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Dave, of course the first impression---when it is actually an "impression" or "exposure" will see the greatest lift but it's a mistake to assume that a second or third impression in a particular time frame has little value. The main thing is the time frame. Professor Jone's analysis of 78 packaged goods brands as I recall, which was the genesis of Erwin's thesis, indicated considerable short term sales effects for homes "exposed" two or more times, but, curiously, he did not provide a breakdown at various frequency levels, so we are left in the dark, somewhat, in interpreting his findings. Returning to the issue at hand, If we select a week as our time frame, as Erwin did---though most brand campaigns with a particular positioning strategy play out for several years, not a week---- it makes sense to try to limit "excessive" exposures as people who have seen ad ad on day one are less likely to pay attention to it a day or two later. However, if the time between exposures is streched out so that the ad is seen for the second time seven or eight days later, attentiveness will be higher. What Erwin was advocating was an every week schedule for every brand with a 70% reach and, if possible, a 1.0 frequency. Of course that was never a possible outcome---even 25 years ago. However, if you take Erwin's "ideal" plan, a 70% weekly reach with a 1.0 frequency and replicate this every week over the course of a year you are buying 3640 GRPs. Assume 90% reach for the year and you are hiting each consumer---on average---40 times. That's a lot of "crabgrass". Still, since the 40 expoures will take place every nine days, maybe the redundency is not as bad as one thinks. It's all a matter of timing---just my opinion, of course.
A lot of platforms have taken backward steps by removing various functions here and there. HuffPo, LinkedIn, FB and others. It's ubiquitous.
Is this good or bad news? What about clutter? Spot pod clutter, usually considered a tune-out factor, is not just about commercial unit length. The number of discrete units, whether spots, promos, or bumpers is also a factor.
I understand and agree Ed. I've spent decades wrestling with this issue.We have audience measurement systems, which can exist at three levels. 1. Delivery 2. Consumed 3. Gained Attention.We're stuck at Level 2.Howvere, there are SO many vectors as to what attention is. What gets my attention, but may not get you attention. My belief is that we will not be able to measure attention with any depth and accuracy.Yes we can use al sorts of tools such as skin response, retinal studies, brain activity. But that is 100% dependent on the content. Should/will every advertiser test their ad? Won't happen. Should the media test their content in which the ad is placed? Won't happen.At this stage I think the most likley approach will be to do bespoke research and tests using the mythical 'average ad' (by category?, by daypart?) for each medium so that strategists and planners can factor in the effect to get an estimated/likely "gained attention" number. Maybe it is the CPMA - Cost Per Thousand Attention, whereas the existing CPM is Cost Per Thousand Consumed.
Totally agree Jack. You said it so much more clearly than I did. Thanks!
Ed, your points about the relative value of incremental frequency in TV campaigns, particularly agagaint heavt viewers makes sense academically, but doesn’t hold up in the field now that we have massive data sets matching ad viewing to purchase at the person/impression level. That data makes clear that Erwin was absolutely right. When it comes to short term sales lift, the first impression is by far the most valuable. I have seen this across thousands of campaigns now. No question that many of those impressions never really landed, but the misses seem to be evenly dispersed.
What Dave is saying here is so much more than about media planning. Nielsen’s way of measuring viewing is at least transparent and we’ll known. And the market has not replaced it. What he is saying is that we have 25 years of online display advertising that has all this data but so little information. We are awash in data. It is not scarce or unavailable anymore. We don’t need more data. We need information and knowledge the algorithms can provide if we ask smart questions. We don’t. We need the right questions.
