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Guru Search Results: 1077 matches were found

Tuesday, November 15, 2011 #8294
effective frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 15, 2011 ):
Click here to see more than 100 Guru comments about effective frequency / effective reach.

Monday, November 14, 2011 #8292
Is there an online standard for reach & Frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 15, 2011 ):
Not specifically. It would depend on whether there are other media. Whether online is the primary medium and other media are driving traffic. Or whether the online is traffic-driving itself or stand alone ecommerce, etc.

Monday, November 14, 2011 #8291
online reach and frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 15, 2011 ):
Click here to see more than 100 Guru comments about online reach

Monday, November 14, 2011 #8289
Dear Guru, I have a question about Net reach. Can we identify the level of investment where reach figure becomes stagnant. If we say that we want to optimize our investment level to achieve a certain level of reach where we stop our campaign after achieving that certain reach point.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 14, 2011 ):
Look at your reach curve like the one here, and figure where your investment gets you to the flattening-out point.

Monday, November 07, 2011 #8284

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 07, 2011 ):
Click here to see more than 1000 past Guru responses about reach

Thursday, November 03, 2011 #8278
calculating combined reach

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 04, 2011 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about combining reach

Thursday, October 20, 2011 #8253
Dear Guru, When planning an advertising TV campaign, is there any benefit to running 9-10 daily spots for just three days per week (alternating the days every week, ex: Mon-Wed-Fri, then Tue-Thu-Fri, etc) as opposed to 5-6 spots/day all five week days? The goal is to reach as many contacts within my client's target audience as possible and achieve a high enough frequency. The client for whom I am planning this is pretty well-established worldwide, but is less known/just entering the market in the particular region where this TV campaign would run. Also, is the average of 14 GRPs/month (based on 30-second ads) too minuscule to even make it a worthwhile campaign given the above goals?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 21, 2011 ):
Even at worthwhile levels, the schedules you are comparing would not be likely to produce significantly different results. However, at a mere 14 GRP per month, there is probably a much more effective use of the money than this plan.

Sunday, October 02, 2011 #8233
Which has the greatest reach potential? TV or the Internet? Or, in other words, which has more "eyeballs"?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 03, 2011 ):
TV has a virtually 98-99% potential. Internet has not reached that level of penetration.

As of August, US internet penetration was still below 80% See Internet World Stats

Thursday, September 29, 2011 #8228
Dear Guru, How can I accumulate 12 weeks of 50% weekly reach 1+ to reach 3+ of total 12 weeks?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 30, 2011 ):
You need to examine week by week 1+ and 3+ in R&F software such as our own eTelmar

Monday, September 19, 2011 #8215
Define reach

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 19, 2011 ):
reach is the number of different people or homes exposed to a media schedule. This may be expressed as a percentage of the relevant population universe.

The term is frequently mis-used by media when "coverage" would be correct. E.g. 'cable network X "reaches" 100,000,000 households,' when in fact it merely has 100million HH subscribers coverage. It typically will only be watched by (reach) a small percentage of those homes.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011 #8212
Is there a way to calculate online reach and frequency by hand?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 14, 2011 ):
Until you have built a simplified model from numerous actual measurements, the Guru would say not.

To really determine reach of a multi-site online schedule, you need a massive respondent base like those used by Nielsen//Netratings or comScore.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011 #8207
reach & frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 13, 2011 ):
Click here to see over 200 past Guru responses about reach and frequency. Click here to see over 30 past Guru responses about "reach & frequency", Click here to see over 75 past Guru responses about R & F.

This is one of the most common Guru topics. Perhaps you can narrow your quesiton

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 #8193
I am developing a media plan for a product launch next year. The dollars will be spent primarily in print (culinary, beverage, lifestyle magazines), online, social media. Do you have an example of what this presentation should include for the client? # of impressions, CPM, etc? What criteria should I include? Thank you....

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 23, 2011 ):
This query makes it sound like you have created a plan shooting from the hip without working through objectives and strategies.

The strategies would dictate how you made your media decisions, and therby would tell you what data you needed to present, whether it's cpms, composition, reach, environmental analysis, etc. In terms of presentation, stick to highlights, summanry points, and decisions. Detailed supporting tables can be appendices.

For additional thoughts, see the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan.

Sunday, August 21, 2011 #8189
I have requested and received post-buy analysis' from TV and radio stations contracted with on a recent ad campaign. The reports all look different and are not necessarily apples to apples and I'm not sure what to be looking at as I attempt to summarize the data for the client. I'd like to show gross impressions, but most of the stations have provided the reach as a percentage and I don't know how to calculate GRIMP's w/o an actual number. Should I be considering GRP's or CPP instead? What is the best criteria to use to evaluate the data for the client? I'm desperate...Thank you Guru!!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 22, 2011 ):
  • First off, if you are investing money with stations, you should be able to dictate the data you receive in reports.
  • Secondly, reach is not useful for post analysis purposes, you need gross impressions or GRPs
  • Since market definitions, which form GRP yniverses can differ between radio and TV measurements, you are best off using gross impressions.

Friday, August 19, 2011 #8184
Should marketing/advertising dollars be allocated for reaching an ethnic audience if it is less than 5% of the total population?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 19, 2011 ):
It is not the percentage of population that matters, it is the percentage of the product consumption for which they account. For many products, it is said that the 20% of heaviest users account for 80% of sales.

For example, Hispanic women 18-49 may be 7% of the population yet account for more than 25% of the purchase of certain baby products nationally.

Thursday, August 11, 2011 #8171
which plan option usually need more GRPs or is more expensive? a 4wk plan optimised on 1+ or optimised on 3+?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, August 11, 2011 ):
The Guru imagines one could manipulate media mix to go either way on this.

The question in optimization is usually what is the best plan (media mix) to achieve the reach goal within a set budget. So if your question is "at a given budget does optimizing at 1+ or at 3+ call for more GRP?", again the issue falls to the freedom of media mix. It could become quite a circular process.

Thursday, July 28, 2011 #8155
What is the minimum # cable Trps/week to be effective when placing an awareness schedule?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 29, 2011 ):
There are numerous variables here and no simple answer.
  • First, what is your awareness goal? Ad awareness will never be more than your reach.
  • What is your expectation from the schedule? Increasing awareness by some percentage or achieving a specific awareness level? Again, awareness level will never exceed reach. More realistically, look at 3+ reach or evaluate the marketing situation to set another effective frequency level.
  • Is cable to be your only medium? in such a case, your levels will need to be much higher than as part of a mix.
  • Are you using cable for reach or for a frequency enhancement? This will determine not only levels but dispersion across networks.
  • There are other possible considerations depending on your target and content needs.

Thursday, July 28, 2011 #8153
Dear Media Guru, There is a research looking at the quality of viewers delivered by TV channels. It has 2000 sample, qual and quant methodology , conducted by Gfk for Central European stations. It has been found that some of the smaller stations, especially those with tight programming and specific Target audience segments appear to deliver better at generating advertising and brand awareness than they bigger wide-reaching channels. Would the Media Guru be able to comment if he believes than even across channels

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 28, 2011 ):
Better targeting, in general, is expected to perform better against the audience exposed.

There is a balance of reach against effectiveness.

Is it more productive to reach 1,000 target persons twice as effectively as 4,000 less concentrated-within-the-target persons for similar budgets? What if the same 1,000 are among the 4,000?

Monday, July 25, 2011 #8151
Hi guru, What is the forumula to calculate effective reach...i.e. what % of my plan delivers against my target at the 2+, 3+, 4+, 5+ frequency level.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 27, 2011 ):
There is no general percentage to use. This is part of the very complex, overall reach calculation.

You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar or online through eTelmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Sunday, July 24, 2011 #8148
Hi Guru, as a brand manager in a leading packaged goods company, am a bit let down that so many media decisions are based on thumbrules than on validated quanitiative data. Are there any quantitative tools as definitive as LINK is for ad quality testing, that can help answer critical media planning questions below to maximise media dollars? 1/ Effective Frequency: Ostrow tool is not validated, application is highly judgemental, doesnt account for fact that exposure

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 24, 2011 ):
First off, let's consider your own creative-oriented bias here, no offense meant.

Within ad quality measurement there are some measures that are quantitative and within media planning there are some measures that are solidly quantitative. The problem is how the quantitative measures can "accurately" guide marketing action.

Just because you can use proven methods to reliably measure ad quality in terms of recall or intent to purchase and use that to select the better piece of copy, does not mean there is a better way to plan a copy pool, or forecast advertising results except with your own application of judgement to use of these tools.

Similiarly, media planners have identified solidly measurable, quantitative metrics like GRP, frequency and reach that, at least directionally, have known impact on plan success. Highly experienced media professionals like Joe Ostrow have built logical ( and, importantly, repeatable ) approaches to integrating these metrics with other marketing factors, such as competitve pressure, brand awareness, market share, category interest, etc.

Each Brands' unique combinations of market factors, ad quality, and goals, make it virtually impossible for a single organization to collect enough sets of media plans / marketing backgrounds / sales results to build a simple, proven model to guide all media decisions reliably. For a given set of results in the quantitative tools and a specific set of advertsing goals, the tools should reliably distinguish better choices. Advertinsg goals handed over to the media planners should guide many of these decisions. Budget vs reach goals versus marketing timing issues; branding vs retail promotion, etc. are key controlling factors in setting :30/:15 mix as well as timing of introduction of different copy. Experience, guided by logic and available quantitative tools are the best we are likely to do, in the Guru's opinion.

Friday, July 15, 2011 #8140
Hi guru, I'm trying to understand how my TV plan delivers against different age segments and need help understanding the info. For example, my core demo is A25-49 and I reach 79 million people. - I also want to see how it deliers against M25-49 and see I get 74 million impressions and 84 million W25-49. How come when you add the women and men imps up, they don't equal the adult total?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 15, 2011 ):
Very simply, there is an error in the numbers and you have spotted it. The A25-49 total must be the total of the W25-49 and the M25-49.

Mathematically there is no room for anything else. Media math aside, reality leaves no room for anything else. Recheck your numbers and your sources.

Friday, July 15, 2011 #8139
reach 1+

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 15, 2011 ):
This is equivalent to simple "reach:" persons reached at least once.

Monday, June 27, 2011 #8122
How is calculated Cost per reach Point?, which is the formula ?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 27, 2011 ):
Spending ÷ reach = cost per reach point.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011 #8115
What is an effective 3+ reach goal for a new product using radio? 40%? 50%? 60%?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 22, 2011 ):
The Guru's simplest rule of thumb is to reach at least 50% of your target 3+ times. This is just an abstraction, ignoring important considerations such as competitive issues and copy strength. For a more detailed apporach, click here to see past Guru responses about the Ostrow model.

Friday, June 17, 2011 #8108
what are gross impressions

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 18, 2011 ):
An impression is one exposure of an ad to one member of the target audience. Two exposures to one person is two impressions, Two members each experiencing one exposure is two impressions, and so on. The sum of all impressions in a campaugn or schedule is referred to as gross impressions. This is in distinction from "net impressions," meaning the number of different persons exposed, also referred tom as reach. [none]

Thursday, June 16, 2011 #8106
Our client wants to use radio to build brand awareness for a packaged goods brand. Currently the brand has extremely low awareness (basically a new product) in a category that has relatively low interest. What levels of 'average frequency' and 'effective 3+ frequency' should I set as goals so we can significantly increase top of mind awareness?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 16, 2011 ):
FIrst, consider that average reach will be the outside limit of ad awareness. The reach at 3+ is an even more relevant limit to ad awareness, The current awareness level also establishes a floor.

Since you are limiting yourself to radio, set a 3+ reach goal. Average frequency will just have to fall naturally out of that.

So, you have an unknown brand in a category that few people care about or about which most people care very little. Do your best to select stations that cover the right people at the right time (if any) and build as much effective reach as possible among their audience. Ideally select stations covering most of your potential purhchasers.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 #7929
re: #7926 Sorry about the lack of information: •Each of the four TV stations is within the same DMA; The cable schedule is based on a number of networks. •Using the report the client gave me, I plugged in the corresponding numbers for another month’s buy where I actually have the combined TV totals. TV’s reach/Freq/GRPs was 99.4 / 7.1 / 702. Cable’s was 61.2 / 2.1 / 129. •Using the client’s ‘formula’ the average reach would be 69.4 , average freq would be 2.4 and total grps would be 831. •It sounds to me in the above example, I should be weighting it per your suggestion. How do I do that?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 26, 2011 ):
Do you want the R&F of the market where the TV schedule ran or the national R&F combining cable and the one TV market?

  • If you want the schedule of the one TV market, and if the cable schedule is expressed in US R/F/GRP, assume the cable R/F/GRP is the same in your market as in the whole country.
  • With 99+ reach locally, this almost doesn't matter in this case (the Guru never reports reaches above 98%, as a matter of principle)
  • So the local market reach stays at 99, since there is no room for cable to increase it. The GRPs are additive, or 831 in total, and the frequency is 831 99 or 8.4.
  • If you want the US reach, and again if the cable is expressed as US reach, then use the weight of the market size agains the local reach.
  • Suppose your market is 4% of the US. Then, nationally, you would be adding 4% of 702, or 28 GRP to the cable 129, for a total of 157.
  • Now is the trickier part: your local TV reach adds a maximum of 4% of the local 99 reach points to cable's 61, or a max of 65 reach.
  • To properly combine the local and the cable you could run the combined cable and spot though an R&F program with the 4% of GRP figure. Realistically, of the 4 added reach points potential, you would probably gain 2 or 3. Of course this 2 or 3 or 4 depends on the market size. But assuming a very generous 4%, your R/F/GRP is somewhere between 63 / 2.5 / 157 and 64 / 2.5 / 157, so why fuss?
69% reach is out of the question, even if your market is New York, with 6% of the US.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 #7926
Hi there. Thank you for your guidance on the used car infomercials vs. used car spot schedule. They went with the latter :) Next question: I had a client average the reach % of 4 TV station schedules and 1 cable station schedule. They did the same for frequency. Then they added all the grps for all 5 schedules, and listed that on the report as well. They came up with 73.74% average reach, 3.54 average frequency and 1838 total GRPs. That HAS to be inaccurate because the reach x freq formula should still hold true, right? and they are dealing with two different universes as well? Is there a way to come up with average reach/freq for the TV+Cable schedules?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 25, 2011 ):
Congratulations on doing the right thing with the used cars.

Certainly what you describe is wrong, but there is not enough information to correct it.

  • If each station is in a different market, then it is proper to average the reaches, but they must be weighted by market size, and in this case, the GRPs would be averaged the same way.
  • Frequency would be GRP reach.
  • If these stations are in the same market then their reaches must be combined with a method that considers their duplication. In this case the GRPs are added. Again, GRP R = F.
  • The cable "station" is a puzzle here. Cable is usually a network, unless either a) you are talking about a local cable origination, such as New York's NY1 or News12 or b) a DMA interconnect or single system buy. If a such a local buy, then it's treated like the TV stations above. If it's a network buy, it's different markets and the weighting approach applies.

Friday, May 20, 2011 #7897
Thank you. The infomercial is that is currently running is an Automotive Used Cars infomercial. I want to convince the client to use that money in a :30 sec spot schedule. The comparison is for 49 infomercials and 17.8 HH Grps (1252126HH) vs. 1568 cable :30's and 880.8 HH GRPs (763122 HH). In my opinion, running the same tired automotive used car infomercial in the same areas with low ratings does not compare to running over 1500 spots across 26 networks. You're reaching a much larger audience, and you have more chances to reach them - I don't see the infomercial having the same impact. Who would watch it more than once, let alone watch the whole infomercial? I was just wondering if there was a mathematical formula to compare the two schedules. used car infomercial to used car :30's. I really appreciate your guidance.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 20, 2011 ):
A used car infommercial?? Just being 30 minutes long does not an infomercial make.

The Guru supports your position. On any sort of communication measure, a spot schedule will win. But is the infomercial generating any sales at all?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011 #7892
Media Guru Thanks, I am refering to national media and specfically cable, not local spots. We are primarily interested in the cost of DRTV 1 min - 2 min because of what we think we need for a high priced, more complex product in the $400-$500 retail price range launched nationally. our plan is to drive interest to a toll-free number and/or website ie. for a free DVD/more information and then close sales ultimately i.e. over 4-6 wks. and continuing running DRTV based on acceptable returns from the advertising a to be determined length of the campaign. If this does well, then we may then consider a longer format version. Consequently, I don't understand enough about reach and frequency, but understand the DRTV approach is strictly about frequency/number of spots and a conversion rate- our investor - simply wants to spend x dollars for the most # media spots at the least cost and generate the maximum number of profitable leads or close sales. Our objective is to schedule it with cable channels with an audience that meets our target M-W, 35-55, college educated, ideally $70,000 household income demographics and may skew towards women (60% purchasers vs men 40%). Consequently if i had a media budget of say $100K for just for purposes of discussion for 1 month all spent against DRTV either 1 or 2 min formats on national cable, how many spots would I approximately receive and at what cost per spot? For example if the media budget was $100,000 divided by say $1000 per DRTV 2 min spot, this would yeild 100 spots for the month, So whatever rough range of media costs per spot that you can provide for 1 min, 2 min and 30 min formats would be helpful just for budgeting on our end. Lastly without you knowing our product - on national cable say a Lifetime, Discovery Channel or even Animal Planet if there is any range that you are aware of assuming a new, unkown product and if the creative execution addresses a need or problem but was just considered fair not bad, not good: would a range of 2000-3000 website hits per spot be reasonable by the end of the first month? I know this could be a tremendously wide range, but assuming the ad creative as just average for a DRTV spot what have you seen in aproximate ranges for average number of website hits per spot for the first month of a new product's campaign (i.e. assuming $100K or $200K 1st month media budget?) Sorry I am asking lame questions, but appreciate any general responses - it will be helpful just for some preliminary budgeting.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 18, 2011 ):
As to web hits, consider that a web campaign averages about 0.1% clickthru. So 2000 hits would need about 2,000,000 web banner ad impressions. But you are trying to convert TV impressions into people typing in your URL.

Let's say that will only work 10% as well. so you would need 20,000,000 impressions. If an average cable spot you buy has an audience of say 300,000 in your target that's about 70 spots. Looks like you could afford it.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 #7886
Multi Week reach & Frequency I'm having trouble totaling R & F across a 4 week period when ratigns are different across the weeks. We tie back to individual program for a single week but not the total 4 weeks. Everything totals fine when ratings are the same across all weeks. I have a 4 week schedule with 1 program Fri 10-11p Daypart Prime Telmar DPT # 6 Demo M1849 July 2010 Book cume data Avg rating Sign on to sign off Cume rtg avg: 391 Primetime Cume Rtg avg: 204 week 1 2 spots 0.9 rtg reach 1.8 Freq 1.0 week 2 1 spot 1.6 rtg reach 1.6 Freq 1.0 week 3 1 spot 1.6 rating reach 1.6 Freq 1.0 week 4 3 spot 0.5 rating reach 1.5 Freq 1.0 Trying to tie numbers to another company using the same Telmar model they have a 4 week total 4.5 reach and a 1.4 Frequency. We get a 3.8 reach and 2.1 Frequency using both an avg rating and a weighted average ratings. What else could we try to tie back to them we have an array for spots by weeks but only one rating for all the weeks???? Thanks in advance

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 17, 2011 ):
In the data you present, each week shows some inherently incorrect data, which makes the Guru suspect your input. But before the Guru points out these problems, it should be mentioned that trying to fine tune reach at such extremly low levels seems pointless. A reach difference of 0.7% is unlikely to be real within statistical tolerances, anyway.
  • In week 1, two spots having no duplication and exactly 1.0 frequency is unlikely
  • Regarding weeks 2 & 3, a single spot cannot have any duplication, so reach will exactly equal rating for any single spot, anywhere. Further, reach can never be greater than GRP. And, Frequency can never be less than 1.0; (i.e. anyone reached is reached at least once) your 1.8 reach and 1.6 GRP would yield and impossible 0.888 frequency
  • In week 4,similarly, you have an impossible 1.5 GRP and 1.8 reach.
The Guru does not understand how "Cume rating" has any place in this discussion, nor "weighted average ratings"

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 #7883
difference between net reach and cummulative reach

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 17, 2011 ):
Cumulative reach is a type of net reach. Net reach describes the number of different persons exposed to a campaign, exclusive of duplicate exposures. "Gross" includes duplicated audience.

Traditionally, from the days when print dominated, 4 weeks was the standard period of reach measurement for a media plan. Cumulative reach is net reach over any longer period, such as a quarter or a year.

"Gross" is the alternative term to net, but is usually only used to describe impressions or rating points.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011 #7874
I asked the question below: Hello How do I calculate the discreet reach at 2 only (not 2+) for tv?. My additional question is if that if the software does not give us the reach at lower level, discreet reach etc., how do calculate it manually ?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 11, 2011 ):
The Guru is surprised your software doesn't have this feature. You might want to check with your vendor.

Frequency distribution, which is what we are talking about here, requires an immensely complex algorithm, which is why we use computers to work with it. You need software such as that offered by Telmar or online through eTelmar.

For example, as input, you need average spot audience, duplication between spots on the same station / network and duplication between each possible pair of different stations / networks. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Tuesday, May 10, 2011 #7871
Hello How do I calculate the discreet reach at 2 only (not 2+) for tv?.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 10, 2011 ):
Software that calculates reach at "frequency plus" levels, most commonly 1+ and 3+, like our own eTelmar's, typically will display reach at all the lower, discreet levels up to 10 or 15, as well as various reach+ data.

Friday, May 06, 2011 #7869
How do I calculate reach and frequency for print

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 06, 2011 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar or online through eTelmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, April 27, 2011 #7867
How do I calculate TV & Radio reach/frequency, if I only have the GRPs and total target population? I have media software, but had to manually enter ratings for my demos because I don't haven't subscribed to the market yet.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 29, 2011 ):
Find a subscribed market in your system with similar ratings and use it as a model. Percent reach of similar GRP and dispersion plans should be close enough.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011 #7866
How do I calculate TV & Radio reach/frequency, if I only have the GRPs and total target population?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 29, 2011 ):
The input for typical R&F models is much more than just GRPs. Rating size, dispersion across stations, dayparts, programs, demographics, etc, all come into it. This is why computer models have become the standard approach.

In the old days, planners would have assembled tables that compared reach results to typical reaches, taken one or two of these variables into consideration. see our own eTelmar for possible help.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011 #7865
If you know the estimated GRPs for a TV or Radio campaign in a particular market is there a way to calculate the reach and frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 29, 2011 ):
The input for typical R&F models is much more than just GRPs. Rating size, dispersion across stations, dayparts, programs, demographics, etc, all come into it. This is why computer models have become the standard approach.

In the old days, planners would have assembled tables that compared reach results to typical reaches, taken one or two of these variables into consideration. see our own eTelmar for possible help.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011 #7863
My understanding is that you don't need to buy as many TRPs of National TV than you would in a spot market to acheive the same R/F? Is this true? Why is this?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 26, 2011 ):
Not true. Given the same daypart mix, ratings, program dispersion, etc, a certain % reach within whatever universe calls for the same TRP level.

Monday, April 25, 2011 #7860
Is it better to buy to a R/F goal or a GRP goal? What is the preferred buying strategy among media buyers?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 25, 2011 ):
Please review the Guru's responsde to Query #7855, just below.

It cannot be deemed "better" to do either without context.

In an ideal or at least professional media world, there are Media Planners and there are Media Buyers. In some cases these are one person, "wearing two hats," so-to-speak.

It is never within the Media Buyer's role to prefer an R/F goal or GRP; this decision is part of media planning and based on communicvatiosn goals, as detailed in Query #7855.

Although the planner typically gives the buyer goals expressed prmarily in GRP terms. a proper buying platform should be included, describing such details as R/F goals, daypart goals, rating minima, dispersion, etc.

Oftern enough a media buyer is dealing with a single media vehicle, such as spot TV and does not know this element part of the plan. In a plan with an overall reach-oriented goal, the role of spot tv might be tonnage to build frequency, at the lowest CPP. Or it mighty be a reach-extender. Strategies must fit goals. When one is both planner a\nd buyer, the thought processes for each role need to separate.

Monday, April 25, 2011 #7859
Dear guru: we want to kick off a 4 week TV campaign and alrealdy set the GRP target. Assumed that every week have the same condition,i mean the same program ,same drama,same audience scale etc,.if we put a weight like 4,3,2,1 on each week of the campaign named Choice A,put a weight 1,2,3,4 on each week of the campaign named Choice B ,which choice we can ger a high 1+reach & 3+reach.Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 25, 2011 ):
In your scenarios, niether should make an overall difference in 1+ or 3+ reach.

However, in Choice A, you will get more of both in the first week of the campaign, allowing each additional week to build reinforcement on a higher initial reach base. This should lead to quicker results, which could be crucial in a time-sensitive promotion.

Unless you are building a roll-out or deliberately moving slowly at first, as in leading up to a movie or TV program premier, or a short time retail event, the Guru would usually prefer Choice A.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011 #7855
I'm trying to explain to my boss why purchasing the lowest CPP programming-regardless of daypart-is a bad idea. He is trying to save money for the client but I think it's not stewarding their ad dollars. I've tried to explain that the psychographics can be different within a demo. i.e. Buying Judge Judy, Cops and Family Guy against W25-54 is a totally different audience than buying Private Practice and American Idol against W25-54. And I think that the buy becomes more fragmented because you're not reaching a large audience at one time. Is there information I can find to prove this? Audience composition for programming maybe? And also, why we need daypart allocations.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 20, 2011 ):
What you and your boss are both overlooking is that discussions like this need to be framed within a communications strategy.

Somewhere in your media plan it should be established that your primary goal is either

  • Message weight, in which case lowest CPP is most important, or
  • reach, in which case ratings size is more important, because, as you say, smaller, more fragmented audiences do not build reach as well, or
  • Message environment is key which suppports the sell, which talks to your psychographic point. or
  • Frequency, ie. message repetition is key, which would support more, lower rated spots. . .

But, unless you have agreed on where the emphasis should be, you can't resolve this disagreement. Some planners or buyers always assume they should go for the most reach. This is not correct unless it is the stated goal. Nor can you assume, when reach is the primary goal, that bigger ratings are always better; if you can buy twice as many impressions in lower rated programs, they may well generate more reach than half as many impressions from higher rated programs. Not that 50% is the set ratio. Perhaps only a 20% margin will outperform the reach deliver of higher ratings.

So set your goals and examine them carefully. Run R&Fs on schedules of high rated vs low rated programming, and keep effiicency in mind. Examine the other scenarios.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011 #7850
how to calculate 4-week reach

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 13, 2011 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar or online through eTelmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Tuesday, April 12, 2011 #7848

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 12, 2011 ):
Definition: the number of different homes or persons exposed to advertising or that number expressed as a percentage of its population universe.

Friday, April 08, 2011 #7844
Would it be more cost efficient to buy national cable through the targeted networks or through Directtv/DishNetwork?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 08, 2011 ):
Individual networks will generally be more efficient bought directly than through the satellites. Further, the satellites, particulary DirecTV, might only sell you clustered sets of networks, rather than the targeted ones you have selected. Finally. the satellites only cover a bit more than 30 million homes, while cable nets cover up to 100+ million subscribers inlcuding those reached through wired cable as well as satellite.

For the optimal efficiency, coverage, and freedom of selection among your chosen networks, your best bet would be an "unwired" cable network provider such as TelAmerica Media.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011 #7841
Dear Guru, my question is about 30sec GRPs, how can we convert GRPs into 30 sec GRPs. Let suppose i have aired 20 spots of 20 sec each and got 25 GRPs how can i convert these GRPs into 30 secs. is there any formula regarding this? is it fine if i divide each spot;s GRPs by its duration and than multiply the result by 30 to find 30 sec GRPs (spot duration is 20 sec, its GRPs are 2, 2/20x30)?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 05, 2011 ):
You need to establish a standard; what is the reason for your analysis?.

Most simple is the linear conversion you propose, where a :20 is worth two-thirds of a :30, but in what context? If you are concerned with pricing or "equivalization" issues, this is appropriate.

However, in absolute measurement, or for reach estimation purposes, a GRP is a GRP. It is simply reflective of a number of pairs of eyeballs exposed (impressions) divided by a population universe.

By the way, in the early days of :15s, recall measurement showed :15s were "worth" 77% of :30's and some people used that factor in some analyses.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011 #7836
Dear Guru, Can you please explain the differences between Quantcast and comScore/Nielsen data? How do they compare in terms of number of websites measured and reliabilty of data? Am I correct that only tools from comScore and Nielsen will provide a reach and frequency report for an internet plan including multiple websites? Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 09, 2011 ):
Visit the methodology sections of the respective sites: Quantcast | 'How We Do It', comScore | Methodology and Nielsen Online Measurement

Wednesday, March 09, 2011 #7835
Dear Guru, I am planning a schedule with print and internet in California only. My target is California residents age 18 and older. I am using MRI data for a print reach to a target of A18+ who live in California. I am using comScore Plan Metrix R&F data for a target of adults 18+ (national online audience). My questions are: #1 Can I combine these reaches using random duplication and caveat that we are making the reasonable assumption that the state only reach of teh properties we are buying match the national reach. #2 Can I combine these using Telmar's Quick Mix program? If so, would I use the MRI population since it matches our target audience of A18+ in CA? #3 When combining an internet number based on total population online with a print number based on ALL adults, do I need to weight the online number at all? Thank you for your help!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 09, 2011 ):
You first must decide whether you need to report reach on a total population or internet user basis. Total is more sensible.

You will convert your internet reach to a total population basis before you combine with print. Random combination is appropriate.

But you should consider whether reach in California is actually comparable to U.S. you should be able to find differences in internet and specific site penetration for California.

Friday, February 25, 2011 #7833
How do i calculate reach, if I only have the GRPs and total target population?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 02, 2011 ):
reach is complex calculation. It considers dupication between each advertising occasion on the same vehicle and between occasions on different vehicles.

