PBL Task 8

When to use a media agency and how to select the media mix?

·       What is a media agency?

o   What is the definition of a media agency?

An advertising agency or ad agency or advert agency is a service based business dedicated to creating, planning, and handling advertising (and sometimes other forms of promotion) for its clients.

o   What are tasks and core competences of media agency?

Media planners identify which media platforms would best advertise a client’s brand or product. They work within advertising agencies or media planning and buying agencies. They enable their clients to maximise the impact of their advertising campaigns through the use of a range of media.

Media planners combine creative thinking with factual analysis to develop appropriate strategies to ensure that campaigns reach their target audiences as effectively as possible. They apply knowledge of media and communication platforms to identify the most appropriate mediums for building awareness of a client’s brand.

Source: http://www.prospects.ac.uk/media_planner_job_description.htm

o   What are different kinds of media agencies? Give examples.

1. Advertising Agency

The oldest and most common type of agency is an advertising or ad agency; from Mad Men to the largest holding companies and agency networks, ad agencies were the only game in town until 1996 when the first web browser was launched. The largest ad agencies and their advertising holding companies diversified to offer all types of marketing; the most frequent division was and still is media planning and buying services, but now include every other functional discipline, from branding, to internet marketing. No question, the core service from ad agencies remains advertising. Large ad agencies dominate TV advertising—both creative and media, along with all types of print (magazines, newspapers), radio, outdoor, and Internet. Medium-size ad agencies may provide similar services, but without the multinational offices, or multiple, functional divisions. Small ad agencies typically focus on print, but could do radio and internet. Ad agencies tend to focus on retail and package goods clients (business-to-consumer), but will also work with business-to-business clients that require advertising, and/or have significant marketing budgets.

2. Media Planning/Buying Agency/Service 

Often part of an advertising agency, media agencies specialize in all aspects of strategy, research, planning, buying, and placement of all types of media including TV, newspaper, magazines, radio, outdoor, and online. Like other agency types, media agencies often engage in other types of marketing, most notably, advertising development and market research. Large media agencies are critically important to large advertisers, due to negotiation leverage and multi-national networks.

3. Promotion Agency 

The next largest portion of agencies are promotional in focus, typically working with retail and package-goods clients for promotional campaigns that include advertising, coupons, sweepstakes, contests, loyalty programs, merchandising displays, packaging and related; today many promotion agencies are hybrids that will do all other types of marketing.

4. Public Relations (PR) Agency 

A variety of services encompass publicity or public relations including media relations, investor relations, and crisis communications. Traditional PR activities include news announcements, article writing and placement, and press conferences or events. PR firms often engage in event marketing, new product launches, website development, social media, and educational initiatives. Also, advertising or marketing agencies often provide PR services.

5. Marketing/Marketing Services Agency

As advertising has declined in importance for all but the largest brands, many advertising agencies have evolved into marketing or marketing services agencies, typically providing a variety of services that could be offered by other specialist agencies listed here. Often marketing/marketing services agencies refer to themselves as full-service agencies and provide advertising, PR, strategy and planning, direct, Internet, branding, photography and video, and other types of marketing. Many small and mid-size agencies refer to themselves as marketing agencies, and not ad agencies.

6. Internet/Interactive/Digital Agency

With the growing importance of Internet marketing, social media, e-commerce, content marketing and related, one of the fastest-growing agency types describe themselves as one or more variations of Internet/Interactive or Digital agencies. Such agencies will design websites, social media networks, manage blogs, and more. In addition, further specialization is common with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agencies or consultants, Paid Search or Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, or applications (Apps).

7. Direct Marketing Agency

Direct marketing agencies started as experts in direct mail, a tactic in decline, but have reinvented themselves as experts in email, Internet marketing, customer databases, analytics and more. Like other agency types, direct marketing hybrid agencies are common.

8. Branding/Identity Agency

Branding or brand identity agencies are often boutique agencies, or divisions of ad agency networks. Branding agencies provide a range of services from logos, to brand name development, to packaging, graphic identities, signage, and environmental design (typically retail store design). Often branding agencies will provide marketing research in support of brand strategy, and may engage in website design, advertising, annual reports and more.

9. Design Agency 

Often smaller agencies will position themselves as design agencies or studios. Design agencies often perform a variety of services including brand identity, website design, advertising, packaging, brochures and all types of print collateral, and more. Some studios will specialize in certain types of design, for example, annual reports.

10. Social Media Agency

One of the fastest growing agency specialties is social media, or social media marketing.  Social media agencies specialize in creating and managing a brands social media networks. Today, the top social media networks command most of the effort including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, along with newer networks like Pinterest and Instagram. Beyond profile design and implementation, social media agencies often manage blogs, content research and development, video, and increasingly web design, and search engine optimization.

11. Specialty Agencies

We group all other types of marketing agencies as specialty agencies, that either focus on a functional marketing discipline or niche market segment. Examples of functional specialists include search optimization or paid search, packaging and merchandising, video, or brand name development. Market or category specialists include different ethnic marketing agencies (Hispanic, Asian, etc.), cause marketing, healthcare marketing, and software marketing. The sponsor of this guide, Amalgamated Marketing, is a network of specialty agencies.

