Media Planning Vs Media Buying: Which Is More Important?

Media planning and buying are processes associated with the negotiating, strategizing and purchasing of ad placements, otherwise known as “inventory”. While planning which of the inventories to purchase, the planners must consider the products that are being advertised, the target audience, as well as the campaign goals. The media buyers manage the initial purchase and they are also responsible for making efforts that optimize the performance of these ads throughout the whole campaign lifecycle.

Media planning

Media planning forms the first step towards developing a successful media ad campaign. It helps in deciding how to develop the ad campaigns, what should be the basic targets that are to be achieved from such campaigns and how to use different media effectively to spread the intended message across. For any media planning agency, the process starts with reviewing the current trends of the industry as well as carrying out an evaluation of current media associated with a particular industry. It helps in understanding consumer motivations and habits that may determine their response to a particular campaign.

This basic audience research is then followed by dividing the resources meant for the campaign across multiple media platforms. By carefully analyzing the needs of a business, its competitive position and marketing objectives and goals, the media planning agency can come up with ways to effectively utilize the advertising budget.

Media buying

Media buying is an essential part of marketing and is associated with acquiring “paid” media space and timeslots so that the ads placed in them can be viewed by maximum number of targeted customers. This is vital if an ad campaign is to produce desired results. A media buying agency can obtain media space for a client firm in newspapers, magazines and other print mediums, television ads and primetime TV slots. They can also help in promoting online banner ads. The media purchasers maintain positive and nurturing relationships with various important channel owners. While it is not important to get a large amount of airtime for a campaign to run successfully, it is necessary to know which timeslots of the day would fetch maximum exposure. The media buying agencies can also find the best distribution channels for an ad campaign and negotiate the best prices that would in turn offer maximum advantage to the clients. They should also consider the needs and demands of specific ad campaigns and accordingly recommend the best media channels and sources.

Media Planning Vs Media Buying

In order to ensure that a media campaign runs in the best possible manner, it is necessary to use both Media Planning and Media Buying in an effective way. Plenty of companies ignore the importance of one or the other, thereby not being able to reap the best benefits. It is not wise to jump to media buying straight ahead without effective planning, as that would only lead to a major investment without much result. One should also not think that only media planning without appropriate media buying would lead to optimum business promotion.