Thursday, July 23, 2015

Movie Theater Advertisements Are Here to Stay

Most of us have probably been to the movie theater recently and seen a few advertisements on the big screen before the movie begins. This emerging media platform doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon. In fact, theater advertising companies like National CineMedia (NCM) have seen an increase in companies opting to advertise in theaters.

According to MyersBizNet data, cinema advertising revenue totaled $743 million last year and is expected to increase by roughly $20 million this year.

Theater advertising spots are often longer and far more expensive than spots on television. So why advertise there? Well, moviegoers seek out their entertainment opposed to people watching  television  that may very well be a passive activity or mere background noise while cooking dinner or cleaning house. The audience at a theater is captive and engaged. According to Cineplex research, “42 percent of consumers who are moviegoers have a stronger emotional attachment to film than to major televised events, TV shows, magazines and radio.”

The strategy with most cinema advertisements is that it is incorporated with other mediums to reach consumers multiple times.

It is clear that this cinema advertising is here to stay. NCM recently unveiled new tools that they plan to use to make theater advertising even more effective including Audience Targeting Optimizer software that will help brands create media schedules based on movie genres that resonate with target audiences. NCM stated it is working with, “…Rocket Fuel on its new Cinema Accelerator product that will help marketers reach moviegoers online and on their mobile devices, using first-party data like movie ticket purchase data.”

So, as you buy that $10 movie ticket this weekend, be prepared for some long and engaging advertisements. You might even get lucky and see one in 3D!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Report on time spent viewing video among American adults

As consumers have more devices available to watch television content, the question remains how much traditional television is still viewed.  According to research from Nielsen, while video viewing on PCs, smartphones and tablets increase, traditional TVs still have the biggest usage numbers.

MediaPost reports the findings that American adults watch video content weekly on the following devices in these increments:
·        Television: 36 hours and 7 minutes per week
·        Video on a PC (Personal Computer): 1 hour and 30 minutes
·        Video on a smartphone: 13 minutes
·        Video on a tablet: 11 minutes

The reach of these screens with adults breaks down as follows:
·        Television: 87.2%
·        Video on a smartphone: 36.9%
·        Video on a PC: 36%
·        Video on a tablet: 17.5%

Overall, TV still has a large audience potential. Even with the use of DVRs, OnDemand, and streaming services, there is still a significant portion of the population utilizing television.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

African-American media usage by the numbers

Part of effectively building advertising plans to reach the intended audience is doing research. Who do you want to reach? What kind of media do they consume? When are the peak times that the audience is navigating media? Why are some media forms preferred over others? How much do they use? Once these questions can be answered, it can help a buyer start plotting in the essential media forms for that particular audience.

For example, Nielsen along with Essence conducted a survey to see how African-Americans consume media. The Center for Media Research reports the following findings from the study:

·        Overall, this audience over-indexes on almost all media forms compared to the general population as a whole.
·        Total time spent on traditional television is about 201 hours and 43 minutes per month. General population is about 141 hours and 19 minutes.
·        About 52% of those surveyed read magazines compared to 22% of the general population. The report shows that print content typically focuses on culture and heritage specific to the African-American community.
·        About 12 hours a week is spent listening to the radio which is double the total audience at six hours a week. Results show that the peak listening times generally are 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
·        Smartphones have about 81% saturation in the market. On average, this is about 7% more than the general audience.
·        Approximately 56 hours a week are spent using apps or mobile Internet browsers on smartphones. Another two hours and 30 minutes a week are spent watching video content on a mobile device.

Knowing the above general criteria will help an advertiser create competent messaging if wanting to reach this particular audience. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

What's the point in using a unique tracking URL code?

I was recently in a meeting with a client, and we were working to set up a digital protocol for all current and future advertising campaigns. One topic of conversation was the kind of URL (Uniform Resource Locator) to use. A benefit that online campaigns have is how trackable they are. In order to maximize this, we discussed attaching unique tracking URL code to the messaging.

When I say unique tracking URL code, I mean that we are taking the landing page address where we want the ads to be directed to, and adding some descriptive parameters to it. In doing so, the client is able to see on the website analytics side more in-depth details like:

·        What website a visitor came from
·        What creative a visitor clicked
·        Which vendor can be attributed to the click (This is                helpful if you use more than one.)
·        What type of medium can be attributed to the click like        display, email, or search engine marketing

For example, if I ran a digital campaign and directed visitors to the Ruth Burke & Associates homepage of, I’m not able to know on the analytics side where traffic came from. So, if I’m interested in seeing traffic from our blog, I would create the following URL with descriptors like: Blogspot as the campaign source, Blog as the campaign medium, and Unique URL Blog as the campaign name. That way, I know clicks with that information attached to it came from this particular blog post. It will help me see if it resonated with the audience because of how many or few clicks it received compared to normal traffic. Here is an example of the code:

Knowing this information can help clients do A/B testing with creative to see what messaging leads to more clicks; in addition, clients can see which vendors produce the most clicks or which websites drive the most visitors. This information will hopefully aid the advertiser optimize the campaign to be the most effective and successful it can potentially be.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Where are women watching digital video content?