Now that you understand the difference between the many different types of agencies, learn about the 4 Steps to Marketing Agency Selection.  To learn how to choose a marketing agency, link link to our blog. Also, you can download our free guide: The Definititve Marketing Agency Selection Guide.

Source: http://www.amalgamatedmarketing.com/11-types-of-marketing-agencies

·       When to use a media agency?

o   What are pros and cons of using a media agency?


An advertising agency is a professional service provider that develops and administers advertising campaigns for businesses of all sizes. Advertising agencies are highly specialized in creating advertisements for traditional media as well as emerging technology, such as internet video and social networks. Agencies can act as full-service boutiques, handling a campaign every step of the way, or they can perform contract work on a specific portion of a campaign, such as advertisement design.

Cost Advantages

One significant advantage of using an advertising agency, as with other professional service-providers, is the cost savings. Advertising agencies absorb a wide range of administrative and service-oriented expenses, including machinery, salaries for top-talent individuals and established distribution systems. Simply paying a fee to an advertising agency can help your business to avoid the costs associated with adding an entire department to your operations, not to mention the logistical cost of developing advertisements in-house.

Professional Experience

Selecting a reputable advertising agency ensures that your advertising campaigns will be developed and administered by the cream of the crop in the advertising industry. Ad agencies hire the best of the best, and their specialists’ skills are honed further by focusing solely on developing and maintaining advertising campaigns for a wide range of clients.

Hiring experienced, top-level marketing personnel in-house can be an insurmountable challenge for many small businesses, and taking advantage of professional services can allow your campaigns to achieve the same level of quality as the major players in your industry.

Industry Insiders

Established advertising agencies already have a wealth of industry contacts and relationships from which to pull when putting your advertising campaign into action. Agencies typically have established relationships with printing companies, local and national media outlets, independent publicists and publishing companies. These relationships may have taken years to cultivate, giving the ad agency a tremendous advantage over new, in-house marketing departments that have little experience in the local advertising community.

Strategic Control

Advertising agencies will typically consult with you frequently throughout the campaign development process, ensuring that you are completely satisfied with the campaign from start to finish. Advertising professionals will get to know your business, your products and your company culture, as well as your personal preferences, before crafting a campaign that effectively conveys the uniqueness and value of your organization.

Source: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/advantages-advertising-agency-3594.html




o   How to consider budget when using a media agency?

·       How to select the right media mix?

o   What are the components of media mix?

Combination of advertising channels employed in meeting the promotional objectives of a marketing plan or campaign.

o   What is a media plan?

o Define the following concepts:

Source: http://www.three-ships.com/blog/striking-the-right-balance-in-your-digital-marketing-mix

  • Paid: Google pay-per-click ads, Facebook ad campaigns, mobile click-to-call ads or other forms of paid advertisement. One quick caveat: paid ads may generate traffic but often it is low quality. People who click on a paid link stay on the site for 20-30 seconds on average while people who click on an organic link stay for 90 seconds – 2 minutes.
  • Owned: The content, whether video, blog, whitepapers, images or social media networks that you or your company have produced. These are used to drive organic traffic and in the long-run provide more value than paid media.
  • Earned: This is the promotion you hope for from your customers, prospective customers and online community members. Producing content that others choose to share, “like,” promote to friends or opt into is deemed “earned media.”
  • Shared: This is externally generated content that is open to the community and revolves around your company’s online presence. This includes things like social media status updates that mention or promote your company.

Source: http://www.toprankblog.com/2011/07/online-marketing-media-mix/

Paid Media – Often thought of as “traditional” online advertising through display ads, pay per click search ads and sponsorships. The pro for paid media is it’s ability to be implemented pretty much on-demand, the ability to have some degree of control and also that it scales. The growing popularity of social advertising on sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn (YouTube as well) adds another option for marketers to gain presence in channels where consumers and buyers are spending their time. The appearance of brand messages and content within paid media can work together with social sharing and organic search.

Earned Media – The result of public & media relations efforts to gain coverage in publications – on and offline. Or essentially, brand presence within media without having to advertise. This definition also extends to brands that behave online in such a way that “customers empowered to publish” create content on the brand’s behalf inspiring buzz and word of mouth.

Owned Media – Media, content and assets that the brand controls, like websites, blogs, newsletters and brand social media accounts. Brands are increasingly behaving like publishers with editorial staff managing content creation steams. “Content Marketing” is the hot topic when it comes to Owned Media and can facilitate brand information discovery through search and social channels. Content engages customers and fosters relationships throughout the customer lifecycle. Brand content to serve both broad and niche audiences is not immediately scalable, but can provide long term growth benefits without corresponding growth in costs.

Shared Media – Brand social web participation and interaction with consumers on content on sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube that  results in content is “shared media” since it’s a result of a shared interaction. Because of the nature of social sharing and engagement on social media sites, Shared Media can propagate across an individual’s network to others, and so on and so on.  Paid and Owned Media can inspire Shared Media. Shared Media can inspire Earned Media.


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