For any brand, advertising is the voice of the brand. What brand likes to communicate, advertising is the source to convey the message to consumers to inform to pursue and to entertain. Through advertising, brands inform about core benefits, purpose and awareness. Persuasion creates consumer urge for the brand. Entertainment engages consumers and attracts their attention.
To drive awareness, brands need to stand out, be seen and engage consumers. The best strategy for the brand is to budget advertising money as much as it can be possible. To invest in mass media to gain entry into the consumer’s mind using TV, digital, viral video, out of home, or magazine. Where it makes sense, sponsorships, and experiential events can increase the consumer’s familiarity with the brand.
To move consumers to the consideration stage, use influencers to teach those seeking to learn more. Use public relations to make the brand part of the news, whether through traditional, social, or blogger channels.
For more complex or higher risk purchase decisions, consumers will rely on search for almost everything, even if to confirm what makes sense. Marketers can use search sites, such as Google, expert review sites, and online content, or long copy print media.
Media options to help trigger purchase, include point-of-sale advertising, with in-store signage, displays, and sales materials to prompt consumers at the purchase moment. Remarketing is a great tool to push consumers who might feel stuck at the consideration stage to reconsider and buy.
It is crucial to engage and to connect consumers through the media plan and it is more crucial to create media content that explains the real purpose of the brand to fascinate brand story where consumers are most willing to engage, listen, think, feel, and act in ways that payback to the brand.
The purpose cannot be fulfilled without the understanding of consumers’ life moments with a clear understanding of emotional benefits as pursued by the consumers. Media creative execution should be patched with emotional benefits for the consumers, linked closely to the consumer’s life moments. An excellent tool to use is to map out the “day-in-the-life” of the target consumer and place messages where they are most likely to engage. Using consumer insights to make the messages personal to make consumers feel special and attached to the brand.
Media plan must begin shifting to a maintenance media plan, enough to maintain the brand’s leadership presence and perception. Stay aware of the competitive activity, which may force to adjust budget levels. At this point, the brand can shift some of media resources into enhancing the consumer experience, to retain happy consumers, and to drive a deeper love to harness an army of brand lovers. The brand can begin creating shareable experiences for brand lovers to share with their friends.
Days were gone when Old-school marketing used to yell their messages at every possible consumer using mass media, then move consumers naturally through the brand funnel from awareness to purchase and loyalty. With so few media choices, consumers could not escape the advertising. If consumers did not respond the first time, show it to them again and again. Back in the days, it was all about the interruption of consumers, with brands focused primarily on day-after brand recall. Many times, the more annoying the ad, the better it would work. This media planning is not quite the sophisticated media strategy brands need today.
New-school marketing whispers to the most loyal brand fans, hoping they drive awareness with influence on their friends. The word of a friend will bring more influence to their purchase decision than a random TV ad. As the brand moves to the masses, consumers look for the advice of trusted peers whom they respect to know enough about the latest and greatest of the category. They also look to the brand lovers, giving them evidence the brand does deliver what it promises.
In the end, it is imperative that media plan should map out where consumer open to listening. Brands must strategies media plan to place media on the part of the consumer’s life where they will watch, listen, learn, engage, decide, and act. Align with life moments, whether they are parts of the day, the week, the year, or even milestone moments in their life. And win the hearts and minds of the consumers.