Realistically, you need software designed for this purpose, or tables prepared from the results of such software comparing GRP to reach results and considering key variables. See You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Or tables prepared from the results of such software comparing GRP to reach results and considering key variables.

Very crudely, you could estimate by combining the ratings of all your spots, according to Random probabilty. Click here to see past Guru resposes about this.. This would be an overstimate

Friday, February 11, 2011 #7831
I am working for TV brodcaster which has group of channels operating in diffeent genres, I like to ask you couple of question related to TV Rating and TV reach: 1st: Which are the appropriate function to use when channel has niche market segment?. 2nd: How to interpret avergae TV ratings for a day, it gets very low becuase it is averaged for all time slots during a day.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 13, 2011 ):
Your questions are not phrased in a way that allows sensible answers.
    Your reference to "function" does not have a meaning in the context, please explain what you are looking for as simply as possible.
  • channels in different genres" is also confusing in the context of broadcast.
  • If you are using a standard rating source like Nielsen, you should have narrow time period and program ratings, not just tot;a day.
Perhaps you are not operating in the U.S. so that the relevant assumptions do not apply.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011 #7826
Hi Guru. I am wondering how (or if) you can calculate average frequency without using GRPs. I am evaluating a range of marketing strategies some of which i don't think the client would have GRPs for (eg Posters, billboards). So if i can calculate the total number of gross impressions including duplications (which for posters and billboards im still struggling with but i guess thats another question) and the total audience how do i then sort out which impressions are new audience and which are duplications? Is it even possible to get reach and average frequency from this amount of data?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 13, 2011 ):
If you have gross impressions, you have GRPs.

Gross impressions ÷ population = GRP.

reach is gross less duplication. And of course, GRP ÷ reach = average freqquency.

There are various formulae, rules of thumb and software for calculating reach from GRP.

Ask your vendor for their formulae or rules of thumb.

Our own eTelmar has an out-of-home R&F model.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011 #7824
I have been stuck at home for 3 days due to an snow and ice storm. I need to get my client the total reach and frequency for a cable network buy. I have the R&F for my cable network buy (one specific network) and I need to combine it with another cable network buy with mutible networks. I have the R&F for each buy. Is there a way to give them at least a close guestimate?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 12, 2011 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses regarding combining reaches

Review those that discuss "random combination." The method will overstate the combination of two cable schedules by perhaps 2 - 5%.

Saturday, January 08, 2011 #7823
Dear Media Guru, I am hoping you can help. We are currently included in an adpool in the Philadelphia DMA however our store is physcially located in the heart of the Reading MSA. We are looking for any data that can show us if we are getting a fair amount of exposure in Reading pa if our adpool is are on Network stations such as Fox, nbc, as well as phl, comcast cable. We feel seen we are so far on the outreach from the heart of philly alot of our viewer tend to watch affliates that boarder our dma but can not find any data to show this effect either way. I have been told about a special tri county report from neilsen but no one from our adpool knows what that is or how to get it. Any help or direction is greatly appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 08, 2011 ):
You would be helped by the Nielsen County Coverage reports.

Friday, December 31, 2010 #7822
Q1- What is the difference between media planning audience & media buying audience & how do we measure these if we are working on one brand then how can one brand has two audiences ( buying & planning audience )? Q2- Is media Planning audience & media planning TG is different?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 31, 2010 ):
The Guru sees two ways to answer your question:
  • Sometimes a brand's true target is something of an oddball;. Nielsen measures age cells in 3 or 4 year blocks, e.g 18-20 / 21-24 / 25-29 / 20-34, etc. Yet media is typically sold in broader demographic segments like 18-24 or 24-49.. So, your brand may be really aiming at 21-29, but buying 18-34 which is more readily available.
  • OR, Planners use simple GRPs, based on impressions ÷ population. Commercial length is irrelevant to this calculation which might be used to develop reach and Frequency, etc. However, buyers typically "equivalize" to account for the relative value of :15s vs :30s vs :60s. So a :15 is treated as if it had half the impressions of a :30 when buying. Thus a half-the-:30- price :15 has half the :30 impressions and the same "equivalized" cpm.GRPs are usually not equivalized in this connection.

Monday, December 06, 2010 #7820
What are the pitfalls of using an ROI model to plan reach and frequency - Will I end up counting exposures in all media outlets?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 08, 2010 ):
This query seems to skip large logical assumptions between "ROI model" and "exposures in all meida outlets."

It all depends on the structure of your model. If the model is keyed to an ROI based on given R&F results, were the ROI results that were used to build the model based on R&F results from all media? Were there various media combinations?, etc.

Monday, November 15, 2010 #7815
I have a client that wants me to run a TV R&F analysis on different GRP levels...65, 100, 125, 150 and 200. The reason they want me to do this is, we have just completed a 5 week TV campaign that ended the 1st wk in Oct..1st time client has advertised in 3 years. Client hired a research company and their findings reflected that there was a low recall the last couple of weeks of the campaign. We started with 200 points 1st wk, 250 pts 2nd wk (based on historical info, spike in sales that wk) 150 third, hiatus for 2 wks and then back on air for 2 final wks @ 200/wk.The research company has recommended for 1st quarter that we use low GRP levels, 50-65 pts/wk over a long period of time. I recommeded that we run heavy GRP's in 1st quarter for all the obvious reasons plus the most important...impact into the markets. We will have been black for 11 wks prior to our 1st quarter placement. We are selling sausage not trying to brand their name. Please give me your thoughts.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 15, 2010 ):
AMIC has lots of material on this topic of Recency vs Continuity vs peaks. Click here to see past Guru responses Briefly, in a situation where consumer goods has little to no seasonality and regular purchase, Recency theory holds that the impression closest to the purchase decision is the most effective one. And that since there are purchase decisions constantly being made, continuity at low but sufficent levels (say, a threshhold of 30 reach per week) is best.

The other side of the coin, for which you seem to be groping, is that you need a certain level of awareness, before constant reminder messages are effective.

A further, important factor arguing against hiatuses, is that whatever level of awareness you establish decays by about 10% of the previous week's level for every week of hiatus.

So the Guru would quickly build to an effective reach level at least equal to your awareness goal and then sustain at whatever level of continuity is affordable. 50 - 65 GRP/week should work at that point.

The Guru cringes at metrics like "impact" in such discussions. Goals need to be defined in all the other terms of this discussion:

  1. reach
  2. effective reach
  3. awareness
  4. recall
  5. Etc.

Monday, November 08, 2010 #7811
Thank you for your recent answer on how to calculate the number of trucks required for an OOH advertising campaign. Given that we know the audience,all adults and the size of population by region,we also know the traffic volumes by region and we are trying to assess the number of trucks travelling 500 miles per day required to obtain maximum reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 09, 2010 ):
The missing factor is duplication. So far you are working with raw impressions, a traffic count. In the OOH arena, this is typically referred to as "D.E.C." (Daily Effective Circulation). It would be based on how many times a pair of eyeballs are able to see the truck driving around.

Duplication considers whether the truck is seen by the same eyeballs more than once, for example on the way out in the morning and on the way back in the evening.

Then you must consider whether the same people are exposed to a truck on multiple days of your schedule, let's say one month.

Then you need to consider whether one truck is being seen by some of the same people who saw otheer trucks.

In OOH a schedule of 3000 GRP might be needed to generate 90%+ reach, where a few hundred TV GRP would do it. Industry groups like Outdoor Advertising Association of America should have some DEC versus reach calculations.

Also consider the OOH applications of our own eTelmar.

Thursday, November 04, 2010 #7810
Do you have any advice on how to determine an advertising budget for a consumer packaged goods advertiser? Is there a number representing a percent of the gross sales that is standard industry practice to apply in a formula to calculate a recommended ad budget for this category? Thank you for your kind assistance!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 06, 2010 ):
There ar a lot more variables than sales. For example

  • What share of market does the brand have or want? What does it cost to achieve a share of category advertising comparable to the desired share of market?
  • What awareness do you want to achieve? what amount of increase would that be? What level of reach /frequency do you find necessary for that and what would that plan cost?

in short, a rule of thumb is overly simple, think it through.

Thursday, November 04, 2010 #7809
I am currently trying to calculate reach for a truckside advertising campaign.I have traffic volume statistics to use for this purpose. Could you give me some pointers on how, if I required a reach of say 54%,how would I calculate the amount of trucks required for a specific region?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 06, 2010 ):
You need to know how many different people are exposed to each truck.

You need to know how many trucks are in use and the extent to which they are exposed to the same or different people. You would think about whether the trucks have distinct routes or cross each oother. Then soemhow you would figure out when the number of different people from a given number of trucks equals 54% of the target population.

Any given market, the population size, population distribution and patterns of truck movement are unique. Unless the advertising company has done some studies to actually measure these factors, it is hard to begin to make any estimates.

Thursday, October 14, 2010 #7806
Hi..Greetings from Egypt. I went through your archive and searched all over the internet to desperately find an answer for this question, so please help. The diary gives equal ratings to the spot regardless of its length. Simply assuming that a :5 GRP is the same as a :30 is unrealistic. Also assuming that the :5 is 1/6 of the :30 GRP does not seem right and will ruin the CPP. Is there any formula out there to used by a credible source to convert the GRPs based on duration?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 14, 2010 ):
GRP, like impressions, is simply an audience size measure, so duration is not a part of it.

Many buyers use "equivalized" GRP, which do allow for weighting by length. This is based on using :30 as a standard, and as you surmise, taking a simple ratio based on relative length.

Even in this scenario, it is common to leave the GRP untouched and just manipulate the impressions / cpm.

When :15s were new and various metrics showed they were about 70%+ of the recall value of a :30, that was used as a factor.

If GRP are being used in projecting reach, then the idea of holding GRP equal makes perfect sense; 100 GRP of :05 reaches the same number of persons as 100 GRP of :30, albeit much less effectively. You need to make a judgement call as to relative effectiveness and apply it logically. The Guru is not aware of an established standard for :05s.

Thursday, September 16, 2010 #7801
Can you provide any direction on how to determine ratio of online buy dedicated to paid search vs. online display? Minimum impression levels? Is there a standard rule of thumb? Is market size a variable?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 18, 2010 ):
This is truly a multi-layered question.

  1. A buy must follow the dictates of a plan
  2. A plan must be structured with specific communications goals
  3. The communications goals must be a part of a set of media strategies
  4. The media strategies must be designed to answer media objectives
  5. The media objectives are designed to answer marketing strategies and objectives
  • Within all this structure, your target market will have been defined.
  • Your goals as to awareness (display advertising) vs sales / web traffic via click-thru (search driven) will have been defined.
  • Your reach and frequency goals (driven by impressions levels) will come from your awareness goals
  • Impressions levels should not figure in search structure, as that is Click-thru driven and will vary by the effectiveness of placement on various sites
.Market size need not be a variable in all this except as a reality check on the levels being set.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010 #7800
Planning software is indicating TV reach over 4-week TV buys in the 96%+ range, adding in another medium takes reach to 99% - is there a point where reach this high is deemed unrealistic and should be capped?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 14, 2010 ):
The Guru has known agencies that put a cap of 98% or even 95% on reported reach. The Guru finds this reasonable. There are other communications metrics on which to focus once reach is at these levels.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010 #7799
dear guruF what is the difference between coverage(000) and reach(000)

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 29, 2010 ):
Coverage is equivalent to a rating, a one-time audience. reach is a net unduplicated accumulation of audience from multiople advertising occasions. The reach of a single occasion is equal to its coverage.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010 #7798
Dear guru: if our media mix include TV and NP,how to canculate the total effect of the campaign, which unit can be used,reach(000) or Gross impression? we can get the TV and NP data from two data system, thank in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 29, 2010 ):
Assuming "NP" means national print, you need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables. TV needs simlilar computer support.

Click here to see past Guru responses regarding combining reaches

Wednesday, August 25, 2010 #7797
Dear guru: we have launched one burst newpaper campaign which using more than 15 local newspaper to cover different market,and now,we want to know the effect of this campaign. please tell me how to canculate? appreciate!!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 29, 2010 ):
You can add total circulation to look at total impressions of the campaign. Or you can combine the populations of all the amrkets to build a univrse against which to turn these impressions into GRP. Depending on the size of the schedule, turning this into reach will be more or less complex.

Thursday, August 05, 2010 #7793
How can i calculate reach & frequency for radio?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 09, 2010 ):
It's a complex calculation and calls for computer support. Our own eTelmar is a great choice.

Sunday, August 01, 2010 #7792
I am putting together a media plan with only print media vehicles. I am looking for a guideline as to the minimum media weight that I should be keeping in mind as I work this plan out. Maybe a minimum number of GRPS per month or maybe another measure more suited to print advertising. Another way of saying this is a minimum media weight where my investment makes an impact and is not wasted. A threshhold media weight.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 01, 2010 ):
In print, better to think of what percent of the target do you need to reach and how often in a month. For example, if you want to reach the majority of your target at least three time per month ("50% reach at 3+"), you would build a plan that achieves that. GRPS are less used to establish print levels; the number for a plan that delivers a reach / frequency goal can vary widely, depending on whether you are using broad reach, general coverage vehicle or highly targeted, focused vehicles. Different target groups also build reach in different patterns.

Thursday, June 03, 2010 #7788
How would one go about assigning GRP's to trade publication advertising to generate a reach and frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 06, 2010 ):
GRPs are always impressions population.

For trade media, we generally use one reader-per-copy to calculate impressions, unless you have better information. You will have to know the population of your trade segment.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010 #7787
Hi media guru, Can you confirm if when buying network cable, it reaches ADS homes? I know when buying spot cable, your reach is limited and does not include these homes. Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 02, 2010 ):
Yes, network buys are seen on ADS.

Spot cable is placed with local systems, thus national satellites are not in the mix.

Monday, May 10, 2010 #7779
why is my local TV reach 1-2% lower when I am running in the prime only daypart compared to running in multiple dayparts? Shouldn't it be the opposite?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 11, 2010 ):
Assuming you mean the same GRP level, multiple dayparts expand the opportunity to expose the schedule to different people, even though the average rating of the mix may be lower. Broader exposure is the essence of reach.

Further, let's not ignore the probability that your money buys more GRP in other dayparts.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010 #7775
What is a formula that can be used to calculate reach and frequency in just one newspaper?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 14, 2010 ):
If you mean reach and frequency for one insertion in one newspaper, the reach is the daily coverage divided by the relevant population (Metro, DMA, Trading area, etc). The GRP is equal to that and the frequency is 1.0.

If you mean multiple insertions in one newspaper, it is more complex to calculate.

You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Friday, March 05, 2010 #7768
hi, What are equvilent GRPs, and how can they be used?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 05, 2010 ):
Equivalent GRPs are usually :30 equivalent. These are used in evaluating competitive activity or comparing plans using different creative units.

One :60 is treated as "equivalent" to 2 :30s. Two :15s are equivalent to one :30.

Some anlayses may apply these factors to reach and Frequency evaluation.

Friday, February 26, 2010 #7763
hello is it always correct that the smaller the target group the less GRPs being achieved provided that all other parameters are fixed?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 26, 2010 ):
If you mean less GRP per dollar for a smaller group, that is a fair general rule. Sometimes, a given, smaller group is easier to reach than a somewhat larger group with more restricted media habits.

Monday, February 22, 2010 #7758
Hi again Guru. I would like to take a Poster junior (30 sheets)in a centric Mall in San Diego per $1500.00 monthly. Here are the numbers, (considering 1 panel per 90 days): *Market Pop: 700,000 *Adults 18+: 400,000 avg. *DEC: 874.8145 *GRP's: 0.12483064285714286 *F: 2.1123475785714287 *R: 5.3186123207719795 % *CPM: $ 19.06941266209001 I don't know about those numbers so, my questions are: Are a good numbers? Is the Ad in good price? ($1,500.00 /m) I'll appreciate so much your help. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 22, 2010 ):
Something seems very wrong with your numbers.

  • $1500 is a reasonable price for a 30 sheet poster, but
  • a Daily Effective Circulation of 875 impressions, or 26,250 per month is tiny and yields a terrible cpm of $57, around 10 times the outdoor norm.
  • GRPS are 12, not 0.12, if reach is 5.3 and Frequency is 2.1, but 12 GRPs would require many more impressions than you are reporting

Are you certain your DEC is correct? All the problems stem from this low number

Tuesday, January 26, 2010 #7753
What research tools are available to normalize results in regards to reach and frequency when combining traditional forms of media, emerging media, and interactive?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 26, 2010 ):
Our own eTelmar's new tool, Media 360, should do the trick (although the Guru is not entirely sure what you mean by "normalize.")

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 #7738
Dear Guru, I'm a marketing assistant on an online company that is starting to do TV marketing. I have the following questions concerning smaller sized TV-campaigns; is there any recommended value one should optimally achieve or get when it comes to GRP and OTS values? What is a good benchmark? What would be typical in Europe, for a bit smaller sized TV-campains (i.e. not always prime-time and in a limited number of nationwide reaching TV-channels)? Many thanks in advance!!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 18, 2009 ):
There are many minimum theories. A minimum reach level of more than 50% of the target reached at least 3 times is one the Guru finds generally acceptable.

In different media or different countries with different research systems and metrics, the GRPs / OTS behind this level can vary considerably

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 #7737
Dear Guru, Any theory for arrange/split budget to each selected media vehicle ? Thanks. (e.g. TV/NP/RD/OOH)

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 17, 2009 ):
  • Determine your primary medium, based on your communications goals
  • Use that medium up to the point of diminishing returns within communications goals, for example where its reach curve flattens
  • Add the next most important medium within the communication goals. This might be based on adding reach or needing a print vehicle to carry coupons or required FDA information, etc. Use as much of this medium as communication goals demand. Is it a neccessary number of coupons in consumer hands to generate required redemption? Is it every issue of a selected magazine during a prescription drug broadcast schedule?
  • In short, a medium is added in response to communication goals and used to the extent required to fulfill those goals.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 #7733
Please explain the difference between an overall television buy reporting a reach of 84.3% with a 3.3 frequency and a 3+ reach indicated at 51.5%.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 14, 2009 ):
84.3% saw the campaign one or more times, and averaged 3.3 times. 51.5% saw the campaign 3 or more times. These could be results of the same buy.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 #7732
I'm trying to make sure I'm on the right track. How do I determine the estimated percentage of youth (15-24)to be reached by a program shown on one channel (5 times a week) versus an ad on multiple channels (GRP 130-140 wkly).

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 14, 2009 ):
The latter case is a simple r&f. The cume within one program s mre specific and must be pulled directly from Nielsen reports. Nielsen N-Power is one suitable tool.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 #7731
How do you respond when the client asks "what if we spend $XX less or $XX more on this campaign"? Is there a "tipping point" on expenditure versus return?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 13, 2009 ):
reach is one good metric. You can observe the point where the reach curve of your first medium begins to flatten, and then shift to the next medium. So you can determine if the next $XX goes to more of the lastt medium added or to a new one. Or do you eliminate the last medium when budget goes down. You need to think about what is the minimum level to bother wth a medium.

Your goals may not be reach. Do you add or subtract markets when budget changes? You can think about sales potential.

In short, look to your communication goals and how changes in budget move ou toward or away from them

Wednesday, September 30, 2009 #7727
Dear MC, When reporting reach figures - how many decimals should you show after the point? I have heard people saying that 25.76% is incorrect and instead it should be 25.7% Please advice

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 30, 2009 ):
It's not a matter of "incorrect."

In some cases reach is commonly to one decimal. In other cases rounded to integers.

A standard should be mutually understood.

Thursday, September 17, 2009 #7724
Dear Guru,one of our clients wants to launch a new make-up brand. How can we calculate the expected brand and/or advertising awareness after 1 wave mediacampaign? (we do not have benchmarks or post-test on this category) Thanks already for your help with this. Kind Regards

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 17, 2009 ):
The maximum ad awareness would you could acheive would be equal to your reach. According to some theories, it would only equal your 3+ reach.

But the degree of awareness you might measure in research will no doubt depend on creative, promotion and other non-media issues

Wednesday, August 26, 2009 #7722
I need to convert 4 week reach into 6 week reach. I have the total GRPs and HH, but I'm not sure what the 6 week reach is or how to figure it out without media buying software and the Marketers Guide to Media only has a table for up to 4 weeks. Is there a formula I can use to figure it out? Please help! Thanks so much!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, August 27, 2009 ):
The software is the real solution. However, in general, in broad strokes, for mid-level media weights, the six week reach will not be very different than the reach of the equal GRPs total over 4 just weeks.

For easy access to real software, try our own eTelmar or call our Telmar ala carte service (Sales) @ 212-725-3000.

Thursday, July 30, 2009 #7718
I need reach and frequency on a campaign that includes 3 eighth page newspaper ads and 12 home page leaderboards. I would like to know how to calculate this as a combined campaign and what figures I would need to perform this calculation. Thanks for your help!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 30, 2009 ):
First, unit size is not a factor.

You need to determine the total print reach and the total online reach separately. You should have software for each medium, most likely from your audience measurement provider.

Or consider our own eTelmar. You may go here to see past Guru instructions on combining reach and frequency.

Thursday, July 23, 2009 #7713
Guru, can you provide me any information about effective frequancy in OOH and Print? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 23, 2009 ):
Effective frequency can be calculated for print in the same ways as as for broadcast. Since print (i.e. magazine) typically produces higher reach / lower frequency as units are added to plans, the patterns will be different in seeking to get 3+ frequencies if that is your goal level.

In out-of-home, however reaches and frequncies are typically so high, e.g. reaches over 80 for small plans, with average frequencies over 10, effective frequency goals are a separate kind of consideration.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009 #7709
Guru, thank you for your insight. Is such a complicated formula needed to create a cover guide? Or is there a simpler equation to calculate this? Id like to create a spread sheet in Excl to use as a guide when planning.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 02, 2009 ):
In the olden days (1960's - 70's) we made up tables of actual calculated reach and frequency results from measured schedules that Nielsen reported. The table might have rows of GRP levels and columns reflecting schedule dispersion, i.e. number of announcements per program or network used. Or, if you have this much information, you can develop a crude "curve" formula.

But you must start with some actual reach and frequency results to build the table or curve. If the formula was as simple as A * B C3, the Guru would have told you in the first place. There are simply too many variables make it simple.

Different ratings sizes; duplication between one announcement and another; duplication between one station or network and another, different cume patterns of different demographic groups, different ways these all behave in different dayparts, in cable versus broadcast, etc.

Our own eTelmar is one reasonably priced solution.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009 #7708
Guru, Can you help me with the formula to predict reach for television. i.e. What figures/stats are used within the formula and what is that formula? Your guidance is much appreciated!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 01, 2009 ):
Ratings / grps are the usual input. Duplication data, at least in the form of "curve" formulas is also needed. You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Friday, June 19, 2009 #7703
Guru, I have a client who is insistent on using pennysavers to alert area residents of a new train service to a major league stadium. I had suggested major daily newspapers covering the region given that it's paid, provides sports coverage, etc. But they are opting for free weekly pennysavers. I'm certain I can obtain some demo info from the publisher but there is no way to understand reader interest. How would I go about perhaps statistically in show major dailies do a far better job of reaching the right audience over these cluttered shoppers?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 20, 2009 ):
The Guru believes you have one of the of the key points: sports coverage. Environmental support in your media choices is an important driver of message impact. In thias case, it probably outweighs statistics. But try the The Newspaper National Network for research.

Monday, June 08, 2009 #7700
Media Guru thanks so much for your explanation on my ques #7699. Is there a different factor or formula I should be using to tally the cume of my reach over a 12 month online campaign that uses the same websites from month to month?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 11, 2009 ):
You need a tool like comScore-MediaMetrix or Nielsen//Netratings

Thursday, June 04, 2009 #7699
We have been using the following formula to add reach from month to month for our online campaigns: (R1+R2)-(R1*(R2/100))*.96. After some research on your site, the initial part of the formula seems to be the formula for random probability but I'm not sure where the multiplying it by .96 came from. Any thoughts? Could that be another estimate on duplication?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 06, 2009 ):
Applying a factor like "0.96" is an old technique to adjust random duplication (which, as you say, is the first part of your formula) for the fact that duplication in some cases is somewhat greater than simply random.

Between different media, such as print and tv, it is thought to be truly random, that is, there is no greater likelihood that a newspaper reader of your campaign will see your tv campaign, than any other two random events.

However, between two elements of the same medium, like two TV dayparts, there is a more than simply random chance of duplication. That is the traditional case for using a factor like 0.96.

Between consecutive time periods of the same medium, as in your case, the Guru expectss a much greater chance of duplication. You are looking at new exposures of the same vehicle, which should be represented as accumulating along one sharply flattening asymptotic curve (see below). It's a "cume," not a "combination." Random combination is far too optimistic. Unduplicated users from the first few months to the next added would probably become virtually total unless each month used unique, unrelated sites.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009 #7698
How can I determine how much money I should spend in banner advertising in a given market without over-delivering? I know it's a very general question, but there aren't many tools available to small agencies that are inexpensive. It's easier with TV, as there are general TRP/reach/Frequency benchmarks, but with online it's much more difficult. If you can provide any general guidelines that would be great!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 03, 2009 ):
You seem to be mixing questions of metrics and benchmarks.

Are you asking how much to do or how to tell if you've done it?

How much to do is a matter of what needs to be accomplished. Are you looking for direct sales or driving traffic to a site? In any case web results are instantly trackable so you must stay on top of results. If you have an amount you want to run, you should be buying on a cost per thousand impressions or cost per click basis. The you get what you pay for and it's up to the sites to document delivery.

Thursday, May 21, 2009 #7695
please help me understand difference/ relation b/w reach & OTS

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 24, 2009 ):
As other Guru queries have explained, "OTS" can refer to either average frequency of message exposure or to gross numbers of exposures.

Gross exposures ÷ reach = average exposures.

Typical reach calculations use gross exposures (Gross ratings points / GRPs) as input variables) 0

Tuesday, May 12, 2009 #7691
Dear Guru: Thank you for all your efforts it is of tremendous help to all of us here, I am sure. I had already discussed with you the issue of reach and frequency before. Now I need you advice regarding the models of calulation of the fee for a media agency. Of main interest is the labor-based model: cost of labor+overhead+profit. Can you tell me if this is a common formula and what are the normal ranges for overhead and profit. I have seen agencies charge anywhere from 70% to 120% of the labor cost for overhead. And between 5% and 30% of the sum (labor+overhead) for profit. Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 12, 2009 ):
You're welcome.

Your formulas seem to be within normal ranges. But norms differ from country to country, and the Guru has no way to compare Uzbekistan to Hong Kong to South Africa. Overhead can differ considerably as well with real estate, communication and benefits costs varying considerably by country.

One thought to keep in mind: with the historical 15% commission full-service agency structure (if that applies in Uzbekistan) that will likely be an upper-end barrier to fees, except in very small billings projects.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 #7688
The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 05, 2009 ): Bookend :15's are the first and last elements of a commerical break. For all practical, purposes, there is virtually no audience growth from the first to the last, usually just :90 apart. So for reach purposes, they are equivalent to a single commerical unit. This is an informed judgement. But by the definition of GRP, they are two separate exposures of ads. Just like two separate ads in the same issue of a magazine. This is fact. Therefore, the GRP contribution counts both units and reach calculation treats them as one. Dear Media Guru: We, as a buying group, support and understand as an industry standard both :15s in a bookend have the full TRP value of a :30 spot. However, we have been asked to provide documentation to support this fact. Are there any resources you can suggest we could utilize to support this?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 22, 2009 ):
This is a matter of standard definitions.

GRP's are simply defined as impressions divided by populaiton universe. An impression is a single exposure of an ad. Length of exposure is NOT a part of the definition. "Documentation" of this fact could be found in any elementary media text or on several web pages with media definitions. Even the wikipedia entry for GRP / TRP is clear on this, although it is written poorly otherwise.

It is entirely reasonable to use judgement to assign different values to TRPs based on their commercial length. It is common to create weighted GRP measures based on length, awareness scores, recall scaores, etc,

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 #7687
Dear MG, When you report deliveries to a client - for the result value how many decimals do you show for GRP's, reach @ 1+ and OTS?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 21, 2009 ):
As a rule, the Guru uses no decimals for GRP nor reach and one decimal for average Frequency. e.g.

reach / Avg Freq /  GRP
37 / 3.4 / 126

In a case where the numbers were very small, perhaps for internet, the Guru might use one decimal for reach and GRP.

Thursday, April 16, 2009 #7682
Dear MG! Can you help me in such question - there are a lot of theories about effective frequency/reach ( Recency, Eff.Freq etc.) so what the reason to choose one of them? Or decision which theory works better depends only media planners point of view how ad is working? Thanks a lot!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 17, 2009 ):
The decision is a judgment call, presumably based on experience. "Better" depends on the category. Recency says the most recently seen ad is most effective, but obviously this should be more relevant to the less-considered purchase, such as brand of cheese, and less relevant to a more considered purchase such as a luxury car.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009 #7681
How different is media buying in the middle east then in the US? How do the agencies in the Middle East figure out there media goals such as reach, frequency and ratings?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 17, 2009 ):
It depends on data available, as well as culture. If there is a measurer of ratings and reach, then planning can be based on these criteria. In some cultures, ratings are quite high and reach develops differently than other cultures. Planning theories will reflect such differences and experience as to what works.

Planning theories everywhere are based on what is thought to work plus the business model of the media sellers. In some countries, media may sell your schedule out from under you, if a higher paying advertiser comes along. Plans must account for this as well as developing communication goals. In some cultures awareness takes second place to brand image, or vice versa. Local knowledge is always key.

Friday, March 27, 2009 #7675
MG- Thanks for your last response. Very helpful. Got another one for you here... Do you know how GM commercial durations compare to Spanish language commercial durations. Let me clarify...Specifically, were trying to show how avg. pod lengths may differ in length for English language from Spanish language network TV. Also curious if the total commercial during an average 30 minute program on network TV is different on Spanish language TV than it is on English language. Ideally trying to show that there is less clutter and commercial interruption on Spanish language network TV and therefore, more chance for brand salience. Thanks again in advance Cool, Media guru wannabe.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 28, 2009 ):
A: If the theory turned out to be correct, there are still so many more important reasons to advertise in the Hispanic market; better product volume / return on investment, reaching an under-served market, better CPMs, etc. The proposition then becomes almost silly.

