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Guru Search Results: 193 matches were found

Tuesday, November 25, 2003 #6273
I am trying to gather research on the topic "no impression is created equally." Specifically I'm looking for a ratio for TV impressions compared to a consumer magazine impressions and stadium signage impressions. In your archives, I have found where you reference going to The Advertising Research Foundation Info Center (July 16th, 2001#4581). Do you have a current take on an impression weighting factor comparing TV to magazines and stadium signage? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 28, 2003 ):
Generally, advertisers develop thier own indices based on results they experience. Obviously print's strength vs TV's is very different for a women's fashion brand than for a beer.

Friday, October 24, 2003 #6217
What is the rationale for using a mix of :30 and :15 second spots vs. either alone?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 26, 2003 ):
:15s cost less than :30s. Therefore, replacing some :30 spots with :15s extends the schedule, yielding added reach / frequency / impressions, etc.

:30s generally communicate more / better than :15s. Often a schedule begins as all-:30 before :15s are mixed in once the message ius established.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003 #6125
What format should a Post Buy Analysis document be set in?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 17, 2003 ):
The Guru would use a spread sheet, showing columns of
  1. Medium/vehicle
  2. Audience bought
  3. Cost estimate
  4. Audience delivered
  5. Final cost
  6. Planned cpp
  7. Planned vs achieved audience
  8. Planned vs achieved efficiency Index

Depending upon how your plan and buying platform were structured, your "audience" units might be impressions or GRP, your "efficiency" might be CPM or CPP. You might evaluate program by program / magazine by magazine or summarize by dayparts / types or media totals. You might compare to average audience guarantees.

A text overview document should be included.

Thursday, July 03, 2003 #6059
how do you convert CPC to CPM?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 03, 2003 ):
Assuming that by "CPC" you mean "cost per click" then you need CTR (click thru rate) as another variable.

CTR = total clicks ÷ total ad impressions (ad serves).

CPC times CTR times 1000 = CPM

Monday, June 23, 2003 #6030
Dear Guru,As a media planner, what should I care CPM for? Since I need your info very urgent, pls reply soon. Appreciate your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 27, 2003 ):
Lower cpm means more impressions per dollar (or whatever currency unit you use). Planners need to consider this in selecting media and vehicles.

Saturday, June 21, 2003 #6029
Dear Guru, Please help me to clarify these issues : - What CPT and CPM stand for ? - Are the formulas to calculate them as follows : CPT=(Costx1000)/Impression CPM=(Costx1000)/Reach(000) - Impression and Reach in thousand are not the same,are they? Impression include duplication but the reach in thousand does not. Impression = Reach(000)x OTS? - Therefore, there must be different b/w CPT & CPM. But it seems that most books consider them as the same. - GRP = OTS x Reach (%)or GRP = Frequency x Reach (%)? - Does OTS have some meaning of impression? Since these issue confuse me now so much and I current get a stuck in preparing a report. Pls do reply me as soon as possible. Many thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 21, 2003 ):
You have tangled up several ideas and defintions. In different countries, some of these terms are used differently or not used. For example, in the Guru's base of the U.S., we do not use "opportunities to see (OTS)," and though you may be in Thailand, the Guru will not assume so.

CPM stands for cost per thousand impressions; the "M" is the Roman numeral M, meaning one thousand. CPT is not familiar in the US, but is probably another indicator of Cost per Thousand impressions.

The Guru most often sees "OTS" used as equivalent to "impressions" but sometimes as a reference to average frequency, so here are the simplest definitions.

"impressions" are the number of advertising exposures, i.e. the number of different people exposed to advertising times the average number of occasions on which they are exposed. Thus, duplication is included.

"number of different people exposed" is equivalent to "reach."

"Number of occasions on which they are exposed" is equivalent to "frequency."

CPM is cost of advertising divided by impressions in thousands. Reach is not involved.

When reach is expressed as a percentage of a target group, then reach x frequency = GRP.

Monday, March 24, 2003 #5902
Dear Guru, I hope you can help answer this question. If I have a TV Schedule and a Radio Schedule, and I mix them together using a media mix program, I am asked which Population base to use. If I pick the Radio market pop, I get smaller Gross impressions, than if I used the TV market pop. Which one of these is the correct way? I have to explain this to a client. Thanks in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 24, 2003 ):
Radio is typically based on a Metro (MSA) geography and TV on a Nielsen DMA geography, which is usually larger. In reality, Radio GRP would be lower in the DMA area (reduced coverage due to distance), but the DMA basis is probably to be preferred.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003 #5886
Greetings Guru! Some clarification on basic web-site metrics would be much appreciated. What are the current evaluation metrics? Is it Unique visits, page views, and time spent on site? I am confused about the utility of page views- am I correct in my understanding that a page view does not mean that the ad was actually "served" and if it was not served, then there was no "opportunity to see", so what is the value in reporting this number? Are web-sites providing Ad-view data? R.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 20, 2003 ):
Are you evaluating a site or an ad campaign? Unique visits is about the site's reach. Pageviews is about the sites total impressions, If a page is designed with ad positions, an ad is served when the page is served. This does not mean the user saw an ad if the user has images turned off or uses ad-blocking software, but the site can't control that, although it can track it.

Generally, web sites provide you ad view data about a campaign if you are the buyer. Thre are various ways to provide thie data, ranging from third party ad-serving servces to site's internal server logs.

Time spent relates to a site's opportunity to expose pages and ads; of more use to the site operator than the media planner.

Tuesday, March 04, 2003 #5865
What are the pros and cons of using a :15 tv spot versus a :30 tv spot? Does emotional based creative work well in a smaller unit size, like a :!5 tv spot? Thanks, WP

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 08, 2003 ):
By any measure of impact, e.g. recall, persuasion, etc. :30's will always beat :15s, one for one. By measures of media communications, e.g, reach, frequency, GRPs, impressions, :15's will always beat :30's, in a campaign. In a campaign, these latter measures may mean overall recall and impact favor :15s, if the message can be communicated.

Tuesday, February 11, 2003 #5824
An increasing number of tri-vision billboards are becoming available in metro areas. Can one assume that a tri-vision billboard would be less desirable than a static board with a similar DEC/showing, as it would yield only 1/3 of the total impressions? Is there research showing that people are more likely to look at a tri-vision board as it is "active" and eye-catching. If I were to make a decision based on CPMs, would I have to cut the DEC by 2/3 to get "apples to apples" impressions? What is your opinion of tri-vision vs. static billboards?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 17, 2003 ):
The Guru agrees about division of the impressions. One would have to examine the length of the display-change cycle versus the duration of exposure for the passing traffic to support attention getting benefits.

Top-line, the Guru thinks the advantage is more for the display company than the advertiser.

Tuesday, December 10, 2002 #5671
I am doing a media plan for a global biotech company and they advertise in the major trade and science journals. They gave me geography goals of 65% US, 30% Europe and 5% Japan. Meaning the % of impressions in each region they want to reach. How do I calculate the percent that they are reaching with the current plan? For example, do I just take the Europe circulation of the publication and multiply it by the total number of insertions scheduled for that pub to get the total number of impressions in europe? Media Guru, I need your help, I don't know how I am going to reach 30% in Europe. Thanks so much.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 15, 2002 ):
If you assume circulation = readers, then your formula works. In most cases, trade media like these won't have any survey-based audience research available. so circulaiton is a good basis.

Obvioulsy, you need to be considering titles published in some of the regions you wish to cover. See PubList

Sunday, October 27, 2002 #5582
How can you calculate GRPs for magazines and billboards?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 27, 2002 ):
It depends on what information you are starting with. If you have impressions, then impressions ÷ universe is the answer. In magazines, impressions are an accumulation of average issue audience. In billboards, it's the accumulation of daily effective circulation (D.E.C.).

Sunday, June 30, 2002 #5387
I'm working in Japan this summer and trying to get as infomration on the effectiveness of advertising and using a mix of media vs. buying only Tv. Are there any statistics on reach and frequency measurements or can you suggest a simple way I can translate the information to my client without getting too technical? - Difficult to cross the language barrier.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 01, 2002 ):
Keep in mind that in different countries and cultures media behave differently, media mix differently and reach/frequency cumes differently. The U.S. Hispanic market's media are very different than U.S. general market media, for example. Therefore, it would be a mistake to think about simply translating U.S. concepts. Basic definitions such as rating or impressions should be safe, but mathematical relationships or impact measures can bne quite different.

Try Japan Marketing Association for some help.

Wednesday, May 22, 2002 #5300
what are the best metrics for measuring: effectiveness efficiency

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 23, 2002 ):
1. When available, the best metric for effectiveness is sales or some direct measure of the ultimate goal. Sometimes the ultimate goal is a change in image or increse in awareness. These goals are almost never purely a result of media, except in controlled test scenarios.

2. Media efficiency is simply a matter of definition:
Audience achieved per dollar spent.
"Audience" may be expressed as thousands of impressions or rating points or sometimes, net reach

Saturday, April 27, 2002 #5252
what is the total cost of space or times for a 30 second radio spot in ny, and for an internet web site?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 29, 2002 ):
For radio, consult SQAD. Local internet costs generally range around $10 to $20 cost per thousand impressions.

Saturday, April 20, 2002 #5234
How much, in general, does internet advertising cost? Specifically, banners and intersitials. Also, how much is it, approximately, to create a web-site.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 21, 2002 ):
Currently the range is from a few cents per click to $200 per thousand impressions. $10-15 cpm might be an average for traditional advertisers on major sites.

The range to create web sites is even greater, depending on features. A one page display of good can be homemade for next to nothing using just your own time. A complex, ecommerce site, with audieo and video samples could cost upwards of $1 million to build and maintain.

Saturday, March 02, 2002 #5130
Media Guru - if you are already using SOV and SOD models, is there a way to determine share of EFFECTIVE voice? And How does inflation/deflation effect SOV?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 04, 2002 ):
When you use possibly idiosyncratic terms, the Guru is less certain that his response addresses your actual query.

The Guru will assume for the sake of this answer that by "SOV", you mean share of messages/ GRP/impresions being delivered in the category and by "SOD" you mean share of advertising dollars being spent in the category.

Therefore to compare effective SOV you must begin by assigning relative weights to messages depending on the media type and ad unit, so that if a TV :30 has an index of 100, perhaps a TV :10 has a value of 70, a Radio :60 has a value of 80, A newspaper full page has value of 90, a magazine 4 color spread has a value of 120, etc. (these are NOT recommended values, just for the sake of example).

Then by applying these indices to impressions measured in each medium and unit, you can calculate a Share of Effective Voice.

Since SOV is calculated for a specific, measured period of time, inflation/delation shouldn't be a factor.

Friday, March 01, 2002 #5127
I am a student trying to target the affluent for radio advertising. Is it possible to obtain reach and frequency when I don't know exactly how may individuals are in this market. Thank you. Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 04, 2002 ):
If you think of reach and gross impressions in thousands, then there is no problem; if you want Percent reach, then obviously you need to have an estimate of the size of your target universe.

Scarborough is a resource which can provide universes and percent reach estimates for an affluent audience, if you can define affluent in concrete terms, e.g. HH income over $100K.

Friday, February 08, 2002 #5072
what is GRP

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 10, 2002 ):
"Gross rating points" is a comarison of the impressions delivery of a schedule to the target universe size. One million gross impressions equates to 100 GRP if the target population is one million.

Wednesday, January 23, 2002 #5030
Hi Mr Guru. Just wondering : in the basic (reachxfrequency)xCPM/1000 formula, I have a question about reach. Are we talking about the number of people who see the ad, or who might see the ad ? E.g. the 500,000 people who drive by a billboard every week, but who don't necessarily see it. Thanks a lot.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
There is a term - "opportunity to see" - more commonly used in Europe and probably more descriptive than our own "impressions." Each research measurement has a standard for inclusion in the reported audience. For outdoor it may be something like: the number of cars passing a billboard each day time an average of 1.7 passengers per car. In magazine, the number of persons who say they looked into the most recent issue. There are arguements about why each overstates the numbers actually exposed to the ad. However, reach and frequency systems are usually built to deal with the reported audiences fed to them. Most sytems have allowances to adjust inputs or results based on attentiveness, noting or other refinements.

Wednesday, January 09, 2002 #4989
I have some questions about duplication. If I want to find the duplication between 2 titles (i.e. what % of readers of either title read both) do I want to determine net or gross duplication. Should I be dividing duplication impressions by gross impressions of the two titles or net reach of the tow titles? When would you want to look at net duplication instead of gross duplication?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 13, 2002 ):
"Net" and "gross" usually refer to the unduplicated or total audiences, respectively, rather than variants of duplication.

There are just a few simple quantities involved. It is easier to consider them as impressions (numbers of persons) than percentages at first:

  • Let A = Persons in the average issue audience of title A
  • Let B = Average issue audience of title B
  • Let X = Persons in within A who are also within B (i.e. readers of A who also read B)
  • Let Y = Persons within B who are also within A.
  • Let Z = Readers of A and B

The first thing that you should realize is that X, Y and Z are all the same group of people!

You may then consider:

  • X ÷ A = Magazine A's percent duplication by Magazine B
  • Y ÷ B = Magazine B's percent duplication by Magazine A
  • Z ÷ A + B = the duplication of the "pair," Magazine A and Magazine B

Any of these are facts you might use depending on the point you are trying to make. As far as labeling goes,
Gross audience is A + B.
Net unduplicated audience is A + B - Z.

Sunday, January 06, 2002 #4981
I am trying to compare cpm between print and radio. The demo is Adults 18-54. I have the readership for the demo for the MSA for the print. I have the gross impressions for the radio and have calculated a cpm for all (both the print and radio). Is this correct? Can I compare readership against GI's?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 06, 2002 ):
Yes, readership is equivalent to impressions.

Thursday, January 03, 2002 #4973
Can you please explain the difference between TV network and spot buying. What is the equivalize and non-equivalize concept. Why is it used in network buying and not in spot(units are not equivalized). Also can you please explain the reweight concept. How do you come up with reweight cpm. Why can you just do a straight year cpm comparison.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 04, 2002 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about equivalizing. "Why use it?" is a good question regardless of the network versus spot element. The use of equivalence is an artifact of mass buying by corporation wherein large numbers of :15's and :30s are bought but need to be readily comparable. In spot, this type of buying is less common. Also, network :15s are almost alwasy priced at 50% of :30's making equivalence simple. In spot the ratio is usually higher, and inconsistent.

In network, the geography for CPP / CPM is consistent, so that CPP and CPM can be converted back and forth based on simple multiplication or divsion by the relevant demographic universe. In spot however, while CPP is based on the defined DMA (or occasionally metro) geography, CPM is based on impressions generated anywhere, so there is no simple mathematical relationship.

For other network buying concepts use the Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine.

Thursday, January 03, 2002 #4971
Dear Guru - Was there ever a "chart" that enabled media buyers to calculate reach/freq, gross impressions etc for broadcast television planning. I have been explaining to someone that we use programs for this kind of thing, but this person seems to remember using a chart and thinks i should be able to do this manually if he could. I've never heard of it, have you? He would have been planning around 1975. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 03, 2002 ):
Yes, before computers became common in the 80's, when there were just 3 networks, with 90%+ share, no cable, and few independent stations, R&F tables were the way it was done. Every few years, using Nielsen cume studies of actual scehdules, average reaches for various GRP levels were calculated. There might be variables for the number of programs or episodes used. In this way all possibilities for a daypart could be displayed on a single, typed page.

Today, with computers on every desk, 6 broadcast networks amassing only 50% share, dozens of cable options and hundreds of independent stations, accuracy requires computer systems. Such crude tables could be still constructed, but why bother when computers and software are so readily available?

The Guru who was using the charts in the 60's, is happy with his computer today.

Tuesday, December 04, 2001 #4921

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 05, 2001 ):
Reach is the number of Different people (net) exposed to a campaign or schedule. It may be expressed in numbers of unduplicated impressions or as a percentage of the relevant target audience.

Reach is sometimes carlessly (and inaccurately) used in reference to the potential audience of a cable network, i.e. subscribers, when it should only be used to refern to an audience exposed to advertising.

Thursday, October 25, 2001 #4828
hi guru, can u tell me a difference between reach & impression?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 25, 2001 ):
Every time a person is exposed to an advertisement, an impression is created. One person exposed twice = 2 impressions. Two people each exposed once = 2 impressions. Reach is the number of different persons exposed to advertising. Reach is often expressed as a percentage of the target population.

Friday, October 12, 2001 #4785
What is the difference between 100 GRPs in Canada and 100 TRPs in US? I've heard that it is harder to reach Canadains than it is Americans through television, is that true? If so, why?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 15, 2001 ):
100 GRPs means a quantity of impressions equal to the size of the population. So in Canada, 100 GRPs represents about 11% as many impressions as in the US, since Canada has 11% as big a population.

'Harder to reach' might mean many different things. Perhaps the major programs in Canada have lower ratings than in the US, or there are more different program choices. Or cume patterns are lower for whatever reason. Or cost per point is greater due to less economy of scale.

Tuesday, October 09, 2001 #4766
Can you provide a guide for calculating the optimal number of advertisements to place per annum using radio, TV, an Newspaper Printing?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 10, 2001 ):
There is no basis for such a rule of thumb. Pay more attention to impressions, reach / frequency, etc

Tuesday, September 04, 2001 #4696
Dear Guru: What value would you give to a :10 live radio liner versus that of a :30 spot? Would you consider the value of the liner the same --- an impression is an impression regardless of the spot length? Thank you for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 08, 2001 ):
There is certainly less value in a liner. Typically liners are ojly mentions of the advertiser in conjuntion with a program or event, e.g. "Come down and meet our DJs at the mall, courtesy of (advertiser)."

In this case, the value is hard to compare to a brand :30 message, because it isn't aiming at the same goals, but valuing it at a simple proportionate one-third is reasonable. If the liner is a miniaturized barnd message, it may be worth half based on simple awareness building. If you're couunting impressions for bragging purposes, as in charging up the sales force or trade, you might play the 'an impression is and impresssion' game.

Thursday, August 23, 2001 #4674
hi guru, can u tell me difference between SoV and SoM and whats the significance of it?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 26, 2001 ):
Both are ways to consider the competitive situation.
  • SOV is share of voice, the advertiser's proportion of all the advertsing in the category. It's usually share of weight (impressions) but sometimes is evaluated as share of spending.
  • SOM is share of market. This is the advertiser's proportion of all the sales in the category. It can be evaluated as share of units sold or share of dollar sales.

Friday, August 17, 2001 #4663
Love, love, love this site! I think you are providing a wonderful service. I read a recent question which as about an OTS formula (OTC?) I have never heard of this term. Would you tell me what the letters stand for? (I looked in your media terms section, and it is not there.) Thanks,

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 17, 2001 ):
Thank you for your kind words.

"OTS" or "opportunities to see" is used differently by various practitioners. One meaning is equivalent to impressions, or the number of exposures of a campaign to individual members of the target demographic; a summing of the audiences of all the advertsing occasions of a campaign. In this sense, "average" is not an appropriate modifier. Others may use the phrase "average OTS" as we in the US use "average frequency."

The term OTS is not commonly used in the US, but is standard in the rest of the English speaking world.

Thursday, August 09, 2001 #4648
Guru, I'm trying to figure out a Reach & Frequency of magazines which aren't measured. For discussion purposes, lets say my target base was 100,000. I am recommending 5 magazines with a total circ. of 80,000. However, I will be running in each about 5X over the course of 1 year. To make matters worse, I have no idea of the duplication between these mags. Without measured media, how do I figure an approx. R&F?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 11, 2001 ):
The first step to a crude estimate is to determine the target readers-per-copy (RPC of your largest circ book. With an average of 16,000 ( your 80,000 total across all 5), perhaps one is double the average or 32,000. If it has 2 target rpc, or 64,000 then your reach minimum is 64%. If all the books average 2 rpc, your schedule of 5 insertions in each of the 5 books has 320,000 impressions or 320 GRP in a base of 100,000.

