaign. In an increasingly competitive agency environment, reaching the right target audiences with your media strategy may mean the difference between forming a lasting relationship and losing the client.
For more insight into how understanding consumer affinities for strategic planning, we invite you to visit our blog today. 

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