B: There are too many issues to answer this intelligently. There are 5-6 "major" GM broadcast networks. There is really just one major Hispanic broadcast network and three much smaller ones, although these smaller ones rate, within their market, as well as most GM programs do in their own.

With varying mixes of affiliate and independent local stations and cable networks in each market, where would you make the comparisons?

Having decided to enter the Hispanic market for whatever reasons would you then base your media selection on clutter issues rather than audience measures or program content? Advertise on Mun2 rather than Univision if Mun@ had a better clutter profile?

Monday, March 16, 2009 #7671
How can you calculate TV reach if you only know viewership, rating and share (obtained from Nielsen data)?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 17, 2009 ):
You can't. You need duplication between spots data. Or a model like our own eTelmar's.

A very crude overestimate might be done by random combinarion

Friday, March 13, 2009 #7670
Are there any free tools that can provide reach and frequency for online media planning? Are there any models/formulas for calculating reach/frequency for online? Unfortunately I do not have a budget for this and was hoping there are some free tools out there.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 14, 2009 ):
The Guru is not aware of any such free tools.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009 #7667
Do you know where I can get the formula for random duplication? I am trying to combine Stations/Dayparts together to show one over all reach. Thanks in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, February 24, 2009 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about random combination.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009 #7664
Dear Media Guru: I'm an MBA student, working on several marketing plans - wondering if you can provide rough guidelines (or ranges) of cost, GRPs and/or reach/Frequency by the major media types?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 19, 2009 ):
Much too broad a question. What demographic? reach / frequency for what level of budget or GRP? Calls for too much information, in any case

Wednesday, February 04, 2009 #7662
I'm not sure I understand your answer to this question below. Perhaps you can explain better with an example? I agree with the person asking the question that it is not right to double the GRPs. Tuesday, November 28, 2006 #7236 Hello Guru my question is about spot TV units called "bookend 15s". I'm not too familiar with them, and not sure I'm asking the question right. I am told that in the process of buying bookends each :15 has to be counted, doubling one's points. Is it wise to halve the points to gauge a more realistic delivery of R&F? It just doesn't feel right to assume the delivery is really doubled, even thought it technically is two exposures. Your opinion is much appreciated, and thanks. The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 03, 2006 ): For reach calculation purposes, count the bookend :15s as one unit and use the double GRPs. Frequency then is correcltly more-or-less doubled.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 05, 2009 ):
Bookend :15's are the first and last elements of a commerical break. For all practical, purposes, there is virtually no audience growth from the first to the last, usually just :90 apart. So for reach purposes, they are equivalent to a single commerical unit. This is an informed judgement.

But by the definition of GRP, they are two separate exposures of ads. Just like two separate ads in the same issue of a magazine. This is fact.

Therefore, the GRP contribution counts both units and reach calculation treats them as one.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009 #7660
How to calculate OTS for Print campaign

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 04, 2009 ):
The answer depends on two things:
  • What definiton of OTS are you using, and
  • what data do you have to work with?

OTS is sometimes used as equivalent to Gross Impressions (total exposures of the ad campaign to the target group) and sometimes as equivalent to average frequency ( the average number of times a member of the target group who has been exposed (reached) to the campain is exposed to the campaign.

So Gross OTS is the sum of all the impressions of all the ads in the campaign.

Average OTS is this number divided by the reach, expressed in the same terms, e.g. thousands, etc.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 #7655
Im looking for some generic numbers of average GRPs (monthly or in a year) required for reaching a national audience (80M pop.) for both a launch campaign and maintenance campaign of Diary products. Sorry for being so generic but this is for calculating number of insertions and budget in a business simulator, really just academic. The total GRPs are in a year and include both the product launch (e.g. 2 months) and maintenance. This is really an academic question, if you could be so kind to give an insight. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 20, 2009 ):
This is indeed a generic question, so generic that it need to be greatly refined to attempt an answer.

Your first GRP "reaches a national audience" if it's in a national medium.

Begin by deciding what level of reach you want in an average four weeks in your introduction and maintentace periods.

Decide what media will be used. From these dat you can back inot numbers of GRPs.

Friday, December 05, 2008 #7648
I am working on a plan for re-branding a product/service. The category itself is well developed, and the old brand is well developed. Now the brand wants to re-tool its position in the market. Which is more imprtant for the re-branding - reach or Frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 07, 2008 ):
To oversimplify, when we talk about branding, we are referring to managing the expectations of consumers regarding products or services marketed under the brand,

When we talk about rebranding, we may be thinking of

  1. changing that set of expectations or
  2. about reestablishing them because they have faded from consumer consciousness.
. In the latter case, we have an awareness issue, so reach is the first consideration, In the former case, we are probably thinking of targeting those who are already aware of the brand in order to change their perceptions. If we know these people well enough, we know how to reach them; frequency of message, to have the effect of revising their thinking, becomes relatively more important.

In either case, a well considered balance of reach and frequency is appropriate,

Monday, October 20, 2008 #7622
Hi, Me again #7621. I need to back up. If my frequency is 57 total spots per week - how do I calcuate the average? this is direct response - so do I divide by total days or specific time periods? When I divide by days (7)I get 8.14 - which still makes my reach terrible (4.91%). What am I doing wrong? Over a 4 week period my total GRP's are 40 and total spots airing are 57.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 20, 2008 ):
Although arithmetically, GRP ÷ frequency = reach, it does not mean you can get there the way you are going.

reach is a complex calculation of the net number of different people exposed to your campaign, taking into account the duplication of audience between one spot and another on one station and between the audiences of different stations. Once you have determined reach, typically with a computer model, you can devide GRP by reach and get the average number of spots (frequency of exposure) seen by each of the people who were exposed at all. No manipulation of the numbers of spots you buy will get you to this average frequency that is a quotient of GRP and reach.

You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Friday, October 17, 2008 #7621
Hi MG, I have been asked to do a direct response media plan and include reach and Frequency. I have 40 GRP's and Frequency of 57. When I calculate to get reach I come up with .7017 - does this mean my reach is 70% or am I doing this wrong...?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 17, 2008 ):
If you are right about the 40 GRPs and 57 Frequency then the reach is actually 0.7017% (reach can never be greater than GRP). But the Guru doubts your frequency. How would you get to frequency without having calculated reach? Don't confuse the total number of messages (commercials / mailings / etc) in your plan with the average frequency of exposure of your schedule.,

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 #7618
Please explain the following on how are they calculated as I cant get it. I couldnt paste the Table so for your understanding the data has 6 Columns & 3 rows.

Markets| Pop ln 000s| reach 1+%|AvgOTS| reach 3+%|Avg OTS
MumbaiUA| 3703 | 64 | 9.29 | 53.4 | 11
BangloreUA|1139 | 61 | 7.36 | 43.8 | 10
Thnkx Anoop

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 15, 2008 ):
The calculations are not apparent from the data.

The populations of the markets are probably adjusted census data created by your media measurement resource.

reach 1+ is the unduplicated number of persons exposed at least one or more times to the relevant media schedule, expressed as a % of the populaiton Complex algorithms are used to model actual, measured media consumption,

Average OTS (Opportunities To See) or "average frequency" in US terms is the average number of times each person reached one or mmore times has seen an ad in the schedule.

A missing datum is GRP. reach X OTS = Gross Rating Points reach 3+ is the % who have been exposed to the campaign at least 3 times and the next OTS column is the average number of exposures among this more heavily exposed set of persons reached. The same model algorithms will have been used.

Saturday, October 11, 2008 #7616
When planning traditional out-of-home media buys I use the eTelmar Outdoor Synergy system. From day one when I started working at my current media planning and buying group I have been told that the media delivery goal was to be between 60% and 80% market 5+ reach. In the cases where OOH is to be the only medium used the goal is to be between 70% and 80% and if OOH is to be used in combination with other media the goal is to be between 60% and 70%. My question is in regards to the "5+ effective reach" we use. I can't find anyone to tell me why we use "5+" versus "3+" and I was hoping maybe you could shed some light on it for me. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 11, 2008 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about setting effective frequncy levels

Wednesday, October 08, 2008 #7614
Dear Guru! May be you can give me some informatoin about copy wear - out - I mean whо and how analyze level of GRP or reach, main theorys or somethin like that

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 08, 2008 ):

Click here to see compiled Guru comment on wear out.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008 #7612
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using ten-second commercial spots?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 01, 2008 ):
  • Cheap spot = more reach and GRP
  • Short spot = less retention, less awareness, less favorable placement

Thursday, September 25, 2008 #7609
In our market, putting an ad in the beginning of an ad pod is roughly 50% more expensive. Given a fixed budget, would you recommend lowering the GRP level in favor of first positions or not? (Background: the client was off air for 2 years)

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 25, 2008 ):
Ask your self, what metric will improve by an equal amount to justify spending the extra 50%? reach? Certainly not. Attentivenss? Probably some. But look at minute-by-minute measures to see how 1st position compares in ratings.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008 #7608
If we don't have software to combine different reaches on a media plan, how do we establish an acceptable, unduplicated reach and frequency when buying both boradcast and cable, and combining it with print and internet? Also, can we have duplication in broadcast since TV is a "moment in time" rather than print pubs where you can subscribe to more than one but you aren't reading more than one at any given time? Do ratings account for multiple stations or networks viewed?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 24, 2008 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses regarding combining reaches.

reach is calculated over a period of time, typically 4 weeks, so that TV as well as print may duplicate.

Ratings are about a point in time, multiple stations viewed are not a factor, except that ratings have generally decreased as viewing choices have burgeoned.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008 #7607
What is considered to be the optimal reach/frequency for a radio campaign?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 24, 2008 ):
No such animal.

"Optimal" is determined by strategies in each case.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008 #7606
Dear Guru, I am planning on buying 3 broadcast networks and a handful of cable networks and need to determine the reach of my total buy. Is it appropriate to take the total GRP's across all networks and divide it by my frequency to get my total estimated reach? (Using the reach X freq = GRP equation.) If not, what is the better alternative? I do not currently subscribe to a R&F program for TV and need to do a hand calculation. Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 23, 2008 ):
If you knew your average frequency, this would work. But how would you know it without an R&F program?

This sounds like a fairly expensive buy; why wouldn't you have R&F software if you're spending this kind of money?

Try AMIC's eTelmar on a pay-per-use basis.

Thursday, September 18, 2008 #7602
I have a client who would like us to calculate the combined reach & frequency for a cable, spot radio and traffic radio campaign. Without a media mix program, how can I calculate reach & frequency across these various mediums? Are there standard formulas that I should be using?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 21, 2008 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses regarding combining reaches.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008 #7598
Is there a "rule of thumb" wear out number for print during a 4 week campaign? I understand that there are a number of factors that go into wear out (ie: creative, environment, clutter,etc.). However do you have a general rule one could follow?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 14, 2008 ):
No general rule this narrow. Some rules in other media are expressed in terms such as "when frequency reaches 20 in the second heaviest quintile." The Guru does not imagine you will approach such a level in any 4-week campaign, even with only one ad variant.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008 #7597
Is there a way to measure reach/frequency for an overall media plan that includes TV, radio, print and outdoor? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 14, 2008 ):
It is a quite common measurement. Tools like our own eTelmar do just this.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008 #7588
Hi Guru, i was wondering if someone needs an MBA degree to reach the highest Media Director level. Is this something that could put a prospect ahead? Is it worth the $20,000+ for the degree?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 04, 2008 ):
In a lifetime career, the $20,000 would probably eventually be repaid by greater earnings.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008 #7587
Dear MG! Can you explain to me - is it any differense between calculating Recah 1+ in media mix (by random probability) and reach 2+,3+ and so on, or we can use the same sheme as for reach 1+? Thank you a lot!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 04, 2008 ):
It's quite different.

Assuming you are talking about combining media, in the new 2+ group, you will have some of the two+ from the 1+ group in medium A , some from the original 2+ group some from the same sets in medium B and so on. It's a complex formula.

Monday, September 01, 2008 #7586
Dear MG, I am the Director of Sales & Marketing for a luxury Casribbean resort. Frequently I have pop-up requests to purchase ad pages and have a contigency line in the budget for this purpose. What is the quickest and simplest way to determine if the ad is worth the money. We have an ad agency that handles the major requests so I do not want to bother them with some of the smaller ones. The most recent example would be: A partner is celebrating its 20th anniversary will be producing a unique publication in partnership with Luxury Travel Advisor. It will be distributed with the November issue of Luxury Travel Advisor and serve as a marketing collateral for recruitment efforts of luxury selling advisors in 2008 and 2009. Heres the reach: Luxury Travel Advisors qualified readers: 13,000 Virtuosos own distribution: 5,000 Full-page congratulatory advertising messages are US $5,000 net and half page options for $3,000 net. How would you approach this?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 04, 2008 ):
Presumably you have a media plan which sets parameters for media selection regarding environment, audience quality and efficiency which you ought to follow.

In the Guru's experience, the agency would rather take care of the "small stuff" than have you working around them.

Friday, August 29, 2008 #7585
Dear Guru, I am working for a telecom service provider client. Problems I am facing are that: 1. How to successfully capture consumer mind space in an extremely cluttered environment and category? 2. How to quickly build up TOM & ensure acquisitions? 3. How do we successfully differentiate the brand from key competitors in the mind & media space? 4. The brand launch to happen in phases circle wise. How do we ensure maximum media mileage without spillovers? I know this is like asking too much but, still I am hopeful.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 31, 2008 ):
The Guru finds that your questions range well beyond media issues and answers; some of the media points raised by the answers will take you in opposite directions.

  1. Talking about cluttered environments implies you expect to be advertising in the same media vehicles as the competition. If you really "need" to do this, breaking though to top of mind will either be a creative problem or a matter of out-shouting (mostly out-spending) the competition.
  2. Ensuring acquisitions will be matter of the creative and the offer made, more than media choices (however, selection of DM lists is a media issue critical in that arena..
  3. Differentiation in the mind space is again a creative matter if you use the same media as competitors. You might break through by using different, unexpected media for your message to catch the attention of the audience reached. Others have used multiple small-space ads and other odd units to get noticed.
  4. The Guru is not sure he understands "happen in phases circle wise." If you mean introductions in different DMAs geographically arranged in a contiguous circle, spillover can't be avoded in major broadcast media. Cable tv can be tightly controlled geographically as can out-of home media. Larger internet sites can be bought with tight geographic controlls. Small radio stations and local print will minimize spillover, but at some cost to efficiency and reach.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008 #7584
how did ultra luxury brands that are established today such as vertu, maybach..etc launch their brands. How do we create an ultra luxury brand in media? doesn't mass media cheapen these brands that are yet to be born, how do we create awareness of such a brand amongst the ultra rich, poeple who are beyond material achievements?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 29, 2008 ):
These brands establish themselves through promoting excellence (creative / marketing issue) and carrying ridiculous prices. Maybachs are essentially super Mercedes, as triple prices. It's a 100 year old brand, revived by Daimler, Mercedes' parent.

The Guru would say that the media key is to select media environments with an audience among the "right" people, but only among the right people so that an audience member reached knows that only avery select group is being addressed.

Consider using Mendelsohn Media Research' affluent study, which surveys heads of households with $100K+ income, and offers data for demograhics up to $4 million HH income.

Thursday, August 14, 2008 #7578
I am trying to combine the 1+ reach for 3 TV campaigns with the same demo that ran at the same time. I know that I cannot simply add them up. Can you recommend a formula to acheive this number?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, August 14, 2008 ):
The three schedules should be processed as one through R&F software like our own eTelmar

Monday, August 04, 2008 #7575
What are the pros & cons of running 15 second TV ads or bookend ads?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 05, 2008 ):

:15's Pros

  • Lower unit costs, which creates opportunities for greater reach and frequency


    Less communication of message
  • Less awareness building
  • Lower recall, possibly even when all savings are reinvested in greater frequency.

Using bookends may offset some of the cons, but not without offsetting the pros. :15s typically cost more than half of a :30.

Thursday, July 17, 2008 #7568
Hello Media Guru - I am trying to figure out the best way to combine national magazine reach and national internet reach. I know that I can use the random probability formula to combine two reach numbers. However, the problem I keep running into is that my base for print reach is total US (based on MRI numbers) and my base for internet reach is total US that is online (based on comScore numbers). Any suggestions on how to combine these numbers? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 17, 2008 ):
  1. Determine what % of your target is in the online universe, say it's 70%
  2. Multiply this factor against your internet reach. That is, if your internet reach is 50%, you are reaching 70% of that number on a total US basis. 50% X 70% = 35%
  3. Now you can combine your 35% internet US reach with your print reach by random probability. Apply the same universe factor to GRP. Internet frequency will not change

Friday, May 23, 2008 #7552
Media Guru thank you for your quick response . I understand that you are concerned with the forced exposure, however if this is not the issue, let me ask you the following questions. I understand your 20 advertisers X.50= $10.00 a week and I follow your $1.19 CPM ($4,500/3,780,000 = $1.19) And I understand charging each advertiser $4,500.00 a week arriving at $90,000. However anticipating that this amount would have been per advertiser on a national buy leaves us in a position of uncertainty. Secondly, we were anticipating charging $10 per screen per week per advertiser(I omitted to mention this) in my last e-mail. How can we maintain such a screen rate without using a multiplying factor and remain with an acceptable CPM? The answer I presume is to increase the reach within the 9000 screens deployed (but this is a constant measurement and con not be tampered with) Thirdly is the screen rate per week the important factor here or is the buyer more concerned with the CPM allowing us to charge a screen rate as desired, and maintaining a desirable CPM. Fourthly will it be easier for a media buy (and for us) for the buy to be done on a strict CPM basis? And is there an acceptable CPM for OOH, what I mean to say is there a barrier. Thank you for your insight this is amazing. Regards, S

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 24, 2008 ):
Unless you are selling individual screens, nobody will care about your screen rate. Total cost and cpm are the considerations. And this mjeans it's about gross impressions, not "reach."

Unless you have a special audience, such as physicians or C-level executives, the Guru does not expect a cpm much over $5.00 will be palatable to buyers of such an out-of-home medium.

Friday, May 23, 2008 #7551
Thank you for taking my question. We are in the process of deploying an OOH Digital Signage network and I have a problem to solve in regards with the CPM of which seems to be critical in the media buy. We will be deploying 9000 screens one per location, we know that we have 420 people of which will be exposed to the medium per week, 420 x 9000= 3,780,000 people will be exposed weekly. Is this number considered as the reach or unduplicated impressions? We assume it will be both. We are running a 20 minute loop of content and advertising, of which 5 minutes will be dedicated to advertising and we know for a fact through our resaerch that each individual will be in front of the screen for the full 20 minute loop. The ads are 15 seconds each therefore, there will be a maximum of 20X15 second ads per 20 minute loop. We wish to charge a per screen rate per week, for simplifying things lets say $10.00 per screen per week. We are also asuming that each individual will be exposed to all the adverts as they can not leave the environment or turn it off. Are we safe in saying that each individual will be have a frequency of 3 ads viewed minimum since there may be distractions etc.? Therefore if we are at all correct the math would be 420 x 9000 x 3= 11,340,000 impressions weekly? Therefore, 9000 screens x $10.00 per week per screen = $90,000 per week for total network,now if this is right we have to determine the CPM thus taking the total weekly cost $90,000/11,340,000 total impressions will give us a CPM of $7.93. The question remains can this formula be acceptable towards the media buy or must we completely eliminate the multiplying factor of 3, thus 9000 screens X $10 = $90,000/3,780,000 for a CPM of $23.80? If the later is the case then we would price ourselves out of the market, do you have any suggestions to my dilema? Looking forward to hearing from you. Regards,

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 23, 2008 ):
The scenario of forced exposure you propose is somewhat unsettling and one must wonder what the audience attitude toward the medium's ads will be. If the 420 people are all different and do not see any of the other 9000 screens, then yes, 420 x 9000 is the reach per week and may also be called the unduplicated impressions.

You do not offer any reasoning to support your minimum of 3 ad viewed out of 20 on the loop. If there are distractions, they will probably be welcomed, but that doesn't lead to any particular frequency assumption. Frequency is the not an issue here. For impressions one assumes one showing of one ad to one person = one impression. Guru would use 20 as the base of your impressions inventory, but each advertiser will only care about what impressions their own as gets. Apparently this would be 420 x 9000 or 3,780,000 as you said.

If you charge this advertiser $90,000 that's a cpm of $23.80 as you said and it certainly is too high. But if you want to make $10 per screen per week, you will only charge each of your 20 advertisers $0.50 per screen per week or $4,500 for a very reasonably cpm of $1.19. You would be charging each of 20 advertisers this way.

Thursday, May 15, 2008 #7547
the reach in my country for radio is 70%. cost of spot is 18000. rating for prime time is 12 points. how do i calculate cost per thousand and cost per point for a campaign using these details?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 15, 2008 ):
Cost per Point = Cost ÷ ratings,

so 18000 ÷ 12 = 1500 cpp.

Cost per thousand = Cost ÷ impressions in thousands

12 rating = 12% of the population, so

18000 ÷ (0.12 x population in thousands) = cost per thousand

Wednesday, May 14, 2008 #7546
Is there a formula for Effective (or net) reach at certain frequency levels? I can figure average R/F, manually, but I need a formula for pulling Effective

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 18, 2008 ):
> You really need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 #7542
Good Morning Guru- I have been asked by a client to place a spots schedule in the top 20 US Markets. I notice from SQAD that this has the ability to reach 44% of the US households. Where is the "tipping point" where it is more cost effective to buy national instead of spot? In all my years, I have never bought does this differ from spot and how do I learn.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 07, 2008 ):
"National" should mean network. Today we have broadcast network, e.g. NBC, ABC, Fox, CW, etc, and spot consists of their local station affiliates, such as WNBC in New York, KABC in LA, WNYW in NY and independent local stations.

National can also refer to cable networks like Bravo or ESPN, and the "spot" scenario of buying local DMA interconnects or MSOs. There are national alternatives like Telamerica Cable Connect as well.

Assuming you mean the first of these situations, you can compare buying one network announcement that covers the entire country or a spot on each of the affiliates of that network. In terms of "effectiveness" this should be more or less equal, assuming your brand is evenly sold across the country. If there are gaps in distribution or variations in sales rate, spot in selected markets or some network weight supplemented by spot in key markets could be more "effective."

But, you probably mean to ask which is more "efficient."

Almost invariably, a network spot costs less than the sum of all the local spots that make up that same audience. So, at what point in buying spot markets does the cost equal the national for only a portion of the audience value? It will probably be around 45-50% of US coverage if you are buying top markets, but there can be significant variance depending on daypart and demo.

SQAD also offers network cost tools that can allow you to make the case-by-case comparison easily.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008 #7540
Can you offer guidelines for purchasing a banner ad on a local newspaper web site? The newspaper will only provide me with a monthly fee for a set number of impressions. They won't disclose any info about the number of advertisers on the site or the number of impressions purchased by other advertisers. I can't select dayparts. How do I get a sense of the reach and frequency associated with my buy?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 29, 2008 ):
Your reach and frequency do not correlate to the number of other advertisers nor to their impressions. The site might legitimately consider these data confidential.

You may reasonably and more usefully ask what number of page loads are required to serve your impressions commitment, what share of site impressions you are buying, what the number of ad positions on the site is, what is the overall number of unique visits and unique visitors and what the overall reach of the site is.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008 #7536
Hi Guru, My client has asked my to provide the 3+ reach on the Post Buy. My software (Smartplus) doesn't provide the number for posts, and the tv stations say you can't do it. Any ideas?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 23, 2008 ):
Sort the post results into appropriate categories, e.g. GRP per daypart by station or whatever the software requires, and process through software that does give 3+ reach results, such as our own eTelmar

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 #7529
Is 100 TRPs per week the benchmark level for Network TV? Is it the same for Network Cable?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 16, 2008 ):
The Guru doesn't support "benchmarks" with some related goal. 100 TRP in Prime versus 100 TRP in Daytime produce vastly different reach / Frequency outcomes, as do various mixes. Many of these differences realte to rating size, program frequency, etc. Prime network TV, with perhaps a 5 average rating can not be expected to have the same results as 100 TRP of cable network with perhaps a 0.5 average rating.

Numbers like this, with little basis other than being nice and round may make sense for box-car buys such as short term promotions emphasizing frequency, but can't fairly be generalized. Click here to see past Guru responses about levels.

Monday, March 24, 2008 #7521
Dear Guru, I need a clear concept of GRPs. I understand the terminology that it is the sum of rating points but what actually refers to it and what is the rationale behind it. For suppose, I have achieved 235 GRPs over a period of 40 days and my audience is Male - Female, 18-35, SEC- A & B. What does 235 as a weight refers to. What is the minimum threshold level of GRPs. How does the calculation works. I am clear on reach and frequency. Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 24, 2008 ):
For any given audience considered, each time there is one exposure of an ad to one member of the audience, an "impression" is generated; there are 2 impressions whether the same person sees an ad twice or two different persons each see an ad once, and so on.

If the sum of all these impressions is divided by the population base (universe) of the target audience, the result is GRP, which are expressed as a percent of the population. I.e. if the number of impressions is equal to the population size, the result of the calculation is "1" or 100%, expressed as 100 GRP.

Similarly, the impressions of a single ad, divided by the population, is the ad's rating. Thus, the sum of all ratings is also the GRPs. There is no "rationale," these are simply media terms and definitions.

Different theories and approaches set various GRP thresholds depending of marketing goals.

Friday, March 14, 2008 #7513
Do you know what O.E.S Analsys is? Someone mention that it had to do with the amount of spots you had to have a week, in order to reach your reach and requence goal. I'm not sure, I would like to find out more infomation about it. Where can i look?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 14, 2008 ):
The Guru believes you are referring to "Optimal Effective Schedule" analysis, an old-fashioned radio scheduling technique from before the advent of PCs on everyone's desk and the availability of station-specific radio R&F software or R&F modeling programs like that of our sister company, eTelmar.

The concept was that rather than buying each radio station in your plan to some arbitrary number of spots per week like 12 or 18, it was more efficient (in building reach) to buy each station to a number of spots that generated a certain percentage of the station's cume potential. As the Guru recalls, the standard was commonly 80% of the cume potential. In this way, stations with higher "turnover" (cume potential average rating) got more spots, and the best reach of the plan was most efficiently attained. Today it is so easy to analyze reach and frequency of various schedule options that these old techniques have fallen out of use. Still, in developing schedules to test in your R&F software, the cume potential and turnover may be useful, directionally.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008 #7504
what is mean by universe

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 04, 2008 ):
"Universe" is the total population of the type you are considering within the geography you are considering; it is the base for rating, GRP and reach calculations. If your target is Women 18-54 in the US, the total number of W18-54 in the US is the universe.

The information is taken from whatever audience survey vendor is being used.

Thursday, February 28, 2008 #7503
I am new to media buying, especially buying radio and i was wondering what is a good GRP to look for? One schedule that a sales rep laid out for me has 42.5 GRP, 24.4% reach and 1.7 frequency for the 25-54 demographic. Is this a good schedule? Please advise.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 02, 2008 ):
Schedules are not "good" in the abstract.

Are you emphasizing reach, efficiency, frequency, content or what?

Some very generic rules of thumb:

  • It is standard to buy at least 12 spots per week on a station
  • Some buyers looking for best schedule reach buy each station up to 80% of its cume potential
  • Typical buys include more than one station, so overemphasizing the reach of a single station is not useful
  • GRP-wise, 100 per week is a common minumum buy in a radio-only plan at the outset.

24.4% reach is rather low level in a market, so mulitple stations are even more likely to be needed. Unless you are supporting a short-term promotion, evaluating reach on a four week basis is standard; the schedule you show seems like it might be a one week schedule or on a low-rated station. Talk stations and music stations have different patterns of reach building, which is why this may or may not be a "good" buy on this station. Cultural market segment stations, e.g. Black or Hispanic, typically have much higher ratings within their segments and cume much higher reaches for the GRPs. In the top few urban markets, as many as two out of three of the top stations will be in these cultural segments; their audiences are focused within these segments. You may need to add other stations to expand coverage to a broader slice of of market if your target is spread across all cultural segments. So called "spectrum buys" address such issues, whether you want to spread coverage across all age segments of the broader target, all cultural segments, all income segments, all sub-geographies or whatever other marketing issues apply.

Friday, February 22, 2008 #7500
On his 2008 spot calendar, our media buyer shows a breakdown of total spots, total trps and total cost for a 4 week month, a 5 week month and fluff. It's the fluff that bothers me. Shouldn't the buyer be willing to pay more per spot to increase the odds it will run, rather than anticipate pre-emption and include a fluff buy? He subscribes to the theory of catfish level buying which doesn't seem to be working that well any more. Thanks for your input.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 22, 2008 ):
Wow, "fluff" and "catfish," two unfamiliar but sufficiently picturesque terms! As to your question, about "shouldn't the buyer be willing. . . ," maybe so or maybe not.

Buyers don't independently make the rules about how much efficiency to pursue, that should come from the plan and its buying platform.

Some buyers arbitrarily pursue efficiency or reach as if they were an absolute "good" instead of other qualitative values like consistent delivery levels or program mix or other metrics that should have been established in the plan. The plan must guide the buyer as to what is desired. You cannot blame the buyer for using his own judgment instead of that of someone else who didn't communicate in a timely fashion. And while that someone is at it, let him also state the standard for "not working that well any more."

Friday, February 01, 2008 #7491
Hello Guru, Hope all is well. Is it acceptable to enter into a reach model "1" for an ad in both a newspaper and a magazine if they share the ride, or should it be counted as two separate insertions, one for the newspaper and one for the magazine? The geographical base is the same for both.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 02, 2008 ):
First, consider what you really want to know, and then what are the actual facts and their impact on measuring your media plan.

Ultimately, you really want to know how many different people see the ads and how often.