Assume each additional title adds at least one reach point. Now your reach will be somwhere between 68% and 95% (arbitrary upper limit). With 320 GRP, your Reach / Freq is now somewhere between 68 / 4.7 and 95 / 4.3. Refining your rpc may narrow the range.

Or, if you have circ and rpc estimates, Telmar has software which can produce better projections.

Monday, July 30, 2001 #4615
How do I decide how much I should pay for pay per click services? Is there an industry standard? We have been offered $.35 per click.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 30, 2001 ):
The Guru doesn't believe in selling cost-per-click, since that makes the web site responsible for the quality of the advertiser's copy.

Nevertheless, if you assume there will be about three clicks per thousand impressions, then $0.35 per click equates to $1.05 cpm based on impressions. On the Guru's web site, he would not be interested in business at this price.

Monday, July 23, 2001 #4598
Dear Guru, I need to compare the W25-54 gross rating points of national consumer magazines to the W25-54 gross rating points of a network television schedule. I am concerned about keeping “apples to apples,” when making this comparison. In doing so, it seems that it would be necessary to calculate GRPs based on the same universe (for both magazines and television). The television universe that I am using is provided by Nielsen and is based on W25-54 who live in a household with a television, which I think is roughly 98% of the population. My question is: Is it appropriate for my print universe to be based on W25-54 living in a TV HH (98%), OR should my print universe be based on 100% of the W25-54 population? Also, can I calculate the rating points of magazines individually and then add up my schedule to determine GRPs OR must I calculate magazine rating points based on a schedule in order to prevent duplication of W25-54? I am doing these calculations by hand and do not have access to MRI – outside of requesting information, such as a magazine’s W25-54 audience, from a magazine sales rep. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 24, 2001 ):
It would be simpler to compare impressions and not worry about the slight universe differences. If you must use GRP, adjust TV grp downward according to the TV penetration factor.

GRPs disregard duplication, so simple addition is fine.

Thursday, July 19, 2001 #4593
Guru, is there a way one can measure fatigue levels of online advertising typically banners i.e.. in terms of number of impressions and no. of clicks , please help thanx

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 19, 2001 ):
There have been various studies. Visit The Internet Advertising Bureau

Monday, July 16, 2001 #4581
I have found research that indicates that the ad impressions generated from arena signage are not as effective as other kinds of media impressions. A ratio is given (1/4 to 1/5) that says it takes four "sponsorship impressions" to equal one radio or TV spot. Are you aware of any research that can substantiate this?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 16, 2001 ):
The ratio sounds right; after all it's typically just a brand logo, not a message. For research try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, June 29, 2001 #4538
Hello again, I have two questions about calculating reach and frequency that I have been unable to find in the archives of past responses. Perhaps you can help? 1. I normally use the formula (a+b)-(.a*b) to determine combined reach of two mediums, such as radio and print. How do I calculate the combined reach of more than two? The plan I am working on includes spot TV, spot radio and local newspaper. 2. Is it possible to determine a combined reach for more than one market or should each market be reported separately? In the past, I have provided separate delivery for each market in the same plan with a total number of gross impressions for the whole plan. Is this correct? Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 29, 2001 ):
1. This common formula is based on an assumption that different media duplicate their audiences according to random probability. Therefore if you follow this assumption, media may be added to combinations of media in a "chain" of the same formula. So, once you have combined TV and Radio, you can use this combination as your "a" and then combine it with newspaper as "b."

2. You can combine reaches across markets by doing a weighted average. Multiply the reach in each market by the percent of U.S. in each market. Add all the products and divide by the sum of the % U.S.

Wednesday, June 27, 2001 #4529
Hi media guru! I'm just starting out! help! I need to give impressions for a radio buy (per station, of course) based off Tapscan! Help????

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 28, 2001 ):
Contact Tapscan for directions in operating their software.

Wednesday, May 02, 2001 #4354
I noticed in the media strengths sections you don't include Internet Advertising. Why is that? Also, have you seen any best practices in how media people compare tradtional advertising with Internet advertising. For example, how can a media planner compare reach frequency in broadcast with impressions and unique audience in Internet? Any insight would be helpful. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 02, 2001 ):
The actual reason is that the media strengths page goes back to AMIC's earliest days, late 1994 / early 1995, before the internet was being taken seriously as a medium. But the Guru will now add the following to that page:


Capture audience in the act of shopping (Search engines)
Narrowly select target by site appeal
Instant interaction / order taking
Instant copy change
Customer relationship building
Target customer / deliver ad variant based on customer profile or past action
Powerful environment for computer-related advertising
Streaming allows TV-like audio video within above advantages

Regarding comparing to other media, the differences are no greater than between Radio and outdoor or TV and newspaper. If you compare numbers, it's a clean comparison. If you need to explain communications impact and other differences, it's more complex, but merely a matter of choosing the right words.

Sunday, April 01, 2001 #4302
What is the relationship between GRp's and gross impression

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 01, 2001 ):
For any given demographic,

GRPs =
gross impressions ÷ population in hundreds

Tuesday, March 20, 2001 #4272
How do you calculate CPM?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 20, 2001 ):
Cost ÷ audience impressions in thousands

Tuesday, March 13, 2001 #4254
Dear MG. I am currently involving in making an internal online media planning system. It seems to me reach&frequecy planning in online media does not fit very well. I am appreciated if you tell me current discussions on reach&frequency in online planning.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 15, 2001 ):
The key issue in reach and frequency is defining your universe. If your system is totally for online planning, then your universe would logically be the population with internet access. This should match whatever audience data source is being used to generate audience figures in your planning.

Presumably, if reach is an issue, then unique visitors will be the key metric.

In comparing to other media reach estimates, it should be kept in mind that online impressions are a very different sort of measurement than in other media.

Tuesday, March 06, 2001 #4235
Dear Guru, Is there any rational for using the long-duration ads (media-wise) other than it can convey full message? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 06, 2001 ):
Perhaps message retention is better, but most quantitative arguments -- reach, frequency, impressions, etc. -- would be against longer forms.

Friday, February 23, 2001 #4202
We are doing the planning for an acount in a market we have not previously bought. The demo is Adults 25-54. What formula is used for establishing the weight distribution per daypart. If we are asked to buy 150 points per week how do we determine what the percent of each daypart.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 25, 2001 ):
This depends on plan goals. If reach is the main goal, then you can examine a variety of mixes of weight to see the best reach available within the budget. The same technique works if the goal is effective reach or frequency.

In all likelihood, starting with about 20% - 25% in each of 4 or 5 dayparts and changing mixes in 5% increments, you will find very little difference except by adding or deleting prime time totally.

If impressions weight is the key, then just buy according to best efficiency, once your reach minimum, if any, has been met.

Tuesday, February 20, 2001 #4197
Hi Guru, we have just added an ad management tool to our newly re-designed website and are working on our rate card now. Our site averages approx. 450,000 impressions per month. Does a $30cpm for a full 468x60 ROS banner seem realistic? We plan on asking a minimum of 50,000 impressions, but is this typically sold per month or based solely on impressions? Also, are cpm's typically gross or net?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 22, 2001 ):
$30 is a somewhat above average CPM for a site with no special audience. See Ad Resource.

Buyers will ask about cpm and 50,000 impressions is a reasonable minimum for an interested party if you can interest serious advertisers. If your content is such that it's mostly going to attract "mom & pop" advertisers, $1500 might be a bit rich.

CPMs may be gross or net (AMIC quotes net), but be explicit whichever you use.

Monday, February 19, 2001 #4194
Dear Guru, what is "cost per aquisition" and what do you believe is the most acceptable way to count the effectiveness of a web site? impressions or unique visitors? This is a huge problem in Greece right now. Every site has it's own general overview of it's performance and visitor's behavior so things are confused. Thanks in advance

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 19, 2001 ):
"Cost per acquistion" may refer to the marketing spending required to bring a new visitor to a site, ot the cost of generating a subscriber, or the cost of making whatever sale a site aime at.

Sites have different goals, missions and standards of success. A site might be designed to sell retail products such as books, vdeos, muic, food, cars, etc. These sites may need repeat customers, who buy music every month or more often. A site selling automobiles will probably not see the saem customer more than once in three years once sale is made.

Other sites generate revenue via advertising, still others from subscriptions, and some by conveying information to support corporate image, with a one-time message. If you are evaluating sites as advertising vehicles, and seeking reach, then unique vistors will be the key. >"Brand Visibilty Index" is not a standardized media term. It might be a term invented by one agency or advertsing school to indicate a specific concept they use in describing some situation. It might be an index of Brand GRP versus category average GRP. Or it might be something else based on awareness, clutter, etc.

What may seem important to a site, like building impressions so that it has ad inventory to sell, may be relatively meaningless to an advertiser. Sites with a million unique visitors may be able to sell you as many unique visitors as a site with 10 million, because your needs only call for 200,000 unique audience. Evaluate according to your plan's needs, not the site's claims of success.

Friday, January 26, 2001 #4126
Have you heard of the term a "Media Metrix" online buy that basically defines a driving traffic/unique user strategy so that the site rises in the ranks of its Media Metrix number? Please advise. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 26, 2001 ):
There's nothing unique about a site's advertising being aimed at attracting traffic. If the site wants more unique visitors it would presumably buy for the greatest reach dispersion instead of merely big boxcar impressions. The Guru has not heard the specific term "Media Metrix buy."

Wednesday, January 24, 2001 #4120
Which is the best way to decide how many billboards are effective in a specific city?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 26, 2001 ):
Out-of-home media are sold in "showings." These are typically #25, #50 or #100. The numbers indicate that the daily traffic being exposed to a showing equates to impressions which would translate to the indicated number of marketplace Adult TRP.

So, a #25 showing is 25 TRP per day, etc. This means 150 TRP weekly (discounting a bit for lower weekend traffic) and 600 TRP in four weeks. Reach and frequency are given in the defintion of "Showing" in the Media Guru's Encyclopedia of Media Terms

In different markets, billboards will generate different daily effective circulation, depending on traffic patterns, and locations. The outdoor plant operators know how many locations are necessary to achieve each showing level in their markets. Market differences may not be proportional to market size differences. One market 4 times as big as another may need 6 times as many boards.

With this information, you can plan billboards to suit your communications goals.

Saturday, December 23, 2000 #4063
Dear Guru, I am a very new media planner so I have a very basic question. What is the difference between average Frequency and average OTS and what is the formula for their calculation. Thanking you in advace.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 23, 2000 ):
"OTS" or "opportunities to see" is used differently by various practitioners. One meaning is equivalent to impressions, or the number of exposures of a campaign to individual members ot the target demographic; a summing of the audiences of all the advertsing occasions of a campaign. In this sense, "average" is not an appropriate modifier.

Average frequency is the average number of exposures experienced by the members of the target who have been exposed to the campaign (net reach) over a measured time period such as 4 weeks.

Gross impressions ÷ net reach
GRPs ÷ percent reach.

Thursday, December 07, 2000 #4025
What is the formula for cost per thousand?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 07, 2000 ):
Cost ÷ impressions expressed in thousands.

Monday, November 20, 2000 #3976
We have as a client a national family style restaurant chain. Our TV media is based on impressions with 25% running in prime, 25% fringe and the rest is daytime. Many of our spots are falling in the court shows which deliver well; however, the client feels the environment of these court shows will downgrade their image because of overall program content and other advertisers in these types of programs. Seems they are full of TV lawyers, etc. Are their any studies that agree or disagree with this?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 24, 2000 ):
First the Guru's theories:

1. When people like a program, they don't think badly of advertisers who support it, even if many other people do not respect the program.

2. Guilt by association with other advertisers is certainly possible, but again, if people like these sleazy court programs why would they attach negative connotations based on other, highly relevant advertisers?

For real research on the point, if the syndicator isn't helpful, try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, November 17, 2000 #3973
What is cost per miller? What is rating point? What is efective frecuency?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 17, 2000 ):
  • The Guru has never encountered "cost per miller." Perhaps you mean "cost per mille" which is how some people interpret "CPM," which actually means cost per thousand, based on the Roman numeral "M."

    This in turn means cost per thousand impressions delivered by the medium. An impression is one exposure of advertising to one single member of the target audience.

  • Rating point is audience expressed as a ratio. Target impressions divided by target universe or "base". Thus, if the medium delivers 1,000 impressions and the population universe is 5,000, there are 20 rating points.
  • Effective frequency is a number of exposures judhged sufficient to effectively communicate a message. Therefore a plan may be judged according to the reach at this level of frequency or above. 3 is a commonly set level. The concept is going out of favor.

Thursday, November 09, 2000 #3959
Dear Guru - I have two questions - #1 - I have a client who wants a shifting reach pattern in place for a media test - No problem - however, there corporate department wants to run the test 2 on 2 off - I think it needs to be every week so that the hiatus time doesn't screw up the added frequency and reach you would receive by being on consistently - any thoughts? #2 - I have a new client that I am working up a media plan for in general terms of spots, reach and frequency. We are using 4 different medias in each market - Radio, TV, Internet and Outdoor - How do I estimate a total reach and frequency, GI and Persons Reached for each market to give to the client when I am using general CPP's to estimate numbers of spots, etc.?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 12, 2000 ):
The Guru doesn't understand your first question. What do you mean by "shifting reach pattern" and how do you ssuppose this is affected by the flighting? Where do you have a problem with reach and frequency in #2 other than the impossibilty of an accurate local market internet impressions count? Do you have reach and frequency tools for these media but face a local problem or something else?

Thursday, November 02, 2000 #3938
Do banner ad CPMs still tally when the browser is minimized? My guess would be yes, but I'd like to know for sure.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 02, 2000 ):
impressions are counted when an ad is "served," that is, the browser takes an action causing the ad to be sent by the serving computer. Typcally, the action of arriving at a page of a web site when the user has clicked on or typed in a link is the action causing an ad to be served. Obviously, this can't happen when a browser is minimized. Some servers may rotate ads and load new ones on the same page simply because time has passed. This will cause an impression to register even though the browser is minimized. It is one of many bogus counts, similar to a bottom of the page ad which is never seen because it is outside the range of the browser window.

Thursday, September 28, 2000 #3849
One of our clients is very interested in a rich media campaign. He just want to have an approximated idea of the production, deployment, creative costs and other extra costs like extra fees for adserving or premium CPM. Bannertype Flash 1.000.000 impressions tech savvy target (USA MArket) I'd appreciate if you answer me asap. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 28, 2000 ):
Placement cost premiums of rich media vary from site to site, and may be as little as $0. The other issues are not media questions.

Wednesday, September 20, 2000 #3811
According to Ephron, reach is most important for a brand. If this is true, should a major packaged goods company target A18+ rather than women? In their case, 70% of purchases are still made by women. However, we know men are a very strong influencer for this particular category. It seems to make sense, since we could achieve higher overall reach with an A18+ target, especially since tv cpp's for A18+ are lower. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 23, 2000 ):
You are confusing three different concepts.

The point about reach is that it is discussed with some target being implied. Theoretically, some demographic groups are much better prospects than others for sales, and it is more valuable to reach these.

Imagine a population of 1,000,000 A18+, including 400,000 women 35+ who have a 150 index of usage for a product and the remainder of A18+ average a 67 index. So, W35+ are more than 2x as likely to use the product.

Now, you might be able to buy a W35+ GRP at $100 cpp and reach 4000 W35+. If A18+ CPP is $80, you can buy 25% more of those GRP for your money, but each untargeted A18+ GRP only produces 30 W35+ GRP.

The key is this, when you "targeted" W35+, every GRP you bought also came with cosniderable audience among the remainder of A18+. The idea of targeting is to focus on the best prospect. Thinking you get more reach by buying a cheaper GRP target is merely an illusory of improvement. Keep buying W35+ but count A18+, if you want to feel you've reached more people.

There is a simple technique for comparing two such buys. Add all the impressions (or net impression) of each and weight the segemnts acccording to their index of usage. The buy with the most weighted impressions, no matter how you bought it, has the advantage. (That is, an 80 GRP W35+ buy might have more value weighted impressions or net people reached than a 100 GRP A18+ buy).

Thursday, September 14, 2000 #3796
Is there a metric for evaluating the performance of online advertising (Internet), print, radio and tv advertising?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 18, 2000 ):
The absolute metric is sales. Short of that there is ad awareness or recall. Otherwise there are audience measures; impressions, or reach.

Wednesday, August 30, 2000 #3767
Dear Guru, we are getting into awareness based media planning which means objective will be set on awareness scores, rather than GRP, R&F. Please tell me the factors which are required and procedure for setting awareness objectives.Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 01, 2000 ):
Very theoretical. There is no specific rule of thumb equating awareness to GRP. There will be a big difference in saying the objective is to achieve 30% brand awareness versus increasing an existing awarness of 30% by 30 points.

You should think about:

  • What percent of "aware" persons will be purchasers?
  • What number of purchases is the pay-out level of your advertising?
  • How often does the aware person make a purchase decision?
  • Assuming awareness never exceeds reach, what reach must you acheive and what decay rate can your afford to maintain the awareness that will drive sales?

Frankly the Guru believes that saying "awareness based media planning" is just putting a marketing spin on the media plan. Ultimately a media plan sophisticated enought to have objectives almost invariably has some awareness objective mentioned. And ultimately, media must be bought in terms of GRP or impressions or insertions; the media vendors do not sell quantities of awareness. So either you have a formula which equates awareness numbers to media units or you do not. The Guru does not.

Friday, August 25, 2000 #3747
can you please explain various tools through which one can determine the efficieny of a TV plan

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 28, 2000 ):
"Efficiency" has a standard definition, so it is subject to arithmetic formulas rather than tools. Efficiency is defined as cost per unit of audience. "Audience" might be expressed as impressions or rating points.

So "efficiency" usually means, CPM (Cost per Thousand), which is the cost of a schedule or advertising unit ÷ the sum audiences of the ad units (in thousands) and CPP (Cost per Point) is the cost of a schedule or advertising units ÷ the sum of the ratingss of the ad units.

Monday, August 21, 2000 #3728
What is the formula to equate reach and frequency from an outdoor showing? i.e. a 25 showing has a reach of 76.8% and a frequency of8.2 (I pulled these numbers from your media glossary)

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 21, 2000 ):
"25 Showing" in out-of-home media indicates a buy with a daily effective circulation, or traffic count, or impressions, which equate to 25 GRP per day.

In considering a month's reach & frequency, it is common to adjust the weekend days' traffic down by about 50%. In a month, instead of 25 X 30 = 750 GRP, we credit about 630 GRP. This agrees with the arithmetic of 76.8 Reach and 8.2 Frequency.

Friday, August 18, 2000 #3718
I am new in the field of internet advertising sales, and I have never sold ads for the media before. Are there any web based pricing charts or formulas to use for calculating conversion rates, cpm, cpc and cpa?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 19, 2000 ):
Sample pricing and a cpm calculator can be found at Ad Resource.

"CP_" anything means "cost per" whatever. It's simply cost divided by thousands of ad impressions or clicks or anything.

Thursday, August 17, 2000 #3711
Dear Guru, I'm a member of a company operating an internet portal. We are planning on making an ad for Television but I would like to know if there are any studies or research that will show how a coming out TV ad could directly affect the hits a website would get. Basically, we want information on how TV ad expenditure translates to click-throughs. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 19, 2000 ):
It depends on many things:
  • How good is the creative
  • How well the ad is placed relative to the sites' audience appeal
  • How broad is the appeal of the site and its offerings.
In a NY Times article this past January, a variety of sites' ad campaigns were evaluated. The ratios of ad impressions to site visits ranged from 150:1 to 1:5.

