How can this be?
In my world, the lines between media and creative are blurred. Media and creative walk hand in hand, since creativity is an expectation from both. The best ideas fall flat without media to bring them to the world and ensure they reach the right audience.
And highly efficient and targeted media buys that aren’t wanted or relevant will either be ignored or filtered by the audience. This leaves no space between media and creative. We now share a common goal; to create connections and experiences.
In the past, media focused on smart budget allocations based on reach and frequency, but today media is much more complex. The numbers will always be a priority, but with empathy-based media planning, we place the person, not a metric, at the center.
We want our messages to add value to people’s lives. And our focus is not on the distribution method, it is on attracting people to our message via good ideas.
Instead of launching a product with ads, our media and creative team recently partnered with the History channel to create a week with uniquely themed content. This unconventional idea not only broke traffic records for our client, but also boosted ratings for the History channel, creating a win-win for all parties. This could not have happened without media and creative collaborating from ideation to execution.
The old model of creative presenting ads and media presenting a flowchart at the end of the pitch is long gone. We aren’t buying from a rate card anymore; we’re using negotiation and partnership skills to co-create and make the impossible possible.
Creative and media together make certain the message is relevant and adds value to consumers’ lives, based on the idea, the audience and the engagement. There’s a symbiosis that will only get stronger in the future.
I felt this power of shared inspiration recently at a Google conference, sitting next to my chief creative director. I knew we could walk out the door and together make things happen immediately. I didn’t have to sell an idea to a creative team, and he didn’t have to fight with media for budget. With media and creative starting out at the table together, the innovation journey goes further, faster.
If you’re not giving media a seat at your agency creative team table, and if creative and media aren’t pitching, presenting and working in tandem, you may want to rethink your strategy to include the people who are ultimately responsible for connecting your ideas to the outside world.
There are a lot of great concepts that die within the halls of an agency, but including media early on is one way to increase the chances that the next one sees the light of day.