On the "actual facts" side, the Guru believes you are saying you are advertising in a Sunday newspaper and its magazine supplement, like the Sunday NY Times (ROP) and the NY Times Sunday Magazine.

At some levels, this is equivalent to advertising in two different sections of the the same day's newspaper edition. You would not add to the reach, but you would double the GRP's.

In the ROP + magazine situation, the Guru expects that there is a somewhat better chance that the duplication is less than the 2 ROP ad scenario.

However, syndicated research resources do separately measure the newspaper and magazine, and the newspaper itself may have specifically researched your scenario. Get access to these resources and then apply your best judgment as to what use of the reach model best reflects reality.

If you are instead considering a newspaper and the local edition of a national supplement that may have some additional circulation, there may be a slight difference.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008 #7488
Hello Guru, I am in the middle of an argument with a friend, and we are hoping that you can settle our dispute. My friend insists that the reach and frequency of a print schedule with 3 insertions in Better Homes and Gardens in the same month will be a different reach than 3 insertions spread out over 3 months. I disagree. We both have access to R&F tools and I even showed her that the end resulting reach will be the same. She now insists that the tools we use are wrong. Please help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 30, 2008 ):
Your friend is right. 3 insertions in 3 different issues will generate more reach than 3 insertions in the same issue. This should be intuitively obvious: the reach of the 3 ads in the same issue can only be the audience of a single issue, with virtually no unduplicated exposures from each additional ad.

3 different issues each have a significant number readers that the other two do not. In media research and research tools, we treat an ad in any print issue as if it were read by everyone who reads the average issue, although there is obviously some overstatement in this standard. But audience measurement actually demonstrates that different issues have somewhat different audiences, even if the majority of the audience is duplicated by the next issue.

Your R&F tools are probably not "wrong." Your interpretation of the results probably is. The Guru would be very surprised to learn that your R&F software offers a way to distinguish the inputting of a schedule of 3 ads in one issue from 3 ads in different issues. If it seems to, but gives the same reach in both cases, then it is wrong.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008 #7477
what method can be used to combine frequency between billboards and transit

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 15, 2008 ):
The Guru is not clear as to your meaning when you say "combine frequency." Assuming you mean the combined average frequency of the total schedule;

in any media combination, the combined average frequency is determined in the same way;

  1. Calculate the combined reach, whether by using Sainsbury as in your two previous queries of yesterday and today, or any other method
  2. Sum the GRPs
  3. Divide the total GRPs by the combined reach to get average frequency

Monday, January 14, 2008 #7476
can the sainsbury formula be used for print, outdoor and radio

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 15, 2008 ):
As indicated within the prior Guru responses used to answer your query yesterday, #7475, "the Sainsbury formula is a method for combining the reaches of schedules in different media." In other words, yes.

Monday, January 14, 2008 #7474
TRP levels change from one market to another and countries. With the globalization, US clients many times don't understand that what works in the US not necesarly works in other countries. My question? Do you have a comparison between effective TRP levels in the US vs other countries? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, January 14, 2008 ):
Even within the U.S., TRP levels' effectiveness vary across market segments like Hispanic vs Black consumer vs B2B vs general market. E.g. the reach/ frequency results of the same radio GRP can be quite different in Black of Hispanic radio than general market radio.

Even other countries have significant ethnic submarkets, for example Boers in South Africa, English in China, etc. Media types is another kink.

Your question would have 1000+ answers if it even made senst to attempt it.

Friday, December 28, 2007 #7464
In national industry with quiet competition, not much advertising - strongest competitor did unprecedented national cable TV buy and acheived significant brand name recognition resulting in gains. Moved the bar. We need to place more nationally now to keep up - currently doing regional spot cable buys in few larger DMA's. Would it be more cost effective to do national cable network buy or national spot cable in mid-sized and up DMA's for max reach(Service not typically used as much in rural areas.) Also, any research on how much average TV ad spend it takes to achieve national brand name recognition? I've heard $25 million but don't know the source of that figure.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 29, 2007 ):
Every case is unique, but in rules-of-thumb terms,
  1. If thinking of national brand name recognition, you should be thinking of national media
  2. Arbitrary numbers like $25 million are just that, arbitrary. If your target needs you to be in more expensive (less efficient) media to get to a certain point with the right image or environment, so be it. If more efficient media work, that's even better. Set reach goals and price a plan.
  3. National buys are almost always more cost effective than local / regional, unless you can truly ignore large portions of the country.
  4. "Rural areas" do not account for much of the country.

Thursday, December 27, 2007 #7463
I have two questions about a wearout standard according to the frequency in the next-to-highest quintile, something like "when the next-to-highest quintile has a frequency of 20+." My first question is whether quintiles should be made based on only reached target audience (whose frequencies are 1+) or based on all target audience (including the audience with frequency 0). The second question is how the frequency of the next-to-highest quintile is defined? The average frequency of that quintile is 20+? The lowest frequency is 20+? Or, the highest frequency is 20+?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 29, 2007 ):
When thinking about wear out, obviously only those reached are relevant.

Frequencies of quintiles are the average frequency for that 20% of audience.

Thursday, December 27, 2007 #7462
DearGuru: How to evaluate a radio media chance? Quantity analysis and quality analysis? How to? would you please give me a main structure for doing this work? thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 29, 2007 ):
This question is somewhat unclear. If by "chance," you mean a specific buying opportunity, such as a given station's promotion or event, then there are both quantitative and qualitative elements to consider:
  • Quantitative:
    What are the CPP or CPM figures?
    How do these compare with other opportunities or standard buys you have made?
    Is the frequency and duration adequate to your promotional needs?
    Are reach needs met?

  • Qualitative:
    Does the event engage the right audience in the right way?
    Does it support the Brand?
    Does it fit the rest of the marketing effort?

Wednesday, December 05, 2007 #7456
We're trying to raise unaided brand awareness for our Insurance client. Do you know of any research that proves that increased reach positively impacts unaided brand awareness scores? It seems like a "no-brainer" but I know in the past you said that brand awareness is a trickier subject than ad awareness. Please let me know what you think. Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 06, 2007 ):
It certainly does seem like a no-brainer, but try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230. ARF materials will also be available through American Association of Advertising Agencies and Association of National Advertisers.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007 #7455
Hi What is effective cover? Is it the same as effective reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 04, 2007 ):
"Effective cover" is unfamiliar. Effective coverage might be a term you have seen abbreviated that way. Adding the word "effective" to another media metric like reach means that there is some limitation to the measurement, as effective reach means that we are counting only the portion of the reach that has received some designated amount of frequency of exposure.

Coverage is generally used in one of two ways:

  • The portion of a demographic group that is in the audience of a single issue / episode of a media vehicle, most often a print vehicle, or
  • The portion of a media market with the opportunity to see a media vehicle issue, most typically newspaper coverage, calculated as circulation households.

The limitation that might be intended by any particular use of "effective coverage" is unclear. Often cable and syndicated tv programs use coverage to describe the portion of the U.S. in the markets where the programming is available, regardless of whether or not everyone in those markets subscribes to that cable network or ever choses to view the program. In such a case, "Effective coverage" might be one way to put it.

Monday, November 26, 2007 #7453
What is the current practice for calculating the most effective daypart mix? Are there new media tools or research to do this analysis?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 29, 2007 ):
Optimizers have been around for 20 years or more. reach and frequency analysis is even older.

But you have to define "effective" first. Is it based on reach, frequency, efficiency, sales, awareness, recall, etc?

Friday, November 23, 2007 #7452
What is the average ROI for newspaper advertising? Where can I find this info?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 25, 2007 ):
The question is inherently unanswerable and the answer would be virtually useless if found.

There are far too many non-advertising variables involved, on top of the many, many advertising variables that would make almost any result non-applicable to another scenario.

  • On the media side, size, coloration, coverage, budget, schedule and use of other media if any, are variables are too complex to allow any result to apply to any other situation. Just for example, effectiveness typically follows a bell-like curve: lesser effectiveness at the low spending end, before enough reach, frequency and awareness is built and again at the high when wear-out and exhausting the supply of new prospects may set in.
  • In other advertising issues, the strength of the copy, the "offer" and price are critical variables.
  • On the non advertising side, the price and profit margin are crucial. How could you expect any relevance of the ROI of a retail frozen vegetables campaign to apply to a national luxury auto campaign? Seasonality and promotional periods also muddy the waters.

Beyond all this, since ROI is specific to brands and thus proprietary information, it is not likely one could get ROI on enough of the various campaigns to average anyway.

Nonetheless, try The Newspaper National Network for possible useful information.

Thursday, November 15, 2007 #7449
Dear Guru, Would it be valid to use the Arbitron cume audience ratings to compute a frequency distribution for a flight spanning periods of various lengths? For example: 1) a flight of four days, and 2) a flight of four weeks? Thanks in advance.... MM

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 18, 2007 ):
The Guru is not clear on why you would want to use cume ratings here.

The Guru would use AQH to compute reach and develop frequency distribution within your reach system. Cume ratings aren't used to compute reach, because they are artifacts of stations and dayparts, not of advertising schedules.

As to applicability of frequency distribution to analyzing flights of various lengths, the Guru supposes it depends on what conclusions you might make from the results. Offhand, the Guru says "why not?" Assuming the flights are not greatly separated over time, that is.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007 #7447
I have a question about online reach and frequency. We are planning 1,500,000 targeted impressions over 4 weeks in a market where the A25-49 population is 1,300,000. Is there a way to hand calculate expected reach and frequency of the campaign? Is it more accurate to use the population as a whole, or to use only the online population?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 14, 2007 ):
So you have 115 GRPs, to begin with. The range of reach possible in online is enormous, depending on the sites and placements selected. If you use a third party ad serving system e.g. DoubleClick, you can determine reaches of schedules that have run, and build yourself a model to roughly estimate reach.

Even rougher, you might use a web measurement tool like comScore to get reaches site by site and calculate by "random probability".

Ultimately you want to know a number of target persons reached, soit really doesn't matter which universe you work with until you turn the results into reach percents. Then, be careful to label accordingly.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 #7441
I want to test high profile TV & Cable in 3 mid sized markets. What are good A35-54 GRP levels just in Prime? What kind of R/F will that deliver?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 09, 2007 ):
"Good GRP levels" is a nebulous term.

100 per week is a nice round number. That might deliver 78 reach in 4 weeks. Short term promotions call for higher levels, continuous maintenance needs lower levels.

What are you really testing? Something versus nothing? or TV / cable versus alternate media?

Monday, November 05, 2007 #7440
Is there an industry standard or formula I can use to estimate length of time it would take to brand a new company in small regional areas from a media standpoint. Is there a goal to set for GRPs or impressions? I understandn the short answer is probably "no" with so many variables to take into consideration but I am hoping for maybe some parameters and goals to shoot for. thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 05, 2007 ):
You are right that there are many elements here beyond duration of media exposure.

Your biggest issue in looking for formulas is quantifying your terms.

First off, how do you quantify "to brand?" What factors define a "branded" company?

  • There must be awareness, certainly (how much?)
  • The awareness must be positive and relate to the brand character desired.
The latter depends on creative as much if not more than media. The creative must say something positive about the company, it must say something that supports the branding message and it must be memorable.

From a media perspective, awareness correlates strongly with reach and frequency. Ad awareness will never be greater than the reach level achieved, and will not equal that level without sufficient frequency. This is why some planners look only at reach at 3+ frequency or some other frequency level judged effective.

Using the best media, whether described in terms of environment, "engagement" or other impact descriptors, is important.

Budget is also a controlling factor. Time-wise, "branding" would be likely to be achieved sooner if higher GRP levels were used.

Thursday, November 01, 2007 #7436
What is combined reach and frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 01, 2007 ):
Assuming the Guru correctly understands your question, combined reach and frequency refers to the overall reach and overall average frequency of a schedule consisting of two or more media, such as televison and print. Click here to see an example

Thursday, October 25, 2007 #7434
Could you please, explain definetely what is GRP Wieving in Outdoor advertising. Is it daily potential reach (%)or cumuilative audience (GRP,s)calculated basing on estimated D.E.C.? It'll be so usefull in case you demonstrate some formulas and examples of GRP Showing calculation. Thank you for the co-operation.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 26, 2007 ):
As in all media, GRP's are impressions population base. DEC may be used as the daily impressions figure for outdoor.

GRP's are neither reach nor reach potential. Outdoor schedules' GRPs are typically in the several hundred to 2000 - 3000 per month range while reach can only be up to (theoretically) 100%.

Typical outdoor buys are 25, 50 or 100 GRP ( or "showing") referring to GRP per day.

100 GRP outdoor buys do approach 95% reach per month.

Friday, October 12, 2007 #7432
If I wanted to explore the possibilities of enhancing my clients advertising reach through the use of the Internet as a new media, barring that I will be only utalizing the route of Information and Entertainment and I am reaching persons in Jamaica, what suggestions would you give as I venture along this journey?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 12, 2007 ):
Begin by learning about internet users in Jamaica. The Guru suspects internet penetration is low, but your target may be atypical.

Monday, October 08, 2007 #7426
Media Guru, Why is 100 GRPs the standard or minimum for a weekly radio buy in a MSA? Is there a research article I can show our clients in order to explain?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 09, 2007 ):
100 GRP is simply a nice, round number. Other relevant radio "standards" include buying a minumum of 12 spots a week on a station or buyung enough spots on a station to reach 75-80% of the cume (reach) potential.

More practically, 100 GRP per week will deliver about 45 - 65 reach over 4 weeks, depending on number of stations, demographic target, average rating, etc.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007 #7409
Our client is a franchisee of a national company. He has asked us (in so many words) what is the local penetration of national cable into his markets (GRPs or reach/frequency). Can you let me know how to calculate this. thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, August 29, 2007 ):
GRPs or reach are results of buying a schedule, not factors of market penetration. What your client should ask is
  • What is the local cable coverage of his market (what % of markets' TV homes are cable subscribers?
  • or, less usefully, what is the reach potential of cable in these markets?

In either case, consult a spot cable vendor like SpotCable

Thursday, July 26, 2007 #7398
Hi Guru, Can you please put light on the top three cable providers in U.S that should be considered Locally. I presume Comcast( includes time warner i think) is the top and the major contendor, but is there any other provider who might have a better reach than Comcast

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 29, 2007 ):
Comcast and Time-Warner are separate companies.

On a local basis, either of these or one of several other MSO's, e.g. Charter, Cox, Brighthouse or Insight might be more important in any given market. For example, in the New York market, Cablevision is the leading MSO, but has virtually no presence in any other DMA.

Consult SpotCable for further information.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007 #7395
Hi Guru With reference to question #7384 ,i want to ask that TVR is Time weighted reach and if we have reach figures with us ,than can we find time spent.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 29, 2007 ):
One would need details of the algorithm used to construct the specific "time-weighted reach" you are using in order to try to work back to time spent.

Monday, July 23, 2007 #7394
Thanks for answering my previous question. In my previous question " forecast" means forecast. I would like to know if there is any way to find out future GRP figures for channel on the basis of channel share or reach figure. i.e if we have 100 grp for 'x' channel in this schedule now when i am planning for the same brand and this month on the basis of channel share or reach figures can i calculate have actual GRP figures. example if 100 GRP are planned for 'X' channel then what will actual number of GRP I will have in next month or next two month... Thanks in advance

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 29, 2007 ):
The usual process is to estimate ("project") rating for each program in the schedule, typically using latest program share and usage levels of the time period for the season, tweaked with judgement.

reach will not come into it.

Thursday, July 19, 2007 #7393
Hi Guru, Can we forecast GRP figures using any variable like reach, channel share or TVR. If yes, then could please let me know which formula i should used?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 21, 2007 ):
It is not clear what you mean by "forecast." GRPs are a sum of TV ratings in a schedule.

Friday, July 06, 2007 #7384
Hi Guru I'm Planner from India ,Please tell me how to find time spent ,if i have following data reach '000 ,reach% ,TVR'000 and TVR. Awaiting for reply

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 06, 2007 ):
Time spent cannot be calculated from these data. It must be directly measured.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007 #7375
what information is required from the broadcast operators to plan for local television advertising. If we have a poor budget which is effective cable or broadcast?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 01, 2007 ):
You need, at minimum, ratings and prices. Demograpihc analysis of the audeinces is also useful.

Cable is usually cheaper, out-of-pocket than broadcast but has lower coverage / reach, and is usualy less efficient.

Thursday, June 14, 2007 #7367
Again Guru, I have been asking questions out of much curiosity as im studying and need to get such answers to increase my knowledge base, So to ask you again, I know the calculation of GRP's but I dont understand its relevance, A rating point is reaching one percent of the universe, GRP is sum of all the rating points. My query considering this formula is, what would a 100 GRP per week plan mean ? This obviously does not mean reaching 100% population as the duplication is not considered. But what does a certain level GRP plan mean? How is the efficiency of a medium being recognised on the basis of GRP ? Thanks again

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 17, 2007 ):
Let us agree that the definiton of a rating point is "a number of impressions equal to 1% of the population" and never use the word "reach" in defining rating point or GRP, because this can carry misleading implications.

So a 100 GRP per week plan would have a weekly gross number of impressions equal to 100% of the population.

GRP only describes weight. The reach will vary depending on the media mix included.

"Efficiency" is defined as either cost of a GRP ("CPP") or the cost of 1000 impressions ("CPM").

Thursday, June 14, 2007 #7366
HI Guru, justwanted to know how do get information of the local websites, Basically im looking for reaching audience through internet medium locally, how do i go about with it? I know of google adwords (SEO) and dont want to go for that option, I want to buy banner ads pop ups and pop unders etc,The problem I'm Facing is i dont know the way to search local websites and the category of websites to go for, also Please advice if it will help if i go for local newspapers and radio websites in that case. Many thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 17, 2007 ):
Finding local websites may seem difficult because they are inherently smaller in audience than the large websites that you might find listed in a comScore Alexa or Nielsen//Netratings run.

The Guru's approach would be as follows: "Google" search terms that combine the geographic description with a likely site category for local interests. For example, let's consider Long Island, New York. Googling "radio Long Island" would show you Long Island Exchange high in the results list. This site provides links to sites of a few dozen radion stations listened to on Long Island, including some from nearby New York City. Googling "newspaper Long Island" produces ABYZnewslinks' Long Island newspapers' site links. Searching "shopping," "entertainment," "yellowpages," "sports," etc plus the geographic name works, too.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007 #7364
How do I determine reach and frequency of a media mix that includes television, radio, print and online? Also, how do I calculate newspaper reach? Is it the same as coverage? Can I calculate by demo? Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 13, 2007 ):
Once you have the pieces, combine using "random probability"

Coverage (a HH percentage) is the same as rating or one-time reach. Demographic reach may be determined in Newspapers.

See our eTelmar for reach calculation tools.

Monday, June 11, 2007 #7361
How these five following terms mean, while they are used in Media Planning? -Billing -Flowchart -Fringe time -Rate card -Share of voice -Agency commission -Duplication -People Meter -Waste circulation -Position Thank you for your help

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 11, 2007 ):
  • Billing is the amount charged to the client for advertising work. Not a planning term. It can include media purchased, production costs, etc.
  • Flowchart is a graphic representation of the media plan across time, usually by week. The format is technically known as a "Gantt Chart." See our own version, FlowMaster.
  • Fringe times are the TV periods immediately before and after Prime time. Plans usually include weekend daytime other than sports in this category. Strict constructionists also include programs which run in the Prime hours, but not on broadcast network affiliates, within the Fringe definition.
  • Rate card is literally a table of media prices for various advertising units offered by a media vendor. As an adjective, it refers to the list prices on the card as opposed to negotiated rates.
  • Share of voice is the portion of all the advertising in a category which is attributable to the specific brand
  • Agency commission is the payment to the agency for placing the media. Traditionally, "gross" media costs include 15% agency commission. The remainder is the "net" to the media vendor.
  • Duplication is the portion of the audience in a media episode / issue / insertion / etc. that is the same people as the audience of another episode. I.e. people who watch American Idol in one week are mostly the same people who watched the previous episode and so they are duplicated audience. "reach" is calculated by deducting duplication from the total ("gross") audience of a schedule.
  • People Meter is a mechanical survey instrument, mounted on the TV set, which records the program being watched. It has buttons for each person in the household to register their presence and thereby can project audience among different categories of people in addition to household audience.
  • Waste circulation is the portion of a print vehicle's distribution that is not reaching the designated target audience.
  • Position is the physical placement of the ad within a print or online vehicle. Descriptions such as "opposite table of contents" in a magazine or "home page leaderboard" on a web site are examples.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007 #7357
Hi guru, What is the bench mark with respect to reach and frequency in a television plan for a grand opening of the retail store. What would be the ideal GRP or reach and Frequency we need to acheive for such a plan,It would be great if you can ans similarly for other mediums as well i.e outdoor, radio and internet Thanks Again

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 10, 2007 ):
For a retail opening, more is better. 90+ reach at 3+ frequency is great if you can afford it.

Simply aiming for those numbers, they will be cheaper in outdoor, depending on how you define your coverage area. Radio can reach those levels, and internet cannot (only 146 million U.S. active home users in April '07, according to Neilsen//Netratings). reaching even 90% of those on line is unlikely and potentially ruinously expensive.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007 #7350
I am planning for television advertising in U.S.I dont know how to go about with it to start off, I just have an idea that there is broadcast Network and Cable. How effective is both n which is the best one for local audience? Which is more cost effective? Also if you let me know which all things i need to consider for cable and broadcast respectively to analyse which is better? Thanks Again

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 10, 2007 ):
"Network" is a national medium

"Cable" is a network form as well.

"Network" refers generally to national, not local, media.

"Network," meaning broadcast network programming, and cable both are locally available in a form of buying called "spot."

Either can be highly effective if used properly. Broadcast offers greater ratings and reach potential.

Once you establish your objectives and strategies for communication, you need to find the appropriate outlets in the markets you are targeting and discuss price, program environment, audience and demographics.

Friday, June 01, 2007 #7346
How do we calculate Outdoor reach? as per the formula that i have i.e reach = (target audience weight x daily GRP's x no of days in the campaign)/frequency) .. This contradicts my answers if I go only one billboard, while I get a respectable no if I go for several billboards...Again If you can try it out yourself how do you calculate reach only for one billboard?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 02, 2007 ):
The Guru can't find "number of billboards" in your formula, so the question is confusing.

Otherwise, dividing the cume GRPs by frequency will always be correct math to derive reach. But where did you get the frequency?

Take a look at our own TOPS system for out-of-home planning

Thursday, May 31, 2007 #7345
Hi Guru, if national reach can be combined with local reach and vice versa, can reach numbers be combine across markets? For example, can you weight average the reach % numbers for SF and Austin, just as you would GRPs, in order to back into a blended 2-market R/F? Thanks in advance!!!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 01, 2007 ):
Yes, this is a correct procedure.

Monday, May 28, 2007 #7339
What is the "Sainsbury" formula and is there a difference between unique circulation and paid circulation? Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 28, 2007 ):
The Sainsbury formula is a method for combining the reaches of schedules in different media. It varies from the simple random probability method which is based on the generally accepted assumption that there is no particular correlation between exposure to one medium and another. Sainsbury varies by adding a small adjustment to account for an assumed slightly more-than-just-random probability that those exposed to an advertiser's schedule in one medium will also be exposed to its schedule in the next medium. Typically, the adjustment is about a 5% deduction from the result of the random combination.

As you will see at the link shown, we may vary in our arithmetic expression of the probability equation (for the same result), so we can express the Sainsbury formula as (0.95 x random probability).

Unique circulation and paid circulation are unrelated terms.

  • Paid circulation refers to the number of copies which are actually bought for money at the newsstand or by paid subscription, rather than distributed free or at such a discounted rate that the circulation auditor no longer qualifies the copies as "paid."
  • "Unique" is more commonly an intrnet audience term. Perhaps you are thinking of "unduplicated" audience which only counts readers once, if they read two or more issues.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007 #7337
In our firm we are using PrintAdex softer and we can not get reach in print. Please could you tell me how can we calculate reach in print? thank u

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 23, 2007 ):
Our own eTelmar offers tools for print reach.

Monday, May 21, 2007 #7333
How can we combine reach between Radio & Television OR Radio & Newspaper OR RAdio & Outdoor ?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 22, 2007 ):
Click here to see more than 30 past Guru responses about combining reach

Thursday, April 26, 2007 #7317
Through what media vehicles are active seniors most effectivley reached? I am targeting active seniors for a brand new retirement home in a 100,000 pop city.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 28, 2007 ):
First you need to develop quantitative definitions of "Senior" and "Active."

Let's imagine you decide it's persons 65+ who regularly participate in any sports.

Then you decide what you mean by "effectively reached." Is it large audience numbers (coverage), high concentrations (composition) or motivation of those reached due to advertising environment?

Then, using syndicated media research such as MRI or Simmons or Scarborough or similar, you can cross-tab that demographic with media choices to determine best coverage or composition. "Effectively" may be based on observing the successes of competitors or your own testing.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007 #7309
Who is the founder of Random Media Combination theory? Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 04, 2007 ):
The Guru would not consider this a "theory" per se, nor that there is a "founder."

The "random" concept is basic statistics: when the probablity of occurrence of two unrelated phenomena is known, then the probablity of both occurring is calculated by the product of the two probabilites. In media terms, this means:

  • The reach of a given medium is the probability of the audience being exposed to the schedule
  • So 30% reach is 0.30 probability of exposure
  • The combined reach of a media schedule (say print) with a 30 reach and another media schedule for the same advertiser (say tv) with a 60 reach is actually calculated by figuring the probability that neither reached the target:

    0.7 probability that print didn't reach the target x 0.4 probablity that TV didn't reach the target = 0.28 probability that neither reached the target or 72% reach (1.0 - 0.28 = 0.72)

Multiplying the two reaches together gives the probability of both reaching the target, which is not reach, but duplication.

Of course, the reach of different media schedules reaching the same target are not truly unrelated phenomena, and various adjustments to pure random have been promulgated by many practitioners.

Monday, April 02, 2007 #7308
Dear Guru, I am the sales manager for a hard bound monthly magazine that is targeted to Gen Y users and expanding into several college markets through out the South East. Currently, my main challenge is to expand the advertiser base and bring on regional/national advertisers and my biggest obstacle is how to get my product in front of the proper contacts. So, do you have any advice for the following: 1. How do I know who to contact for each product/company? In some cases it is the company itself, many companies use ad agencies, some use a combination and still more use an assortment of agencies for different purposes such as reaching specific demographic audiences. So what is the best way to compile a target contact list and is there a resource available to expedite this? 2. What is the most efficient way of reaching as many media buying contacts as possible? Is there a centralized database, list serve, etc. that the industry uses or must they be approached one at a time? 3. Is there a resource available to help me figure out the client list/prospective advertisers that each agency represents? 4. Should we pitch our product line to an agency for their entire client base or should we do our research and select specific clients' from their base to pitch to? 5. I know in the online arena there are ad networks that purchase remnant ad space, is there such a thing for the print magazine industry? 6. Any other general advice you would offer to a newer but growing media company to help get its name out in front of the national advertiser base? Any guidance you can shed in these areas would be deeply appreciated. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 04, 2007 ):
  1. AdWeek Directories and Redbooks list advertsers and their agencies
  2. You might use direct mail or media planners' websites, like AMIC
  3. AdWeek Directories and Redbooks again
  4. Pitch only to potentially interested prospects
  5. The Guru is not aware of networks vending remnant print
  6. Advertise, attend trade shows.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007 #7296
what are the factors in effective media planning

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 08, 2007 ):
If you are referring to "effective reach" / "effective frequency" planning, it is a matter of combining media elements to deliver a given reach at a specified minimum frequency level. For extensive Guru comment on this click here to see more than 100 past Guru responses on this topic

Wednesday, February 21, 2007 #7288
Hi Guru, Excellent Guru. Could you give name(s) of "media planning models" particularly "online media planning models". It is appreciable if you can give details and or point to any resources like what you did for the previous query. Once again thanks for precise answer. Best Regards, Shaiju Jose

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 21, 2007 ):
The Guru assumes that you are again thinking of reach analysis models. Try our own eTelmar WebPlanner, which is described as:

"WebPlanner - is the first software tool that lets you completely evaluate website schedules in terms of targeting, impressions, reach & frequency, cost efficiency, and timing. WebPlanner allows you to build your own site-centric audience database. You can easily import any syndicated web data that you subscribe to such as Comscore Media Metrix2 to create internet schedule buys. You can build and prototype web sites using syndicated data or create your own! "

eTelmar offers models for all media and media mix.

Monday, February 19, 2007 #7286
Hi Guru, Thanks for answer. Answer is informative. There are some models for Media Planning such as Hyper Beta Distribtuion, Binomial Distribution, Beta Binomial Distribution, Conditional Beta Distribution, Hoffmans Beta Binomial Distribution. Could you explain each model with variables; at least Hyper Beta Distribution if time isn't permiting. Once again thanks. Best Regards, Shaiju Jose

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 19, 2007 ):
None of these are strictly "media planning models." They are statistical analyses of frequency distributions, some used to project reach of media schedules, some, particularly the last two two, in other business modelling applications.


Monday, January 29, 2007 #7278
I have a client that is pretty adamant about stripping ads in any given program during a week. The max is 3x on any given show. My question is if there is any concrete thinking as to why stripping is bad, other than the spots lose their effectiveness after running more than 3x? It feels sort of just rule of thumb to me, and Im curious if there is more to it. Thanks for your advice.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 31, 2007 ):
Stripping produces less reach than spreading the schedule over more programs.

Monday, January 15, 2007 #7273
Dear Guru, Is there a minimum benchmark for GRP-reach-and Freq when buying spot TV or Cable in one DMA? For example, I have been using a goal of 150 GRP with a 40% reach at least 3.0 times toward the target demo over a four week period when consulting clients on the miniumum amount they need to spend in a certain DMA. This means if the most recent avg CPP in that DMA is $35.00, I would recomend they spend a minimum of $5250 (150GRP X 35CPP per month. Is this calculation correct or should I be using a different formula when reccomending a budget per DMA?? Thanks!!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 16, 2007 ):
The calculation is correct if you have validated your 150 GRP / 40 reach for 4 weeks. 150 seems much too low to generate 40 reach at 3+ frequency in four weeks. A level closer to 250 is probably needed.

