My own media habits have changed immeasurably, there are so many great things I love about the way media and technology has advanced; I can watch, listen and read what I want, when and where I want.

Advertising is more relevant and targeted to my individual needs than ever before.

There is no doubt that  it enhances my life in many ways. At the same time, though, I am always on and constantly connected, which makes my life busier – and I am sure that of many others – busier and cluttered. Adding to this is the abundance of content, which can sometimes be overwhelming.

This brings challenges to media owners in that they need to build brands that you and I choose to spend time with. On the flip side, they also need to demonstrate to advertisers that they can deliver the right audiences and impact for their campaign.

To do this, media owners must showcase to audiences and advertisers the unique value of their brands and platforms. Of course, this is not as simple as it once was.

Media choices are always in flux. New players emerge that did not even exist yesterday. The competitive set is always changing; content is always changing; and the audience’s needs and expectations are always changing. Both advertisers and media owners need to better understand when the right time is to target people, why it is the right moment, and the right platform and brand.

In the midst of the constant change of media, brands, and content, people have an almost infinite choice when it comes to how, when and where they spend their time and money.

So, how do I decide? Well, I choose the media that positively comes to mind at the relevant moment – the moment that matters to me.

Those brands and platforms that I choose are those most likely to come to mind easily; the ones I associate with meeting my needs. This is because media brands, like other brands, act as mental shortcuts, enabling people to make decisions quickly, intuitively and often, unconsciously. We are creatures of habit, so the platform or media brand considered “best” will be the one that best fits my needs at that very moment. Do I really want to search through the relative strengths and weaknesses of all the breakfast radio shows before choosing? No. Hence my media usage is broadly similar (or almost exactly the same) day-to-day.

Understanding how to influence the choices we make is paramount for media owners and advertisers to measure media platform effectiveness and increase potential (the ability to encourage people to spend time with them and measure the strength in advertising).

To fully understand effectiveness, we have to understand why people do what they do and when they do it, just as much as what people are doing in the first place.

Herein lies some of the major challenges for media owners and advertisers alike. If the mental network associated with media platforms and brands (or destinations, services, apps, etc.) help people make, often, unconscious choices, the added challenge for media brands is that the cost of switching is frequently free (or very low). Moreover, people are creatures of habit and habitually choose relatively few media out of many options.

To be chosen, we must grab people’s attention. With this almost constant competition for audiences, it is important to know the distinctive character your assets bring to people and thus to advertisers; what elements bring the brand to the minds of consumers? With so much choice, it, perhaps, goes without saying that every brand and every platform has a role to play.

There are three key questions that media owners and advertisers should be asking when thinking about understanding the effectiveness of a particular platform or channel:

  1. Am I reaching the right people, at the right time, in the right way?
  2. Why is it the right moment to reach these people? This is what needs to be leveraged and promoted so as to be compelling.
  3. Can I prove the unique value that one platform or channel offers to both people and advertisers? Naturally, this may be incremental as part of any campaign

To get the answers to these questions right, you need to truly understand how platform effectiveness can be measured, understood and optimized to create impactful campaigns, and then you’ll be well on your way.

By: Anthony Njoroge

Head of Connect

 Ipsos Ghana.


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