There is so much emphasis on media these days. With all the traditional and non-traditional media options and a growing array of new alternatives, so much scrutiny is given to media effectiveness. Do you continue to rely on traditional media? How much of the media budget do you shift to non-traditional media? How do you effectively utilize online advertising, social media, mobile and digital? And how do you evaluate and analyze all the analytics that’s available to you? So much of the critical analysis for an advertising campaign is about the media buy. If the campaign is not effective, the media plan most often takes the blame. Jack Neff made this point in an article in Ad Age.
But more important are strategy and creative. Even with the perfect media buy, if there was one, if the strategy is off target or the creative mediocre, the campaign will not be effective. True, media is very important. And great emphasis should be given to the myriad of critical media decisions. Media planning has become more complex and complicated and requires much attention. But in the diligence to maximize media decisions, the real keys to advertising effectiveness takes a back seat. Strategy and creative are in the front seats.
Strategy is the essential foundation to every effective ad campaign. Nothing is more important than strategy. Nothing trumps strategy. It requires hard work, research, analysis, consumer understanding and smarts. It is the basis of every successful advertising campaign. Without a sound strategy, no media plan can be truly effective. Strategy drives everything. Strategy is the prerequisite to every other element of the campaign. It is the chief factor in determining how effective the advertising can be.
And the next most important component is strong creative. Creative that communicates, that resonates, that grabs attention. It’s the big idea. The concept that builds a brand and drives sales. Creative that is rooted in the right strategy that communicates with the right tone and style. The combination of thought and visuals that stand out. That captures heart and mind and speaks to the soul. Very little is as powerful as a great idea!
Advertising and marketing seem to be dominated today with discussions and debates about the media landscape. What’s new and what works. But more time, more energy, more emphasis should be spent on strategy and creative. With proper attention to these two, the odds of the media plan being effective increases tremendously.