Monday, January 15, 2007 #7270
spot versus network breakeven analysis

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 16, 2007 ):
  • Rank the spot markets in order of importance to your brand.
  • Add market costs per point until you reach the national cpp.
  • What is the sum of the US Coverage percentages of the markets?

Thursday, January 11, 2007 #7267
Guru - I am hoping you can confirm something for me. When planning a media buy, we pull ratings for targeted audiences (for example, W25-54). We report GRPs, reach and Frequency. A client has asked that instead of reporting GRPs, we supply TRPs. Because we are pulling information for a specific demo, aren't the GRPs the same as the TRPs? As I understand it, if we were pulling total household information, then there may be a difference between GRPs (total household) and TRP (our targeted audience). But because we're pulling ratings for W25-54 to begin with, then GRP = TRP. Correct?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 14, 2007 ):
You are correct.

Thursday, January 04, 2007 #7259
Hi Guru, Thanks for the advice on the Google searches. I reran the numbers with some new search terms and was able to substantially improve the total number of clicks. With more visitors from pay-per-click, I'm now thinking of eliminating either TV or radio from my advertising plan and going with only one or the other, along with the pay-per-clicks. To help me with that decision I wanted to clarify something regarding the TV and radio rates. I calculate 1.5M gross impressions for my two-week radio schedule (5.0 frequency x 150k reach/wk x 2 weeks) for about $3k. The three-week TV schedule is 750k total gross impressions for about $7k. That means radio ($2 cpm) is only a little over 1/5 of the cost of TV ($9.33 cpm). Am I calculating this correctly? If so, is TV really worth that much more than radio? Thanks again for your help. Rich

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 05, 2007 ):
The Guru isn't sure you are calculating radio impressions correctly. if your AVERAGE frequency is 5 and your TOTAL reach is 150k, then you have 750k impressions. But if you have 150 reach PER WEEK, that doesn't necessarily connect with overall average frequency. Look at gross impresions only, don't work with reach for this calculation. The Guru would accept a TV cpm 2 to 3 times as high as radio's.

Thursday, January 04, 2007 #7256
I need to update guidelines for estimating net cume reach of a radio or TV audience based on the number of spots placed. The number of spots to achieve the staion's cume will be influenced by the size of the station's AQH and cume:turnover rate. Is there any kind of a spot reach simulator someone like Arbitron or Nielsen may have done that documents these relationships so we can develop regression-based guidelines?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 05, 2007 ):
Try ours: eTelmar

Wednesday, January 03, 2007 #7255
Happy New Year, Guru. I am trying to establish communication goals for television. We plan on using multiple dayparts- -prime, em, late night, cable- - how does this factor into the effective reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 05, 2007 ):
Different mixes lead to different effective reach results at the same budget. Set your goal and then the plan must meet it. You don't set goals by projecting a plan's results and making that the goal.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007 #7254
What is the standard time period to measure plan delivery. Is is better to use a 4 week average or total plan?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 05, 2007 ):
4 week is the standard for reach. Total plan might be best for impressions or GRP.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006 #7251
Hi - Happy Holidays. Pricing Question. Is there a benchmark (cpm) for restroom advertising? I've been told it should be on the low end of outdoor. Putting the averages at $2.0 cpm according to, however that just seemed a little low. My companys new display will be placed above every urinal and in every stall in some local ballparks, convention centers, and bars at first? Most of these venues get approximately 150k-400k visitors per year. The display is a new wall mounted drink holder with a 4" x 6" front space for a printed ad. The statistics state that the average person uses the restroom between 2.3-2.7 times over a 3 hour period at these games/events. If I was to price this at 200,000 annual attendance average 2.5 trips to the restroom at 500,000 impressions annually that would be $900 revenue from ad sales for the year at $1.8 cpm. To me that seems very low considering that there will be 175-225 displays in some of the venues. I complied my higher pricing figures from other signs they had in there venues bases on a direct correlation to impression figures and ad size and came up with $25 cpm. This would put all the restrooms at one of these facilities at ~1000 per month with an average 200k annual attendance. Thats more along the line of what I was thinking. Is my pricing way off. Where can I get data on this? Basically I have thousands of dollars invested in this display and 20-25 signed leases to put the displays up when they are done being manufactured next month, however if I have to sell the ad space using the lower CPMs figures I would go out of business quick. There would be no way to service 1400 displays at 22 locations for 12k per year total. Also some of the locations only have 12-15 displays but still get 225k annual attendance. Should pricing be the same or different than a larger venue possibly with less attendance based on the number of displays even though the full audience is still reached. Also is one 30 60 second trip to the restroom considered one impression? That could be the discrepancy in pricing? Any advice would be appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 28, 2006 ):
First off, get away from outdoor cpm pricing. Ordinary outdoor is low-priced because of its enormous numbers, which are based on counting cars passing locations and multiplying by average passenger load. These are shorter impressions for a limited message and assume that all traffic sees the signage. Your positioning is more of a forced exposure and probably longer. It is a higher quality exposure than roadside billboards.

The trick will be to persuade prospects that the location has spcial value because it's in a bathroom or a stadium. The Guru himself is a bit put off by the idea of a beverage dispenser on a urinal or in a bathroom stall.

Monday, December 18, 2006 #7248
Dear Guru We are planning to launch an automotive advertising Web portal in January serving Pittsburgh/southwestern PA. The primary income stream will come from local auto dealerships that will pay to advertise their used cars on the site. In order to justify their expense, I need to ensure that enough car shoppers visit the site to search for vehicles, resulting in sales leads for the dealers. I believe we will need to get about 1500 local visitors to the site each month in order to show enough value to the dealers. I have received much appreciated advice from the Guru in the past in which you recommended online advertising, which I plan to do using pay-per-click services through the search engines. I have also budgeted for TV and radio advertising, but you expressed concern with my planned ad frequency. Unfortunately, my budget is only about $12k/month. I currently have proposals from local broadcast TV and radio stations. Here are the stats on each medium: - Google, Yahoo and Ask pay-per-click ads, with an estimated 500 total clicks (cant seem to get more regardless of what Im willing to pay for each click) for about $1500. - Two-week radio schedule, 70 total spots (:15s), alternating weeks with a 5.0 frequency and 150k reach/wk (M25-54) for about $3k - Three-week TV schedule, alternating weeks with 95 total spots (:15s) and 750k gross impressions (M25-54) for about $7k My radio and TV commercials are :15s that can run independently or can be combined to create :30s. My questions are: 1) Do these TV and radio rates seem reasonable? 2) Is television advertising really worth so much more than radio advertising? 3) Assuming that the website/concept is useful and interesting, do you believe that this plan can return the 1500 visitor response that we need? 4) Would I be better off to focus my advertising dollars differently? Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 19, 2006 ):
  1. Rates seem reasonable
  2. Your TV seems to cost less than radio, on a cpm basis: TV is $7,000 for 750,000 impressions / cpm = $9.33. Radio is $3,000 for 300,000 impressions / cpm=$10
  3. The plan could generate the 1,500 visitors.

    Revisit your search engines' traffic estimator. When the the Guru tested "car" and "cars" on Google in Pittsburgh, he found about 250 clicks per day available. You may need different search terms.

  4. Consider where to find people interested in used cars. Isn't most used car advertising in newspaper classifieds currently? Consider print and online advertising in newspaper and newspaper websites' used car sections.

Thursday, December 14, 2006 #7245
Our client was asking whether or not the current creative we are running for our trade effort has reached a point of wearout. Any advice on how to measure/address this very subjective question.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 14, 2006 ):
When it stops selling, it's worn out. If you have sales tracking showing a down-turn, that's the best guide. Otherwise old and current ad awareness data is good.

Simple rules of thumb, like "2000 GRP" are too simple.

Friday, December 01, 2006 #7239
How do you increase frequency without necessarily increasing reach? Which media forms provide for the greatest frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 03, 2006 ):
In any given medium, frequency increases without reach increase by placing additional ad units in the same vehicle, such as multiple ads in a single print issue or single TV program episode.

The medium that is typically bought at the highest average frequncy level is out of home, where a standard "100 showing" four week schedule will have 95% reach, and 29.5 frequency (100 showing is equivalent to 100 GRP per day).

Friday, December 01, 2006 #7238
in a newspaper with 180 thousand circulation what is the minimum number of insertions that guarantees my ad is noticed by the whole 180 thousands

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 03, 2006 ):
No number of insertions assures noticing by all purchasers of the paper. An ad on the front page would probably be noticed by almost all with only two or three insertions.

An ad in a specialized section like sports or financial may never be noticed, and may well take dozens of insertions to be noticed by 90% of readers. Like reach, it is a measure that almost never really reaches 100%.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006 #7236
Hello Guru my question is about spot TV units called "bookend 15s". I'm not too familiar with them, and not sure I'm asking the question right. I am told that in the process of buying bookends each :15 has to be counted, doubling one's points. Is it wise to halve the points to gauge a more realistic delivery of R&F? It just doesn't feel right to assume the delivery is really doubled, even thought it technically is two exposures. Your opinion is much appreciated, and thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 03, 2006 ):
For reach calculation purposes, count the bookend :15s as one unit and use the double GRPs. Frequency then is correcltly more-or-less doubled.

Friday, November 03, 2006 #7221
Hi GR- I am working on an annual TV buy for a client and I have a few questions for you? What are good levels of GRPs, Frequency and reach % to go by as guidelines/benchmarks? The client's target is basically everyone (A 25-54) in this market. This year (2006) he had light spot TV schedules on every major network in the market as well as some infomercial spots-all year, with no hiatus weeks. I feel like he can't be on every station with the given budget and make a impact. Please help me if you can--I just need some guidelines to consider. I have bought much more radio than TV and the TV I have bought has been very limited (small % of spot and majority cable). So this is somewhat new to me and I am beginning to panic because I am not sure I can make my budget work if I use the levels I think I need to make an impact. My client is somewhat well branded in this market but last year he pulled budget dollars from his primary market and put it in outer markets so he lost his awareness in this market. In 07 he wants to build his primary market back up, what levels do you recommend I try to work towards to refresh his awareness in this market? He also wants to break into a few new markets-what levels of GRPs do we need to break into a new market. Thank you advance for all your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 05, 2006 ):
  • In radio, people listen to stations; in TV people watch programs, so don't use the radio share of voice = impact approach to allocation of TV stations.
  • Start by thinking about what reach level you want to achieve. reach does not neccessarily = awareness, but ad awareness will never exceed reach.
  • Put some frequency behind your reach to make sure the message is digested. How much depends on whether you have a point-in-time need for impact or you have a constant-purchase product where recency outweighs other factors.
  • Infomercials are aimed at immediate response so leave those out of your reach thinking.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006 #7209
When you consider reach and frequency levels, what are considered the upper and lower levels for reach and frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 29, 2006 ):
In recency theory, 30 reach weekly, on a continuing basis is considered a minimum by some pratitioners. 95 is the highest many will consider reporting.

Obvioulsy 1 is the irreducible minimum frequency. Some practitioners like a minimum of three (these are not the "recency" theorists). Upper limits are not really to worry about unless one is considering copy wear-out.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006 #7198
We have a health care client that has specfically asked for Quantative data to back up our planned reach and frequency for a buy. We have used Ostrow's model and have determined a 4.4 frequency. Is that a weekly frequency? or the standard 4 week frequency? Over how long do we sustain that level? It's a fairly new brand in a highly competitive market where we are clearly #2. The client has asked for specific examples of R/F levels used by other advertisers (especially in our category). He is concerned about message wearout and consumers being innundated with his healthcare message along with all other healthcare messaging (competition, pharmaceuticals...).

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 23, 2006 ):
You are working with a four week frequency.

Sustaining period depends on issue like budget, and seasonality as well as competitve pressure.

Many healthcare categories are very heavily advertised and others less so, so the media climate is a valid consideration. Consideration of the overall pharmaceutical messaging is less so, in the Guru's opinion. Yeast infection remedies' messaging most likely pass relatively undigested by potential prostate problem patients.

Monday, September 18, 2006 #7197
Hi! Can you give me a ball-park figure of TV advertising cost per 000 audience reached in US National as well as Regional TV? How does thi compare with European prices? Thanks from Italy!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 23, 2006 ):
The best source of this kind of comparison is one of the major, multinational agencies or media services, such as or McCann

Thursday, September 07, 2006 #7192
Hi Media Guru. I have a question that I'm looking for a general answer (I know that there are many different situations that would allow for many different answers- but please try!) If I am building a media plan using TV as part of a media mix (including radio and print) can you give me a very general answer as to how many points per week over how many weeks would be a MINIMUM. Target is Men 35-64. The client is only interested in news dayparts. I'm having a hard time wrapping my hands around this. I'm saying for a maintenance type schedule, we could run a minimum of 75 points per week because the dayparts are so concentrated and news viwership is loyal. the client is insistent that they've been told by their old agency they need 120 GRPS per week. I'm thinking they would be correct if the dayparts were more open. We're getting additional reach through radio and print. Any thoughts? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 10, 2006 ):
You're saying 75 for "maintenance," but what's the rationale for the 120?

These issues always come down to what the communications goals are. Is it a reach level or a frequencey level or an effective frequency level? You can't argue against someone else's unsupported recommendation any more than you can support your own without goals and rationales. Your 75 seems reasonable to the Guru in a multimedia, "maintenance plan."

Friday, August 04, 2006 #7174
Dear Guru - In a past posting I mentioned that, in addition to online advertising, I am planning a TV and radio campaign to drive traffic to my web site. I was planning for about 35 to 40 0:30 spots per month each for radio and TV, however you suggested that this is a little light, at least for radio. I have since looked at focusing my message, and I believe I can create an effective 0:15 message for both media, nearly doubling my placements for about the same budget. My question is, do you think that 70 to 80 0:15 placements each for radio and TV is more in line for a monthly schedule? Also, should I be running the same number of ads on radio and TV, or does one require more time than the other? Thanks as always. -Rich

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 07, 2006 ):
reach and frequency-wise, this is better, but usineg :15's alone in radio is a questionable approach.

Radio, engaging only one sense needs more messaging than TV. A longer message and more of them is the rule-of-thumb.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006 #7158
What are basic key points on tv copy length influence on campaign effectiveness? Naturally, creation is crucial, as well, but - assuming that creative affairs are "stable" and cost aspects are also foreseen (shorter copy is nominal cheaper)- are any findings how copy length influences on pure media campaign effectiveness indicators? Could you give some short points on it, please? Thank you in advance, Cesear

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 07, 2006 ):
When you say "shorter copy is nominally cheaper," the Guru imagines you refer to production not media time costs.

Typically, longer copy has more impact, better recall and better awareness generation than shorter copy. . . on a unit-by-unit basis.

But typically the cost of shorter copy is also less than longer copy by a margin that exceeds the advantages above, and therefore, reach, frequency, awareness and other campaign metrics work out better for shorter copy.

Obviously, you should work out these numbers with specific reference to your own copy and media buys.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006 #7156
Hi guru, please i am working on an in-house presentation on creativity in media planning. the document is supposed to speak to qualitative issues outside of the regular reach, frequency, GRP that we are familiar with. could you help with resources? Also help with definition of impact as a media term. thx.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 02, 2006 ):
Some other metrics and issues include
  • Engagement
  • Recency and
  • ROI
Look up each of these at the Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use these as your search terms.

"Impact" is a term cients and account execs love to use without definition. Loosely, it means some sort of effectiveness. Measures that may relate include memoribility, recall, awareness, engagement, and of course, various sales measures.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006 #7142
How do I do TV post buy analysis when actual spends data is missing (we just took over the account from other agency)? What I have only pre campaign GRPs, 1+ reach and Frequency and Post GRPs and R&F

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 25, 2006 ):
Obviously, the client won't be expecting you to analyze data you don't have, assuming you have requested the budget and been told it can't be provided. Still you can provide a comparison of all the pre / post data you do have and even compare achieved CPP to SQAD or other standard used by your agency.

Friday, May 19, 2006 #7139
1. Is Below The Line Activity part of Media Jobs ? 2. What kind of tools to maximize our media planning ? Thank you very much

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 19, 2006 ):
"Below the line" is generally promotional activity, which may or may not be part of media.

Events and street teams, for example are not ordinarily media activites.

Competitive spending tracking, reach and frequency analysis, syndicated data tools are among primary keys to media planning.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006 #7138
I have to construct a radio schedule for a media mix campaign, the radio campaign is a 4-week flight, we aim to reach 60%-65% of our target audience,my target audience only buys the product once in 3 to 4 weeks, hence monthly purchase cycle. So should I just plan the ad for just 1 week (beginning of the week) to coincide with their purchase cycle and the fact that the purchasers receive their salary at the beginning of the month or do I go for continuous advertising during the remaining 3 weeks. Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 17, 2006 ):
If you actually know that purchase are all made over a specific few days of the month, which are the same for all purchasers, then runnig your campaign for a week around those few days makes good sense. But this is an odd situation. The Guru infers that the purchase is relatively expensive, and bought by relatively lower income people who are all on the same pay day cycle. Is it an enlisted military target?

Friday, May 12, 2006 #7135
When considering a TV advertising schedule, it seems logical to me that I should be looking at time slots with the lowest CPP for my target demographic. If this is true, why are advertisers willing to pay a much higher CPM for some spots than others? For example, the CPM during the local evening news is $2.98 but a local spot during the network evening news is $7.24. They both hit about 150K people, so would I choose the network news? Am I missing something? I am new to TV advertising, so any advice is appreciated. Thanks, Rich

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 14, 2006 ):
There are more considerations than cost per point. If only CPP mattered, thn radio would be more desireable than TV and outdoor would be the "best" medium.

Higher rated spots have higher CPPs. Planners place value on ratings size, for example, for various good or bad reasons, including:

  • reach
  • ratings stability
  • higher ratings theoretically equals popularity equals engagement

More realistically, we have to consider that mere impressions weight is not always the key goal, but that's all you get buying lowest CPPs. A mix of programs, dayparts or stations yields more reach which might be the true goal, in pursuit of awareness, for example. Finding program environments which are more supportive of the message also leads to selections for reasons other than simple CPP. A good understanding of plan goals is the first step in making the best buy.

Friday, April 28, 2006 #7132
How do I calculate reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 28, 2006 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables.

Monday, April 24, 2006 #7130
I am beginning to plan for one of my TV clients and want to allocate a portion of my GRP's to cable. Is there a "rule of thumb" as to what % should be cable vs. regular television? I have heard 10-15%. How do I need to approach this? thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 24, 2006 ):
An early rule of thumb was 10-15% (circa 1985). These days roughly half of all viewing is to cable. Make your decision based on the standards of composition, coverage, reach, etc that you would use for other programming decisions.

Thursday, April 06, 2006 #7126
We handle 3 co-op's for a major fast food chain. We want to intergrate internet into our annual plan. Is there a source that will tell which web sites best reach our demo? Also, if those website be purchased on a DMA or more local basis? I have had some experience with internet, but it was in the tourism industry and I know at one time there was a source, but it was more on a national basis. Thanks for your help...again!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 06, 2006 ):
@plan can give you site demographic details, but not at the DMA level. Many of the the biggest traffic sites do sell by DMA, but you need to inquire.

Thursday, March 30, 2006 #7125
Hi MG ,This may be a stupid question ,but could you please tell me how to decide on which will be my lead medium for a given product category, Given the media reach levels and clutter. In many cases it seems like TV and Print are giving almost equal reach where as advertisers prefer a particular medium only .I belive there comes the qualitative factors such as the perception and execution ,however what all parameters I can take to decide on the lead medium.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 01, 2006 ):
It's certainly correct to consider qualitative factors.

Your objectives and strategies should be built to guide you to the proper priority.

Is reach the number one priority or is it something else, where adverrtising environment takes precedence over absolute reach or reach efficiency?

If reach alone were the overriding goal everytime, outdoor would be everyone's lead medium.

Friday, March 24, 2006 #7118
I'm planning media for a reputed airline brand in a market that has the competition dominated by about 4 key players - 3 general (premium) airline brands & 1 LCC's (Low Cost Carriers). Whilst my brands media spends has been a low constant over the years, they are very keen to sponsor day parts (morning drive-time, evening drive-time & mid-day day parts) on radio as almost all competition dominate these day-parts in form of sponsorships. Some competitors carry on-air calling promos regularly to attract listeners to the station/ promo. Sponsoring the entire day-parts such as 0600 to 1000hrs in the morning is an expensive proposition hence a two-week on air call-in promo was looked at in a station not having a major reach in listenership figures where two air tickets with accommodation was the prize offered. Client was not too happy with the outcome but the actual response for the promo was higher than the usual response for the station. Client is very keen to how best to use radio in this context. Personally I feel based on the inherent attributes of Radio such as passiveness of the media, perish ability of the media that radio is best used for tactical activities such as promotions & competitions perhaps but not for strategic usage which is what most of the competition here is using radio for (except for the on-air or calling-in promo they do once-in-a-way). Please advice in a context like this what are the kind-of tools or ways we could best use radio creatively?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 26, 2006 ):
The Guru believes the question is not how to use radio, but what medium to use to achieve goals. But your goal is not clear. Is it simply to sell air tickets? Many direct response media options might do this effectively. Is it to build awareness? Other media and mixes might be best, with a reach emphasis.

Thursday, March 16, 2006 #7112
Hi Guru. How about "the minimum GRP reached for effective tv campaign"? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 18, 2006 ):
There is no specific minimum. Many planners "feel comfortable" at 100 GRP, but mix and reach / frequency goals are more important. Other details such as purchase cycle and budget have theri impact as well.

Thursday, February 23, 2006 #7101
Media reach and frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, February 23, 2006 ):
Click here to see approximately 200 past Guru responses on this topic.

Friday, February 10, 2006 #7095
I am evaluating an advertising buy of $22,800 for one 30-second spot to be aired 48 times (48 Sundays at 12:30 p.m.) on Fox Sports Net Southwest (reaches Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, New Orleans, Oklahoma City and Austin. Of 25,895 households, the HH ratings are 0.54, 0.41, 0.26, 0.27, 0.15 and 0.28 respectively. This is not my area of expertise, so I'm at a loss as to whether this is a good deal, bad deal or so-so. Can you give me some guidance please?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 12, 2006 ):
Using your figures, the Guru believes you have a total audience in the range of 4 - 5,000 Households for your schedule: 25,895 HH times the average ratings you list. Therefore you would have a cpm in the range of $5,000.

This stinks.

Or did you mean you have a total audience of 25,895, derived from those ratings? Then your cpm would be is $880.

Still bad. But, perhaps you are buying for something besides numbers.

Saturday, January 28, 2006 #7085
I have a national client that wants to generate national news media attention to help promote awarness of their charity to raise money for Dialysis and sell tickets on thier cruise. This is their 4th annual cruise (one to Alaska and one to the Caribbean). Last year I ran a 15min segment on Speed Channel and I saturated cable in several target DMA's. Speed did okay but cable bombed. I had the proper amount of GRIPS reach and freq reaching the right demo with no results. How can I expose this client to the news media nationally without having to spend a ton of money. Would you suggest USA Today or Washington Post or should I create a Press Release along with a media kit and send it to all the major news networks and talk shows?? Your thoughts. Its a big client for a great cause.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 28, 2006 ):
The Guru doesn't deal with PR, but as media, doing a direct mail piece (press release) to an audience in the business of reading press releases seems sensible.

Awareness isn't your problem, persuasion is.

You refer to a demo, but your target, the news media, is much more specific than any demo; the Guru would be interested in knowing how you calculated GRP against news media.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006 #7079
What's your feeling regarding using statewide radio networks versus buying larger metro stations that provide good reach throughout the areas? I am currently evaluating the strength of the stations and cost efficiencies for both but need to know general thoughts. Thank you--I always find helpful information here!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 26, 2006 ):
The Guru's immediate reaction to "statewide networks" is a set of rural stations with low reach and coverage, unlikely to include major, metro area stations. If your geographic goals are based on metros, it's one thing; if any listener anywhere in the state is a good as another, in boxcar load fashion (perhaps a lottery or governmental message?), then the statewide network might be best.

Monday, January 23, 2006 #7078
A co-worker mention last week that 50% of the advertising budget of the automobile industry in US goes to tv when recent data appoints that most people use newspaper and internet to make their desicion.He understands that the television budget must be lowered and used more on internet and print. Please comment.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, January 23, 2006 ):
Considering the auto industry as a whole is somewhat misleading.

One must consider the message, the target and the specific marketer: In the big-ticket, "considered-purchase" sphere, there are distinct phases for the buyer. We can think of them as awareness, consideration and "shopping."

During the awareness phase, consumers are learning about the available brands / products / features that could meet their needs or even learning that they have needs, based upon information presented in ads. These are messages from auto makers, dramatizing and romanticizing cars, with some detail about capabilities and features. Image and awareness are typical goals. Budgets are big and TV carries the burden. This awareness / image building phase can occur over years, leading consumers to establish general attitudes towards auto brands.

When consumers have an awareness of the brands, they begin to form a consideration set, focusing on the choices which will meet their needs. More detail regarding product capability and features is sought. Magazine and online ads can serve these messages, better targeted to the likely buyer of specific models, based on age, income, family size, interests, etc. These are also big budget, manufacturer, ads.

The consumer next reaches the shopping stage, where pricing and deals become key issues. At this point, local dealer ads and newspapers are more relevant. Yet, this decision is being made among brand choices stemming from the big budget advertsing that we discussed first.

Of course, none of these stages are pure, and messages overlap. Keep in mind that the decision / internet nexus you have identified goes well beyond the advertising arena, and involves consumers' use of manufacturers' web sites or independent product comparison sites like Consumer's Reports, neither of which involve advertsing budgets.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005 #7073
Can you tell me how to calculate reach/frequency without a software program? We have the TRPs, daypart mix, and I'm sure we can find out population estimates for the demo. Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 28, 2005 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta Binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005 #7061
Guru, when a local media property or station is promoting itself to the business community or media buyers, is there a rule of thumb that says promoting % reach or the number of viewers/readers/listeners is more effective? Thanks for any words of wisdom.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 04, 2005 ):
The only clear rule the Guru knows for these cases is: more is better.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005 #7060
grp formula

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 04, 2005 ):
It depaends on what data you have to begin with. It could be:
  • Impressions population, or
  • Average rating X number of ads, or
  • Sum of ratings of all ads, or
  • reach X frequency

Tuesday, November 29, 2005 #7059
reach versus frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 04, 2005 ):
Number of people who see an ad versus average number of times these people see an ad

Friday, November 11, 2005 #7043
Dear Guru ,how can i calculate 5+ reach with in a given GRP and universe for a TV PLAN.May be it depends on the program and channel mix but I want to know the basic calculation ,plz

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 13, 2005 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, October 19, 2005 #7030
What would tv reach and frequency be over a 3 week period in Chicago with 4stations on buy and total A35+grps of 165.0?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 19, 2005 ):
Visit eTelmar

Friday, October 07, 2005 #7026
Hi, Guru. I am trying to show a client that buying cable is more efficient than network TV in a large Metro market, ie. Chicago. I've determined the client's service area is 19% of the DMA. 1) Is it fair to compare reach and frequency of 2 schedules? 2) When comparing number of impressions in client's service area, can I use 19% of total impressions of broadcast TV and 100% impressions on cable (assuming all cable zones fall in service area)? 3) Can I consider 81% of the impressions on broadcast TV waste? Any other suggestions or advice on the best way to show to compare the two is appreciated. Thanks in advance Guru.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 08, 2005 ):
Apparently your premise is that the client's entire service area is 19% of one DMA. The Guru doesn't understand how such a client could possibly consider network TV at all. But,
  1. Yes, you can compare two schedules
  2. If you are talking about broadcast spot TV rather than network, yes, roughly 19% of broadcast, vs 100% of cable "counts." A more precise measure of this should be available through Nielsen.
  3. Yes, similarly, 81% of the DMA broacast coverage is "waste."

Wednesday, September 14, 2005 #7012
We have been ask for a point of view on industry magazines. The client's market is heavy B to B with a small amount of consumer marketing for appearance and support of the B to B portion. Can you help me on finding the pro's and con's of business publications?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 17, 2005 ):
We must first distinguish between "business publications" and "industry publications." Forbes is a business publication, Oil and Gas Journal is an industry publication in the energy field.

When a marketer is interested primarily in a specific industry, e.g. selling petroleum-specific piping to oil producers, then industry publications provide a low-waste means of communicating with prospects. Because not everyone in an industry reads specific trade journals, broader but less targeted business publications can add reach albeit less efficiently.

The authoritative editorial environment of industry publications is considered more supportive of industry-specific messages

Tuesday, September 13, 2005 #7010
I have a client whose target audience consists only of Insurance Brokers. I am planning a print campaign and need to justify it to the owner who wants to know only the ROI. I have one weekly business publication and two trade pubs in three markets. I also only have the circulation numbers and nothing else. What is the best way to calculate reach and frequency with this information? Can I also figure the percentage of awareness from these numbers?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 17, 2005 ):
In trade publications, circulation tends to be heavy among qualified readers, pass-along is often minimal. A conservative audience estimate is audience = circulation. Again, because of this distibution pattern, issue-to-issue cume is minimal. As far as duplication between titles, random probability is a safe estimate, but may be a bit high.

reach becomes a maximum measure of awareness; you need to estimate the required frequency which generates awareness as well. Ad Awareness can't exceed reach.

Friday, August 12, 2005 #6993
Back when I started in media (1984) I learned a way to hand-calculate combined reach/frequency. Say adding together a tv and radio schedule. I unlearned it over the years, especially when I had software that did it for me. Now I don't have the software anymore and have been asked to do a combined R/F. Do you have that formula? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 12, 2005 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about combining reaches

Thursday, July 21, 2005 #6981
Is there a way to calculate Rtg, TRP's & reach for media that has no surveys: Biilboards, Cinema??