John, the basic point I'm making is not so much that we don't have anything approaching ad viewing/reading/listening in the audience surveys utilized for media planning and buying, but that these in all cases wildly inflate the actual incidence of advertising noting and message consumption. When we become concerned that we are overexposing heavy TV viewers, for example, and accept the idea that such redundant exposures are "crabgrass", we may be deluding ourselves. In reality the extent of "over exposure" is not nearly as great as we think. Of course it would be desirable to control the number of times a person "sees" our message but in a practical sense we are not going to be able to measure this on a realistic basis anytime soon---if ever. Also, when a brand gets all hot and bothered about diverting "media weight" from heavy to light viewers, it should start by determining how it is selling among both segments and how this stacks up against competing brands who usually have exactly the same "problem". Often, the brand's share of market is about the same in both segments, in which case, shifting weight alters the competitive GRP balance, reducing share of voice among heavy viewers while improving it on the lighter end of the viewing spectrum. Is this always a good idea? Sometimes, yes; sometimes, no.
I 100% agree with the comments about 'attention' to TV. The current method is a proxy for attention.However, this plagues every medium. For example, those who believe that slavishly analysing transaction data for a website or a video stream are deluded. Simple example - I currently have 12 MediaPost tabs open as I type this. All are crediting time. Just this tab is in focus. Not to mention that I have two browsers open. In comparison, TV's proxy is probably better. It is possible to include real-time facial recognition but I would seriousky question what that would do to the quality of the panel and their 'button-pushing'.Magazines and press have the same problem. We ask about 'read or looked into' for titles - not ads. Radio diaries ask for 'listening to at least 8 minutes per quarter hour', and electronic measurement has it's issues with carry-rate - which still don't address attention. Out-of-Home 'fliters' the traffic/footfall data to exclude people who didn't have 'eyes on' the panel - but nothing about attention.Yes, we are right to call on better data around 'attention' for TV but do this in the context of all media.
Without question, the most annoying media story of the week. HBO's new boss wants to destroy the very thing that's made HBO so incredibly successful, as if he doesn't understand the basic differences between the value propositions HBO offers its subscribers vs. what Netflix offers. So billions in annual profits isn't enough for you? Reconition that their product is demonstrably superior to any of its competition isn't enough for you? It's as if someone bought out Nordstrom, then immediately complained they didn't have the same foot traffic as WalMart.Knowing what happens when successful creative entities are taken over by clueless corporate types, I expect we are witnessing the end of a brilliant 30-year success story. (Full disclosure: Long ago, I worked at HBO as a freelance story analyst. And I learned the secret to their success -- and what set them apart from other networks back then -- was never about ratings, or how many hours of TV their subscribers watched per week. It was in how satisfied their subscribers were to pay an extra $10 or $15 a month for the priveledge of having HBO, whether or not they ever watched it. "It's not TV, it's HBO" wasn't just a great ad line, it was a genius strategy. And it's worked ever since. Maybe they should update it to "It's not Netflix. It's HBO."Naah, the suits still won't get it.
Gerard, I am hopeful that the recent moves by the TV industry to better understand how their advertising works and, particularly, both complements and competes with digital will catalyze agencies and others in the eco-system to refocus on stronger, foundeational media planning. It needs a lot of work but I'm hopeful that it's coming.
It's similar to all the CMOs at the ANA Masters of Marketing meeting in October who speak about all the great things they are doing in digital and then show their TV spots!!
All excellent points, especially about the erosion of the conceptual art of media planning. It seems that when device graphs are connected with consumers, a cross platform measurement-and-reporting victory is declared. But this technical feat is useless without full knowledge of the conceptual underpinnings on how advertising works. The TV industry now appears to be committed to learn more how advertising works by packaging ad inventory with the goal of achieving business outcomes. Encouraging. Ths movement could be a catalyst for media agencies to intensify efforts to advance their own TV buying models and train personel on how best to tweak TV (and all media) investments to improve client business. When I was overseeing research and analytics on the media agency side, more often than not the strategic planners would ask my department to run the more complex media planning software modules. I kind of wonder if things have changed. If not, they need to.