C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) might have studies, but the Guru doubts that generalizations will be useful.

Tuesday, August 08, 2000 #3687
Hi, How do I compare two web sites targeting the same audience - should it be based on the number of impressions delivered or cpm? Any formal research on this??

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 08, 2000 ):
CPM. You are buying a certain number of impressions. It matters little that the site could deliver 10 times as many as you buy or 50 times as many as you buy.

Tuesday, August 08, 2000 #3684
CPMs for portals are often quoted as being in the $20 to $40 dollar range. As ane example, Yahoo! are shown with an effective CPM of more than $40 in the AdZone analysis for June 2000. However, taking the figures for ad revenue and page impressions in the latest Yahoo! financial figures (for Q1 2000) gives a CPM of only about $4.00. Why the big difference?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 08, 2000 ):
What you are asking is probably more of an accounting question than a media question, but:
  • If you are looking at the same source of Yahoo financial data as the page the Guru checked, you are looking at NET revenues, while the arithmetic of CPM times impressions would yield Gross revenues. Of course that should not lead to a 90% discrepancy, but perhaps it could account for 50%, and . .
  • AdZoneInteractive's Ad Data uses published rate card CPMs, and rate card rates are certainly higher than real deals, which might be T 50% of rate card for big advertisers, and
  • If you watched carefully while drilling down to the financial data from the home page, you would have noticed that you generated several Page impresions with no Ad impressions. There were also no outside banner ads on the Yahoo home page. Combined with unsold inventory, perhaps more than 50% of Yahoo page impressions generate no ad revenue.
So if Net is half of Gross, and real rates are half of rate card, and half of impressions aren't sold for advertsing, then it all hangs roughly together.

I.e $40 x 50% (net vs. gross) x 50% (rates) x 50%(unsold) = $5

Friday, August 04, 2000 #3674
How do ad servers like double click work - and which are the top 10 ad servers by continent and market

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 06, 2000 ):
Without getting very technical, the site showing the advertising has a link with an image source referencing the url of the banner at the server site. The reference may actually be to programming scripts which then pick the appropriate banner to serve based on various specifications.

According to MediaPost's July 2000 issue of Media magazine, the top 10 ad sellers, ranked by monthly impressions sold, are

  • DoubleClick
  • 24/7
  • Engage Media
  • Real Media
  • L90
  • WinStar Interactive
  • ClearBlueMedia
  • AdFlight and
  • Cybereps

Because of the nature of the internet, the geographic location of the server or ad served is hardly relevant or discernable.

Wednesday, August 02, 2000 #3666
Ref. question 3663 Thanx for answering my question. I buy slots with high eff. index when my objective is to accumulate GRP's and drill my message into my consumers mind. This is the secondary stage where after creating the initial reach i focus on accumulating greatest total number of impressions (Funnel Treatment). As for the decay factor it reflects the decrease in the recall leval when advertising is reduced or stoped. I normally use 10% decay level in IMphase(IM horizontal planning technologies) The question that i want to ask you is what is the better way of flighting. There is a 70's 3+ eff frequency model by Prof. MacDonald which says that brusting is a better flighting patteren.On the other hand there is more recent Recency concept championed by Prof. JP Jones of Syracuse university of NY which says that as far as FMCG goods are concerned people are in the market every week and infect only needs one OTS to stimulate purchase.Please comment MY second question is how do you calculate Eff Frequency. Normally i use Eff frequency model where i calculate the eff frequency by applying judgement and common sence in a disciplined manner using Marketing, Advertising and competitive factors Thanx Sarwar Khan Media Manager R-Lintas Lahore,Pakistan

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 06, 2000 ):
1. In regard to 3+ effective frequency versus recency, the Guru tends to favor recency for "Fast Moving Consumer Goods." Recency is not really a contrast to the 3+ frequency theory, but an extension. As championed by Erwin Ephron, a core concept of recency is that once the third exposure is delivered, all additional exposures are at 3+.

2. Once again, there seems to be a semantic issue when you say "calculate" effective frequency. If you mean setting the frequency level to be considered effective, then your "judgment and common sence in a disciplined manner using Marketing, Advertising and competitive factors are the right approach, and the Ostrow Model will be helpful.

If instead, you mean to calculate the effective frequency delivered by your schedule, this has absolutely nothing to do with the subjective factors you have listed. A reach model determines how many persons are exposed to each discrete number of ad units in the schedule. That is if your reach is 75%, that means, explicitly, that 75% of the target has experienced one or more ad exposures. Within this, perhaps 70% of the target has been exposed to 2 or more, 66% to 3 or more, etc, up to the full number of units in the schedule. Reach models allow for expressing all of these levels. "Effective reach" mean those reached at least the minimum number of times established as effective, most typically 3.

Saturday, July 29, 2000 #3663
Dear Media Guru I am a media planner from Pakistan.I need to ask what are the possible comparison tools that we can use while planning for different programs on television.At the moment while planning i calculate cost index, rating index, efficiency index, Avg GRP's, Maximum reach, and avg.viewing miniutes for each time slot. Normally i advertise in time slots with high effeciency index, is this a good comparrison tool for planning or not. Normally the decay factor that i take is 10% is this OK or not. What are the different possible ways to break the adverising clutter on television and increase the possibility of high ad exposure. Thax in anticipation Sarwar Khan Media Manager R-Lintas (Pvt.)ltd. Lahore Pakistan

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 29, 2000 ):
It always fascinates the Guru that countries sharing a common language can use it quite differently when applying it to the jargon of a particular business or interest.

What you are describing as "planning" seems to the Guru to be what he would regard as a buyer's selecting a schedule after a plan has been approved. You haven't mentioned what goals you are pursuing with your schedules. Selecting spots with the best efficiency index (audience versus cost) will get you the greatest total number of impressions, but possibly not the greatest net reach. The best rating is more often likely to lead to high reach, but perhaps not without due regard to efficiency and duplication.

"Decay factor" is an unfamiliar term to the Guru. "Maximum reach" and "average viewing minutes" don't seem relevant to assessing individual spots as the Guru understands the terms.

Overall, the Guru believes you should be comparing possible schedules, rather than individual spots to accomplish planning goals.

Optimizers serve this purpose, but running reach analyses of several schedules can get you there, as well.

Wednesday, July 12, 2000 #3616
Dear Guru, I am currently doing some research for a client and I need your help. They want to know what the top Web sites (according to impressions and unique visitors) are in the following categories: women 25-54, top Insurance sites (like a Insweb), top Health sites (like a WebMD) and top Human Resources sites. My agency subscribes to @plan and I found the top sites for women 25-54 but I am having a hard time finding information regarding the other categories. Do you have any suggestions or know of any other resource out there that I could use? THANKS

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 12, 2000 ):
MediaMetrix and Nielsen//Netratings are other sources, but you should talk to the @plan people. They may have more information than is obvious.

Thursday, July 06, 2000 #3599
what are the methods of pricing that most sites use for advertising? Is there any differences in ad. pricing methodolgies between targeted sites vis a vis large network sites Cud you also direct me to some sites that cud give me more info?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 06, 2000 ):
The most common method of pricing is cost-per-thousand advertising impressions.This methodology works across all types of sites.

Ad Resource has a lot of pricing information.

Saturday, July 01, 2000 #3588
Dear Guru, I currently run a site with 1,000+ members, and it is growing 30-50 members a day. I need to find advertisers that will buy banner space in our "VoiceBox". A "VoiceBox" is given to every member, and they can talk live to friends and family via their "VoiceBox". The banner in the "VoiceBox" rotates every 30 seconds. My question is how can I find advertisers that would be interested in this unique way of serving banners? Is there an agency that may be able to help me find advertisers? Please check out my site and give me advice on how to find advertisers. The very lowest I can sell this space for is $7 CPM. Thank you very much, Shawn Randazzo

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 03, 2000 ):
Unless you can find a way to qualify your members as highly desirable in some way, you don't seem to have an advertisng medium here.

Let's imagine your growth continues nicely and a year from now there are 10,000 members. How many are conceivable going to be in a chat at one time? 100? If so, one banner ad showing is worth 70 cents. Over the course of a month, which is the typical advertisng period, can you deliver 10,000 impressions for a banner? If so you will earn $70. No sales rep would bother with this.

Monday, June 26, 2000 #3578
Given that available inventory on web sites is virtually unlimited what prevents sites from continually dropping CPM prices? This is about to happen in India where a large international site with extremely large no. of pageviews has dropped prices significantly. How do other sites react in this case?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 26, 2000 ):
What prevents sites from dropping prices is the revenue the owner wants to generate.

A large number of "generic" untargeted pageviews is less valuable than targeted impressions. This is why sites charge a relative premium for keywords, section-specific impressions, sponsorships, etc.

"Unlimited" is a rash statement. There are only as many pageviews as there are visitor requests for pages, and only just so many ads that can be placed on a page.

Wednesday, June 21, 2000 #3564
We are establishing a membership, where each member will provide their unique demographic information ie name, age, income etc They will also advise us of what purchases they intend to make over the next 12 months ie insurance, cars, homes etc. We will therefore act as their trusted agent directing the appropriate advertising and sponsership to them over the internet. Therefore we will be in a position to sell to advertisers the individual demographic data of our members. And for our members direct to them the information/sponsership that they request. So the question is what is the value(in $) to the advertisers for this specific information?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 25, 2000 ):
Your question appears to confuse the sale of information with the sale of targeted impressions.

Lists of people with known demographics who are planning to make specific purchases arfe fairly common options sold by direct mail list houses. You can check prices of some of these, but the Guru estimates value at about $US75 - $US 150 per thoussand.

Selling targeted impressions against people of known demographics interested in particular purchases, and probably nearer the purchase decision is an option of various search engines or shopping sites like MySimon or AutoByTel, where impressions sell in the neighborhood of $60 per thousand.

Tuesday, June 20, 2000 #3562
I would like to know which reports as to my web advertising I should except from the web site I advertise on. If you have any examples of empty reports as to the traffic in my web page/banner clicking figures - that would be great thanks ifat

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, June 20, 2000 ):
The miniumum basic report expected from any commerical web site would be banner exposures and click rates. Typical frequency is monthly. Sites could also break down exposures and clicks by pages associated with the exposures and clicks and the geography of the persons exposed and clicking.

Other than the basic exposure (impressions) and click count nothing is truly expected unless part of the deal. If you are buying a flat advertising rate, without cpm or audience guarantees, even that data may not be assured.

In any case, this basic data is too simple to need standardized reports. How many ways are there to arrange two numbers?

Thursday, June 15, 2000 #3553
Hello Guru, how can I define the competitors for local portals? Is it based on advertising spending or the statistics report?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 18, 2000 ):
This a decision you must make based on what is happening in your specifc case. Local portals may face competition from giant sites which offer to sell impressions targeted by DMA or other detectable locality. These sites may well deliver more localized impressions than a purely "local" portal.

Tuesday, June 13, 2000 #3548
I am in the process of evaluating a print proposal submitted by a business to business annual register with company listings/profiles, accessible by category. In addition to receiving a P4C ad, my client wil also receive 8 bold type listings with descriptive information and 4 bold type listings(company name and phone # only) throughout various sections of the register. At first glance the package looks like a great idea. The circulation is nearly 100% targeted, the CPM (based on the P4C alone) is very low, and there are additional merchandising perks that will expose my client to their target for one full year. The problem is, I must put a "value" on each component of the package. Do you have any ideas on how to place a value on the "bold type listings" described above?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 15, 2000 ):
Your situation is analagous to evaluating reach versus GRPs or a full commerical in a special versus billboards.

Since the deal seems efficient and effective simplay based on the P4C, any value you give to the other elements can be arbitrary and will be just for the sake of dicsussion. Why not calculate the impressions of all the other elements and price them at 25% of the P4C cpm?

Tuesday, June 06, 2000 #3535
Hi Guru I think this service is super.Congrats. Now for my question: I am trying to value the cost of an web-alliance and in doing so ,need to define metrics for the alliance. The alliance is basically sponsorship and we will look for exclusivity.What are the metrics you would consider?Which are tangible and how would you measure it?I have looked at CPM,Cost per Click etc.Also,what are the costs for opt-ins ,like email addreses etc.? Your inputs will help a great deal. Thanks Ash

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 11, 2000 ):
Obviously, the answers depend on the goals. An ecommerce site wants to produce sales. Clicks that don't lead to sales are not worth measuring. An ad-supported site wants traffic. Clicks and page loads at the target site are what matters.

The Guru is used to seeing email impressions valued comparably to web impressions, and clicks from email parallel to clicks on the web.

Friday, May 26, 2000 #3498
Are there any metrics for advertising on streaming media sites, eg:, where commercials and text links are incorporated into a media piece? Is the CPM cost higher in this format, and how are the impressions counted? (looking for a pricing structure to charge advertisers for a converging media site). thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 29, 2000 ):
ADResource offers comparisons of various online rates.

There should be some added value if you can get the few consumers who are properly equipped (now about 4 million or fewer), to sit still for it.

The Guru tried ON2 and was discourages by the site's attempt to download a plug-in without asking first. In these virus-paranoid times, it's quite off-putting. The Guru imagines such sites are a very long way from generating enough ad traffic to think about charging in CPM terms.

Monday, May 15, 2000 #3475
My company is currently placing free internet terminals in high traffic pedestrian locations. We currently have our terminals in 3 mall locations in the Las Vegas, Nevada area. We have recently completed about 2 months of data collection in the Fashion Show Mall in Las Vegas. We are generating 1.2 million impressions per month out of that single location. We anticipate generating approximately 3 million impressions per month by the end of May. Now that we have collected all this data. We are ready to start selling the advertising. We are considering hiring an advertising firm. How do we find and evaluate an advertising firm that will meet our needs?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 19, 2000 ):
Two sources of agency listings by selected criteria are The Standard Directories of Advertising Agencies and Advertisers ('The Redbook') and AdForum

Wednesday, May 10, 2000 #3456
I would like to ask three questions: First, is there a website that provides guidelines for advertising on the Internet. Our company only provides services in certain areas and want to evaluate how we can reach these areas using the internet. Secondly, are there any other alternative ways to get messages across besides traditional TV, radio, print and outdoor? Thirdly, is there a website or service that reports spending on ad circulars (for instance, DirecTV in a Best Buy ad)? Thanks,

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 13, 2000 ):
  1. The Guru doesn't believe there is any website specifically providing an unbiased guide to internet advertising. Many of your questions might be answered by looking up past Guru queries and responses in the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use your various topics as your search terms.

    The Internet Advertising Bureau and C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) are sites with good, general information.

    If your key issue is advertising to a specific geographic area, you can advertise on sites providing local information, which today exist for most localities, or you can buy geographically specifc impressions from most major, commerical, consumer-oriented sites.

  2. There are always new, unique non-traditional media, such as skywriting and cross promotion. But since the new ones are new they are not generally known until you stumble across them or unless their sellers find you.
  3. The Guru also doesn't believe there is a service which tracks specific products within stores retail ads. In some cases, where these represent co-op deals there may be some record, but generally, not.

Thursday, May 04, 2000 #3444
Hi Guru - I'm doing a radio campaign for a small restaurant chain. I have about 3 different station options that will work well. My dilema is that the station that comes out the best is an Oldies format. Not my first choice for a "guy sportsbar". My first choice was a combo of stations - NTR, AC and oldies bringin up the rear. My boss wants to just use the oldies station based on the numbers. I say, since all of the numbers look good - let's go with the 3 station buy. This is not a numbers argument and I don't know what to use to convince him. Any suggestions, or does it matter? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 07, 2000 ):
You don't say on what basis oldies "comes out the best." The Guru would imagine it's based on target rating, target composition, target efficiency or some combination of these.

You also don't say what the communications goals are, reach, effective reach, pure target impressions weight or something else.

You don't say why you don't think an oldies station would be good for a guys' sportrs bar, but the Guru would expect it's probably misguided, as in you like sports bars and you don't like oldies. The Guru has encountered this kind of thinking before; for example in NY or LA buyers who think country music is strictly for lowbrow blue-collar workers and farmers, not considering the format's dominance across many strata in most of the rest of the country.

If all the numbers you can think of favor the oldies nad you don't have research such as Scarborough or MRI to tell you that oldies stations are not listened to by guys who like sports bars, maybe you should just go with the numbers. If reach is an issue buy all three stations.

Generally, when the Guru has encountered a buyer putting "instinct" ahead of numbers in making decisions, it has turned out to be very simple unscientific, personal preference at work.

Tuesday, April 25, 2000 #3420
We are putting together a sponsorship package that incorporates TV spots, our company newsletter, our website and our fleet vehicles -- is it possible to estimate a combined reach/frequency for all four mediums combined?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 25, 2000 ):
The TV is easy, using standard methods, of which you are probably aware.

The other estimates must start from simple counts of the newsletter circulation, web traffic and - the toughie - persons exposed to your fleet. Most simply, after getting a standard TV reach, convert the other media impressions to ratings and combine by "random probability."

Monday, April 10, 2000 #3383
For an "Impression Advertisement" what is the time that the ad must be available for viewing. Can you place 6 banner ads for 10 seconds each and have each 10 seconds be credited with an impression ? Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 10, 2000 ):
In broadcast, where presentation is linear, time of exposure doesn't change how we count GRPs and impressions. However, limiting display time of a banner means that there is less chance of exposure, as the user may have scrolled away from the active portion of the page. As a media buyer, the Guru would not give full credit to this method of display.

Sunday, April 09, 2000 #3379
What is the difference between Eyeballs, Pageviews and impressions?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 10, 2000 ):
"Eyeballs" is a colloquial term and has no standard meaning. Someone might use it to mean audience impressions or web visitors, etc.

Pageview is defined as a page request succesfully delivered to a user. A "page" is a set of files, generally text files and graphics files, which make up an html page.

Impression can be equivalent to pageview, if it's page impressions. Ad impressions are comparable but refer to delviery of ad banners, which are most often gif or jpg files.

Thursday, April 06, 2000 #3370
dear guru, iam developing a marketing plan for a portal in india and of indian that context i need to know what are the number of advertising exposures required on the net(say on sites hotmail and yahoo) to induce a person to visit the knowing that iam trying to calculate the effective exposure index.thanks in advance.awaiting ur reply.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 06, 2000 ):
Put this way, you make it a very complex question. Some individuals will never visit, some will respond to the third exposure they see. And of course, it depends on the creative.

As a general rule, though, current average banner click rate is about 0.5%. On that basis, 200 impressions produce one visit.

Tuesday, March 28, 2000 #3350
I am asking a follow-up to the performing arts corporate sponsor question and the value of their logo on our website. Thank you by the way for your prompt response - it has been very helpful. Could you also give me an idea as to the value of a link to the corporate sponsor's webpage?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 28, 2000 ):
If by this you mean you will make the sponsor's logo on your website "clickable" to link to the sponsoe site, that is the same pricing as mentioned previously for impressions; the typical web ad impression is mad by a clickable banner which links to the advertiser's site.

Some deals are made on a cost- per-click basis. On this basis, clicks are selling for a ridiculously low 25 cents. It is not a good deal for a site. When a site sells impression for a $40 cost per thousand, it needs to get $8 per click as an equivalent.