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 24, 2005 ):
One can estimate audience based on experience and judgement and build from there. But both billboards and cinema do have surveys.

Start with TAB for billboards and for Cinema

Friday, July 15, 2005 #6977
I am trying to determine ratings, estimate TRP's and reach for a specific target group in Billboards (OOH media). Here is the example for one location: Location A: 50,000 daily vehicles Average persons per vehicle: 1.5 Total persons for location A: 50,000 x 1.5=75,000 Target: Men 25-34 (represents 7% of the total population-Census) Estimated Men 25-34 for location A: 75,000 x 7%=5,250 What i did, is that I assumed that 7% of the total persons passing through location A are men 25-34 Rtg M25-34: 5250/250123 (total M25-34 population)= 2.1 I am not sure if I have to apply a percentage to this rating or audience to eliminate the duplication factor. I have this formula, to eliminate the duplication, but I am not if it's right. The formula assumes that: 10% of the vehicles pass 1 time = 10 10% of the vehicles pass 2 times = 20 10% of the vehicloes pass 3 times = 30 10% of the vehicles pass 4 times = 40 10+10+10+10=40 10+20+30+40=100 40/100=40% which is my duplication factor. I apply this 40% to the Men25-34 rating for location A: 2.1x40%=0.8 is my net reach. Is this a logical assumption? If I want to determine the reach for various locations, can I sum the net reach for each location and have a total reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 17, 2005 ):
Both math and logic seem off.

If 10%, or 5,000 vehicles pass once, that's 5,000 vehicle-passings
If 10%, or 5,000 more vehicles pass twice that's 10,000 more vehicle-passings
If 10%, or 5,000 more vehicles pass 3x, that's 15,000 more vehicle-passings.
If 10%, or 5,000 more vehicles pass 4x, that's 20,000 vehicle-passings.
So that adds up to 20,000 vehicles and 50,000 passings, alright. But as soon as you decided you had 4 different sets of 10% of vehicles, you knew reach was 40% of the gross passings without the rest of the arithmetic. And, the Guru has a hard time imaginging a location that would be passed three or four times per day (in the same direction presumably) by half of the vehicles that ever pass.

Friday, July 15, 2005 #6976
Dear Guru, i am a media planner with mediareach OMD Nigeria. I would like to know what levels of GRP is desirable particularly for developing markets like Nigeria, we have clients that are asking. Secondly, should GRP's be calcuated nationally or reginally or by key market/locations in the country?Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 17, 2005 ):
Appropriate weight levels and their audience impact are different in every country and culture with its own media; the Guru has no expertise in Nigeria. National or reegional or local depends upon the marketing scenario.

Click here for past Guru responses about levels.

Thursday, July 14, 2005 #6973
What is the difference between TVR and reach and How do benchmark effective levels of reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 17, 2005 ):
TVR is rating. The audience size of a single program or commercial announcement, as a percentage of the populaiton universe under consideration,

TVR is equivalent to the reach of this single instance.

reach is the net accumulation of unduplicated audience, the number of different member of the population exposed to the entire set of programs or advertsing schedule.

Click here for past Guru responses about levels.

Monday, July 11, 2005 #6968
Hi, There's are especialized publication such as magazine that reach the army. Bottom line you can place ads in those publications?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 11, 2005 ):
For advertising to the Army, the classic of the kind is Stars and Stripes

Friday, July 01, 2005 #6964
What is the relationship between reach & frequency in the US to reach & frequency in Canada? For example, if a flight in the US has 325 GRPs and gets 38% 1+ reach and 17% 3+, how could I adjust those so they correlate to a similar flight in Canada?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 03, 2005 ):
There is no simple or specific relationship. Each country and each culture with its own media within a country (e.g. the US Hispanic market) have different reach curves. The different daypart cumes, rating sizes, numbers of vehicles within a medium, etc. contribute to reach derived from GRPs. It's not magic, it's generalizations from measured, consumer media behavior.

Monday, June 20, 2005 #6958
Dear Media Guru, I am creating a media plan to reach a very narrow audience - moms looking to buy pianos for their kids. What resources do you recommend for research on the best media options to use? The client has a limited budget but needs to advertise in major markets. Thanks! Tracy, Capstone Media

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 20, 2005 ):
Syndicated media/marketing research studies report on purchases like pianos. Cross-tabbing mothers in households that bought pianos versus usage of various media is your starting point.

Try MRI, Simmons and Scarborough.

Friday, June 17, 2005 #6955
hi media guru, can pls tell me the relationship between reach and frequency and average frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 17, 2005 ):
Each person reached has a specific number of exposures to the campaign (simple frequency). The phrase "reach and frequency" refers to average frequency among all thosae reached. GRPs reach = average frequency.

Or, each person reached multiplied by the frequency of that person's exposures yields a number of impressions. The sum of all impressions of all persons reached = gross impressions. Gross impressions number of persons reached = average frequency.

Friday, June 10, 2005 #6948
Please let me know what is the formula to calculate OTS of an advertisement in a print newspaper?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 11, 2005 ):
The Guru sees OTS used in two ways:
  • Averaage frequency of exposure of those reached, or
  • gross number of exposures of the schedule (persons exposed counted each time they are exposed)
In the latter case, audience of the newspaper times the number of ads gives OTS. In the former case, this calculation is divided by the net exposures (counting each person exposed only once) to yield average frequency of exposure.

Thursday, June 09, 2005 #6947
We have put together a campaign consiting of print & television in a few spot markets. Is it possible to determine the reach & frequency for those persons who will only see the TV and only see the print? How is it possible to know who has seen only print & only TV?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 11, 2005 ):
  1. Calculate TV reach
  2. Calculate print reach
  3. Calculate combined reach (presumably, you have gotten this far)
Now it's simply addition and subtraction:

Suppose you have found the following:

TV reach = 50
Print reach = 40
Combined reach = 70.

Therefore, 20 reach points of the print are added to TV (saw only print) and 20 duplicated (also saw) TV.

Further, 30 points of the TV are added to print (saw TV only), and that same 20 points as above are duplicated.

So it breaks down to

TV only = 30 reach points
Print only= 20 reach points
saw both = 20 reach points
Total reach = 70

Monday, May 30, 2005 #6942
What the standard sustaining, maintenance and saturation GRP levels for a media buy? For what time period are these levels: one week, four weeks etc. And finally, what is your source for this information.... is it an "industry standard" or found in a textbook? Assume the client is an automobile dealer.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 30, 2005 ):
There is no generally accepted standard. For maintenance, some like 100 GRP, probably because it's a large, round number.

It makes more sense to think in reach and Frequency terms, i.e how much of the target gets how many messages; then the logic comes through. It makes some sort of sense to say that in maintenance, you want to reach at lease half of your target in an average four weeks (four weeks is the standard period in which to measure R&F). Ephron has said that cency theory calls for 30 reach every week for products continuously purchased. COmpetitvew pressure migh raise these figures or call for a specified minimum level of frequency. Attaining these levels can call for very different GRP levels depending on medium and daypart selection. All this too depends on what the budget will afford.

So, clearly, GRP levels are a great oversimplification.

Thursday, May 26, 2005 #6938
I have a new client that specializes in remote control cars. Currently they are advertising in every hobbyist magazine out there. I want to tell them that this is not a smart way of spending their dollars. Are there any statistics or info that I can get to help convince the client to reallocate their dollars more effectively?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 30, 2005 ):
There are lots of statistics in the world. But what do yu want them to prove?
  • That the buyer of remote control cars doesn't read these magazines?
  • That they read something else or find information elsewhere, like online?
  • That after "X" number of insertions you have reached everyone who reads these books, and are wasting your money?
If you don't have a hypothesis, what will statistics do?

Wednesday, May 25, 2005 #6937
Thank you for your answer about internet grps(#6936). Another question would be, can we calculate reach for internet? and how about reach for a hispanic target

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 25, 2005 ):
Calculating reach is ususally done in one of two ways:
Using a respondent level audience measurement such as Nielsen//Netratings or comScore-MediaMetrix, one tracks the actual use by the relevant demographic within the sample against the schedule run.

More practically, one obtains a series of such measurements and builds a model, so that one can then genralize from schedules run in the future, using variable such as # of impressions, number of sites in the mix, share of page loads on the sites, etc.

The issues are what portion of the sites' reach does your schedule get and what is the duplication between sites' audiences.

For example, Yahoo might reach 40% of all those online in a month, but your buy will probably appear in less than 0.1% of all Yahoo page loads. And how many of the persons exposed to your Yahoo buy will also be exposed to your buy on

Since Hispanic audience is measure by both services, the Hispanic issues are no more difficult in this scenario.

As a ballpark sort of estimate, most major sites ought to be able to tell you the number of unique visitors exposed to your schedule. This number, divided by the relevant universe will give you an estimate of reach on that site. You can combine sites' reaches by random probability unless you can get site duplication estimates from the sites.

Monday, May 23, 2005 #6931
Hi, I want to know you point of view about what william arens says about reach & frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 23, 2005 ):
The Guru has not read Arens' textbook. Available blurbs indicate it is about creative more than media issues.

Monday, May 23, 2005 #6930
what is reach & frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 23, 2005 ):
Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use " reach and frequency | reach & frequency" as your search term.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005 #6927
What is your opinion about reach and frequency, and do you think its worth using this tool?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 20, 2005 ):
reach tells the number of different people exposed to your campaign, frequency tell the average number of time they are exposed.

In the Guru's opinion, these are crucial campaign metrics. Effective reach considers specifc levels of reach at minuma of frequency.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005 #6926
reach & frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 20, 2005 ):
Click here to see Click here to see over 200 past Guru responses refererring to reach and Frequency

Thursday, May 12, 2005 #6921
Dear Guru thanks you for your response on my previous question and I have another question for you. Please tell me how I should calculate reach in the diary methodology when in the diarys there is not present question about reach of each program (meaning how many people were watching the selected program in the same time with the interviewers). Until this moment I am making media plans based on the GRPs level on weekly basis, but I have requests from my clients to make media proposals based on reach and frequency. Is it possible to make reach and frequency media plans when the research methodology is diary, and how to do this? Second question is what is the difference between the reach calculations in the diary and reach calculation in the people meters methodology? Thank you in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 15, 2005 ):
"reach" of a program means the average (time period) audience of the program. Diary or meter, it means the same thing, although the method differs. Diaries do not "ask about reach;" reach is a phenomenon of the total sample, not the individual. Diaires require the respondent to record viewing as the measurement period goes on, just as meters record this same behavior electronically, and rating or reach is a calculation conducted by the reasearch vendor from the compilation of diaries' or meters' results. reach models may be built based on cumes genrated in either methodology.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005 #6908
I was asked to present Q1 & Q2 local TV buys to my client's new advertising manager. Both buys include daytime and early news only. The Q1 buy aired Mon-Sun/8-week flight: Q2 airs Wed-Sun/8 week flight. Question #1: The new ad manager insists that the reach and frequency of the 7 days/week buy should differ from r/f of the 5 days/week buy. I say its the same. Who's right? Question #2: The ad manager informed me she likes marketron reports (because they are easy to read) and asked if I could obtain them for the current buy for her review. My reply was, "Sure I can. No problem". There is, however, one small problem. I don't know what a marketron report is. Please help!!!!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 01, 2005 ):
Assuming the same daypart dispersion and GRPs, the same schedule dispersed over more days should have a higher reach; there is greater reach potential in more dispersion. The typical reach model at your disposal may not have the ability to account for this level of detail in the input variables. In any case, the 5 day / 7 day difference is most notable in a one-week schedule. Over eight weeks, little or no difference would remain.

Marketron is a vendor of computer analysis systems for broadcast, nowadays more used by stations and reps than by agencies. One of the stations you buy from may be able to produce the report you need.

Sytems more oriented to agency media buyers and planners include those from our own eTelmar.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005 #6906
Re: Spot Radio Do you have any studies or opininons on minimum spots/daypart/station/week? I have a buyer who insists that its ok to buy only 1-2 spots/daypart/station week as long as they reach 12 spots/station/week. This theory seems to be based on the fact that radio listeners listen to multiple dayparts on a particular station and thus frequeny is gained throughout the day. I believe that daypart minimums should be a priority and that its better to buy 4-5 spots/week on a station for one daypart than avoid a station entirely just because 12x/week cannot be achieved. I believe that people tend to be loyal to stations by daypart (i.e. listen to the same drive-time show every day but not to that station at any other times) so we need to build frequency throughout the week on that daypart and that to buy only 1-2 spots/week/daypart (even if you achieve 12x/week) is a waste of money.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 29, 2005 ):
Some radio professionals, especially on the sales side, insist on the 12x/week minimum, some flex as low as 10. The Guru has not previously encountered a "4-5 spots in one daypart" as a total schedule theory.

Media theory is best built around the consumer effects. The consumer needs to get a certain frequency of exposure through a medium, and the plan needs to reach a certain minimum portion of the target. The consumer is notr likely to be aware nor affected by the portion of that frequncy which comes from any daypart nor from any one station.

As with any medium, radio should be used until the building of desired communications impact (generally reach) begins to taper off. At the micro level, this may mean 12 or 18 spots on the best station (however judged) before adding another station. Four or five spots seems to be a no-impact minimum, unless your target is specifically only listeners to that daypart and that station. The same thinking says consider station specifics. In some cases, paticularly among Hispanic or Black consumer markets, top stations can generate target ratings in the 5.0-10.0 range, rather than the 2.0 range typical of top general market staions and targets, meaniing these multicultural stations can extend reach beyond ordinary radio levels.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005 #6903
Dear Media Guru, Please help me figure out the combined reach and frequency of a multi-station TV buy. To find the average frequency, would I add the frequencies of the stations and then divide by the number of stations? Do I then multiply it by the total number of GRPs to calculate the reach? Since I do not have access to a software program, I need to calculate this manually. I'm in desparate need of your help since these figures are due soon. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 24, 2005 ):
Frequencies are never additive. A specific model is the only accurate way to combine station reaches. The reach may be divided into the sum of GRP to calculate the average frequency.

A very rough estimation of combined reach might be calculated by a string of random probabilty parings (i.e. pair two stations and then combine the next with those and combine the next with the cume of the three and so on). Because this is "random" and does not account for the greater likelihood of any TV viewers to view other tv, the result will be overstated, by at least 10%.

Monday, April 11, 2005 #6891
We need to quickly learn how to plan & buy TV in Barcelona Spain. Can you provide a good source?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 17, 2005 ):
If you have NO idea at present, how can you expect to learn quickly? You need the help of someone "on the ground" in Barcelona. What is your starting point? Do you know Spain in general but not Barcelona? Do you know Europe but not Spain? Each country has its quirks and cities differ in terms of competitive climate at least. If you know nothing beyond US practices, the only quick solution is an advisor: a few tips might lead to a quick and dirty solution but not professional level work. There will be different standards, cume patterns, reach models.

Friday, April 08, 2005 #6888
Dear Guru For media vehicles that aren't measured (reach and freq aren't available), can you please tell me what measurement on can you use to show delivery to a client?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 10, 2005 ):
A basic impressions count should be available for or possible to estimate for any medium.

Thursday, April 07, 2005 #6886
Hi Guru, We get asked often by clients to plan a radio campaign with sufficient budget to achieve a minimum threshold required to sustain market share. Is there any scientific method of analysing this "minimum threshold" or do we use our own insight? Thanks very much!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 10, 2005 ):
You seem to imply that radio is the only advertising at play here.

If you assume that the only influence on share maintenance is advertising weight (which is dangerous, of course), then considerations might be:

  • What is the current share? Obviously it will take more weight to maintain an 80% share than a 10% share.
  • What is the current awareness level?
  • What is the historical share of voice?
  • What are competitors likely to do; is it a stable category or are there new entries?

In the absence of better factors, the Guru would keep reach at the current aweareness level and share of voice at the current share of market level.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005 #6882
Hi Guru, I was asked to do a daypart mix analysis and using that analysis, put together some TV options. Where do I do once I select a daypart mix?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 05, 2005 ):
You need to set the goals against which you will evaluate daypart mixes. Is it highest reach? Most supportive program environment, most selective for the target. The you may compare performance against these goals within budget.

Friday, April 01, 2005 #6875
Hi, Guru. I need to calculate the media mix. I have a set of media, some of them are measured by one research company, some of them by another, some of them are not measuring at all, but i can estimate their reach for my target audicence. All media are using on the same market at the same time. There is no problem to estimate the combined reach for the whole media mix. The question is - is it correct to combine the GRPs, gained by each media to the 'Total GRP of the campaign", which can help to estimate the frequency of the full campaign (for all media in the mix together)? Thanks, Luba.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 03, 2005 ):
From one perspective, a GRP is a GRP, simply and litereally a "gross" representation of all audience impressions. This view is most applicable for the purpose you are considering, leading to a frequencty calculation against the reach calculation.

On the other hand, it is not uncommon to apply weights to GRPs representing their medium's relative attentiveness or message retention, etc. But this approach is most applicable at the stage where media are being comared for inclusion in the plan or allocating a proportion of budget

Wednesday, March 23, 2005 #6867
What is the current U.S. household penetration of DVRs?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 27, 2005 ):
According to a recent posting on IT Facts

"Nielsen, the TV ratings analyst, estimates that 4-5% of US households that own a television own a DVR, while in some places the DVR penetration reached 10%. In April 2005 Nielsen plans to start reporting on TV watching habits among DVR owners."

Monday, March 21, 2005 #6859
Hello I am student of industrial engineering of polytechnic of Tehran. My thesis is writing a media planning software for media planning in Iran. In our country isnt any media planner and we having not any software or book or manual about this subject at hand. In our country are not copywriting rules. Internet isnt used suitable. We have not e-commerce. I want to know what software exist in the world of media planning. What is the most famous software and its parameters, variables and algorithms. I dont have enough information about basic subjects of media planning: targeting, frequency, reach, continuity, CPM, GRP If you may, please guide me. If you have any demo of media planning software, and if you may, please send to me. I know the value of your help. Regards; Ayoob Sadeghiani.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 22, 2005 ):
eTelmar is media planning software from the Guru's organization, Telmar, world leader in media software. The programs are proprietary, and follow established practices in media planning. These are not likley to fit your country's practices.

Thursday, March 17, 2005 #6858
reach curve

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 20, 2005 ):
Click here for past Guru discussion of reach curve.

A graph of a reach curve is shown below.

Thursday, March 17, 2005 #6857
Dear MG: When does is make better sense to buy Radio using TSA numbers as opposed to Metro numbers?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 20, 2005 ):
If the marketing target is everyone within range of the signal equally and there is no reason to focus on persons in the metro, or the centerpoint of the audience is not relevant, then use TSA. If you need reach calculations and GRP's then TSA is not workable

Monday, March 14, 2005 #6850
What might be the drawbacks of sponsoring a tv program vs buying normal tv spots

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 20, 2005 ):
  • Less reach than a dispersed schedule
  • Less efficiency
  • Shorter duration of advertising suport

Thursday, March 03, 2005 #6835
A small change to yesterdays question. If we know the competitors 1 year GRP'S and average reach, can we calculate the effective frequency. This is a little urgent

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 06, 2005 ):
There are far too many variables of media mix to accomplish this from the data you offer.

The Guru presumes you mean "reach at a given effective frequency level."

The Guru's approach would be to use R&F software that can deal with effective frequency and enter one year plan variants that include wahtever you know of the plan's components, until you find one that matches your 1 year GRP's and reach, and then see what reach at the effective frequency you have.

Thursday, March 03, 2005 #6833
Hi Guru, If we know the competitors 1 year GRP'S and average reach, can we find out the average frequency. This is a little urgent.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 03, 2005 ):
If you mean the 1 year average frequency, just divide GRP by reach.

Thursday, March 03, 2005 #6832
For a launch, growth and maintenance campaign in a high competition category, after arriving at the reach and the frequency and arriving at the amount to be spent for a month can you tell we how many burst of advertising we will need to do for the year. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 03, 2005 ):
Only the budget will tell you that

Monday, February 28, 2005 #6815
Guru, My client has asked me to provide him with an in-depth daypart analysis...not just ratings and attentiveness levels. Specifically, he is questioning way we use/recommend one daypart over another. I haven't been able to find studies on this anywhere (including the Television Audit Bureau). Help!!!!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 01, 2005 ):
The Guru supposes that you have a system of sorts in you mind, since you apparently are recommending specific dayparts.

You probably know various other characteristics of the dayparts, such as

  • Age/gender composition
  • Product user / usage composition, and
  • reach potential
All these, as well as ratings attentiveness, efficiency need to be evaluated against the specific goals of the plan. For example if reach is the overriding goal of the plan, then you would use the first daypart you select up to the point where its reach curve flattens and then select your next daypart based not just on the above characteristics, but also based on which one best adds reach to the first.

You probably have a model of sorts in your head, it's now a matter of writing it out as a set of steps and considerations

Friday, February 25, 2005 #6814
Guru, we run :15 television spots as bookends in a commercial pod. My client wishes to count each :15 spot (2 per pod) as seperate commercials, i.e. counting GRPs as if each spot were a seperate :30. We do not recommend this, we recommend that two 15 spots are counted as one :30 spot. Do you have any research that proves the agency theory? Thank you!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 25, 2005 ):
It depends on what you are doing, what conclusions you will draw from the GRPs. If you are projecting reach, then you must count these the same as single :30 units. If you are looking at cpm analysis and adjust :15 for value relative to :30, then again, it's more appropirate to evalue as if one :30. Actually, the Guru would be curious to learn the client's reasoning.

Friday, February 25, 2005 #6813
AMR = average minute rating; is this the same as reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 25, 2005 ):
The average minute rating is equivalent to reach for that one time period. But reach is usually used in describing a schedule or series of epeisodes of a program, and means all the differnt (unduplicated) people who are exposed to the schedule.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005 #6806
I have been asked to evaluate spending money on a transit program versus adding GRPs and/or weeks to our existing radio campaign with the same amount of budget. The problem is that comparing GRPs for one versus the other, transit clearly has higher levels and extremely high frequency if you believe the numbers they provide. Any additional thoughts?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 23, 2005 ):
Transit GRP are real, but they are based on traffic with an opportunity to see the poster. The real distinction of out of home is the limited message as compared to radio.

If your message can be simple, and reach/frequency are your top communications goals, then transit can be a powerful addition and probably more effective than adding more to an already adequate schedule in your main medium.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005 #6798
is is ever possible to reach 100% of your target audience?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 20, 2005 ):
n theory, yes it is. No single medium reaches 100%, so at minimum, a multimedia plan is needed. The potential of media types is only truly measured on medium at a time so there is no usable respondent level data to demonstrate this. MAny planners will, as a matter of principal, not report a rach above "95+" or even "98+."

Tuesday, February 15, 2005 #6794
Local Sales Marketing. With the shrinking shares of broadcast TV and the effects of Tivo and DVRs, how are marketing/advertising agencies managing getting the most for their clients media wise? How do you foresee DVRs effecting TV shares/viewing?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 23, 2005 ):
The first solution to shrinking broadcast shares is cable, of course. And other media mix adjustments. DVRs will eventually be a bigger problem. Nielsen now tells us that DVR users are much greater consumers of other media, so to the extent these are a key target, meida mix is all the more important. Analyzing reach against this segmentation will become more important. When Nielsen begins reporting DVR-based ratings, better judgements will be possible.

Thursday, February 10, 2005 #6790
I'm making a presentation to a franchise group in which I'm supposed to explaing planning/buying of media (largely electronic). Can you direct me to any web site or book that might be good for finding a basic overview or possibly a presentation? Thanks, Paul

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 12, 2005 ):
Franchisees are rarely, if ever, experienced in media planning or buying. Generally, they will think schedules including their own favorite programs or those watched by people they know are the right programs and that the average price per unit of a package applies equally to all units(" I get prime time for $50 a spot!"). They don't think about plans being more than schedules purchased

Please excuse the Guru's cynical voice of experience. They think spots aired when the store is closed are worthless.

The point is, minimize discussion of reach, frequency and research methodology. Talk about effectiveness and consumer response.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005 #6783
How do you calculate an average 4-week frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 12, 2005 ):
Divide four week GRPs by four week reach.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005 #6772
Hi Guru, We recentrly presented a print plan to our client which we believed would have been highly effective in reaching Prof./Manag Men 25-54. The client then proceeded to compare our impressions against the impressions delivered by their online plan which were significantly higher (20.4MM vs. 3.4MM). Is this really an apples to apples comparison? Is there another way to compare the efficiences of the 2 plans?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 06, 2005 ):
"Efficiency" is cost per thousand impressions. So, if that's your only standard, that's that. But experience should tell the client something about the value of a print impression versus an online impression. Generally, online impressions are less expensive than print or tv impressions. If the two plans had the same cost and print impressions were six times as numerous as online, instead of vice versa, among the defined target you specify, then something is wrong.

If the plan is direct response, each thousand print impression might deliver 5-10 times the response of online, if it's static rather than "rich" media.

Yes, there are other standards than efficiency. What else is important here?

In short, comparing print and online solely on cpm is foolish.

Thursday, January 13, 2005 #6742
Dear Guru, I am a media director for a very very small agency. My boss (the owner) has sold one of our national clients on the idea of network radio. All fine and good except that their budget allows the purchase of only 3 spots per week!!!!!!!!!!! I have been unsuccessful thus far in trying to convince him that this will not be effective. Do you have an opinion on minimum levels to be effective on Network radio?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 13, 2005 ):
Do they understand reach and frequency at all? Does the network to be used have a rating of 1.0? So the message will reach perhaps 1 or two percent of the target each week an average of 1-2 times per person? Perhaps 5% in four weeks? Can you express the limited POSSIBLE effects? It makes no sense to do this if the money could buy a real schedule in a few markets.

This sounds like a client with a delusion that it is "national." With this plan, it will be nowhere.

As for effective levels, this will depend on target, and what are the marketing goals, but generally the same standards of schedule as in spot radio will work. One possible exception; if you are sponsoring a strongly authoritative commentator, like Tom Joyner or Paul Harvey, their influence can affect a brand, at least among their audiences, with relatively few weekly spots.

Monday, January 03, 2005 #6732
Guru, If I want to look at a total reach/frequency for several TV schedules that have run over the course of a year (same demo, various creative messages), does it make sense to use the highest reach and to just add up the frequency of all the schedules? Thanks for all your help!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, January 03, 2005 ):
If you are trying to calculate a cumulative reach and frequency for the year, and any one schedule delivers 95 or more, then you can probably safely call the cume "99+." Then add all the GRPs and divide by 99 to determine the year's cumulative, average frequency. You would have a total reach, total GRP and average frequency among the total reached. "Total frequency" must apply to a specified group and this seems to be the most logical group.

If the best schedule delivers much less than 95, then you should process all the schedules together to determine annual cume reach as your first step, then proceed as above.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004 #6726
I am looking for an up to date CPM rate comparison across traditional media that includes Blimp (Airship) aerial advertising. (TV, Cable,Radio, Newspapers, Magazines, Billboards, Blimps) The recall and retention rate with viewers of a blimp, unlike traditional types of media, is extreemely high - 70 to 80%

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 26, 2004 ):
The Guru has not seen this in one place. Perhaps Outdoor Advertising Association of America can compare blimps to other out-of-home placements. Even something as "niche" as blimps has several variables: small to large tethered blimps or piloted blimps or radio controlled blimps. Blimps reaching enormous audiences on New York City public beaches versus much more targeted blimps at spoecific events.

Saturday, December 11, 2004 #6716
Hello, Guru! Please give me an advise how to plan an appropriate ad campaign to promote a newspaper. Please help me with some ideas?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 11, 2004 ):
Are you promoting readership or ad sales? These will have different targets, consumers vs advertsers. Decide whom, within whichever group, is the target. If readers, is there an age / gender / interests / ethnicity skew? If advertisers, do you need to talk to the advertiser itself or its agency; to media planners or account mangers?

Then it's primarily a matter of deciding which other media reach the specifc target best and will accept your advertising, as you may be considered a competitior.

Sunday, November 28, 2004 #6705
MG, I believe I've seen recent news about efforts to align methods for measuring online and offline media. My first question: Are you familiar with these efforts? Second: Have you seen any data ranking the "effectiveness" of specific channels online and offline. (Clearly "effectiveness" is a tricky label, but I'm referring to it only in the sense of the effort to align measurement methods referred to above.) Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 02, 2004 ):
1. Yes, the Guru is aware of such alignment efforts. They have been going on almost since the dawn of internet advertising in 1995. Organizations like CASIE, Association of National Advertisers, American Association of Advertising Agencies and The Advertising Research Foundation have led these efforts.

More recently, The Internet Advertising Bureau is a leader. The newly linked I/PRO and BPA internet audit effort, with the participation of Agencies for Internet Audits, is also a force for this goal.

The essential unit of media measurement is agreed among traditional and online media to be the "impression;" one exposure of one ad to one person. Although measurment methods differ among media types, once there is agreement to impression numbers, moving to reach, frequency and GRP figures is relatively easy.

2. As you acknowledge, "effectivenss" is subject to interpretation and is best examined within an advertising category. One medium may be best for selling real estate another for cars and a different one for diamond jewelry. Within a medium, it is more reasonable to compare the effectiveness of various vehicles, while controlling for copy variations. And of course defintions of effectiveness are variable; sales, awareness, share change, etc.

One great advantage of online advertising is its accountability and immediately measurable results.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004 #6701
My question is two-fold. We are trying to project the number of responses from a print campaign in trade publications. Realize that there are many variables to consider (offer, response mechanism, size of ad) but are there any rules of thumb on response rate. Would the response rate be applied to gross impressions, net impressions, of net effective impressions (e.g., % reach at 3+ level). Thank you, in advance, for your thoughtful consideration.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 24, 2004 ):
The Guru does not know of any specific rules of thumb here. The various publications may have some parameters. Generally, the Guru is used to seeing rates applied to gross or net impressions.