Having been very actively involved at what many believe was the inception of "media planning", I have seen how this function rose to prominence---for a time---so long as the agencies thought they could promote it, mainly in new business pitches. However, once they understood what the numbers were saying, namely, not to buy big primetime TV sponsorships or sports or big event specials as well as the advertisers' favorite magazines and other "sacred cows", agency management quickly lost interest---as did most of their client marketing directors. Even when the "media" and "creative" people worked in the same office building, they rearely talked and there was no effort to integrate thses functions, leaving media planners little option but to give clients what everyone knew they wanted--with minor polishing, here and there, like recommending a tad more daytime TV or adding a few pages in a particular magazine ---if the client would allow that.The sad truth is that this kind of thinking is still widely in force----despite a few notable exceptions I have encountered and lots of BS to the contrary. Yet this is a time when many new media options are emerging while traditional media are adapting and becoming more flexible about how they target audiences and how they sell time and space to advertisers. Seemingly oblivious to this, many advertisers are operating as if this was 1988 not 2018 and their entrenched buying systems are not being tempered by the kind of thinking a well versed but fully integrated planner might supply---so little progress is actually being made. Will this unfortunate situation change? Near term, probably not; long term, who knows?
Neil, your point is so important. The investmetns and training in TV planning have gone down so much as clients have squeezed agencies on fees, that these kinds of insights and opportunities just aren't translating into activated plans and buys. And you're further right on target that we need to find ways to bring this into the ecosystem operationally today, since otherwise we're only just talking to ourselves.
I miss the days when planners actually understood what you guys are talking about. Regardless of the quality of the data, unless we really train entry level people to understand the concepts behind the numbers, I'm afraid we're just talking to ourselves.
Am a big fan of AR storeytelling's potential and focusing higher engagement with more episodic content, though the McCluatchy(above) staff didn't really say anything special, its the same recycled talk with AR pursuits/the general value prop, just spun another way. Seriously,
20 years in this business and the buzz words keep on coming. My father once said, that the only "dumb" question is the one you dont ask.What is a Media Inventory Graph?"Behavioral data is linked to a media inventory graph, the combination of which is activated through a work flow and content engine that enables Omnicom agency teams to deliver personalized messaging at scale."You might want to start speaking/writing in a language that people can truly understand or is the use of htis type language here an attempt to mask the notion that render Media Buyers, Media Planners and Media Sellers even more unnecessary as does the Programatic Platforms do to a large degree.
Marketers will need to be able to accurately identify what values are most important to their consumers and determine how those values will be best expressed within the context of their particular category. These will have to come from the consumers’ own points-of-view, and not from marketer preconceptions or assumed definitions. As those consumer views have become more emotionally-driven over the past decade, the addition of tribal political and activist values have transformed the brand space into something marketers haven’t faced before. If marketers think they knew what values were important to consumers before, they are going to need to take a very hard look, very quickly at themselves and their brand, because as of now, it’s extraordinarily likely that consumers have an entirely new-view of what’s ideal for them.The new, value-based bottom line: Consumers are only going to buy from brands that can deliver the values they truly expect. A brand that fails to do that will find themselves facing a consumer backlash.
Ed, no question that , on average,ach "frequency" on TV today certainly represents something less than a fully attentive viewing of the ad, and I'm excited about the future when we enhance our ad viewing measurements with more robust data as Mark suggests. However, I do think that Erwin would still stick with him core mantra that +1 reach is always better than +1 frequency, assuming the quality of each impression is the same. That is the context of the frequency is crabgrass point - additional friequency may be more needed today than before, but sacrifincg oincremental reach to get it isn't the answer.
Mark, no question in my mind that we're giong to see our tlevision and video ad measurements enhanced more and more with directly measured data that captures not only what the vewers are actually doing, but then what they subsequently do - purchase for example. I don't think that it will happen super fast, but it is certainly coming.
Wow. I didn’t realize they had whackadoodles reading MediaPost. You would think someone bothering to read an industry trade publication would know that Netflix is producing prison shows because people want to watch them, not to prepare the population for some dystopian prison-based future. Maybe it’s legal cannabis in CA affecting the brain?
Dish seems to have these same kind of problems on a regular basis. What do you say is the cause that may not be cropping up elsewhere ?