Tuesday, March 28, 2000 #3346
I am a fundraiser for a non-profit performing arts center. We are working with a potential corporate donor who is interested in naming our auditorium. They want to know the marketing impact their name would get from all of our advertising. We have been placing dollar values on all of our advertising but we are having hard time estimating the value of their logo on our website - not to mention links to our performing arts tenants which would include the corporation's name with regard to location of events. I have heard website values are based upon the number of visits. We are working on getting that info - I do not think we get that much activity right now but we have great potential. Could you give me a general rule - dollars/per visits? Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 28, 2000 ):
Website impressions (ad views) sell for anywhere between $2 and $200 per thousand, depending upon the rarity and desirability of the audience. A performing arts center surely has as special audience, which might sell for $35 to $50 per thousand impresions. The corporate sponsor of an arts center logically would find value in that sort of audience. The number of visits might be anywhere from 10 to 25% as many as impressions, depending on how many pages a visitor views per visit. Using visits as a value standard would depend on whether the corporate logo is on every page or some portion.

Friday, March 24, 2000 #3337
I am trying to evaluate media value of our website. We get about 4000 hits daily and anticipate greater number of hits as we advertise and develop the site further. What would be the estimated media $ value for banner advertising? Thanks,

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 24, 2000 ):
Let's assume when you say "hits" you mean page loads or page impressions, since "hits" literally means server log entries. A single web page can include 10, 20, 30 or more files of text, pictures, decorative graphics and banner ads, which cause server log entries, when a visitor requests the page. The ad banner impressions you can sell relate to page impresions; but as you will have seen, there can be multiple ads on one page.

As media value, the range of selling prices for ad impressions is anywhere from under $2 to $200 or more. The difference depends on the rarity and desirability of the web site's audience. Let's assume the average, for specialized web sites, is about $50 per thousand impressions.

So if you have 4,000 page impressions daily, or 120,000 per month, when you put an ad banner on every one of those pages, you might charge the advertiser $6000.

Tuesday, March 21, 2000 #3330
what are the parameters to consider when we evalaute the internet as an advertising medium? we want to develop a model for this so we need some help. and if you know of studies done in this area, could you please let us know. thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 24, 2000 ):
If you are evaluating the internet against other media to use in a plan, use the same parameters as any other medium: cost, efficiency, reach, environment. As a supplemental medium, does it add reach you couldn't get through some other medium?

When you are planning within the internet the principals are the same, but you will need to deal with impressions, visits, visitors, and duplication.

Saturday, March 11, 2000 #3308
This is a follow-up to my question of yesterday, regarding cost per web visitor for the major media. The data to which you referred me were very useful, and I thank you for that reference. As you note, however, nothing is provided there (or anywhere else I have searched) to determine the rate at which such CPM actually results in a web visit. Any thoughts on sources, or a means of reaching an educated guess, on that all-important information? Thanks again and best.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 11, 2000 ):
t was not clear that you were asking about other media being used to drive web traffic. The Guru thought you were considering these media as competition.

Keep in mind that the ad itself may be more important than the media vehicle. On January 2, 2000, the NY Times ran an article on ecommerce giving a comparison of web visits versus traditional ad impressions, thought these were not identified by media type except for TV. The range was enormous, from one visitor for every 2.7 TV impressions at to one per every 2977.3 at Of course, the number of impressions in other media is not considered in this ratio.

Friday, March 10, 2000 #3304
I come before you with a novice question. I am involved in the early stages of a dot-com startup and am trying to develop some kind of idea of what numbers of visitors are delivered per dollar by each of the major advertising media. Generalities are just fine; when you've never played ball, just entering the ballpark is a big step. Thanks and best regards.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 10, 2000 ):
"Visitors" is one of the unique measures of the internet. It isn't readily comparable to measures of other media. On the other hand, the way internet impressions are counted is different as well. The best comparison will be your cost per 1000 visitors versus cost per 1000 (CPM) on impressions in other media. You will find some CPMs in AMIC's Ad Data area.

Keep in mind that on line vistors measures are usually not specific as to age while other media CPMs are usually based on 18+ or 12+.

Thursday, March 02, 2000 #3273
Hi Guru, It's relatively easy to get numbers on click thru rates. Do you have -- or are you aware of where I might find -- statistics on conversion averages? Thanks!!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 04, 2000 ):
Online retailers don't generally release these figures; they have no reason to do so. But on January 2, the NY Times had an article analyzing Christmas ad spending for dot-coms, visits versus ad impressions, plus percent of on-line shoppers who made a purchase at a few dozen of the leading consumer ecommerce sites.

This combined Nielsen//Netratings web audience measurments with an Ernst&Young study of global online retailing. The Times article can be analyzed in various ways, and the Ernst & Young report gives a 1 to 10% conversion average across retailers interviewed.

Wednesday, February 23, 2000 #3239
Dear Guru: I need to analyze a cpm tv negotiation on w1849. I would like to transfer the negotiated w1849 cpm to w2549. Can you please explain the formula to transfer Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 24, 2000 ):
Step 1: calculate the vph ratio (or impressions ratio) of w25-49 versus w18-49.
Step 2: divide the w18-49 cpm by this ratio.

Suppose w18-49 CPM = $10.00
Suppose the w18-49 vph is .700 and w25-49 is .600
then the ratio is
.600 ÷ .700 or
Then $10.00 ÷ 0.857 = $11.66

It's best if you have the actual vph or impressions of your buy, but you can make an estimate from the daypart averages.

Friday, February 11, 2000 #3208
We are in the early stages of learning more abouthow internet banner advertising works and how ads are priced. Could you please help me with answers to the following? Can banner ads be placed locally, regionally and nationally? How are the rates structured - cpm? How do companies who measure website audiences determine the number of viewers? Regarding advertising costs, is there a range of what an advertiser expects to pay for banner ads? Do you know what the name of the ads at the top of the home pages are called? What about the ads that typically appear to the right as you scroll down - do they have a name or term? Thanks Guru.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 13, 2000 ):
  • In principle, all sites are accessible to all internet users. Web servers can identify the location where a web user's ISP is based and decide whether to serve specific pages or ads on that basis. The big flaw in this capability is that users of the giant, national web connectivity providers all appeat to be located at the providers' locations, such as the Virginia headquarters of AOL.
  • Most banner ads are sold based on cpm. Some are sold based on cost-per-click or share of revenue created by click-thru visitors who buy on the advertisers' sites. Others are based on a flat price.
  • The Guru is aware of cpms from under $2 to well over $100 for highly targeted sites with specific, proven value to an advertiser. The majority of sales are falling between $10 and $50, and the average is probably about $25 -$30 today. Cost per click is in the 25 cents to $1 range. With today's average click rate of around 0.5%, that equates to a cpm of $1.25 to $5.00
  • Web audiences are measured in many ways. One, which the Guru prefers, is by "metering." Software is placed on the computers of a large sample, perhaps 10,000 or more. The software tracks the users' web site visits, and on a schedule reports the activity to the measurer's computers for compilation. MediaMetrix is an example of this type of measurement.

    Another is a survey, such as the ones conducted by MRI which asks another very large sample about their web activity. This type of measurement is capable of much less detail, relies on memory, and can only report the largest sites, a fraction of those reported by metering.

    The third common measurement is analysis of a site's own server logs, preferably with a third party audit through a service such as ABC Interactive

  • When ads are sold on a cpm basis, the cost can be flexible, and advertisers can order $500 or $500,000 worth, based on the appropriate number of impressions at the agreed cpm.
  • There is no special name for a top-of-page banner. Such a postion may be part of a site sponsorship, just a rotating banner or a fixed, premium-priced position. Ads down the right side, typically smaller, or square or vertical have names for the shapes, but may be placed under a variey of deals, like the top-of-page banners.

Thursday, January 27, 2000 #3167
Hi Guru, I posed a question to you earlier today that might require some clarification. I'm speaking specifically about Internet advertising and am really looking for some guidelines in what are generally considered to be optimal levels for reach and frequency in a campaign. That is to say, how many times does a user generally need to see a banner before its value starts to diminish. Secondly, how many banners should one consider purchasing -- again as a general rule -- in order to maximize the flight's impact. Another way of looking at might be to say, if one were to buy one million impressions, what is the likely number of people who will have been impacted? I realize there is a wide range, based on the narrowness or broad-based appeal of the sites, but is there a general range that can be modeled from?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 27, 2000 ):
This is a very interesting question.
  • The irony of the concept of effective frequency on the web is that effectiveness, measured as click-thru, has been shown to drop through the first three exposures to a banner and then flatten. (see DoubleClick: "Banner Burnout")
  • The Guru is also quite leery of "modeled" web R&F that does not take into account specific sites used. Often, one advertiser gets more reach from only one-sixth as many impressions as another advertiser. For example Nielsen//Netratings posts their measured "Top ten advertisers of the month" with each one's impressions and reach. At this writing, December 1999 is posted. (#3) ran 620 million impressions and got 54% reach while TRUSTe (#1) ran 2.1 Billion impressions for only 37% reach. Even Barnes & Noble (#7) with 276 million built 38% reach

Thursday, January 27, 2000 #3166
Our Internet marketing company uses metrics such as Are you aware of any studies or "rules of thumb" that suggest how many banner impressions one must buy in order reach specific number of people?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 29, 2000 ):
The differences between various sites and schedules in reach building are extreme, so there are no safe rules of thumb; see the Guru's reply to query #3167

Wednesday, January 26, 2000 #3160
Hello Media GURU! Online question... Are any Online Ad Networks such as Doubleclick, ClickNow, Valueclick, 24/7, etc. negotiating on a Cost Per Click basis? Are the sites they are serving ads to quality sites? What are the pros and cons of cost per click vs. traditional CPM buys?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 26, 2000 ):
Yes some are doing this. For the most part it seems to be lesser operators, offering low ball prices for remaindered space, for instance 25 cents per click.

So a site doing this business has unsold inventory it is willing to let go at about $1.25 cpm impressions. Neither is an indicator of quality nor, at least, of strength.

Thursday, January 20, 2000 #3138
Dear Guru, What is the best way to evaluate spot cable with spot broadcast? I fear that CCP won't account for universes of cable systems. Is it CPM's? And wouldn't you have to use impressions derived from the cable universe? Thanks and GREAT site!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 22, 2000 ):
Yes, the cable universe must be taken into account. It is simple to adjust between the two universes. If you start from cable ratings, multiply against cable unverse and divide by total market universe to get comparable ratings.

Sunday, January 16, 2000 #3122
Dear Sir / Madam, The question that I have is related to media weight setting. q1) Often in the past we have used the market prioritisation technique in BDI / CDI. Having done this we simply super impose the market dynamics to arrive at a market task. Now the question is can we make the BDI / CDI numbers talk harder. Is there a relation between BDI and the frequency required.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 19, 2000 ):
BDI and CDI are typically used to establish the effort which will be made in each market in relation to the other markets. These indices reflect a market's contribution to national sales versus its portion of national population.

The application of the index typically addresses allocation of media dollars or impressions. It could just as easily be used to set average frequency or effective frequency goals, but since frequency grows in a non-linear fashion - the growth rate accelerates as GRPs accumulate, it is simply a more complicated basis for media application.

Thursday, January 13, 2000 #3119
Media Guru, I'm an advertising student and will be going out into the working world of advertising on a media buying internship in two weeks. I have one question which i would much like your input on. The question is as follows; Junior media buyers are routinely asked to book millions of dollars worth of advertising. But do they know enough about the vast complexities of media to do the job right? sincerly, intern student

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 19, 2000 ):
No, they don't. But then again they aren't actually asked to do this. You have a somewhat oversimplified view of the roles, the Guru believes.

Junior buys operate within tighly defined limits on their authority to make spending decisions.

Over the course of a year a "junior buyer" at a large agency might book millions of dollars, a few tens of thousands at a time. Each time, in a properly run agency, there should be a set of buying parameters from a olanner which specifies the target group, amount of media weight, (GRP or impressions) type of programming or environment, minimum audience size of an ad unit, cpm/cpp range, and perhasp even reach of the schedule.

With all these parameters properly set, there is little room fro a junior buyer to make a significant error. The job is to find the right media according to clearly set, mostly numerical, standards and then to negotiate the best possible price.

Additionally, there should be review of a junior buyers proposed buy by a supervisor.

If you find yourself in a situation without these controls, then you are not observing a professional media operation.

Tuesday, January 11, 2000 #3107
Dear Guru, Are all trps equal?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 11, 2000 ):
The Guru knows a loaded question when he sees one.

TRPs are statistical measures. They are always the relation of impressions to population. 1 TRP is always equal to one percent of the specified population group .

But if you mean is one TRP in medium A always equal in communication impact to 1 TRP in medium B, then the answer is no. Even in the same medium, TRPs don't distinguish between 15 second copy and 60 second copy. One advertisers network TV :30 may not have equal impact with a competitor's network :30 depending on daypart, postioning, and copy quality.

Wednesday, January 05, 2000 #3096
Oh Great Guru -- I need to calculate GRPs, but I don't have reach or frequency on some tv buys. I do have CPM, total impressions and impressions/week and the total population of the demographic. Can you supply a formula for calculating GRP based on what I have?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 05, 2000 ):
(impressions divided by population) x 100 = GRP.

For example,
if impressions are 2 million and population is 1 million, GRPs = 200.

Wednesday, January 05, 2000 #3092
Hi Guru, Thanks for your service. what is the term "stickiness" meant in web terminology. Is it similar to the meaning of "session"?. Please clarify.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 05, 2000 ):
Stickiness refers to a site's ability to keep the visitor there, browsing through various pages, generating more page and ad impressions.

Friday, December 31, 1999 #3083
Can you help me out in the following areas: 1. How can an online agency offer an advertiser pre campaign creative testing of ad banners? What are the variables involved and can you suggest links to sites that do offer such solutions? 2. Can you provide an online plan for any hypothetical advertiser? What is the step by step approach taken? I know one will have to proceed looking at marketing objectives, setting impression levels and then buying impressions based on the campaign objective and target audience. Do you have a ready framework for a full online plan that you could share with us?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 01, 2000 ):
1. There are companies which do such testing, including IPSOS. C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) will have a list of such vendors.

2.There are no standards for how an on-line plan should look, other than those for any media plan. Because the focus will be on selecting specific sites, the overall style will probably resemble a magazine plan more than any other specific type. One plan might focus on advertisng envorinment more than another which is more aimed at raw impresions, and both may differ greatly from a third based on click-rates or revenue generation. Analysis might focus on cpm or reach or availability of relevant pages or keywords. Creativity is more the rule than following a format.

Wednesday, December 15, 1999 #3054
Hi Guru, Thanks for your service. Could you please inform me some ad management softwares, with their url address, ideal for a site which get over 9 million page impressions per month. By any change do you know the advt. management software used by leading sites like yahoo, aol, amazon etc.?.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 19, 1999 ):
AdIntelligence, AdJuggler and AdForce are some. The Guru can't comment on their suitability for any particular site, nor on which site uses what resource.

Thursday, December 09, 1999 #3042
Dear Guru- I have heard there are thousands of ways to advertise on the internet for free. What are they, and do you think any of them are effective? How many impressions do you think can be generated with little or no money to spend. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 09, 1999 ):
There may be thousands of sites, but the Guru doubt's there are thousands of ways. Here are some:
  • Free on-line classifieds on community and local newspaper sites
  • Free on-line classifieds when you pay for print advertising in major newspapers
  • Free banner ads as merchandising for buying paid space in traditional media, particularly magazines. Free job lisitng ads in many places, including AMIC's Ad Jobs area.
  • Link exchanges which are banner trades with other sites.
  • Cross-links with other sites.
  • Putting up your own ad-bearing site in the free web-site space allowed to customers by many, if not most, ISP's

The Guru does not think many of these options generate large numbers of impressions. They may be effective, given a small scale goal.

Wednesday, December 08, 1999 #3037
What is considered an average level of annual advertising revenue for a consumer website? What is considered a low level, and what is considered a high level of revenue?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 09, 1999 ):
Stated this broadly, this question is like "How high is up?" With millions of web sites and hundreds of thousands of serious, commmercial web sites, no one could possibly have the data to make an intelligent average.

However, CPMs (cost per thousand advertising impressions) and numbers of impressions available to sell can be dealt with.

The giant sites, like Yahoo and AOL may have 25 billion impressions to sell anually, and sell them at $30 CPM. That would equate to revenue of abouot $750 million per year if they can sell all their impressions. It could be even more, based on premium offerings, like keywords and section sponsorships.

By the time you come down to the 50th largest site, there may be only 150 million ad impressions to sell annually. And by the time you're looking at the 100,000th, perhaps only 5 million. Very small sites may be very specifically targeted and able to sell at a premium CPM of $50 or more. Smaller, general audience sites may sell at a CPM of $5 or less.

Friday, November 19, 1999 #2991
Media Guru, I have heard that banner advertising on-line is a waste of money. Do you know if there are any facts supporting the ineffectiveness of banner advertising? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 22, 1999 ):
Effectiveness depends upon expectations. If your goals depend on consumer action, i.e. click-thru, you have to determine whether the expected 0.5% click rate will be enough. If you pay a $25 impressions cpm, you might be paying $5 per click. If 10% of those who click will buy, then you need to net over $50 per sale to call the advertising "effective."

If you intend to use banners for branding, you need to compare awareness results with other media. Some research has been done by DoubleClick and The Internet Advertising Bureau to demonstrate branding effectiveness.

Friday, November 19, 1999 #2989
Media Guru, Our client is asking us why we use reach & frequency to analyze the effectiveness of our media plans. We are not aware of any other tools/methods that have been developed. Can you give us some pointers on how best to answer this question? Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 19, 1999 ):
Reach and frequency are used to help predict the effect of plans and, more appropriately, to compare the available alternate plans, when communications power is the issue.

Media plans are actually advertising communications plans: "how many people of the targeted demographic receive the message and how often?" is the most basic quantification of the expected acheivements of the plan. In the process of selecting targets amd media, other issues of prospect quality and ad impact are addressed, but the final wieghts and measures are reach, frequency, and their product, gross impressions.

During and after execution, of course, sales and awareness measures are more direct evaluative tools.

Thursday, November 18, 1999 #2985
Guru, thanks for your answer, a good on-line sales rep sounds the way forward, any hints as to where they hang out? and what do I ask them to make myself sound knowlegeable about what they do? Have you any rough idea of what they charge and how they will generate income. I am a beginner at this . Andrew

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 22, 1999 ):
There are several large and small reps, like DoubleClick, AdSmart and 24/7 Media. If none of these suite, ask them for guidance or consult The Internet Advertising Bureau.

The Guru believes it is smarter to admit what you don't know rather than "trying to sound knowledgeable" and missing out on gaining information.

You need to know what the rep's commission structure is (15-20% for a sizeable site is reasonable). They should tell you how they will present your site. Reps who will only sell your site in a package of commodity impressions at a high (more than 50%) commission are to be avoided. Unless your site can offer over 1,000,000 impressions per month, your options will be limited.

Tuesday, November 02, 1999 #2928
Guru: I'm trying to plan an online media buy for branding purposes and having a hard time devising a formula for adequate impressions levels. I think % reach is a better way to go, but what's the optimal % reach for online branding on a website (high enough frequency without waste)? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 03, 1999 ):
It is very early in the scheme of internet reach models to imagine that there are standardized formulas.

You are correct to think that "branding," which means different things to different people, but seems to be about awareness in most definitions, depends upon reach.

But reach in relation to internet impressions is a curious thing. As in all media, it depends upon duplication between one day's visitors and the next plus duplication between one site's visitors and another site's.

When reach formulas are created, they begin from examination of the actual reach and frequency in real advertisers' schedules.