Thursday, November 18, 2004 #6691
I have a client that has a one county market area. The billboards selected for the campaign are within the market but the DEC counts that relate to reach and frequency relate to a wider marketing area. The other elements of the campaign are within the one county market. How do I establish measurable goals for the campaign? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 20, 2004 ):
DEC is calculated for individual boards at a stage of the prosess. Be sure to focus on boards in the right area.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004 #6684
Hi Guru could u please tell me how can one decide on the media mix i.e the primary medium and sub mediuum for different product categories and with what what proportion one needs to spend in those media.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 17, 2004 ):
There are no absolute rules. Target, budget, marketing strategy and other factors contribute.

One good process rule is to use each medium until it hits a point of diminshing returns, with respect to reach, awareness, sales or whatever is your goal.

Click here to see past Guru responses about media mix.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004 #6675
Hi, I would like to explain me in the meaning of media typology: why I should use for ex. 3+ or 2+ reach level, or even 1+. How I can know what the right planning measure is?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 10, 2004 ):
The classic approach is represented by the Ostrow Model

Monday, November 08, 2004 #6673
My client is launching a new food product in Sunday newspapers, but he can only afford 3 insertions. The ad unit will be a 1/6th 4-color strip ad. My client and I are debating what will be the most effective and impactful way to the schedule the insertions. I think they should run every 2-3 weeks. He thinks they should run once a month so they're aligned with the FSIs. What do you think? Thank you for your advice. - A Big Fan

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 10, 2004 ):
The Guru's gut reaction is that a 3-time, one-sixth page schedule is so insignificant that the refinements of timing are of little consequence. Unless they will expicitely refer readers to the FSI's, the Gurus instinct is to schedule separately, for what little reach impact might be gained.

Thursday, November 04, 2004 #6670
Dear Guru, I have several clients that like to say they want to place a media campaign with the main objective being to "raise awareness." Even if they give me an actual set percentage to measure from, say increase awareness by 20%, how do I know what GRP's to plan to? Besides the old rule of thumb of a min. of 3 frequency, are there any set "standards" in the industry of a min. reach and GRP goal to have an effective awareness campaign (I know that sounds very broad...that's why I need help!)

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 04, 2004 ):
We are discussing ad awareness, of course:

Consider the current level first. For a newly advertised product, growing awareness from 10% to 30% might be relatively easy as comarey to grwoing awareness of a product with 70% awareness to 90%.

The Guru would posit that the first step in growing awareness is by assuring reach is at least at the desired level of awareness; i.e. you won't attain 80% awareness without reaching 80% of the target.. . You will likely need to reach them 3 or more times. However, if advertising is contiuous, you may consider frequency over longer period of time.

Thursday, November 04, 2004 #6669
I'm writing a newsletter and am wondering how to best explain how reach and frequency are calulated in a newspaper buy. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 06, 2004 ):
Click here to see more than 100 past Guru responses about reach calculation.

Thursday, November 04, 2004 #6668
How do you feel PVR's are going to affect the television advertising industry?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 04, 2004 ):
PVR's make skipping ads easier. VCR zipping never became a great problem, but by the time that PVR penetration reaches 50% of VCR levels, commerical viewing measurement of recorded material will be an industry-wide demand.

Thursday, October 28, 2004 #6653
Abby, given Nielsen's inability to measure niche networks, and planners' desire to provide ROI via post analysis -- how can a highly targeted Spanish- language niche network get on the planning radar?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 29, 2004 ):
Skip, first of all Nielsen doesn't put any vehicle on the radar, though it meay help prevent some from being ignored. Making direct contact with the media professionals, as you have been doing, will make you known. The key is to figure out how you are a unique solution to brand communication needs. Custom research can describe your audience, if it cannot acceptably quantify it.

If you are the only in-language non-cartoon kids programming, or if you reach a more upscale Spanish-dominant family, or if your content offers better message integration, such selling points can be important. Without ratings, you can't go into the "me-too" boxcar numbers game rgardless of target.

Sunday, October 17, 2004 #6643
Dear Guru, In the past we used to assess media plans based on CPM. More than ten years ago, planners started to use CPP as a base of comparison and not CPM anymore. I would highly appreciate if you could elaborate on this evolution from CPM to CPP. Thank you & regards,

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 17, 2004 ):
This is not an evolution, this is apparently how your company has changed. Both of these measures have been in use for 40 of more years.

CPM is a more absolute measure, while CPP is in relation to a target population.

Network buyers may look more to CPM, since they don't deal with geographies of varying sizes, while planners look more to CPP, which relates directly to GRP, a planning metric, from which reach and frequency are most readily calculated.

The growth of internet as a medium brings more emphasis to cpm, as CPP is not typically used in online media.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004 #6634
Hi MG , could you pleasetell me what is the significane of awareness index in setting media objectives.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 17, 2004 ):
If a the marketing objective is to grow awareness, then media objectives focused on awareness building will have more importance. These tend to call for strategies which use more reach-oriented, intrusive media.

Friday, September 24, 2004 #6616
what is the responce curve?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 26, 2004 ):
This refers to the consumer behavior pattern of action or learning (response) as a function of the amount of message weight. When graphed with a response, such as "awareness" on the Y axis, and weight such as GRP on the X axis, the line is curved, rising rapidly at first and then flattening. A reach curve (below) operates similarly.

Thursday, September 16, 2004 #6606
What is reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 16, 2004 ):
reach means the unique, unduplicated members of a target group exposed one or more times to a message or campaign. More often expressed as a percentage of the target universe, it may also be expressed in simple numbers.

Click here to see nearly 800 past Guru responses about reach

Thursday, September 16, 2004 #6604
Hi MG . My question is regarding FREQUENCY DISTRIBUTION , could you please tell me how can one design a frequency distribution tabale if only the reach data is available over a period of time. For example I have the reach of a particular TV program which is tecasted 4 times a month.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 16, 2004 ):
An approximation is possible. For example if you are considering one month and you have had an announcement in each program, and the reach is 40% and the program rating is 15%, your table will have rows for reached 0 times, 1 time, 2 times, 3 times, and a maximum of 4 times. It will begin to look like this:


(# of exposures)

% reach
Average Frequency
1 or more
2 or more
3 or more

Beyond this, lacking specific measure of the program, old actual schedules may be compared to approximate the missing cell entries.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004 #6583
Dear Guru, Can you once and for all please give the mathmatics involved to calculate a local r&f into a national r&f, and vice versa. If I am mixing a national schedule into a local market, will the GRP's remain the same? If not, how is it cacluated? Thanks in advance

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 31, 2004 ):
Local to national is simple arithmetic:

Local reach X % US coverage translates Rreach and GRP to national.

E.g. if you have a reach / Frequency / GRP of
70 / 4.0 / 280 in a market which is 10% of the US, then national reach is
7 / 4.0 / 28. Note that frequency is NOT recalculated, it is simply the same. In most cases, this doesn't make a difference, but when it does, keep the original frequency. This is because it is a count rather than a percentage. So the same people that were reached, even when expressed as a percentage of a different universe, simply experience the number of exposures originally calculated.

National to local however, invloves estimation or measurement as much as arithmetic: If you have a schedule delivering a national R/F/GRP of
70 / 4.0 / 280, then you may estimate that its local delivery is
70 / 4.0 / 280, because, by defintion, that is the average reach across markets. However, various vehicles have differences in market-by-market audience, and if you have a specific market in mind, you can get the actual value of the schedule's delivery in the designated market. Then reach and frequency can be calculated for the market using whatever R&F model you have at hand, or perhaps using GRP delivery indices established in past experience. A delivery index would apply only to the GRPs; reach grows along a "curve" and would not vary in a linear fashion proportionately to the variations in individual vehicle audiences.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004 #6575
I've been planning and buying media for a few years now at a smaller ad agency. I've been to a few media conferences, but all seem to be very basic (i.e. - this is rating point, this is reach, etc.) Are there any conferences out there that really focus on advaced media buying? I"m interested in negotiation tactics, how far you can push, what you can expect for added value, etc. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 29, 2004 ):
The Guru never recommends these conferences.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004 #6562
Can you please clarify the differences between objectives, strategies and tactics within marketing and/or media planning?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 06, 2004 ):
It's forest versus trees:

Objectives are the broad statements of what is to be accomplished, such as "increase awareness," "grow share," etc.

Strategies are the general ways in which the objectives will be persued, such as "build reach at high levels of frequency via network television."

Tactics are very specific approaches to eexcuting strategies, such as "select most efficient programming to extend budgets and build highest reach," or "select programming which enhances product image to build awareness in the most favorable light."

Monday, August 02, 2004 #6560
Dear Guru: In one of your answers re efficiency of :15 spots vs :30 you said: "In a campaign, these latter measures may mean overall recall and impact favor :15s, if the message can be communicated". Can you give me any references to such studies. The references I have been referred to so far support the opposite view: "Television viewers' attitudes and recall of 15 second and versus 30 secund commercials. James S.Gould" and "Max Sutherland & Alice Sylvester "Advertising and the mind of the consumer". Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 06, 2004 ):
The issue is what do you measure; under almost any circumstances, a :30 has better recall than a :15. But the consumer experince is not about seeing a :15 or a :30. If a campaign has 50 to 100% more exposures because it is executed in ;15, the reach and frequency will definitely be increased and if the ;15 communicates the message, overall effect may be better. It's about camaign versus creative. i.e the media director view rather than the creative director view.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004 #6556
what are reach an frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 31, 2004 ):
Click here to see over 160 Guru responses regarding reach and Frequncy

Monday, July 26, 2004 #6550
Can you give me some rationale on why spreads are better than full pages. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 26, 2004 ):
From a media viewpoint, there is little justifcation in light of the price; creative issues are key. The noting is better. Creatives often act as if twice as big is twice as good, but from an empirical perspective, no measure increases in proportion to the price difference vs a single page. Noting in better, the impact is better, the reach / frequency is no different. Intangibles of "impact" are the primary argument. Sometimes brand positioning issues support some large units.

Sunday, July 18, 2004 #6542
what are the theories on effective reach and effective frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 19, 2004 ):
Click here to see over 120 past Guru responses about effective reach and effective frequency.

Friday, July 16, 2004 #6539
Our automotive agency is using propritory research using GIS to match past buyers to PRIZM Clusters then using MRI reports to target our best prospects in media buys. All reporting is based on indexes. Narturally cable is intexing much higher than broadcast television but I am having difficulty explaining that an Index is only an indication of interest - not people. I am concerned about using 100% cable and missing the reach possible with broacast in markets where cable penetration is 50-75%. Am I looking at this wrong or how could I better explain my position?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 16, 2004 ):
It isn't clear what you're indexing, nor why it's "natural" that cable does better. It isn't clear why GIS maps tell you something that the PRIZM / MRI data didn't, and the Guru is a big fan of GIS mapping, himself.

You may have too many links in the system. What not just plot customer data base on a map and look at cable the same way?

If the index is cable subscribers rather than viewers, that's one way to be misled.

In any case, you're right to have reach concerns. The Guru would use the indices you are getting to adjust the cpms of cable and broadcast to copmapre them, but not apply the indices further. Then you can consider gross efficiency or efficiency of reach appropriately given the data you have.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 #6535
Do you know of any models that allow you to project what your brands advertising awareness could be based on different variables such as spending, current awareness, etc? I have a client that wants to know if he doubles spending, can he expect to double awareness? Are there other ways to answer this question?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 16, 2004 ):
Like reach, awareness grows along a curved -- not straight -- line, since it can only approach 100%; and in ever-smaller increments. Further, awareness can decline over a period of communications inactivity.

So the simple answer is no, doubling spending does not double awareness -- unless the earlier spending is on low reach / awareness vehicles and the next dollars are invested better.

Monday, June 28, 2004 #6522
M.G., what do you consider to be a "sustaining" level of GRPs in a mid-size local TV market for a major auto dealership? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 02, 2004 ):
If you ignore any competitve activity or seasonality or promotional calendar an auto dealership might have, a shedule sufficent to reach 30% of target weekly would be "sustaining."

Thursday, June 17, 2004 #6514
Hi Guru. I have been given the task of planning and buying some spot TV in 5 DMAs to promote a live event in one of those DMAs. There will also be follow-up spots right after the event. On rare occasions in the past when we've bought TV spots, it was on a cost per spot basis. I've been told to do it on a CPP basis this time. I understand what a CPP is and how SQAD works, but how do I determine how many points I need to buy in order to effectively reach my target audience? I don't have my budget for this yet, and anticipate them asking me how much $ I would need to do this right. Can you help me?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 20, 2004 ):
The essence of your needs is in determining what portion of your target audience you need to reach, how often, and over how long a period of time. reaching the majority of the target (at least 50%) at least three times is a starting point.

Then, you need reach calculation software to see what level of GRP gets you there. The Guru's favorite software, naturally, is our own eTelmar.

Thursday, May 20, 2004 #6500
Using the OTS formula (GRP/Net reach), if we set an OTS target with a predetermined reach, can we arrive at the required GRP for differrent OTS targets. Why effective frequency is more popular over OTS when setting frequency objective. In my experience we need to achieve more GRP's to achieve a predetermined reach for an effective frequency over OTS target, any reason for that methamatical relationship.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 20, 2004 ):
As a matter of simple arithmetic, reach and GRP are inextricably linked by a multiplying factor which can just as readily be effective frequency. This does not mean that you can set any reach goal at random and assume a given GRP number will relate back with a specifc OTS. Different mixes of dayparts and media elements have different capabilities in reach / effective frequency generation.

Why more GRP for an effective reach level? Again, simple arithmetic explains it. "reach" in an ordinary "reach and frequency" calculation, means reach 1 or more times. In other words, a frequency of 1 is treated as "effective." Typically, when we talk about "effective reach" we are working on an assumption that 3 or more frequency is needed for effective communications so that only those reached at least 3 times count. Naturally, more GRP are needed to get a given reach 3 tiems than only once.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004 #6499
We are currently purchasing local broadcast television combined with local cable television in a large number of markets. We have been grappling with the question of how to report the ratings achieved by each medium. Our initial thought was to add the broadcast DMA ratings to the DMA equivalent ratings of the cable activity in order to keep the figures "apples to apples." How do other agencies report cable ratings back to their client? (Local cable reports their audience delivery a number of ways including: DMA ratings, cable universe ratings, cable zone ratings within cable universe, etc.). However, there are some cases where we may be purchasing select cable zones in a market, rather than the entire market's cable interconnect. In these cases, the cable television activity probably won't be efficient when compared to the broadcast TV DMA CPPs. On the other hand, purchasing the entire broadcast television DMA probably isn't an efficient way to reach just the geography surrounding a few stores. How do other agencies rationalize purchasing select cable zones (surrounding store locations) to their analytical clients? In these cases, the DMA CPP comparison probably isn't realistic. What this boils down to is a basic question--is local cable forced to compete on exactly the same playing field as broadcast television? Are both forms of media judged against the same CPP goals or is cable allowed to compete based on a different CPP (based on the cable universe or percentage of cable penetration)? Does this answer change if purchasing an entire market's interconnect versus a single zone or multiple zones? How is cable television posted when buying an interconnect? When buying a zone or zones? What other factors should be considered in this analysis (i.e. are we overlooking anything)? How is the budget (or TRP goals) allocated to between cable and broadcast television?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 20, 2004 ):
The Guru reports ratings on the basis that makes sense for the clients' marketing needs. If the client is a retailer, ratings localized to cable zones in store trading zones make sense and will reflect the efficiency of this localization, while also put the waste of DMA ratings into perspective. On the other hand a national consumer goods marketer with interest in entire DMA's should use DMA ratings as a comparison basis.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004 #6498
hi guru , I have avery fundamental doubt, i.e about reach , does reach mean the number of hose hold have access to a particular channel whether they swich on to it or not. If it is so how relevent is reach in selecting a channel.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 20, 2004 ):
reach is about the number of people actually exposed to ads or programming. Coverage is the appropriate term for the number of homes or people who are able to watch.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 #6492
Is there a way to apply a conversion factor to reach? We are being asked to run R&Fs to the African American audience and we subscribe to the General Market software.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 12, 2004 ):
It is not possible to convert reach without, at a minimum, knowing the audience compostion of each program in the calculation as well as the duplication among the specified target. In limited circumstances, for example if you knew the audiences to all programs was 100% African American, but had to use a general R&F system, you might get close by just using population % as a conversion, but this still ignores potentially unique duplication patterns typical of culturallt defined markets.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004 #6465
For a new entrant with a small budget in a high spending category, 1)What should be prioritised in terms of reach, Frequency or , Continuity at the expense of reach & frequency. 2)Is there a rule of thumb to set higher weight than competitors atleast in the launch month for better vicibility & cut thru at the expense of number of maintenance bursts.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 24, 2004 ):
The Guru always recommends 'outshouting' competition. For a new entrant with awareness issues this is all the more important.

Continuity can be a uniquely powerful technique if competion is flighted; a careful study of competitors' flighting patterns might show when to be the big noise in a loud field.

Another technique is geographic selection. If your budget does not allow making enough noise nationally or in a big region, it is wisest to begin in a smaller geographic area where your campaign can have significant share of voice.

Going directly to your question, the Guru would priorize continuity over reach and frequency, if you can achieve at least a minimum R&F; perhaps 30% reach.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004 #6464
What is the differrence between avg. OTS & Effective frequency. Which is the most popolar measurement tool used for setting frequency objective & can you illustrate the differrence through a sum.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 20, 2004 ):
OTS is generally a raw exposures count (impressions). One could take total OTS and divide by reach to get average OTS, which would equate to average frequency; that is, the average number of times any person exposed to the message (reach) sees the message.

Effective freqeuncy is the number of exposures JUDGED to be required before a person reached is affected by the message, e.g. remembers or understands it. Effective reach is the numer of people reached at this effective level. 3+ is probably the most commonly used effective frequency standard, but there are various models for setting the level. See the Guru's comments on the Ostrow model.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004 #6462
When assisting in building brand within a market, is there a minimum reach percent to aim for? ie, no less than 80%?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 17, 2004 ):
"Building a brand" is not a quantified goal. More reach is better than less. More continuity is better than more reach.

Thursday, April 08, 2004 #6458
Dear Guru, Radio data collected via diary gives a signficantly higher reach figure than data collected by syndicated databases. The methodologies are of course different. In the diary system, respondents are given a diary and asked to record their listening habits. For syndicated studies, the question is "Did you listen to radio yesterday/past month etc.?" Still, why is the diary data reporting higher reach? The research agency assures us that the panel selection is based on ownership of radio or listernership of radio , and is not limited to those who already listen to radio. Is it because diary panelists are more aware of radio, and are actively seeking it out? Almost like the phenomenon where if I am thinking of buying a VW Passat, all the cars on the road I notice are VW Passats? Response awaited.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 11, 2004 ):
Apparently you are in an unknown country outside the U.S., hence the Guru can not effectively comment on the specifics of your local research systems. The Guru imagines the radio system is meant to measure listening to specific stations and times, while the "syndicated" study, as you call it is a more general measure of radio usage, estimating general listening rather than schedule reach. As a rule such systems are not meant to estimate reach and frequency.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004 #6453
How often do u have to run a 30 second tv spot in the same daypart before your generate awareness?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 11, 2004 ):
How much awareness? Every announcemnt generates some awareness. Some planners would view 3+ reach over a short period of time as an awareness indicator.

Sunday, April 04, 2004 #6448
Dear Guru, What is meant by flatter quintiles in terms media plan and how is it important?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 04, 2004 ):
Consider the adjacent sample quintiles. The 20% of the target with the lightest frequency of exposure averages only a frequency of 1.0, and the next lightest 1.1. Those most heavily exposed have a freqeuncy of 7.5.

The plan would be more effective, especially among the 40% least exposed, if these frequencies were more like the average exposure of 3.1. or if the quintiles were "flatter." Various manipulations of schedule and mix can deliver flatter quintile results

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Friday, April 02, 2004 #6447
Is online a valid form of Media for adults 50-64 and adults 65-85?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 04, 2004 ):
"Valid" is a nebulous term here. These people can be reached on line, although they might not be as active or available as younger demos. Is there a reason to use online in your plan beyond the quantitative?

Thursday, March 25, 2004 #6434
How important are gross impressions to a media buy (specifically radio or traffic sponsorships)? Wouldn't eff. net reach be more important? How can I better explain the difference between gross impressions and frequency to a client that has these two efficiencies confused as the very same thing?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 26, 2004 ):
Firstly, a media buy must answer the specifications of the plan:

Do plan communication goals specify maximum weight or a focus on frequency over reach?

Frequency is linked to gross impressions but only through other factors and neither is an "efficiency." Budget divided by gross impressions is CPM, which is the classic measure of "efficiency" and no normal cost / frequency ratio with which the Guru is familiar is in use.

Gross impressions takes into account both frequency and reach. 1million gross impressions can be 1 million people each exposed to advertising once or 10,000 people each exposed 100 times. Radio is commonly considered a "frequency medium" but is capable of generating significant reach. Traffic radio is typically a frequency buy. Effective reach, i.e. reach at a specified minimum level of frequency is not the most likley goal for a traffic radio campaign.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004 #6430
Dear MG, Thanks for replying to my question on quintiles. If we take the same example (Q No. 3965) how does quintiles help in better media planning or deciding on the media mix.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 26, 2004 ):
Quintiles of media allow selecrion of media which are more likely to be cosnumed by the target.

Quintiles of schedules allow balancing frequency of exposure so that a greater portion of those reached are exposed "enough" times to the campaign.

Monday, March 22, 2004 #6427
Dear MG, In respose to Q.No. 3965 Dated Nov 13, 2000 you said that reach is devided into 5 quintiles of 20% each. Then we have to look at highest viewing qintile and lowest viewing one. I want to know from how do you find the highest and lowest viewing quintile. Our Media Analysis Software gives data in terms of reach, frequency and GRP for a given schedule in addition to reach at 1+, 2+, 3+ etc exposures.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 22, 2004 ):

It's a fairly simply bit of arithmetic:

Imagine you have the following frequency distribution for a schedule of 31 reach, 95.9 GRP and 3.1 average frequency:


reached exactly (%)

reached at least (%)

That is, 31.0% reached at least once (1+) and 11.6% reached exactly once. To convert to quintiles, the steps are as follows:

  1. Divide the reach into 5 equal groups to set the percent reached in each quintile. This will be 6.2% reach (see table below)
  2. Beginnning with the "1" frequency level in your frequency distribution, put GRPs into your quintile table. That is, if 11.6% were reached exactly once, then the lightest 6.2 percent must have been reached once, so you can fill in the "lightest" row at 1.0 average frequency and 6.2 GRP.
  3. This will leave
  4. 5.4% reached 1 time to begin building the "next lightest" quintile (11.6 - 6.2 + 5.4)
  5. Now you need to take 0.8 reach from the reached 2 times group to finish building this "Next lightest" quintile (5.4 left + 0.8 from the 2 frequency = 6.2)
  6. This quintile now has 5.4 GRPs ( 5.4 reach @ 1 frequency) plus 1.6 GRPs (0.8 reach @ 2 frequency) for a total of 7.0 GRP. By division we determin the average freqeuncy for this quinntile is 1.1 (7.0 6.2 =1.1)
  7. Continuing the same way, the middle quintile is made up of the remaining 5.2% reached 2 times and another 1% reach from the 3 frequency group, so it has 13.4 GRP and 2,2 average frequency
  8. "Next Highest" has the remaining 2.7 from the 3 frequency level, the 2.6 from the 4 level and 0.9 from the 5 level, to make 23.0 GRP and 3.7 frequency
  9. Finally, the "Highest" quintile has the remaining 46.3 GRP (95.9 - 46.3 accounted for in the four lower quintiles) or conitinue working the arithmetic for each frequency in the distribution.

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Wednesday, March 17, 2004 #6422
Hi Guru, I am planning a internet plan for client. Pleas help me to what data I have to put in plan to convince client the choosen site,the format(logo, banner, popup,..) most effective or approriate. My client is an IT Manufacturer. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 21, 2004 ):
Given the established target, compare sites for their ability to reach this target (coverage) and their focus on the target (composition). Then consider the appropriateness and supportiveness of site content.

For format, consider effectiveneess measures such as clicks, awareness building and available placement. Also consider audience reaction, for example, there is growing objection -- among some audiences -- to pop-ups.

Friday, March 12, 2004 #6417
Guru, For a reach DTC plan, do you think it's effective to go into 8 books only once or 4 books twice? Or what do you suggest Thanks, Kim

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 14, 2004 ):
This depends on several factors. How thoroughly do the 8 or the four cover the target? If it's truly a reach plan than the one of the two with the higher reach is better. If the reaches are close, then the four book plan will probably have better frequency and be more effective.

Friday, March 12, 2004 #6416
What determins an effective reach at a certain frequency? For example, I have worked on a piece of business where the net effective reach had to be 60% at a 5+ frequency. I have also worked on a piece of business that required the net effective reach to be 60%, but at a 3+ frequency.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 14, 2004 ):
The Guru is assuming you mean to ask "how does one determine the frequency level at which to consider reach "effective'?" One standard approach is known as the Ostrow Model. Click here for Guru discussion of this model.

Wednesday, March 10, 2004 #6412
Hello Guru I receive your comments of my question . I Want to know , How many weeks is the maximum period I should accumulate for analysis of the reach for one campaign???

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 10, 2004 ):
The (US) standard is 4 weeks. At times, for various purposes, such as wear-out analysis, 13 week and 52 week cumes may be calculated.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004 #6411
could you help me please, i need whats is means this words. recency effective frequency reach frequency tanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 09, 2004 ):
Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use each of these words as your search term.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004 #6409
Is there a standard for reach/Frequency for TV over one week and over four weeks? How many TRPS should be bought per week on TV? This is most likely to differ by product category and media mix, but are there any studies that can be quoted to defend a certain level of TRPs bought per week?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 14, 2004 ):
No one standard. Click here to see past Guru responses regarding levels

Saturday, March 06, 2004 #6403
Hi Guru, I have a question. What's the difference between a frequency plan vs. a reach plan? How would you go about putting together a reach plan if needed? Are there any formulas or anything that you need to plug in to determine reach? How do you know what is effective? Please HELP!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 07, 2004 ):
A reach plan emphasizes reach versus frequency and the frequency plan is the oppposite. That is, a reach plan is designed to deliver is message to the greates number of different people while a frequency plan emphasizes the number of times each person reached is exposed to the message - no matter how many are reached. reach plans are used when branding or awareness building are the focus. Frequency plans are aimed at more immediate, direct action such as a retail promotion for a limited time sale.

Some media, such as prime time TV and national magazines produce relatively more reach and others, such as radio, online or daily newspapers are better at frequency within a plan.

You need tools of the sort provided by our own Telmar or eTelmar to evaluate reach and frequency.

Monday, February 16, 2004 #6383
Hi, I've looked through the archives but couldn't find anything on developing Spot TV RFP's to the various stations. I've done spot radio RFP's, but want to know if I need to include anything more than: client & brand, target, market and market R/F goals,weekly GRP's, Target CPP goals, flight dates, days of the week within flights,daypart mix, any must buys shows, spot length, RFP due date, and the flight schedule deliveries. Is there something really embarressing that I've overlooked? Don't hold back. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, February 17, 2004 ):
A good RFP has two key elements;
  • It specifies everything that will be considered in your decision making, so that proposals are complete and allow decision making immediately, and
  • It does not request any information that will not contribute to decison making so that you don't have vendors wasting time on unnecessary work that you have no need to waste time considering, rather than the important info that you do need.
. It strikes the Guru that you have included everything under the sun that might eventually be used to describe the eventual buy, but do not need as qualifiers of submissions.

Do you have a standard for days of the week to decide what to buy? In retail that's possible, otherwise, perhaps not.

Do stations need to deal with your daypart mix? One station may have different strenghths than another. It might be counterproductive to ask each to submit the same mix, when you might do best with one station's prime and another's news.

Do they need to think about your GRP total if you might buy 2 or 3 or 4 stations?

Can they respond to your reach goal, knowing they are providing only a portion of a schedule?

All these specs would be useful if each station is competing for an exclusive, but the Guru doubts that is the case.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004 #6379
I am a media director at an ad agency specializing in pharmaceutical promotion to physicians. I am working on a multimedia promotional campaign for a new brand. Is there any data that shows in general, how the various forms of pharm promotion (detailing, journals, desktop, internet, etc - compare in terms of cost efficiency, reach, targetablility, etc? Specifically, the strengths and weaknesses of each. I am looking for an overall chart or comparison that will show how each form of media may contribute to new prescriptions (depending of course, upon mkt input, etc).

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 13, 2004 ):
Most of what you are asking about is promotion rather than media. Try Promo Magazine

Sunday, February 01, 2004 #6373
What is the most cost efficient way to get political information to as many people in the shortest amount of time?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 01, 2004 ):
Sunday Supplements have the shortest publication-through-cume cycle for high reach, but network radio is quickest from concept to air to reaach development and can be more efficient.

Saturday, January 31, 2004 #6372
I am doing an assignment for university based on recruitment for one of the armed forces. i cannot decide which would be most effective- to use higher frequency or reach..any ideas??

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 31, 2004 ):
The answer has many variables. reach can be more expensive than frequency. Minority targets can be more difficult to reach and have fewer media options than a general audience. Suppose you had a ridiculously small budget of only $2500 and want to recruit Arab Americans. The problem would then be reach versus efficient targeting. Broad reach might argue for outdoor media in a neighborhood densly populated by Arab Americans, e.g. Brooklyn, New York's Atlantic Avenue. But that budget would buy only one small posting for 5 months. It could achieve substantial reach in that small area and good frequency but with a limited message and considerable waste.

City-wide Arabic newspapers might offer three different options covering broader geography for the same length of time. This would likely increase reach and lose frequency.

In short, never ignore budget parameters when thinking about reach versus frequency. With a more reasonable budget of $25,000, for the same goals, think more about reach and multiple media and adequate frequency will be there.

reach versus frequency needs can also depend on awareness. If your audience is highly aware of your offering but needs persuading, then frequeuncy is probably more important; with no awareness, reach is primary.