Watching videos online has become the new norm, more or less, for internet users in the United States. The question becomes is there a site where people view content more than others? While YouTube has the lion share of viewership, other vendors have made a dent in the landscape. A new poll conducted by SheSpeaks outlines how American women access digital video content online.

eMarketer reports on the poll results which shows that internet users who are female discover videos through these conduits:

·        YouTube with nearly 100% of poll responders
·        Facebook with 83%
·        Websites at 54%
·        Word-of-mouth at 49%
·        Blogs at 36%
·        Twitter at 27%
·        Instagram at 21%

Facebook is also one of the primary ways the women polled shared video content. Approximately 71% answered that they used Facebook to share.

Research shows that women have the slightly higher Facebook audience than men. In fact, eMarketer released estimates stating that females should hold the majority at 54.9% of the Facebook community from now through 2019.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Emojis become the new norm for internet slang

Communicating with people is something that we humans deem necessary in life. However, communication has branched out into many different forms. Over the last few years, digital stickers or emoticons have invaded our language. In fact, some experts believe that emojis have become the new preferred form of “internet slang.” Acronyms like LOL (Laugh Out Loud) have been dethroned.

In fact, AYTM Market Research polled US adult internet users 18+ about emoji usage in text messages and/or in social media posts. eMarketer reported the following findings:

·        14% of respondents use emojis on social media or text messages often
·        22.7% sometimes use the graphics
·        12.2% rarely use them
·        51% responded that they never use emojis

Please note that this does not take into account the younger internet user demo of 12-17 year olds. It’s estimated that the emoticon usage is much higher among that age bracket.

In regards to the adults 18+ demographic, approximately 58.1% utilize five or fewer emojis on a consistent basis. 

Friday, May 8, 2015

The true/false of media buying and planning

How do you hire someone to join your team? Every industry and place of employment has to determine what will make an ideal candidate for an available position; media planning and buying agencies are no different.

Currently, our agency is looking for a person who can fill our coordinator job position. Because media planning and buying is typically not the main focus of advertising curriculum at universities, a lot of the interviewing process is effectively explaining to college graduates what media planners and buyers do.

For those college graduates who are excited to join the advertising world, first of all, welcome. Secondly, here is a quick true/false list about our job here at Ruth Burke & Associates:

Truth: You need to understand math. Media planning and buying largely consists of balancing budgets, negotiating rates with vendors, updating flowcharts and formulas, dealing with gross budgets, net costs, and calculating client commission rates. Therefore, your brain, a calculator, and Excel are going to be utilized constantly.

False: You quit working every Friday at 4:30p to drink. While we like to have fun and celebrate with agency outings, pizza Fridays, summer hours, holidays, birthday parties, etc., we are here to work. Some other agencies like to advertise the fun atmosphere of the office with “Beer Thirty” on Fridays, which is fun, but it comes from the “work hard, play harder” mentality. Meaning, while it’s fun to stop work on Fridays early, it’s expected to work past the 5pm quitting time all other days of the week. We like to work hard and enjoy life.

Truth: You will get free tickets to concerts and events. This is not a guarantee, but because media planners and buyers constantly work with sales reps from all media, free tickets become available. A lot of the time, the tickets are sent to clients as a “Thank you” for working with us. However, there are times where you can enjoy a concert or show that you wouldn’t have otherwise been able to see.

False: You never travel or get out of the office… hello cubicle! We’ll be honest, the majority of the time, you will be in your office conducting work via email and phone. A large portion of our time is coordinating between the vendor and the client and making sure everything runs smoothly. However, there are times when we get to be social and interact with the media community in a non-work capacity. Also, a good portion of our clients are not local to the Kansas City area. So, occasional market visits can come up. And for those clients who are in Kansas City, we get to go to different areas of town that may not be in our comfort zone.

False: Every media buy is the same, so it’s easy to be a buyer/planner. Every client has a different set of goals when advertising. Budgets are different as are geographic and demographic target parameters. If trying to reach a woman 25-49 in northern Kansas City, it wouldn’t make sense to advertise in a magazine that is distributed only in southern Kansas City. Each media platform has to be evaluated to determine what makes the most sense for the client and the campaign.

Truth: If you like solving puzzles, you might be a planner. A lot of what we do is problem solve. Whether it’s picking up tickets for radio promotion for the client, updating a flowchart and campaign to account for the $20,000 cut in the budget and still keeping the majority of the media unchanged, or determining if a makegood meets the criteria needed to be approved, media planners and buyers ultimately make decisions that affect a lot of different outcomes.

Overall, we look for team members who are willing to lead projects, be the supportive role for other employees when needed, be engaged in the clients’ needs, rein in big ideas and implement them in a real-life way.

One way to best summarize a media planner/buyer’s job objective is to organize the chaos.