In this connection, it is instructive to visit the "Top 10 Advertisers of the Month" page at Nielsen//Netratings, a web audience research firm. In the month of September, 1999, the #1 advertiser, in terms of impressions, was TRUSTe, with 945 million immpressions and 25% reach among persons with internet access. But, the advertiser with the highest reach, at 44%, had less than one-third as many impressions, 273 million. Other advertisers with as few as 103 million impressions surpassed TRUSTe's reach.

The bottom line is that

  • Clearly, there is not a lot of consumer reach possible on the web, if the top advertisers' perform like this.
  • impressions-to-reach models are going to be complicated to build.
  • We probably need a new definition of "branding" for on-line purposes.

Monday, November 01, 1999 #2923
I am new to online sales but realize it's much different from regular media sales. I've been trying to find information on the types of questions I might be asked, etc. but am not having much luck- can you help?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 01, 1999 ):
Most of the reasonable questions are parallel to traditional media sales questions:
  • What is your audience size? - a difference here is that you typically sell "units" of a month's duration, but "unit" impressions are different than unit reach
  • What are your audience demographics?
  • What is your price structure?
  • How do you compare to your competition?

Other questions will be unique, whether because of the nature of the medium or because the buyers are new to this as well:

  • "Is that net or gross?"
  • What is your site's audience and what percent of it is my buy?
  • What ad units do you offer?
  • What keywords are available? (for search / portal sites)

Thursday, October 28, 1999 #2916
Hi Guru, How is the CPM rate calculated by the web publishers?. what are the criteria adapted by them to arrive on their CPM rate?(say $30 or $40 for every 1000 impression).

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 28, 1999 ):
The CPM = Ad Cost ÷ Ad impressions. Many sites quote ad rates in terms of CPM. That is you can order the number of impression you want your banner to receive, and get exactly that number priced at "x" CPM.

Several issues are taken into consideration in setting CPM prices:

  • Competitive pricing - a site can't successfully charge double the CPM of another with similar audience and content.
  • Traffic - up to a point, more size is considered to have a premium value. Then there will be econimies o scale
  • Unique audience- hard to reach demographics are more valuable

Thursday, October 14, 1999 #2872
I have a client in the travel industry who is still not convinced that advertising on-line will increase sales. They have a website, but do not use it for its full benefit such as bookings. They have read somewhere that there is only a 1% clickthrough on banners and therefore are convinced we don't need to include Online Advertising on any media mix even though we have the budget for it. Can you offer any advice.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 14, 1999 ):
"Only 1% click-through" is only good or bad in relation to cost and business expectations. If you buy one million impressions for $30,000 and get 10,000 click-throughs (1% of 1 million) and they all book something, it's all net profit after the first $3 of profit each one generates. If your conversion rate on clicks is less than 100% (which of course it is) than you just need to estimate the conversion rate and profit per sale to judge the value of on-line.

And don't take the Guru's $30 as gospel, see what you can get.

Monday, October 04, 1999 #2843
Guru - I have been put in the situation of planning, negotiating and buying online advertising. I'm having difficulty in determining the appropriate number of impressions to purchase for a two week flight of an entertainment property. I understand every site is different, but is there a benchmark to follow? Someone once said that the minimum level of impressions to be effective is 10% of the site's available impressions. This seems high. Also, is there a syndicated source that lists the total number of impressions available per month? Can online impressions be purchased against a specific demo (i.e. Men 25-54)? Thank you for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 04, 1999 ):
There are many buying-minimum rules of thumb that seem arbitrary on first consideration, like '12x per week per station' in radio, but have a logic if someone clearly explains it.

However, this "10% of the available impression" idea is certainly not one of these. It's not only arbitrary, but relatively ridiculous.

Consider a site like Yahoo, which may generate well over 1 billion monthly impressions. 10% of that is 100 million. If you bought that weight at a $30 CPM, that would be $3,000,000 per month. Are there many advertisers spending at that rate? And, if you think about other top sites, it becomes even more fantastic.

According to Nielsen//Netratings, top, deep-pockets, online advertisers like Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo each ran about 200 to 600 million impressions in August. And of course, they didn't do that on just a few sites.

What would a 10% rule achieve? Identification with a specific site? Perhaps some very targeted sites which fit your campaign creative very well are worth sponsoring at this level. Or do you think each person exposed is aware of how many other people are seeing other banners on the same site?

By the way, the Guru would be interested to hear anyone's justification of a '10% of available impressions' rule and will post here any that make sense.

It's also worth noting another point here: Bigness is of questionable value in selecting on-line media vehicles. Exposure isn't figured in the same way as for other media: In a magazine, each ad page is treated as if it had the average audience of the issue; within some tolerance, this is realistic. But in a popular web site with potentially hundreds of pages, neither the home page nor those within the site get all the monthly impressions the site accrues. Any one page might get less than one percent of the total, and a rotating banner might get less than one percent of the page where it's shown. One million impressions can be bought from a site with one billion to sell or with just two million. If the targeting is controlled, there is equal value.

Sometimes page or section content will allow targeting to be assumed. On some sites, registration data, or 'cookies', or IP tracking can allow ads to be served to specified categories of visitors.

Wednesday, September 15, 1999 #2800
I just did a media buy for radio, cable, and related internet sites for a NJ based portal business that wants to attract consumers to their site. They asked me what number of people visiting their site constitutes a sucsessful ad campaign...50-100 week? Since visitors won't be buying anything, (no e-commerce)how do you judge what kind of response is successful? Is there any research on new "Dot Com" companies who have advertised, and what kind of results they got?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 19, 1999 ):
Any advertiser needs to define its own success. Portal sites are usually expected to deliver boxcar numbers, they are playing in a league with Yahoo, Netscape, Excite, etc, which have 20 million or more monthly visitors.

If your advertiser isn't doing e-commerce, presumably it wants to sell advertising based on the size of the audience it can deliver. If portals sell monthly banner ads at a $35 cpm, what is 100 visitors a weeks worth? If it's 100 per week, and they each view 3 pages that's 1200 impressions or $42 worth of traffic. The Guru is guessing you spent more than that on the campaign. If these people come back every week, it will be a long time before a campaign at this rate of response is "successful."

Using the actual cpm and page loads at the advertiser's site, you can estimate how many visitors and page views are needed for a return on investment.

C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) and Internet Advertising Bureau are most likely to have accessible research in this area.

Wednesday, September 01, 1999 #2762
Greetings Gurus! I am trying to impact enrollment in our university from a specific geographic. I know that the so-called "Generation Y" is a great consumer of the internet. How would you suggest I go about targeting my demographic (probably not a difficult task) combined with geographic to reach the target via the internet? Many thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 03, 1999 ):
Relevant lifestyle sites and lifestyle sections of large, portal sites will attract your age target. There are city and state specific sites, though virtually anyone might visit them. Large sites can target impressions delivery so that your ad is exposed only to visitors from the selected geography.

The problem with that option is that such a high percentage of your age target will be using AOL or similar, national ISPs. All AOL users appear to be coming from AOL's Virginia headquarters. To get around that, you can place ads inside AOL (rather than on

Monday, August 02, 1999 #2681
what is grp

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 06, 1999 ):
GRP stands for "Gross Rating Points:"

Every ad has a number of people or homes in its audience (impressions). This number, divided by the population base for the relevant demographic, is the advertisement's "rating." The sum of all the ratings in the schedule is the GRPs. Or, the sum of the schedule's impressions divided by the population base = GRPs.

Friday, July 16, 1999 #2641
Here's a basic math question for you: I recently bought a media (TV) schedule that gave me a total A18-49 delivery (in 000's) of 45000, 89 spots, total cost = $1,300,000. Knowing that the total A18-49 universe is 61350 (000), how do I find the following?: 1) total GRPs delivered 2) total CPP

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 16, 1999 ):
The GRP equation is 45,000,000 impressions divided by 61,350,000 universe, expressed as a percent, or 73 GRPs.

The CPP equation is $1,300,000 cost divided by 73 GRPs or $17,808 CPP

Guessing this is national cable, it seems high. to the Guru.

Wednesday, July 07, 1999 #2609
We're starting to place advertising on the Web and have never done an insertion order for Web-related advertising. Any suggestion or recommendation? thanks. ilaria - Austin, TX.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 07, 1999 ):
Most web sites provide their own documents. But it's just like any other media:

Specify quantity (impressions, usually) per month or other time period, cost per quantity (CPM, usually), kind of unit (rotating banner, keyword banner, etc.) dates/duration of schedule, and payment/cancellation terms.

Tuesday, July 06, 1999 #2608
Our company is presently trying to locate a list of kids aged roughly 12-19 for a direct mailing. Do you know where we might find such a list? We are also interested in knowing what the most popular magazines are among kids in this segment (for advertising purposes). Lastly, we would like to determine what it costs to advertise (gross, not CPM) via the following media: TV (specialty channel), radio, Internet (banner), magazine (popular), billboard, and space. Any help you could give us on these questions would be appreciated. Thanks in advance for your assistance. Sincerely, Drew Spence Market Research Associate Lac-Mac Limited

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 06, 1999 ):
Most list brokers would have a teenage list available. Try American List Counsel for starters.

. Seventeen ,Teen,YM,TeenPeople are among the most popuular, especially with female teens. Male teens gravitate to more broadly targeted titles like SportsIllustrated.

To discuss ad prices in the media you mention, you really must consider something other than simple gross. If the Guru tells you a :30 on a specialty channel cost $100 or $1000, how can you evaluate what you must spend to communiucate something?

Internet banners are sold in cpms and numbers of impressions, not flat gross dollars usually; major sites have more impression than you might buy so you buy a portion of the available impressions. You can get teen oriented sites' banners for $15-30 per thousand. But just putting a banner on all the teen pages of Yahoo could cost $1,000,000 per month.

or more. Billboards might cost $250 apiece, but you won't buy just one, you buy a quantity of daily effective circulation expressed as GRPs. A teen cpm might be $5-$10

Friday, June 11, 1999 #2570
how do you figure out net impressions for newspaper. also, how do you show that you are delivering proportionate impressions to the populations of the different markets? would you show the population as a % of impressions? thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, June 15, 1999 ):
If you mean "net" literally, this is the reach of your plan expressed in numbers of consumers instead of percent. There are various newspaper reach methodologies. If you mean total impressions, newspapers you are buying should have detailed audience data, from resources such as Scarborough.

If by "proportionate" you mean to deliver impression in the same distibution of age and gender as the population, one wouldn't expect to deliver impressions proportionate to the market: different population segments have greatly different newspaper reading habits.

If you mean the total impressions distribution across a market list should parallel the population distribution between markets, then simply calculate the market-by-market population percent distribution and buy newspaper schedules to that proportion.

For information about newspaper planning and research tools, visit the newspaper media software page of AMIC's sister company, Telmar or for readers-per-copy averages and other research sources, see the The Newspaper Advertising Association site.

Monday, May 31, 1999 #2548
How do you determine reach and frequency for a site?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 31, 1999 ):
Reach is the number of different people exposed to a message or media vehicle and Frequency is the average number of times the person reached is exposed in the stated period. On the web, unique visitors is the term used for "different people," and the period of time usually considered for average frequency is one month.

If your site has server log analysis software, like HitList , for example, it can tell you the number of unique vistors per month, and also the total number of page impressions served. Monthly page impressions, divided by unique visitors = Frequency .

Also, syndicated, user-centric, web ratings services like MediaMetrix report on these audiences independently. Hoever, only the top few sites, less than1% of all sites, are big enough to be reported.

Traditional media planners are used to expressing reach as a percentage of a target audience. However, for most sites, this percentage would be vanishingly small. Only the top few sites among MediaMetrix's sites reach even 1% of active web users: the 50th ranked of the 15,000 they measure reaches about 3 million unique vistors. This would be about 3% of the perhaps 100 million people on-line in the U.S. and Canada.

Monday, May 31, 1999 #2545
Client has asked on how to advertise on their extranet. What does that involve? Should they use a third-party like NetGravity? How do I get started?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 31, 1999 ):
The Guru assumes you mean the client wishes to sell banner advertisng on their web site. Generally,the web representative firms are not interested in site getting less than 1 million impressions or 50,000 visitors per month. Deals for samller sites offer few advantages to the sites, so self-selling is the best option.

Your client should document, as well as possible, its site traffic and then approach a sales rep if the numbers are big enough or otherwise approach firms with which they do business who could benfit from reaching the same audience as those who would visit your client's site.

Tuesday, May 18, 1999 #2510
Could yu give me some insights regarding pricing ad space on the net on the basis of fixed number of impressions? How are the slab rates decided upon? What is the minimum number of impressions one can sell for, 5000, 10000 etc.?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 18, 1999 ):
Most larger, commercial general audience sites are selling at cpm's in the $15 - $30 range, barring special deals or unusual volume. This would make $5000 worth 167,000 to 333,000 impressions.

Monday, April 26, 1999 #2471
Is it possible to know that which particular segment is using the internet most-- age wise, profession ,sex etc? Which are the means to find out those things and is there any software available to know the hits for a particular site ?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 26, 1999 ):
  1. MediaMetrix and Nielsen-NetRatings provide this sort of user demographic information, for a price.
  2. Software to count the hits of a site is readily available. If you want to count your own site, Marketwave is one provider. If you mean software to count hists on other sites, no, you would need to subscribe to a service which provides that information, like those mentioned above.

Please also avoid using the term "hits" which refers to server log entries and might count a dozen or more file items as "hits" in loading a single page of a site. Page loads equates to media impressions which is most likely to be useful in media planning.

Friday, April 23, 1999 #2464
Dear Guru: We are about to place our first order for banner advertising on the web. With print we require tearsheets and broadcast we require affidavits as proof of performance before we pay the invoice. Is there any standard proof used for web advertising? Thanks in advance for your advice.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 24, 1999 ):
No, there is no "standard proof." It would be easy for a web site to send you a "screen capture" showing the banner on the site as equivalent to a tear sheet, or to have their invoice notarized so that it becomes an affidavit.

The Guru can think of two reasons why these haven't become standard procedures:

  • In most cases the advertiser can just visit the site and actually see the banner as it is displayed. Of course, this could be very difficult when someone is buying only a small portion of available impressions on a giant site like Yahoo.
  • The affidavit approach would work for the major commercial sites that get most of the ad revenues, but the nature of the commercial web is such that the site operators are too many, and from too frar outside the traditional advertising arena, to understand the need. If C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) or IAB were to promulgate a standard, these same perifieral sites would be unlikely to know of or adhere to it.

Friday, April 09, 1999 #2439
Where can I find a list of the top business websites. A client is looking to reach business executives through web advertising. Do you have any suggestions?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 10, 1999 ):
MediaMetrix, one of the leading web usage measurers, offers a list of the top sites visited from work.

Defining "business websites" and "top" are different issues. "Top" may not really be relevant. The web is different than any other medium. In TV or magazines, we credit the entire audeince of the vehicle to an ad run in it. But on the web, we usually buy the number of impressions or clicks we want. It is no easier to buy 1,000,000 impressions/month out of 300,000,000 availably on as from another site that only has 5,000,000/month in its inventory. Reach and frequency might be better buying 5,000,000 from 5 different sites than just one.

Tuesday, March 30, 1999 #2421
The need: I am looking for a way to factor 'page exposure' data into mainstream media metrics such as CPM or GRP. MRI tracks and calculates page exposure using the following: (#_of_days_magazine_is_read * #_issues_read * %_of_pages_read)= avg_page_exposure I believe such data would not only provide a more accurate picture of a readers exposure to the ad pages but could alter CPM & GRP rates. My Reasoning: CPM=(ad_rate/audience); audience=(circ * readers); 'readers' is thenumber of different set of eyes per issue (single exposure). This number does not take into account how long or to what extent the reader looked at the publication -- it could be the mailman delivering the magazine who remebers the cover or it could denote a subscriber who reads the issue cover to cover. Enter the issue of page exposure. Suppose I am considering a magazine with a CPM of .01851 = 40,400/(704,000 * 3.1). However, if this same magazine provided me with a page exposure rate of .99 = (3 * 1 * .33) -- which says that the audience takes 3 days to read the issue and reads about 33% of the issue a day (which I know is unrealistic, but hear me out). Now suppose I take the .99 exposure rate and add it to the 'reader' and recalculate CPM --- 40,400/(704,000 * (3.1 +.99))= .01404 -- I get a much lower CPM. My Question: Why can't I make this type of calculation with page exposure data -- where is the break down in my logic or math? Any insights would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 01, 1999 ):
First, overall, yes it is a reasonable and not unusual concept to adjust CPM according to additional measured factors reported for magazines. However, there are some minor and some major issues with your process in terms of labels and decimal places, etc.

Yes, CPM is ad rate ÷ readers. Readers is circulation times readers per copy (refer to the explanation of MRI information which the Guru did for you in query #2403).

So the basic CPM -- cost per thousand impressions -- in your example is actually $18.51, assuming you mean $40,400 is your ad csot, 704,000 is circulation and 3.1 is readers per copy.

The exposure rate is a factor, not an add on. So the adjustment would be 3.1 times 0.99 or 3.069 or virtually no change. The cpm is now $18.70. If there was a very different page exposure factor it would make a difference. It is a valid way to reaxamine CPMs.

Thursday, March 25, 1999 #2412
1) Are the terms OTS, impressions, hits and exposures interchangeable? 2) Are there media industry norms (or even studies) that indicate a correlation between a number of OTS or exposures and audience (reader) behavior. I understand there were a number of Politz studies conducted in the 60s which suggested that one exposure produced a dicernible response and two exposures produced about double that response. Also there are European reports stating that a magazine ad should provide at least 5 OTS in order for the reader to digest or understand the ad message -- is '5' the number? Are there industry norms, and if so, do they differ by media vehicle? Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 26, 1999 ):
1) Other than "hits," you may generally consider those terms interchangeable. "Hits" is a much abused term peculiar to the internet. Some people do use it when the mean impressions, but technically "hit" is defined as "an entry in a server log."

Whenever a visitor requests a page on a site, as by clicking on a link, the server log records a "hit" for the text of the page, and hits for each frame and hits for each little bullet or other icon and a hit for each ad. A single page on one of today's commercial sites may consist of several dozen items which would all create "hits" in a server log when only one page impression is happening. The internet is also unique in its ability to serve content with a different ad each time a new user arrives at a page. So page impressions and ad impressions will not agree as they do in magazines or broadcast.

"Hits" originated in the early days of the world wide web, when browsers read text only, like the venerable "Lynx," and a page was just one block of text, so "hit" then equalled "impression," more or less. Hits include server log error messages as well, which are of no value to anyone.

2) The study of effective numbers of exposures goes back at least as far as the scientist Ebbinghaus (1883) who tested how many repetitions of nonsense syllables were required to achieve learning. This was the origin of 3 as a magic media number there have been infinite numbers of other studies, more advertisng and sales focused since.

Note that European media and Europe's media environment are different than the U.S. It is a common trap to assume that media perform the same tasks with the same effectiveness when used in different cultures. The U.S. Hispanic market is a good exanple, with TV, radio and print all delivering very different reach / frequncy, reach potetial and overlap than do the parallel general market media.

The best source of studies on the topic are: Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter, Newsweek Media Research Index and ESOMAR, the European Survey, Opinion and Market Research Organization. The Guru has discussed this frequently.
Click here to see past Guru responses about "effective frequency"

Tuesday, March 02, 1999 #2364
Dear Guru: Our little website uses two software packages to track user sessions, impressions, etc. Web Trends gives us daily, weekly and monthly reports, while AdJuggler administers and tracks banner impressions, and reports same to our banner advertisers. Our problem: Web Trends reported total 2/99 page views as approx.144,500; while totalling the AdJuggler reports for each banner yielded 68,500 total banner impressions. What's going on? Our Webmaster claims this huge discrepancy is a function of the way browsers cache pages vis-a-vis ads; our sales manager is awfully frustrated with that answer, and unsure how to explain this situation to prospective and current advertisers. (If we give them the WebTrends total, they'll wonder why their banner is not delivering its fair share of impressions; if we give them the more conservative AdJuggler numbers, our stats are nowhere near as compelling.) Can you shed any light on this situation, or point us in the direction of someone who might be able to? Thanks Very Much, -Chuck

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 02, 1999 ):
Please understand that the Guru cannot possibly be familiar with the workings of every piece of web site utility software.

With that understood, here are a few possibilities; all of these have caused the same problem here at AMIC until they were understood and corrected:

  • Are you sure every single page of your site displays banners? Some pages deep in the directory srtucture may have been missed.
  • Pages generated by .asp scripts or other "on the fly" systems may not carry banners.
  • Pages served by sub servers, such as those holding data bases or data archives may not be displaying banners. This might be particularly true if there are mixed operating systems, such as using Windows NT for the primary server and Unix for others
  • There may be other possibilities; does one utility detect whether a visitor's browser has images "turned off" and therefore delete banner impressions while counting page impressions?
  • etc.

Monday, March 01, 1999 #2363
Dear Guru, We found a formula that is supposed to calculate newspaper impressions. (insertion X circulation*2.28*0.58)/1000) We thought that this was calculated simply by multiplying the circ by the # of insertions. Do you know what this formula could be doing? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 01, 1999 ):
The Guru believes this formula is meant to estimate persons impressions. "Circulation" represents just copies, not readers.

The 2.28 factor looks like the Sunday average adult readers per copy. The 0.58 then would seem to be the composition for some demographic group, perhaps 18-49. The "/1000" seem to be meant to set the decimal for the particular context in which you found the formula, it will cause the result to be expressed in thousands. Perhaps the number of impressions derived from this formula was going to be used to calculate cpm.

See The Newspaper Advertising Association research databank. for other readers-per-copy and demographic composition data

Monday, February 15, 1999 #2335
Dear guru wanted to find out what is the role of BDI and CDI in market prioritisation. How do you arrive at BDI and CDI and is there a point of saturation on CDI

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 15, 1999 ):
BDI is Brand Development Index

CDI is Category Development Index. In either case the index is calculated by dividing the percentage of sales in a local market by the percentage of the population which is in that market. It is done based on a Brand's sales or the whole category's sales respectively. This index then reflects the per capita sales in the market and is used to indicate sales potential.

Some marketing philosophies allocate advertising dollars or advertising impressions delivery according to such an index.

Since the usage ia an index, "saturation" would not be a factor unless sales were bizarrely skewed geographically. For instance, a new product in test market might have 90% of sales in a market accounting ofr just 1% of the population. In such as case it would be ridiculous to use BDi to determine allocation.

The Guru has discussed this frequently. Click here to see past Guru responses on BDI and CDI

Sunday, February 14, 1999 #2331
How can i measure and incorporate the effectiveness of outdoor mediai(hoarding,transit etc)in a conventional media plan?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 15, 1999 ):
Do you actually incorporate the "effectivenss" of other media in your plans?

Outdoor is measured, and you should be buying outdoor by audience size as you do other media. 30-sheet and 8-sheet outdoor, for example, sell in "showings." The current standards of "Showings" call for expressing showing in GRP-per-day. In other words, a "50 showing" of outdoor means that the locations you buy have a combined "daily effective circulation (DEC)" -- or number of daily impressions -- equal to 50% of the population.

Some people may discount the passive, short copy outdoor medium by a certain percentage, say 50%, when combining with or comparing to other media such as broadcast and page-dominant print.

Tuesday, February 09, 1999 #2315
Do you have an opinion on the media weight required to revitalize an ailing brand (a former success story which has been performing poorly of late). Should we stick to conventional weights, or heavier weight to try to make more powerful impact?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, February 09, 1999 ):
Questions like this come up so often, and lead the Guru to ask more questions:
  • How sure are you that the Brand's troubles stem from the advertising weight rather than the advertising copy or product attributes or competitive pricing or competitive quality?
  • What levels are competitors using?
  • What media are competitors using?
  • What media will you use?
  • etc.

A simple answer, when you believe advertising weight or exposure of a new message is the core issue, is that you must deliver more impressions than the competition, by a noticable margin, say 20%.

Friday, January 22, 1999 #2285
Dear Guru, This is a bit of a theoritical problem.I am currently working on a shaving cream brand which has been on decline for a few years now. Currently it has a market share of 3.9% and is ranked 7th.The markets where it is doing relatively better are actually the smallest markets, but here too, it is not better than 5th on market shares. It has a media budget which is about 1/5th of the biggest spender, which incidentally is not the market leader. My dilemma is - in the given scenario, for a relaunch, where should media focus be - on the overall smaller markets but where the brand is but marginally stronger or on the bigger markets for the category, where a greater potential lies ? The distribution strength is the same in all markets and no directions have been provided by the marketing team on priority markets. Thank you Guru. My name is Abu Huzaifa and i am media planner in Bombay, India.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 22, 1999 ):
Firstly, these are really marketing issues, not media issues, but to try to look at it from a purely media perspective, consider:

Think beyond the "bigger opportunity of the larger markets," because the impact you can deliver in a market is important. In other words, do you get more consumer response to 100 GRPs against 2 million people or 200 GRPs against 1 million people?

For example:

1. Assume that every impression delivered, no matter the market size, has the same potential to generate sales and / or share growth - where will your budget buy the greatest number of impressions?

2. Assume that the ability of the impressions to generate sales growth is influenced by current share of market. Estimate the value of this effect, plus or minus. Apply this weighting to the impressions you can buy and recalculate sales potential, according to paragraph 1.

3. Or assume that every exposure after the third one (or a level of your choosing) is some degree more effective. How many "effective impressions" can you deliver to each market set?

Tuesday, January 19, 1999 #2276
What you can tell me about GRP and CPT? How to explain the formulas of them?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 19, 1999 ):
The Guru assumes that by CPT, you mean "Cost per Thousand," which is abbreviated "CPM" in the U.S., (using the Roman numeral "M" for one thousand)>

GRP stands for "Gross Rating Points." It is the sum of all the ratings of all the advertisements of a schedule. Or it is the sum of all the impressions of a schedule divided by the population of the geographic market under consideration. "impressions" and "Population" must be in the same demographic category within the same geography when applying this formula.

CPT, or cost per thousand, is simple a matter of dividing the cost of media by the number of impressions delivered expressed in thousands.

Monday, January 18, 1999 #2275
Dear Media Guru: How would I go about analyzing the benefits of advertising on national cable TV vs. spot TV? For example: a retail store has locations in only 8 DMAs and therefore only buys local time in those markets. Is it feasible to compare the out-of- pocket costs of a local buy vs. a national buy? Would the wasted exposure outside of the 8 DMAs outweigh the cost efficiencies of a national buy? Are there any - simple - models that do this? Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 19, 1999 ):
This should be very simple. According to your question, only impressions delivered within your 8 DMAs have any value.

So, for a given amount of money invested in national cable and the same money invested in local cable, which will put more impressions into your 8 markets?

If the 8 markets are fairly large, it could be easy for the national buy to be less costly.

It also depends on the system structure of the markets. Some markets are served by just one or two systems and can be purchsed more efficiently than markets, like NY, for example, which has dozens of systems. By the same token, it can be more expensive, out-of-pocket, to buy just a segment of the NY market, like northern New Jersey, than to buy all of the DMA, because of price structure oddities.

At any rate, "waste" isn't your issue, the issue is what value do you get for your investment.

Thursday, January 14, 1999 #2261
The Media Guru response of Dec. 4/98 was that "common products . . . bought recently" are best candidates for recency planning, as opposed to products involving "considered purchase," such as automobiles. Not every- body buys even "considered purchase" items on the same day, so does it not make sense to spread impressions over entire year, perhaps on basis of % sales by month? My experience in grocery packaged goods designing Test vs. Control experiments on different ways to execute "recency" supports Erwin Ephron's work. Same approach should apply to even automobiles, it seems to me -- unless someone has conducted experiments proving the contrary. Have you seen such evidence, or are you speculating. There are many myths about recency. My experience is in Canada, where I am a consultant specializing in recency.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 15, 1999 ):
That Guru response combined readings of Erwin's published work on recency, conversations with Erwin, and some of the Guru's own thinking.

Your excerpt is inaccurate, however. The Guru referred there to "common products bought regularly."

In that response, the Guru also stated that recency does not require even levels of continuity, but that seasonal sales peaks can certainly be reflected in plan levels. This would likely fit the automotive situation.

Thursday, January 07, 1999 #2253
How can I use Spot Quotations and Data (SQAD) quarterly TV Cost Per Rating Point Report (HH Ratings)to calculate CPM? Whether SQAD has info. of CPM for each DMA?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 08, 1999 ):
There is a small difficulty in that the total audience usually used to calculate cpm extends beyond the DMA. But for your purposes this can probably be ignored.

"Cost per Rating Point" means the cost of buying audience impressions equal to one percent of the population. Therefore, dividing DMA CPP by 1 percent of the DMA population yields DMA cpm.

Tuesday, December 22, 1998 #2233
Dearest Guru, I am in desperate need of your help. I have a hotel client that would like both a Corporate anylysis & indivdual property anylysis based on what was spent last year. I need to calculate total impressions by business unit (there are 4 units) & also what the cost per impressions were. This is where it gets tricky, can I calculate this information without last years media plans? I am new here and the person before me kept, shall we say, no records of last year's activity. If I can get total dollar's spent by business unit for 98' how can I calculate the above impressions? (ie: last year's circulation per publication / by total cost per media buy) Please help!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 22, 1998 ):
If the plan was all print, and you know the spending per title and the magazines' actual rates charged as well as the creative units used, you will be able to do your figuring. But. . .

this means you are using circulation for impressions while audience would tell a fuller story.

Someone in your financial area should have the bills for the schedule, which would tell you the number of insertions and eliminate all that calculation with questionable spending and rates.

Better yet, be a real media pro and contact the salesmen at the magazines to give you the impressions anaslysis you need, they'll probably be delighted to introduce themselves to the new media person this way.

Monday, December 21, 1998 #2230
I am currently analyzing a media schedule that includes consumer print, trade print and national cable. I have been asked to pull a reach and frequency for the entire schedule. I realize that I am working with several differenct universes. I have added the circulations and pulled the gross impressions for cable. I have added those together. Is there any formular to determan a reach and frequency? Help?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 24, 1998 ):
In general, different media have different audience accumulation patterns when thinking about net unduplicated audience vs gross audience.

Calculating reach from a total multimedia impressions number is not practical unless the gross rating points (impressions divided by GRPs) is so many thousands that a 95+ reach can be assumed.

Some media, in particular broadcast media, allow general estimation of reach from a table of GRP levels. Print media are more complicated.

What you really need is standardized media software for reach and frequency calculation like that which is offered by AMIC 's sister company, Telmar.

Wednesday, December 16, 1998 #2223
dear guru- what is the best way to analyze magazines once proposals come in? Obviosly we want to evaluate comp, cov, cpm, positioning, added value, etc. do you recommend an excel spreadsheet with weighted averages? Is there one already set up on the site to download? Just looking to do this the smartest possible way. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 20, 1998 ):
All these factors, as well as some others, like added reach, and authoritative editorial are possible considerations. One can even consider the degree of the match of the magazines total impressions demographic distribution with the overall distribution of the purchaser.

It is extremely simple to build a spread sheet, making magazines the rows and making the specific factors the columns. Weighting ought to be set up as changeable so that it can be different from one advertiser's plan to the next, depending on goals. It will even be interesting to consider how magazine rankings change, when different factors get differing weightings within the same objectives. For example when reach is more important than frequency, is the magazine list very different than when these factors' importance is reversed?

Of course, the best approach is to independently compute the data using a syndicated data base (such as MRI, SMRB, MMR, TGI, PMB, etc.) and software such as Telmar's (AMIC's sister company) which handles all of the above data as well as many additional capabilities such as reach/frequency analysis and optimization.

Monday, December 14, 1998 #2221
What is the value of adding TV to an all-print media plan?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 20, 1998 ):
Adding any medium to a single medium plan will add reach and equalize distribution of impressions among those reached.

TV of course has sound and motion to allow different kinds of messages.

For advantages of different media, see the Guru's "Advertising Media Strengths".

Friday, December 11, 1998 #2216
Dear guru- we are trying to figure out how to combine impressions for radio and newspaper across 18 markets. should we combine each market separately? or should we combine all markets for each media vehicle? what is the best way to do this? thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 11, 1998 ):
It depends on what use you want to make of the data. impressions may be added across media and across markets.

The tricks come when you want to turn them into GRPs. Then you must compare impressions against the population for the relevant geography to get GRPs for that geography.

Tuesday, December 08, 1998 #2207
dear guru - to compute a CPM for OOH, would you divide the monthly cost for the board by 30 (days in month) and then divide that by imps x 1000? Please confirm. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 08, 1998 ):
The daily impressions, expressed in thousands (which means divided by 1000) are divided into the 1-day cost of the board.

Wednesday, December 02, 1998 #2194
Dear Guru, can you name any media analysis tools and media predictive tools that media planners use on a regular basis without being too technical, of course. Many thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 03, 1998 ):
Here are several:

  • Reach: the number of different target households or persons exposed to a campaign (most often expressed as a percentage of the target universe, and most often calculated over a 4-week period).
  • Frequency: The average number of exposures of the campaign to those reached.
  • Gross Rating Points (GRP) / Target Rating Points(TRP): Essentially interchangeable terms for the sum of the audiences of all the ad units in the campaign, expressed as a percentage of the target universe.
  • Gross impressions: Same audience count as GRP/TRP but expressed in whole numbers rather than percents.
  • CPP / Cost per GRP and CPM / Cost per thousand impressions: should be self evident from the previous. These are referred to as the "efficiency."
  • Effective reach: Those in the "Reach" who experienced a specified minimum number of exposures (effective frequency)

All the above stem from the audience research tools and investment figures. So called "reach and frequency" systems typically generate all these figures.

Other tools, especially in print media are also occasionally used. These may include "time spent with" media vehicles, "page openings", attentiveness, etc.

Wednesday, December 02, 1998 #2192
Dear Guru. It is not still clear to me how to measure or calculate Reach of the ad campaign using media mix. For example, my ads on TV provided 90% reach, and ads in print reached 25% of the target audience. What is the total reach, frequency of the campaign? What other indexes can we find for such campaign? And my second question is about outdoor advertising. It is essential to measure the effectiveness of the ad campaign comparing awereness and sales before and after the ads placing. But that is somehow the post- campaign analisys and my client would like to see some feagures before the campaign starts (pre-campaign). What indexes (like reach, frequency, GRPs, OTS) can we provide to the discription of the outdoor ad. campaign? Thank You very much.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 02, 1998 ):
Reach of a medium in a plan is simply a statistical probability. Further, it is generally thought that each medium overlaps each other medium randomly.

So, in your example, if you consider the reach of each medium as a decimal, the probability of not being exposed to TV is 0.10 and of not being exposed to print is 0.75.

The probability of not being exposed to either one, is therefore 0.10 times 0.75 = 0.075.

Therefore, total reach of the mix is 92.5 (if 0.075 or 7.5% don't see it then 92.5% do see it).

Other basic "counts" for a campaign are impressions (OTS), cost per rating point and cost per thousand impressions.

All of these counts; reach, frequency, GRP, OTS, etc are possible for outdoor, if the research has been done, in your country, to count the audience of the locations used.

Tuesday, December 01, 1998 #2190
Guru- Can you please explain Gross Weekly Reach Points (also refered to as levels)? How are they determined? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 02, 1998 ):
The Guru believes you mean "Gross Weekly Rating Points," a term often used to mean "levels." "Reach" is a term referring to the net, or unduplicated, audience.

Gross Rating Points are the sum of all the ratings of all the announcements or insertions of the campaign, or the sum of all the impressions of the announcements, divided by the population for the relevant target demographic.

An "impression" is created every time an audience member is exposed to one advertisement.

Tuesday, December 01, 1998 #2189
Dear Guru. I've got several questions. 1. What is the difference between the following three types of compensation for the ad agency services: commission, fee and percentage? Are there any other compensation systems used by the ad agencies? 2. What is the right way to evaluate the efficiency of the advertising campaign: a) held in several cities at the same time (each city has its' own media vehicles and their ratings are measured for the target audiences based in those cities); b)using several medium at once (i. e. TV and print). 3. How can we measure the effectiveness of the outdoor ad campaign? Thank you in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 01, 1998 ):
  1. Commission is based on a percentage of the agency's spending on the advertiser's behalf. The spending will primarily be media purchase and (in the U.S.) traditional commission, usually included in media rate cards, is 15% of the gross spending. Other expenditures, such as production, are marked up 17.65% of the net spending; this is exactly equivalent to 15% of the gross.

    Fees are flat amounts of compensation for performing agency tasks. On very small accounts, 15% commission may not cover the work required to create and place advertising. On very large accounts, 15% far exceeds what would compensate the effort.

    By Percentage the Guru imagines you mean an agreed commission other than the 15 / 17.65% structure.

  2. Efficiency is typically expressed in one of two ways: CPP - Cost Per gross rating Point or CPM - Cost Per thousand audience impressions (Roman numeral "M")

    In comparing markets, CPP is problematic because the universe number for calculating the Points - or percentage of universe - changes. However, CPM just uses impressions, which can be added and compared across markets. Other issues, about units and print versus broadcast can merit separate consideration, but these would be beyond efficiency.

  3. Effectiveness measures depend on a definition of the effect desired; is it awareness or sales or share? To best measure outdoor specifically, you need to set up your standard of effect and measure it with and without outdoor.

Monday, November 02, 1998 #2120
Our agency has little direct response TV (DRTV) buying experience yet a client has asked us to buy for a DR creative unit. Is there any rule of thumb on how many spots to purchase per week? I know it depends on results expectations and clearance rates but am wondering where to start.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 06, 1998 ):

Make sure you have enough telephone answering capacity to handle the calls you will generate. For safety, consider 2% of the impressions you will buy as call volume.

Consider spacing spots to manage response flow.

Track responses closely to understand

  • clearance
  • which spots work best
  • and actual response rate

Wednesday, October 21, 1998 #2105
Dear Guru, Can you recommend good sources for learning more about banner media advertising. I'm looking for sources that explain the media concepts/terms related to web media buying (page views, CPC, CPM, impressions and that will educate on how to make the most of web banner campaigns. Please help!!! Thanks, Kathleen

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 21, 1998 ):
See the Guru's web glossary, AMIC's publisher's article, Pricing Web Site Advertising; A Media Buyer's View

several of the Guru's friends' Think Pieces,

and check the books in the AMIC Bookstore (in association with on the "internet" shelf.

Tuesday, October 06, 1998 #2076
I am looking for services such as 24/7 Media to assist in the selling of our impression inventory. Our inventory is growing rapidly being at about 100,000 for the month. Can you make any recommendations for me. Thanks in advance, Todd

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 07, 1998 ):
All such reps of which the Guru is aware require about 250,000 minimum impressions inventory.

Sunday, October 04, 1998 #2070
My client is a large medical-surgical products manufacturer. Their audience is nurses and sometimes physicians. Their budgets are small, they advertise several products with separate b-to-b campaigns. They are urging me to recommend online instead of or in addition to business print. This does not seem effective to me given their small budgets. Do you have any info on how I could recommend an effective online ad effort instead of using print?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 04, 1998 ):
Is the goal of adding on-line to add reach or to reduce costs?

In either case, the first step is to identify media which draw an audience of "nurses and sometimes physicians."

Then, the efficiency in audience impressions per dollar can be evaluated as can the total audience which is reachable.

Your first step may well be to locate the websites of the print media you use (and if you find these, they may offer free on-line ads as merchandising for your print schedule). Other possiblities are the sites of non-competitive advertisers who share your target.

Once you have explored these possibilities, you can decide whether you can make an effective recommendation or can support a decision against on-line.

Tuesday, September 22, 1998 #2052
I am working on a national cable buy. First question, please explain VPH. I have been asked to provide the following information: -How many households will my schedule reach and how many times. Of course, I have to have all this information by tomorrow at noon. I have selected my networks and have asked for proposals from each network. The networks inform me that it will take several days to pull a reach and frequency. So my question to you is, can I take the HH's thousands and add them? It this the right way to approach this project. How will I calulate for a frequency. I can give the client the total number of spots, but is there a way to calculate frequency? Please Help? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 22, 1998 ):
VPH is "viewers per Household" and is used as a simple way to express persons audience in relation to housholds. In other words, if a network has a measured average quarter hour (aqh) audience of 1000 Households and a measured aqh among women 18-49 of 550, then its VPH for women 18-49 would be .55

Estimates of reach are based on modeling from actual past schedules and are typically calculated with computers. These calculations take only minutes, but you are probably facing a backlog in your vendors' research departments or, typically, a turnaround time policy which can be overriden if you apply the right charm or pressure to your sales reps.

Because these models reflect varying audience duplication between one spot and the next and between one network and another, adding household impression would be wrong. Such a calculation would produce "gross impressions" which is much greater than reach.

Frequency is calculated by dividing reach into gross impressions (or percent reach into gross rating points), so you need reach to calculate frequency.

If you have any media planning software at all, such as Telmar's AdPlus or Maestro, you would find that these system usually have a general calculator of cable reach built in.

Sunday, September 13, 1998 #2041
We're about to take our science-fiction website commercial with it's own domain. We have started having inquiries about advertising and sponsorship of different sections. My question is how do I know what a fair price would be to charge for these? Right now we average 8,000 hits per month with little advertising. Once we launch the new domain, we are also launching an aggressive ad campaign so expect that number to multiply rapidly. Our plans for our site can be viewed at We plan to launch the end of Sept. Thanks for the help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 16, 1998 ):
The Guru trusts that you mean 8000 "page views" and not literally 8000 hits, which are server log entries and may overstate pages (impressions) by a factor of 10 or more.

Cost per thousand impressions on the web can run from $5.00 to $ 75.00 depending on how targeted the audience is. The lowest cpms are ususally found on the biggest audience. least targeted sites, such as the major search engines. The higher prices will be on very targeted business-to-business site.

This would price your advertising at $40 to $600 per month with 8000 page loads. You would most likely not be valued - for targetting - at better than $30 cpm, and at 8000 impressions, not be very interesting to most major advertisers. On the other hand, the sort of vendor who would attend your conventions might be quite interested.

Friday, September 04, 1998 #2028
I am currently pulling together information for one of my clients on national cable advertising. I have spoken with different network reps and have been told that they can not provide reach, frequency, or TRP's. They have said that they are not measured this way. Is this true? The network reps have provided gross impressions (in thousands). Is there a minimum threshold for this measurement?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 05, 1998 ):
Everything which has its impressions measured in national tv has TRPs, which is merely a calculation: the division of impressions by the relevant population base, either in the cable network's coverage area or the total U.S.

Any metered measurement can produce the data for calculation of reach of schedules or the production of formulae which will allow estimation of reach.

The Guru would guess you are dealing with smaller networks whose ratings and reach would be unimpressive and therefore are not a part of the sales effort.

A 0.1 rating is the usual threshold for reporting in a printed report. There may be a requirement to earn this rating over a specified time span before even this level is reported. On the other hand, networks with ratings normally below this level are likely to be bought strictly for their content/environment, not their audience delivery.

Monday, August 24, 1998 #2011
We are in the process of planning for a major TV client where we have been applying the recency theory for the past year. Because of the size of the budget we have been limited to around 70TRPs weekly essentially for the entire year. In Year II our client has asked us to consider temporarily abondoning the recency theory and to move dollars (and TRPs) out of the more expensive buying months (April, May) to the relatively more more inexpensive months (January, Feb)and to increase our TRP levels accordingly. Do you have any input on which strategy should/could have more effect on brand performance assuming all other factors are equal (pricing, distribution etc.)?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 24, 1998 ):
First we have to assume that the basis of recency theory is accepted.

Recency theory calls for reaching as many people as possible as close to the sale as possible. Thats's why continuity is emphasized for products with little seasonality and regular purchase cycles.

One of the essential elements of recency theory is that not all impressions or GRPs are equal, even in the same programming. You are focusing on cost per point. As you are probably aware, reach developed per GRP decreases with every added GRP in a schedule. There is therefore, a declining return on investment in reach at any point in time, which is why spreading out prospects reached produces the optimal return. The first 10 GRPs bought in a week generate more reach than the last 10 GRPs.

Hence, the added impressions bought when they are cheap produce less sales than the impressions lost from the more expensive times.

So now you have to evaluate what might be produced. Assuming you are lowering -- not eliminating --activity in higher priced periods how many more impressions, and how much more reach can you achieve in low priced times. If you cut back 10 reach points per week in July but buy 20 added reach points per week in March, perhaps the added reach can sell more than the lost reach, or perhaps not. The Guru would look for a 50% minimum trade up in added vs lost reach points to justify the change; i.e. if the plan goes down 10 reach points per week in one period, then it need to go up 15 reach points per week in the other.

Sunday, August 16, 1998 #1998
i am just learning how to prepare a print media schedule, is there a standard formatt that you could supply me with. kind regards russell

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 16, 1998 ):
It isn't clear to the Guru whether you are referring to a presentation format or a decision making procedure.

But the simplest way to thisnk about the whole process is to present the plan in a way that shows how the decision making process produced the recommended schedule.

For example, your plan may call for

  • using magazines that are most authoritative in the topical area relevant to your product category
  • achieving a particular reach each month or in total
  • selecting magazines to accomplish the above based on greatest target audience coverage or
  • audience compostion or
  • audience efficency

You would then select candidate magizines to consider under each of the above and list them based on how well they ranked on these criteria. Finally, the schedule is assembled by trying various numbers of insertions in various numbers of titles to evaluate for overall reach or impressions delivery.

The schedule is presented by stating each of the above rules pertaining to selection, the ranking of the titles on each criterion and a comparison of the recommended schedule with others considered.

Friday, July 24, 1998 #1973
I need help! I need to know the forumla (or formulas) for figuring the reach and frequency on a television schedule. I need it to be demo / and have the following information: universe, impressions and grps. What else do I need and what is the magic FORUMLA! At this point we are using the cumulative impressions into the universe to figure the reach - but could that be right? I don't think so - but the reach is what I need to figure (already have grp and freq is easy if I have reach!). Please help - and thanks tons.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 24, 1998 ):
When you divide the accumulated impressions by the universe, your result is GRPs. There is no simple reach formula unless you already know GRPs and frequency. There are various very complicated algorithms for calculating reach for a given average rating size, known average duplication between programs used, etc. "Beta Bimodal" is one of the best known.

But today, Reach calculations are done by computer, using models built from Nielsen's actual measurements of net audience reach from meter-measured schedules.

Telmar, AMIC's sister company, is the leading provider of software for such analyses.

Before computers were commonplace, media planners had tables which gave reach for various GRP levels depending on demos, dayparts and duplication. These, too, were based on average Nielsen audience accumulation reports.

Monday, July 13, 1998 #1949
Dear Guru, You've never failed me. I need your help. I thought I understood pageviews and banner impressions. However, I'm wondering, if a person sees banner doesn't it stand to reason that they will naturally view the page to do that? What am I missing? Please clarify. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 13, 1998 ):
If a person sees a banner, the person sees the page it's on. But remember, "sees" is just a handy word. What we mean is that the person's browser "requests" the page from the server, and the page is loaded by the browser with the banner gifS or jpgS the server is programmed to deliver with the page at that moment.

In theory, depending on certain browser settings, if a person goes to the same page twice in one visit, and that page rotates its banners, then on the second visit, the browser could request the banners but load the page out of its own cache, creating a banner impression, but not a page request in the server log, even though the visitor "sees" the page both times.

Saturday, July 11, 1998 #1946
I'm a newbie and I need your help. I've been asked to put together a proposal for an online campaign. But my startup website doesn't have specific numbers on the desired target audience for this campaign. I can tell you now that we certainly reach that group but we have no hard numbers. How can I build a compelling argument without having to give exacting avails on this demographic? What are your thoughts?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 12, 1998 ):
There are limited numbers of ways to document specific demographic target impressions for a website.

1. It can be rated by one of the user-centric meter / panel survey systems which attempt to parallel TV style ratings: MediaMetrix, RelevantKnowledge or Net Ratings.

These services, however, typically report data on larger sites and would not likely generate stable data on a start-up early in its life.

2. It can be rated by one of the other survey systems with a longer report cycle, like MRI or Nielsen, to give demographic composition which can then be applied to server log impressions counts.

These systems may be less likely to be useful for start-ups.

3. Strict registration with demographic details and cookies or sign-in procedures which allow detailed tracking of visitors in the server logs and log analysis software.

While this is possible for a site of any size or age, it creates obstacles to visiting which most sites would prefer to avoid.

So let's see how we can work with what you've got. Of course you have server logs which can tell the boxcar numbers of pages loaded to show total impressions.

From the way you state your question, you appear confident that your site is targeted to the demographic in question. Choose a site which is targeted to the same demographic and is reported by the ratings services mentioned above in point 1.

Assume you will get the same proportion of your total impressions in the target demographic segment as the rated site does.

You will also need to present a good rationale for why your site is targeted to the specified demographic

Saturday, July 11, 1998 #1945
Dear Guru, I have seen you use "advertising weight" in other response. Please clarify the meaning of this percentage. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 11, 1998 ):
Advertising weight refers to the gross audience of a campaign. It may be GRP/TRPs or impressions. It may be considered in total or by individual demographic segment. While some look primarily at expenditure, "weight" is a better guide to communications impact.

In competitive analysis, each advertiser's weight is compared to all others as a percent of the total weight in the category to calculate "Share of Voice."

Saturday, July 11, 1998 #1944
Dear Guru, Thank you for your incredible help! I have to fulfill an RFP for an online ad campaign. The agency requested avails, SOV and a proposal. Please explain SOV in the online context. I understand avails to be available impressions.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 11, 1998 ):
"Avails" in the context of a media proposal typically means a listing of the advertising positions offered. In broadcast, it may describe dayparts and programs available for sale with audience and pricing specified.

The term seems a bit of a stretch in on-line, but could describe a lsiting of available banner sizes, positions and rotations, with impressions and prices.

"SOV" does not seem to fit here unless it is meant to express the portion of the site's total available impressions delivered by each available advertising opportunity in the "avails."

The Guru's observation has been that people operating web sites and managing their advertising have not come from other media or even agency backgrounds. It would not seem useful to try to impose broadcast terminology on new electronic media, except for those terms common to all other media, such as "impressions," "GRP," or "cpm."

Monday, May 25, 1998 #1603
our website attracts 1.1 million hits a day.our server is in u.s.a.In recent times a lot of our advertisers start asking demographic and psychographic profile of our reader.And also informations on impression,page view, ad view ,visitor, click-through ratio etc.please enlighten me if they data can be generated,if so who can do these things?.,our server or the I.T.professionals working with us.Also please send me the mode of collecting those informations.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 26, 1998 ):
"Hits" literally means entries in a site's server log. A server log entry is made for every file requested by a visitor to a site, as well as for every error, such as incorrect page requests within the site.

One page request, that is, one occasion on which a visitor requests a specific page of a site, may generate 10 or more "hits," since each gif or jpg image file for buttons or navigational images is a file, as is each text page. No one really counts hits as traffic anymore, page requests are the gauge of impressions.

Reading your server log carefully can tell you all about page requests, ad views, clicks, etc. But with over a million hits daily that would quickly become tedious. AMIC uses software called "Hitlist" from MarketWave to produce this analysis. There are several companies that offer comparable services and products.

Saturday, May 23, 1998 #1601
how to price online advertising,especially banner advts.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 23, 1998 ):
CPM impressions pricing runs from $8 to $80 depending on audience "quality" and targeting, but see the Guru's recent answer to this question below, on May 11.

Tuesday, May 12, 1998 #1589
I am a interactive media planner currently tracking a buy via a third-party ad server. When comparing the results from one site with the third-party server, the difference between the impression delivery and clicks is enormous (about a 600 click difference). My third- party sales rep says that this particular site counts clicks that are generated by robots and spiders. I did not know that spiders were clicking on banners??? Please help me make sense of this Guru!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 12, 1998 ):
Perhaps he said the site counts impressions generated by robots and spiders.

Since Clicks must always be less than impressions, only that version would explain robots and spiders increasing the discrepancy.

Wednesday, May 06, 1998 #1583
I have been approached by advertisers interested in "sponsorship" arrangements, but since I am new to internet advertising, I'm having a little difficulty visualizing exactly what I should plan to deliver to my "sponsors." Is it more than just impressions & clickthrus? Please advise. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 08, 1998 ):
Advertisers buying on the web are mostly placing banners to generate impressions and clickthru.

Some want clickthru to an "interstitial," which is more of an ad than the visitor would get in arriving at the advertiser's site.

Still others are trying to generate revenue; e.g. they sell books, recordings, or fishing gear on their site and want to pay you a sales commision on purchases by customers referred by your site.

It seems that each week we hear of new web business models.

Thursday, April 30, 1998 #1578
what is the mathematical relationship between the cpp and cpm, is there any formula linking this two concepts?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 30, 1998 ):
CPP (Cost Per rating Point) is the cost of a number of media impressions equalling one per cent of a given population group (the specified "target"), as in Women 18-49 CPP.

CPM is the cost of 1000 target media impressions.

Therefore, the mathematical relationship depends on the number of thousands of people who equal one percent the target group.

For example, suppose there are one million women 18-49 in a market, and a radio spot has an audience of 20,000 women 18-49 at a price of $50.

The rating points generated by the spot are 2.0

(20,000 divided by 1,000,000).

The CPP is $25

($50 divided by 2.0)

The CPM is $2.50

($50 divided by 20[thousands])

Since CPP is the cost of impressions equal to 1% of the population, the CPM to CPP relationship is:

CPP divided by 1% of the population in thousands = CPM

In this case, $25 CPP divided by 10 [thousand]= $2.50 CPM


CPM times 1% of the population in thousands = CPP

While this works perfectly for national media, it can be tricky in local media unless geography is tightly defined. I.e. a broadcast CPM is usually defined as being on a Metro Area or DMA basis. CPM though, is often based on all impressions generated, even if outside the basic geography. Common geographic population definitions are essential to the accuracy of the formulas.

Monday, April 20, 1998 #1567
i have developed a set of criteria to evaluate a news website they are as follows: original info,value addition, regional info,comprehensiveness, customisation, how do i weigh them to evaluate various websites.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 20, 1998 ):
Since you have set up apparently arbitrary categories of evaluation to suit your own perceptions, you can weight them with an equally arbitrary set of weights.

Relating these weights to marketing needs is the most obvious approach. For example, regional info might be completley irrelevant to some and the most important to others.

It is also not clear whether you're evaluating sites as potential advertising media, giving design awards, etc.

If advertising media, then impressions and cost per impression should be key considerations. If design awards, then navigation should be high on the list.

Tuesday, March 17, 1998 #1533
I am starting an online business soon, and I am perplexed as to what methods to utilize with our limited budget of $5000 per month. I want to initially do my advertising exclusively on the net, and I have been looking into using an interactive ad agency. What kind of targeted traffic should I expect for my budget, and what methods will an agency use to create traffic, besides search engine listings and optimization?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 20, 1998 ):
$5000 might buy just a month of banner display on a major, general audience website. at $10 per thousand impressions. Therefore, you would have 500,000 impressions and perhaps click-thru 5,000 - 10,000 traffic to your site. Of this traffic, you might get 25 - 100 sales, depending on what you're selling.

Other, more targeted sites might sell for less out of pocket, at a higher cpm (e.g $25-$100), but ultimately generate more sales ROI because their audience is more likley to be interested in your product.

Another technique that an agency might use is a revenue sharing model, wherein sites which send you customers earn a share of your revenue from visitors "referred" by their site.

Wednesday, November 19, 1997 #1459
Does it make any sense to calculate GRPs not having reach and frequency stated? My campaign brings me 530 GRps - whatdoes it mean for me? Could I calculate OTS if I have only GRPs? Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 22, 1997 ):
GRPs are simply a summation of all the audiences of all the ads in a plan. They give you the "boxcar" size of a plan without any detail. This can be used to compare to other campaigns or other times, in crude terms.

If by OTS, you mean "Opportunities to See," which is equivalent to impressions, then the calculation is simple. GRPs are a percentage of the population. Whatever your GRP's target group, you need to know the total "universe" of that population for which the GRPs are stated. Then, if you have 500 GRPs, you have impressions equal to the population, times 5.

Tuesday, October 14, 1997 #1431
I want to place some standard banner advertising. What is the best pricing model to use for banner placements on search engines and other sites? I've been getting CPM prices from the search engines, but I've been told to negotiate page views or visits.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 14, 1997 ):
There are three basic pricing models in play at present, cpm, click-thru, and transaction based.

In click-thru, you pay for each time someone clicks on your banner to be taken to your site or full ad.

In transaction-based, if your site actually sells something, like books or cd's you pay a share of sales to the site which "referred" the customer.

"CPM" typically means you pay a given "cost-per-thousand" exposures of your banner. This is not different than page views or visits. The thousands of exposures in the calculation are page views which include your banner, not thousands of impressions of the site.

If you think a site intends to charge by their site exposures instead of your ad exposures, you should get written clarification, and then do insist on paying according to your banner exposures.

Friday, September 19, 1997 #1416
My company has a server that hosts two international newspapers. We would like to get some large companies to advertise on these newspaper's web sites, but have no idea how to go about getting in touch with the right people, or for that matter, who the correct people to contact are.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 19, 1997 ):
A few of the companies which act as adsales representatives for websites are:


Softbank and


These all, especially the latter two, represent higher traffic sites, i.e. 1 million+ impressions per month. There are numerous other reps, which might be found through search engines like Yahoo

Friday, June 13, 1997 #1365
Dear Guru, Could you please give your opinion on what can be viewed as a recommended level of GRP, frequency and effective frequency for a highly competitive advertising category on TV. As an example we can take a carbonated soft drinks' category. What should be the planning guidelines? When and why we should use flighting (pulsing) or what is the rationale for a continous campaign. Additionally to TV which other media should we use and why? Thank you in advance, Bob

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 13, 1997 ):
You are actually asking for the complete Objectives, Strategies and communications tactics of a full scale media plan, without offering enough background.

Nevertheless, here are some considerations:

One theory of competitive media planning calls for delivering a minimum of 10% more impressions than the key competitor, in head to head media. This assures beating the competition in GRP, reach and effective reach.

Budget is a consideration. If there is not enough money to compete as above nationally, then selecting geography where the delivery advantage can be maintained should allow you to beat the competition, bit by bit, until you can afford national support.

When there are time-sensitive promotional issues, then pulsing can be an effective way to deliver more impressions over the crucial period. Recent media theory has emphasized the benefits of continuity, because "the impression delivered closest to the purchase decision is the most effective impression." In the soft drink category, where purchase decisions are constant, continuity may be generally preferable to pulsing.

In other, highly competitive, seasonal categories pulsing may be needed.

As far as recommending other media, that calls for more information, but please look at the Guru's Media Advertising Strenghths

Thursday, May 29, 1997 #1358
Is there any model or guideline that help me to allocate the media budget between regional media and local media, i.e. how much should be put behind regional media vs local media

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 02, 1997 ):
There are several models for accomplishing this media task. There are basic decision points that must be addressed before doing the actual calculations:

-Will you allocate impressions or dollars? (dollars leads to more efficient plans overall)

-Will you set goals for local delivery based on population, sales, brand development, category development or some other basis for assigning value to local markets?

A delivery goal is established for each market or region: e.g. let each DMA receive a percentage of all the plan's impressions equal to the DMAs percentage of the product's sales or the market's percentage of US population, etc.

Then, by examining how each national medium delivers its impressions to each DMA, using Nielsen data, ABC circulation, etc. you can determine how much media needs to be purchased locally to achieve the market by market goals.

The first time you must guess how much budget to allocate to national media, to see how the impressions fall before you have a local media budget to experiment with. Then it becomes an iteritive process to fine tune the allocation.

The Guru suggests you begin with about 75% in national media and 25% in local. If the local skews are stronger, e.g. many BDIs outside the 75 to 150 range, you will likely need a greater proportion of local funding.

It is possible to incorporate many adjustment factors, such as market efficiency, relative effectiveness of national and local media elements, etc.

Tuesday, May 13, 1997 #1345
Since "PRICING WEB SITE ADVERTISING" was first published (it's not dated but I'm guessing '96?) have there been any 'advances' in the methodology for pricing web advertising beyond either the ModemMedia model or the alternatives suggested? I am not an advertising professional (and they said us geeks use obscure achronyms?), and I am also looking for a concise FAQ type document that might explain the formulae and jargon (CPM, Frequency, impressions in your excellent on-line dictionary and Depth which isn't) within the context of web advertising. Are there and other specific media terms (new or old) that are pertinent in a web advertising context (I got page view and hits)? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 14, 1997 ):
The AMIC article was wriiten in the latter part of 1995, not long after the appearance of the Internet World May 1995 article which it discusses.

By the way, please be aware that AMIC has added a new area, called I-Trac, which discusses web terms and measurement and which includes a Web Glossary

In terms of newer thinking, consider the critqued article's central concepts:

1.Determine the ratio of hits between the web site's log and the number of file "hits" that make up the page carrying the ad. Divide logged hits by number of hits making up the page to calculate what we can call "page views." Then call page views "reach."

Since then, the software which interprets log files has developed so that it can distinguish pure "hits" from the more relevant page requests or "page views" . Hits today is taken to refer to any line in a log file, even errors. (Ad) Page requests is the analog to traditional media's "impressions".

2.Determine repeat viewing of that page and call that frequency.

We more commonly use "frequency" in terms of whole campaigns

3.Determine the success of viewings of that billboard ad in moving readers to the actual web site and call that "depth."

This measurement concept has come to be called "click-through" or ad click rate. Depth was a term only used as defined in this Internet World article.

Today pricing is generally based on cost per thousand (CPM) impressions. Rates seem to range from $15 cpm for the broadest, general audience sites' rotating banners, through $50 or so for search engines' keyword banners up to $100+ for "premium audience" on highly targeted business to business web sites. Another pricing model growing in popularity is "price per click," which charges for each vistor who clicks on a banner. The problem here is that the site hosting the banner must rely on the creative to generate viewr response -- it isn't all the effect of the web site itself. Therre is considerable literature today about how to influence clicks, as well as a growing body of research which argues for the awareness building effects of the banners, regardless of clicking response. Finally, simple revenue based models are the rising concept. In this, sites hosting banners are compensated with a portion of the transaction revenue generated by web surfers they send to retail type sites. An offshoot of this is a model for ad placement agency compensation based on the revenue generated by their placement of ads at recommended sites.

Thursday, March 20, 1997 #1011
Hi, where could I find answers to the following questions:
* What are the most used vehicles to advertise on the net?
* What are the costs to advertise through these vehicles?
* Are there any audience rates availabel for these vehicles?
* What are the rules and regulations to advertise on the net?
* What is the effectiveness of advertising on the net?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 21, 1997 ):
The Guru could write a book in answer to these questions.

  • Top sites:Jupiter Communications is the best accepted ad spending tracker, and this link presently gives 1996 total billings for the top 10 sites.
  • Costs to advertise:
    Webtrack is one source of web advertising prices. (read with care, sometimes cpm is listed as if it were a total price)
    FocaLinkprovides cost as well as content/audience information.
  • Audience:
    PC-Meter reports audience for hundreds of sites.
    MRI and Simmons also report web site audiences.
  • Rules: It's still the Wild, Wild, Web as far as regulations go. There is some standardization in agreement to definitions on "impressions" as a basis for ad pricing according to cost-per-thousand impressions. and ad pricing per banner "click-through." There is also some ad size standardization thanks to CASIE and the IAB. Details of these sizes and definitions will be listed in AMICs new I-Trac area. Meanwhile, see the CASIE Definitions and CASIE Standards for banners.
  • Ad effectiveness: Ad effectivenss will vary by ad type and appropriateness of placement. The same could be said for any medium. There is a CASIE Research Compendium which offers several studies on the topic.

Wednesday, January 29, 1997 #1065
I'm finding very hard to calculate the price of an advertise on the web.DO have any tip or formula that could help me ? Thank you very much !

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 30, 1997 ):
What information or goal are you starting with? As a guide line, search engine keyword banners may cost between $30-$70 per thousand ad impressions.

Friday, December 20, 1996 #1087
How do the concepts of effective frequency relate todirect response advertising? Should the same rules of frequency be taken into account when planning forresponse as when planning for awareness? Is frequency even a factor in D.R. or should I just max out on impressions and occasions?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 21, 1996 ):
Effective frequency applies, but differently. If it takes 3 repetitions for a message to be absorbed, then DR may need the 3 repitions as well before it begins to work. But perhaps that's why DR messages are often 90's or 120's, There is the chance to repeat information 3 or more times and capture attention. In half hour infomercials, it is not unusual for ther to be 3 10 minute cycles of repeated information.

Wednesday, December 18, 1996 #1094
i am looking for info on internet advertising control systems.the kind of systems that would allocate ads, measure impressions/"click thru's", automate billingsand allow control to book the ads and check availability.thanking you in anticipation of your helpkind regardstony glencross -

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 20, 1996 ):
The Guru is not aware of any software that performs all the functions you request. However, at any time there are usually one or two web counting or ad managing software advertisers here on AMIC if you check the top page.

Monday, December 02, 1996 #1101
Is there a standard industry statistic on using a 1-800 number in tv and radio spots and what the response levelpercentage is? If it is a percentage, is it a percentageof the number of times the spot ran or a percentage relatedto the target audience?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 03, 1996 ):
There are a number ov variables in this kind of direct response, several of which are more important than the ones youmention.

Is the 800 number purely informational or a sales responsevehicle?

What is the product, how unique, how interesting?

What is the product's price?

How good is the commercial?

The Guru believes there are almost mystical aspects to Direct response. Sometimes spots with smaller audience seem toproduce more response than others with larger audience, whenthere are no apparent difference in target composition orprogramming "fit".

Sometimes one station seems to outperform a similar station whenimpressions, spots and programming appear identical.

Overall, 2% of people reached, is generally considered anoutstanding response rate.

Wednesday, September 18, 1996 #1144
I'm trying to come up with reach curves (how many impressions does it take to get max. reach) for various on-line sites. Do you know how to do this?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 19, 1996 ):
Yes the Guru knows how to do this. He has done it for many media. The first step in "how" is to assemble some actual measurements of the accumualtion patterns of the medium for which you want a reach "curve" model. Telmar has done this and the latest versionof the AdPlus programhas internet curves built in.

If you could persuade a site to give you their unique monthly visitors and for example the 3 month unique visitors,then you could use the latest version of Telmar's AdPlusto determine the reach.

Note: Telmar is the parent company of AMIC and provides supportfor the media guru.

Friday, August 30, 1996 #1157
Dear Guru,We are planning a campaign in the market, where no consistent media research data is available. What we have at the moment is following:1. 2 heavy competitors (one is our client)2. The competitor is running a campaign in the key city of the region using 3 local channels with a combined monthly reach of 93% of the city and the surrounding area, which equals 12.5% of the regions' population. The competitor is spending ca. USD 90K per month.3. We have the objective of running a regional rather than local campaign and, at the same time, outvoice the competitor by 30%.4. To our choice are 3 regional channels with a combined reach of 40.7% in the regionQuestion: what budgert should we be looking at on a monthly basis, given that the average ratio of the local rate card to regional one is 1:1.5?

Sorry for asking for a piece of alchemy and thank you in advance,

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 30, 1996 ):
The simplest conceptual answer is to spend 30% more than the competitor in the key city: USD117 This way you outspend him where he's active and meet the 30%+ goal. Otherwise, assuming the regional buy includes the key city, your budget is still 117, with some in regional media and some in the more efficient key city media, so that you have at least a 10% edge in key city impressions.

If the rate card is telling you that a $150 spot buys thewhole region at the same rating that $100 buys the key city's 12.5% of the region (if the Guru followed your data correctly), then 1.3 x 1.5 x 90, or 175.5 is the budget to deliver 30% more impressions in the key city and an equal level across the region.

Sunday, May 05, 1996 #1227
I'm trying to figure out how Gross Rating Points are used to figure out gross impressions when it comes to using billboards to advertise?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 06, 1996 ):
As you may know, generally. . .

Gross Rating Points as a decimal fraction (i.e. 50 GRP = 0.50)multiplied by population (for the relevant demographic) =impressions.

The "trick" with billboards is that GRP in outdoor are expressed in daily quantities. So a #50 -- or 50 GRP -- showing means a total daily "circulation" equal to 50% of the population, or 1500 GRP per month.

Monday, April 29, 1996 #1237
I represent a company that is creating a pre-paid calling card (PPCC) where all of the time is sponsor/advertiser supported. The users of the card will be a very targeted audience appealing to a good number of potential sponsors/advertisers. Each month, card users would be given 60 minutes of free time. When a user "signs on" to make a call, he/she hears a brief (8 - 10 seconds) promo/message from on the of the sponsors/advertisers. Our estimates are that a sponsor would get their message to a user at least 2x/month in audio format and 1x/month in print. In addition to these "impressions", the sponsor would get information about each user/subscriber including name, address, phone number, e-mail address (if applicable), etc. Additionally, sponsors would get detailed usage reports show which messages were played when, to whom, etc. My question is about pricing: we are thinking of charging a sponsor $1.50 - $1.75/subscriber/month (60 minutes). Our feeling that this application combines direct marketing tools (lists - compiled and response) and broadcast/mass marketing. Does our pricing seem in line?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 30, 1996 ):
Your pricing works out to $500 - $580 per thousand impressions, whereas typical mass media for selective audiences (special interest magazines) are about one tenth of that. If your delivery data capture is enormously valuable to someadvertisers in unique situations, there may be takers at these prices.

Monday, April 29, 1996 #1723
I represent a company that is creating a pre-paid calling card (PPCC) where all of the time is sponsor/advertiser supported. The users of the card will be a very targeted audience appealing to a good number of potential sponsors/advertisers. Each month, card users would be given 60 minutes of free time. When a user "signs on" to make a call, he/she hears a brief (8 - 10 seconds) promo/message from on the of the sponsors/advertisers. Our estimates are that a sponsor would get their message to a user at least 2x/month in audio format and 1x/month in print. In addition to these "impressions", the sponsor would get information about each user/subscriber including name, address, phone number, e-mail address (if applicable), etc. Additionally, sponsors would get detailed usage reports show which messages were played when, to whom, etc. My question is about pricing: we are thinking of charging a sponsor $1.50 - $1.75/subscriber/month (60 minutes). Our feeling that this application combines direct marketing tools (lists - compiled and response) and broadcast/mass marketing. Does our pricing seem in line?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 30, 1996 ):
Your pricing works out to $500 - $580 per thousand impressions, whereas typical mass media for selective audiences (special interest magazines) are about one tenth of that. If your delivery data capture is enormously valuable to some advertisers in unique situations, there may be takers at these prices.

Monday, April 29, 1996 #1704
I represent a company that is creating a pre-paid calling card (PPCC) where all of the time is sponsor/advertiser supported. The users of the card will be a very targeted audience appealing to a good number of potential sponsors/advertisers. Each month, card users would be given 60 minutes of free time. When a user "signs on" to make a call, he/she hears a brief (8 - 10 seconds) promo/message from on the of the sponsors/advertisers. Our estimates are that a sponsor would get their message to a user at least 2x/month in audio format and 1x/month in print. In addition to these "impressions", the sponsor would get information about each user/subscriber including name, address, phone number, e-mail address (if applicable), etc. Additionally, sponsors would get detailed usage reports show which messages were played when, to whom, etc. My question is about pricing: we are thinking of charging a sponsor $1.50 - $1.75/subscriber/month (60 minutes). Our feeling that this application combines direct marketing tools (lists - compiled and response) and broadcast/mass marketing. Does our pricing seem in line?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 30, 1996 ):
Your pricing works out to $500 - $580 per thousand impressions, whereas typical mass media for selective audiences (special interest magazines) are about one tenth of that. If your delivery data capture is enormously valuable to some advertisers in unique situations, there may be takers at these prices.

Friday, March 15, 1996 #1263
Can you fill me in on "recency"? Sounds like a complicated way to say low media weight, long duration? Is this correct? If so, can it work with a small budget?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 18, 1996 ):
Recency does amount to lower weight and longer duration, but allows for more complex discussion. It is a theory which works in opposition to "effective reach." Effective reach is based on the fact that 3, or some other minimum number of exposures to advertising, is necessary for the advertising to be digested, understood and begin to effect consumer behavior.

Recency posits that an exposure close to the moment of purchase decision is the most effective, therefore maintaining a constant presence of messages is most likely to catch the prospect at the crucial moment.

Obviously, even within the recency model, the more exposure provided at any given point in time the better the chance of catching a consumer at the critical time. Recency argues for continuity, not for low levels, though it is often used to justify low levels.

Recognizing that truly seasonal purchases call for different scheduling than regularly cyclical purchases, the concept says that if a given number of impressions are affordable, all else being equal, those impression will generate more sales when spread consistently rather that concentrated into flights at a presumed "effective" level.

Monday, February 19, 1996 #1757
Television's (network, spot are cable) and radio's (network and spot) advertising costs are typically measured in CPP's (cost per rating points). On the other hand, Newspapers' and magazine's advertising costs are measured in CPM's (cost per thousand). It seems the Internet is moving towards the CPM model and I have no idea how "out of home" or Direct Mail are measured. Apples to apples, based on CPM, how do these mediums compare on cost? -- how about ROI?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 22, 1996 ):
First, understand that CPP and CPM are just cost indices rather than "measures." CPM (cost per thousand audience impressions) may be converted easily to CPP (cost per percentage point of population universe):

CPP = CPM x universe in thousands x .01


CPM = CPP / (.01 x universe in thousands)

CPM is simpler to deal with because we only need to know the audience exposed, a figure just beginning to be reported on the internet. CPP requires us to know a "universe," the number of people in the whole category under discussion. For the internet, or more specifically the WWW, where ads are usually found, universe is a hotly debated question. Is it the number of people with computers and modems or the number of people with the theoretical possibility to browse the web (an ISP and browser software) or the number of people who actually ever do use the Web? Even if we pick one of these, there are radically varying research estimates of the size of these possible universes.

If we decide to just use the total population as a universe for internet measurement, the ratings are agonizingly small, and we are still working toward how to define the rating. In print, no matter how often a reader picks up the same issue of a magazine, he or she only counts once in that issues impressions or rating. But website accesses are usually counting multiple weekly visits without the ability to distinguish repeats of the same viewer. There is not yet any common ground in pricing to talk of averages. There may be over 100,000 commercial sites, more than all the tv, radio and print vehicles put together.

The comparison you suggest between all media cpms also changes as we define which demographic to consider. TV has established averages to consider and companies like Spot Quotations and Data publish these cpm/cpp.

Print may vary from $5 to over $200 cpm depending on selectivity of audience and total circulation.

ROI can't be discussed without knowing the goals and depends on ad content, other marketing efforts and how revenue is measured. Web site development and web ads may be meant to sell product, build image or just bring viewers to sites. Web advertising needs to be evaluated against very goal specific potential and possibility.

Thursday, February 15, 1996 #1762
What is the actual formula for calculating GRP's

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 15, 1996 ):
There are various formulae, depending on from what data you are working:

GRP = Reach x frequency


GRP = Average rating x number of advertisements


GRP = The sum of the ratings of all the advertisments in a schedule


GRP =The total impressions delivered (i.e. audience among a specific demographic group, expressed in raw numbers of people X number of advertisements) divided by population universe for that demograpic.

Tuesday, January 30, 1996 #1770
If a media vehicle is delivering 3.5 million impressions per month, what rate should I pay for advertising if I want a $20 CPM?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 02, 1996 ):
CPM = $cost / thousands of impressions
$20 = $cost / 3500
$20 x 3500 = $70,000

Thursday, January 04, 1996 #1802
How do television and radio advertisers value an impression? That is, if someone advertises on television is there a formula used to determine prices for :15, :30 and :60 spots? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 02, 1996 ):
As a general rule, :30 impressions are the standard reference for TV and :60 for radio. "value" and "price" may or may not correlate:

In TV, a :60 is usually double a :30's price but has the same value in reach. Some advertisers use attentiveness or recall factors to adjust the "value" of a :60 vs a :30 impression. Your question focuses on pricing.

In most cases, :15's are priced at 50% of 30's, but there are instances where 65 or 75% is used.

In radio, :60 is the standard, with :30's typically priced at 80-85% and :15's not in use. Some stations today, especially top rockers with a sensitivity about clutter and inventory sell "units" not differentiating between :60's and :30's in price.

Wednesday, December 27, 1995 #1804
what is the difference between general media and direct response television media? and would I ever recommend to my client DRTV as an inexpensive way of getting exposure?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 02, 1996 ):
General TV and DRTV are different in the way they are purchased and in key aspects of the copy used. To qualify for DRTV, the copy usually must be selling something through an 800 telephone number. Mail is also possible, but the immediate nature of telephone response is preferable (900 number ads are typically under a different rate structure).

DRTV rates are usually based on half of the going rate for the time period. The concept of "going rate" is hard to pin down with any certainty, unless you are buying the same schedule at the same time as "general media." These half price schedules are typically in remnant time or relatively undesirable times late at night or early in the morning or weekends. They are also instantly preemptible. You can't rely on delivering a schedule of "50 GRP per week in prime and 75 GRP per week in early fringe" through DRTV.

General TV schedules are used to build awareness through planned levels of reach and frequency or timely impressions delivery during specific promitions or campaigns DRTV schedules are opportunistic buys, with each airing anticipated to generate a certain quata of responses for a product ready to sell at all times without specific timing issues.. DRTV advertisers often track resonse minute by minute to associate each call with the specific commercial airing responsible. This is in clear contrast with the awarenes building aspect of general media.

When your client measures "exposure" in reach or effective reach terms than DRTV is not an efficient way to get exposure. Those remnant timeslots are not reach builders.

A DRTV advertiser is generally selling something worth the investment in inbound telemarketing expenses for each 800 number order, and assuming a certain minimum of orders per airing. (You cant make money if a $5 an hour operator has to spend 10 minutes taking address, size, flavor and credit card info to sell a $2 item, unless you add $3 shipping and handling). This means it doesn't work for toothpaste, floor wax, soap or cookies, unless you're selling the $29 bag-o-groceries special.