Friday, January 23, 2004 #6357
Are reach and Frequency goals outdated? If so, how do you measure effectiveness?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 23, 2004 ):
The Guru does not see how it can become "outdated" to consider what portion of your target is exposed to a campaign or how often.

Monday, January 19, 2004 #6344
Is it better to advertise in the same medium as your competitors or somewhere completely seperate, what factors would effect your decision?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, January 19, 2004 ):
  1. Is the medium in question the only one -- or one of the few -- that reaches your target or reaches it effectively? For some niche consumer targets or B2B targets choices are very limited.
  2. If choices are more open, then consider relative levels; you probably do not want to be a small advertiser where competitors will overwhelm you in weight or "quality" such as units size/coloration or subjective copy quality.
  3. Regardless of the first two points, can you somehow stand out; with break-through advertising, positioning or support from secondary media?

Wednesday, January 14, 2004 #6339
What is considered effective for online advertising in terms of reach & frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 18, 2004 ):
If you consider online advertsing by itself, why would it have a different effective R&F standard?

Realistically of course, it must. If only two-thirds of people are online, that sets an upper limit. With the millions of web sites fragmenting this audience, what portion of this universe0 can realistically be reached?

Even granting that giants like Yahoo may reach most internet users, what portion of Yahoo's reach can you afford to buy?

In the Guru's opinion, online is a tactical medium. It can reach key prospects in environmentally focused contexts with selectively delivered messsages. It can reach people or add frequency among people not otherwise accessible.

Saturday, January 10, 2004 #6336
Dear Guru: One of the cornerstones of recency is the idea that advertising works in a short period (up to 7 days). At the same time in his writings by Mr. Ephron always mentions 4-week reach and 13-week reach. Can you explain the reason for that. Thanks, R.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 10, 2004 ):
More important in recency is that the most recently seen ad is most effective.

4 week and 13 week reach are long-time industry standards, greatly predating recency theory. They are based on being able to combine media types in a common period of time and relate first, to the monthly cycle of many magazines, which were a much more dominant medium 60 or more yars ago, and second, to the common, quarterly (i.e. 13 week) planning / budgeting cycle.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004 #6334
We currently have spot fill radio slated for 2004 to make up for underdelivery of our Network Radio schedule in key markets. Of course we have recommended a :60 spot be created for the spot fill. Our account team does not want to produce a :60 spot and prefers to use two of the existing :30 spots back to back to fill the time. This would not be bookends within a pod, but two very similar commercials running together. Are there any exisiting white papers or support that demonstrates this is not the best use of the purchased time? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 09, 2004 ):
  1. The Guru presumes that you are spot filling for GRP underdelivery.
  2. Many stations charge the same for :30 or :60 units, so solo :30 might not save any money, nor would separating the :30/:30s add reach without adding to budget.
  3. The question then becomes a creative issue about what the is effect on the listener of hearing a given # of :60s versus an equal number of :30/:30

Try The Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) and The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004 #6331
Dear Media Guru, This is a followup to my previous question regarding direct response ads on satellite television. 1). Please elaborate on your statement "Top Tier may as well not be a consideration, since you are persuing minusucle audiences, at best." Are you saying I may not want to buy the most expensive (top tier) networks because satellite subscribers are more fragmented than cable subscribers (disregarding the the obvious difference in subscriber quantities). 2). Would it be safe to assume that one spot airing between 12 midnight and 6am on any given network would be seen by 1/10th of 1 percent of the total subscriber base? Would it be the same for either national satellite or national cable? 3). Is it a safe to assume a 60-second DRTV spot placed in first week of Feb 2004 on national cable on one of the larger networks in overnight (12AM - 6AM) will be twice the rate of a :30 and cost $500 each? Or, is $600 each more realistic? Other rate? 4). WIth a $30,000 budget I can buy 60 national cable spots @ $500 each or 200 spots @ $150 on satellite. Based on a .02% response rate, my media cost per order for cable is $3.31 compared to a $6.25 cost per order for satellite. Will 60 spots be enough for testing DRTV? My thinking is that satellite would be better since more spots will allow me to test more networks and daytime vs. overnight. (Also, I could test one offer on Direct TV Comedy Ch --11,850,000 subscribers -- and a second offer on Dish Comedy Ch -- 9,085,000 subscribers.) Then, I plan to apply response rates from satellite to national cable to determine if rollout is feasible. Does this sound right? How would you do it? 5). VERY IMPORTANT!!! How do I contact DirectTV and Dish to request rates? I can't find one bit of advertising sales info for either company on the internet.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 09, 2004 ):
  1. If a "top tier" network gets a rating of 0.5 to 1.0 and a satellite network has 8% U.S coverage, then a "top tier" spot might reach .04% to .08% of the target, and an average spot .01%. These audiences are too small to make price premium distinctions about, in the Guru's opinion. The Guru expects that satellite audiences are just slightly more fragmented than cable, due to greater numbers of choices, but it's a much smaller universe.
  2. 1/10th of 1% might be generous for an overnight estimate.
  3. The :30 / :60 ratio is right, but everything is negotiable and lower rates are probably possible. In DR, ratings never seem to matter as much as finding the "right" audience.
  4. If testing is the issue, then low out-of-pocket cost is a key consideration
  5. Dish ad sales contact is here. For DirecTV (note: just one "T"), the Guru would call any number listed on the page at this link and ask anyone you reach for an ad sales contact.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003 #6315
How do you calculate combined frequency. If I have a cable plan in a market with a frequency of 2.6 and a broadcast tv plan with a frequency of 6.6 - what is the combined frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 20, 2003 ):
The Guru will assume you are referring to average frequency, typically considered for a four week period. One actually calculates the combined reach and GRPs and then figures the "combined" frequency. Consider the following table. If you had run 400 GRP in broadcast and had 61 reach there would be 6.6 average frequency. If you also had 100 GRP of cable and a reach of 38, there would be an average frequency of 2.6.

GRPs are simply additive for a total of 500. reaches must be combined by a system that recognizes duplication; "random probability" will overstate a bit when you are working with two related elements such as different kinds of TV. Probability might have estimated a combined reach of 76 here but let's suppose your algorithm estimates 72.

In any case, the combined average frequency is calculated thus: divide the combined GRP (500) by the combined reach (72) which equals 6.9; see below:


Monday, December 15, 2003 #6314
Dear Guru, Thank you for answering my questions about the CPM ranges. I was surprised to see that b2b CPM was so high. What are the CPM ranges of TV and radio? And what is in your opinion the most cost-effective medium for reaching upscale audiences?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 21, 2003 ):
True B2B magazines may target very narrow audiences, such as top banking executives or petrolem engineering management. Target Universes can be as few as 5-10,000, so that an audeince of 2,000 is quite resepectable. If the irreducible coast of producing a high quality four-color page is $4,000, cpm is $2,000.

TV and radio can have cpms in the $5 to $25 range depending on target and program selection.

Cost-effective media for the upscale audience are most likely to be print and online. CPM may not be great, but out of pocket is more controlled.

Saturday, December 06, 2003 #6301
I would like to know HouseHolds of W18-49 and approximate cost of spot to air commerical in syndicated program (Oprah Winfrey and Dr. Phil). Also, what is the Households W18-49 and cost per spot for NBC Today's Show. Your immediate assistance is greatly appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 07, 2003 ):
Visit Oprah ad Sales and Dr. Phil ad sales.

Saturday, November 29, 2003 #6282
Is there a method for "manually" calculating the reach/frequency of network TV/radio? I know other options exist (Telmar, for example) but would prefer to have my students do it this way if possible.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 30, 2003 ):
25-30+ years ago, planners worked with tables of GRPs by medium or program frequency, etc, baseds on averages of many fully calculated actual measurements but not full scale calculation, which would involve treating each commerical individually. While there might be some value in learning how to take a set of observations and develop a curve, trying to make these base calculations for each plan seems pointless.

The purely manual calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, November 26, 2003 #6278
Dear Guru(s), how does one establish an effective reach objective for a media mix? Do you report the effective reach for each medium separately and calculate the 1+ reach for the mix and leave it at that? R.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 28, 2003 ):
Media software can readily report total media 3+ reach.

Click here to see past Guru responses about levels.

Wednesday, November 26, 2003 #6275
Dear Media Guru, We did a multiple regression analysis to correlate the Nielsen Awareness scores achieved by a brand with the media weights delivered by the brand. The entire category advertises only on Television. The dependent variable was the current awareness score for a brand (Y). The independent variables examined for the analysis were Share of Voice achieved by the brand in the Category in the week (X1), Awareness in Previous Week(X2) and 1+ reach achieved by the brand in the week (X3). This analysis was done for a eight-week period. The tracking continues. Hence, we are planning to extend the analysis and build a more robust base on which the analysis can be extended. The R-Square values we obtained after multiple tests for Current Awareness with all three independent variables is 0.94 The R square values for any other combination is below 0.3 The question is a) Is this a collectively exhaustive list of what can cause impact on the awareness score ? b) Is there any flaw in the method used ? Regards RSV

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 28, 2003 ):
The method seems reasonable. The only other variables which immediately occur to the Guru are
  • # of competitors.
  • Ratio of share of market to largest SOV competitor. (i.e. 25% SOV might have a different impact against four other smaller competitors than against just one at 75% SOV).
  • Some measure of commercial impact, like recall

Tuesday, November 25, 2003 #6274
If a rating point is the percentage of the audience that could see the message, then what is the difference from reach? I work at a small agency, and we have gotten rid of our software. I used to be able to plug a plan in, and it would compute my reach and frequency, based on the ratings. How can I figure this out without software, if I know the rating points and GRP's?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 28, 2003 ):
Each advertising exposure has certain rating points. For a single such exposure, Rating equals reach.

For a Schedule, each of the various exposures will duplicate a portion of the audience of the other exposures. The sum of the ratings, less the Duplicated audience is the reach. The sum of the ratings is open-ended. reach can approach - but not exceed - 100% of the target.

The calculation is complex, and software is worthwhile, especially pay-per-use software like our own eTelmar.

For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables.

Friday, November 14, 2003 #6247
reach and frequency standards

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 15, 2003 ):
R&F standards for what?

Thursday, November 13, 2003 #6246
I'm a little confused about your answers to my two questions (#6233 dated November 4th) becuase they seem to contradict eachother. If one household impression is often worth more on Network TV than Cable TV (answer 2), then how can the CPM rate for a Network TV Spot be the same as a Cable TV Spot with the same rating (answer 1)? Is it accepted by the industry to charge more for a Network Spot than a Cable TV Spot even if they are reaching the same amount of people? If so, any insight as to why would be of great help. Thanks in advance!!!!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, November 15, 2003 ):
There is a difference between price and value. If two spots are in the same programming, with the same audience size, and same commercial clutter, there is little rational basis for different cpm. Yet, in the real world, because of tradition, marketplace attitudes or negotitation, the difference exists.

Friday, November 07, 2003 #6235
Hi Guru Is there research on effectiveness of advertising in cinema's (i.e. compared to TV)? Do you know something about research on the relation between medium reach and advertising reach in cinema? Can you tell me about the effectiveness of the combination of cinema and TV, radio, print or outdoor? Can you tell me about the quality of the reach of a cinema commercial? What do you think of the future of the cinema as an advertising medium? I'm a media planner from the Netherlands Thanks a lot Kind regards Michiel Veugelers

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 09, 2003 ):
Cinema advertsing has not amounted to much in the US, where advertising is virtually everywhere. It has been more important in Europe. Perhaps ESOMAR, the European Survey, Opinion and Market Research Organization has some data.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003 #6224
I'm looking for any publications or resources that will help me do a comparison of buying Network cable to Local cable. For example, I want information that will give pointers/comparisons on how to persuade a national advertiser (McDonald's, Burger King, etc) from buying ONLY National cable to also Buying LOCAL cable. Any resources that you know of that could help me out would be greatly appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 31, 2003 ):
First, ask yourself what are all the reasons that an advertiser uses National Cable?
  • Efficiency vs broadcast network
  • Programming that relates better to the product or target audience
  • Overall demographics of the channel purchased
  • reach expanision vs Broadcast alone
  • Etc.

Now ask yourself which of these things does Local Cable also offer or have a relative advantage?


  • Same programming (if you can offer the same selection)
  • Localized deliverywhere the store or product distribution is.
  • Better efficiency than broadcast spot?
  • reach expansion?
  • Etc.

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.

Sunday, October 19, 2003 #6209
How is recency theory justified when the entire world is talking effective frequency?How do we know when the TG is going to purchase?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 19, 2003 ):
The entire world has been talking effictive frequency for 30 years, yet not all have followed it.

Recency theory does not oppose effective frequency, it is a different approach to it, comsidering that in a continuous plan, 3 exposures are reached early and all additoinal exposures are effective, rather than only considering exposure in an arbitrarily defined measurement period.

One particular specifically reason for receny is that the time when the TG will purchase is unknown so the best chance to be the most trecent exposure, which is the most effective exposure, is to advertise continuosly. There are minima, even for recency.

Further, the popularity of an older theory is never a valid arguement against the value of a newer one.

Friday, October 17, 2003 #6206
Dear Guru, I've read Erwin Ephron's article on Adstock. Is Adstock widely used in the US? Also, other than reach/frequency goals, the Recency Theory and Adstock, are there other theories currently being used or debated? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 18, 2003 ):
As Efron himself says: "In the US most agencies schedule media without much regard to Adstock carry-over effects, because we have learned that immediate response to advertising dissipates rapidly."

Thursday, October 09, 2003 #6195
What is the correct process for analyzing comparable period retail sales? Specifically, we are working on a project that would not only compare comparable sales periods (year over year), but also compare a sale window to a pre-sale window. Thanks in advance for your feedback.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 13, 2003 ):
The Guru assumes you mean to compare advertising performance in these periods. The simplest approaches are comparing budgets or weight (GRP). Many refinements are possible as to media mix, reach. frequency, etc.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003 #6189
Dear Guru, With all due respect, I had written you back in September about a situation I was encountering (below) and received a response that I found extrememly puzzling. You said that my question had to do with copy opposed to media. Guru, copy is a part of media and a vital one at that. You also sent me to a link where you mentioned wear out. I went to the link and didn't find much to answer my question. Being sincere with my next question, why do you spend time to respond in depth to people with ridiculous questions (How do I buy spot cable, what's a CPM, etc) from people who could find the simple answer in a "Media 101" book, while mine is a rationale, functioning question and concern? Product life (packaging influenced) is also part of media. Why blow all of this off? Thank you, CRH Previous question: Dear Guru, 2 Qs: 1.) My client created a TV ad campaign and RIGHT before we launched, a competitor with lower quality/lower price/larger packaging had close to the SAME TV ad campaign! I feel product confusion has happened between my client's premium brand and that of the less expensive "knock-off" product. Do you concur? Any research to back this theory? 2.) Because of my theory, I have advised my client to change ads IMMEDIATELY. They have agreed and we will begin to advertise our OLD ADS starting October. I feel "ad quality restoration" has been achieved through our previous ad's 6 month hiatus. My client and I find that our campaigns last for about 6 months before we experience ad wearout, based on copy and frequency wearout. However, returning to an OLD AD where we are basing campaign results on ad quality restoration, how long will our old ads last, given new ads burnout in 6 months? should we plan on only 3 months since the audience will quickly remember the ads again? Your thoughts? Any research to back this up? Please help! -Media guru grasshopper. The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 14, 2003 ): Much of this question is about copy and product, not media. Regarding the wearout issue, there will probably be quicker wearout than with a new ad, but that is hard to quantify.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, October 10, 2003 ):
1.) Regarding copy vs. media, quite simply, you are wrong.

Advertising is two essential elements:
Copy (creative message or "the Ad," and
media, the vehicles (TV/Radio/Magazines/Outdoor/Online) which deliver the Ad to the audience.

The Guru deals with the planning, buying and analysis of media. This has nothing to do with copy, the advertising message itself except to decide whether the media is suitable to carry the message and communicate effectively with the target audience. Often, a media professional determines for which media copy should be created to best reach or influence the target, but this is far from deciding marketing or message strategy.

2.) The Guru's past responses about wearout include 50+ more or less detailed comments on the topic, which is a subjective concept at best. If you can define wear out, you can measure it.

3.) The Guru's stated purpose is to answer questions about media planning/buying/research. People who aske "media 101" questions didn't take the course, and the Guru would not accomplish much by telling half his users to look at a text book. Occasionally, that might be the only answer, but the Guru preferes to deal directly with media questions.

If you have signed up for a media position but have found yourself making copy decisions, that's a problem. But not a media problem. Luckily for you, AMIC offers a double-your-money-back on the fee for using the Guru, if you are not satisfied with the answers.

Thursday, October 02, 2003 #6184
Hello Guru, Could you tell me what's the difference between communication objectives, advertising objectives and media objectives? What's the difference between advertising mix and media mix? Thanks already.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 04, 2003 ):
To address these in a logical order:

  • Advertising objectives are broader and will include such details as message content and strategy
  • Media objectives are more specific to media planning and buying, including media budget, target, seasonality, geography, ad environment.
  • Communications objectives are narrower stiil, addressing such issues as reach / frequency levels and flighting

Advertising mix includes media plus direct mail, collateral materials, promotion, etc. Media mix is a narrowed focus encompassing items like TV, Radio, Print, Online.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003 #6183
It is suggested that cable tv be bought the same as radio. With this in mind, should the cable cpp also be the same as radio?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 04, 2003 ):
Cable's ratings size and reach invite comparison to radio. But people may view quite differently. Since cable has more frequent ratings, other buying issues arise.

CPP will likely be higher.

Hey, it is TV.

Monday, September 29, 2003 #6180
Dear Guru, This is further to my question on having a classfieds section in a marketing magazine with a niche readers community (i.e specifically from advertising/media/marketing/PR). The reason I asked this question was regarding Classfieds section, the advertisers you would be targeting would be very low budgeted and it happens that they are not aware of your magazine and its readership, as a seller, you know that you are going to provide the right kind of audience, but these advertisers generally do not get convinced or at times doubtful about advertising in a classifieds section with a frequency of monthly! how do you suggest to market it? or your opinion to have a classfieds section in a monthly magazine where the readers take their own time to read?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 04, 2003 ):
You need to assume that potential classified advertisers are either
1) your readers or
2) are interested in your readers.

The first group will be reached by in-book advertising. The second perhaps by listings in Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS) and the like.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003 #6169
Dear Guru, My first book was published and I am looking for ways to reach the public to sell my book. I am totally new at this. You must also understand that I am just a simple country girl with a college education but I have no concept of how to reach the media. Lavern

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, September 24, 2003 ):
You might place ads in book review sections of newspapers, or in magazines that have such editorial, such as "New Yorker."

If your book is focused on a specifc topic, perhaps there are periodicals or web sites with the same topic.

Your publisher should deal with this, or you can find a small agency that has this specialty.

Monday, August 25, 2003 #6139
Hi Boss, 1. how many weeks needed as a based assumption to get certain point GRP needed to achieved certain level of reach/Freq 2. any explanation about answer no 1 3. how to calculate that (the tools) Big thanks boss

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 26, 2003 ):
The standard measurement period for R&F is 4 weeks or one month. This allows fitting in monthly magazines. For tools, see Telmar

Tuesday, August 19, 2003 #6130
Dear Guru I would like to know if there is any possibility to measure additional reach that is generated by adding other medium to usual media mix based on TV. For a couple of years we have been running almost 100% TV based campaigns for FMCG client and we have recently observed that there are no changes in building brands awareness nor other crucial barnds parameters. We are now deeply thinking about moving some part of the budghet to other mediums as we intuitively think we can be gaining some incremental value by this shift. Is there any way to measure what additional percentage we can gain by using TV + radio or print instead of using only TV? Is there any research on what incremental campaign reach or brand awareness can we get by this decision? We have difference of mediums research methodology (telemetric for TV vs declarative for radio and print) so perhaps you could indicate some findings or research. Thank you a lot

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 23, 2003 ):
The Guru infers from your query that you are in a country without media measurement or at least without reach models.

reach models we have are consistent in demonstrating that adding weight to a base plan in a new medium increases total reach more than adding comparable weight in the base medium already in use. reach models within single media generally are based on measured "curves" of growth. However the reach added by a new medium can typically be estimated by simple random probablilty calculations.

Click here to see Guru explanation of calculating reach by probability.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003 #6129
Dear Guru, Could you please give me the evaluation method or ideas to link with sales and media impact (e.g. GRP/R/F)?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 23, 2003 ):
If you have sales data, it should be simple to correlate with past GRP or reach or Frequency using data tools in something asd simple as MS Excel.

Sunday, August 03, 2003 #6100
I work with a small but well-established African American weekly newspaper. I am seeking to contact as many media planners and buyer as possible to increase ad insertion orders. What is the best way to identify as many buyers and planners who may have either a general or specific interest in advertising in an African American newspaper. Also, is there a way to identify the correct person within an agency who should be contact to increase the likelihood of success in this quest.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, August 06, 2003 ):
Of course, AMIC is the place to reach media planners and within AMIC, Abbott Wool's Market Segment Resources is the area for those interested in ethnic media.

At some agencies, such as the many specializing in African American or multicultural advertsing, any media planner might be appropriate. At others, some are better prospects, but unless you have contacts who can identify them, the Guru can't suggest a method. You might consider buying lists from publications with apporpriate targets such as Black Enterprise magazine

Thursday, July 17, 2003 #6085
I have an $11,000 cable schedule that achieves 182 demo rating points. In Tapscan the reach and frequency is 12.4 and 14.7 frequency. In Strata the reach and frequency is 73% reach and 2.5 frequency. I think the truth somewhere in between. Tapscan will not share the algorithims (sp)in the formula and I haven't asked STrata. What do you think?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 19, 2003 ):
The Guru imagines that the discrepancy has two bases:

One: possibly the Tapscan R&F is assuming that the input is cable GRP and the desirted output is total market R&F, while the Strata is calculating only against cable universe. For example if a market's cable penetration is 60%, then 182 cable GRP = 109 total market GRP. 73 cable universe reach = total 44 market reach.

Two: even under these circumstances, the difference should be less. The Guru suspects that dispersion and programming selection inputs differ between the two so that reach isn't calculated the same.

Friday, July 11, 2003 #6075
Dear MG, I've refered to previous answers on each medium strength, pros & cons. I would like to know further how to : 1) articulate Impact, reach, Frequency & Continuity for each medium, especially TV, Radio, Print 2) product placements - what are the benefits against spot buy in TV. thank-you.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 14, 2003 ):
Articulating these issues is more about wrting skills than media issues. You need to carefullly evaluate the marketing and advertsing goals you have received as input and craft your own documents to relate your recommendations to their delivery on these goals. Expressing how you are answering the needs expressed by the person giving the assignment can be quite powerful.

Product placement is not quite media. The key benefit is the implied endorsement value.

Wednesday, July 09, 2003 #6070
We have a new client on our business who is trying to "make his/her mark" on the brand. I work on a national packaged goods account and the client is questioning our use of primetime as part of the network TV daypart mix. The client's argument is that he/she can buy more points in cheaper dayparts, and therefore is wanting an explanation of what prime "does" for the plan. Beyond showing R/Fs (where the reach goes down and the frequency goes up once prime is taken out) is there anything else I should do? Our theory has always been that prime has a higher attentiveness level but the client wants proof that higher attentive means more sales. I have also championed the idea that people who are more passionate about a particular show are more likely to be more interested in the ads running during that show, but again I have no proof for this. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 14, 2003 ):
This theory is popular. Try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, June 27, 2003 #6047
I have been approached to be the title sponsor of a new sports talk radio show. The show will be on over 200 stations across the U.S. and Canada. With no ratings or history, how do I determine what is a fair price to pay for the sponsorship?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 30, 2003 ):
The Guru would start from the assumption that a sponsorship which reaches the target and has added impact for your marketing is worth some cpm premium.

Then you need to know what cpm you would pay for ordinary, targeted programming.

Finally, you need to estimate the audience delivery against which to apply the cpm and premium factors. You can get a guarantee from the vendor, if the program will be rated. Otherwise, examine the average ratings of similar programs in similar circumstances.

Thursday, June 26, 2003 #6043
Hello Media Guru, Could you tell me what the leading publications are to reach chain and restaurant owners?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 30, 2003 ):
See Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS) and PubList.

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.

Wednesday, June 11, 2003 #6009
Hi Guru, I have heard of one method of setting effective frequency. That is we evaluate the criteria such as : established compaign, complexity of message, well-known brand, high product clutter... by giving them marks depening on their level. This mark will be multiplied by coefficient of each criteria. The total mark will be used to set the effective frequency level for that product. Pls supply me with more info on that. Appreciate should you can give me detailed explaination on steps to do that or give me a source to refer. Another question is that how can we set effective GRP based on effective frequency level, reach curve,no. of phase ( what is no. of phase?).The reach curve we use hereabove is that of target group of the brand or of any else? Thanks a lot.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 15, 2003 ):
Click here to see Guru discussion of the "Ostrow model."

Tuesday, June 10, 2003 #6006
Dear Guru, I have the circulation figures and the readership duplication percentage of various dailies. How can I calculate the net reach? What are the other variables required to calculate net reach? Thanx, Toolie, Bangladesh.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 15, 2003 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Tuesday, June 10, 2003 #6004
We have planned for our client (consumer product) for a TV campaign at prime time slot of Channel A where we are getting good GRP (360 per week) and low CPRP. The campaign is for one month. At the same time we are also proposing to advertise on channels B & C as well. Though the ratings of these channels are not as good as channel A and CPRP at higher side, but the reason to advertise on channels B & C is to cater the audience of those channels as well otherwise we are duplicating the same audiences if we go only for channel A at prime time slot. Now our client insisting that if we are getting the required GRP with low CPRP from channel A, why should I go for channel B & C? Please advise that should we go only for channel A or for channels B & C as well.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 15, 2003 ):
The issue is in how you define "the required GRP." If this level is based on a reach goal, effective frequency goal, or some similar communications standard, then the question is whether concentrating all the GRP in one channel will achieve this goal.

Your question implies you have some basis for thinking that a portion of your target is only reachable on channels B & C. Presumably, you have a way of documenting that theory. This becomes your rationale for broadening your buy.

Friday, June 06, 2003 #5999
Dear Guru: I would like to know that GRP calculation is reach x Avg. frequency or rating x Avg. frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 07, 2003 ):
Just as a matter of simple arithmetic relationship,
GRP = reach x average frequency.

Thursday, June 05, 2003 #5996
How do I figure out the total readership of trade publications. They are not listed in MRI. Is there an industry average for Readers Per Copy for trades? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 07, 2003 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about trade publication reach.

Wednesday, June 04, 2003 #5995
We are planning to release a TV launch commercial, I want to know what do you think the effective frequency, effective reach & GRPs. The commercial duration is 30 secs.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 07, 2003 ):
There are many considerations Click here to see past Guru discussion of effective levels

Tuesday, June 03, 2003 #5993
There has been a major shift in focus of media planning from the "numbers" to the actual "environment" of the medium, especially within print. Why do you think this is so? When are numbers important?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 07, 2003 ):
The Guru sees it differently.
  • In the Guru's experience (30+ years), print has always been more focused on environment versus numbers as compared to broadcast media.
    --In fact, the Guru can remember when some experienced planners didn't even know that print had GRP's, back in the days before everything was computer- dependent
  • On the other hand, over this period of time, the broadcast world has changed from there being three giant network outlets with the big numbers versus few independent stations to a situation of 7 major networks (ABC / NBC / CBS / Fox / WB / UPN / Univision ) just somewhat bigger than several independent stations market-by-market, and 100's of stronger or lesser cable options.
    --Environmental differences outweigh the numbers
    --Or, the compuers handle the numbers leaving planners the environment to discuss subjectively
  • Finally, as you mature professionally, you become more able to deal with enviromental data versus numbers; you are changing, more than the world around you

The media environment in which you communicate is always important, but you must know how much of your target audience you reach and how often and whether you have spent your budget efficiently.

Monday, June 02, 2003 #5990
Media Guru: What is the carryover of awareness from one flight to the next? (with relatively little time between) How does the first flight affect the level of support necessary for the second flight? For instance, if the first flight achieves a target reach of 80%, I assume that your second flight could acheive the same reach at a lighter media level. Do you have any research on this? Please help! Thank you, Brooke

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 07, 2003 ):
The reach of a flight relates to the GRP and program dispersion. Given the same schedule, the same reach is achieved.

Awareness is not the same as reach, but of course there is a relationship; only those reached will have ad awareness.

Once a level of awareness is established, less weight may be necessary to maintain that awareness. One rule of thumb is a 10% decline in awareness in each week without advertising. From this, levels of added support can be planned. Much depends on the levels achieved and desired.

Monday, June 02, 2003 #5989
for finding the number of the total viewers in a tv campaign, which one is more reliable and logicial? to multiple the reach with the total sample or multiply rating with the total sample? thx.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 02, 2003 ):
Firstly, in neither case is the "sample" relevant. You need to consider the total population which the sample represents.

Then, if you want to find the number of different viewers exposed to the campaign, multiply by reach. If you want the gross exposures, including duplication of exposures, multiply by the sum of the ratings (GRPs). Reliablilty isn't quite the issue. Ratings are subject to reliability toilerances, which grow smaller as you compile GRPs and the tolerances on each ratings measure cancel out. reach, on the other hand, is subject to the accuracy of the model. The relative error is usually greater on reach than GRP, but they are not measures of the same thing.

Thursday, May 29, 2003 #5984
Want to know the calculation of different GRPs to get required reach on 2+ or 3+ OTS e.g. on 400 GRPs gets 60% reach on 3+ OTS

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 31, 2003 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Thursday, May 15, 2003 #5974
I can use random probability to calculate reach. Is there any way I can create a complete frquency distribution? For instance, Is it correct to add up probabilities for an individual for 4 publications (Say 0.75, 0.75, 0.5 and 0.25) and say that frequency for the person is 2.25?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 18, 2003 ):
The Guru follows neither your math nor your logic here.

If your example means the the indivisual has a 75% chance of reading the first publication, etc how would that give the person a 2.25 frequency for the 4? You are working with almost unrelated data, not to mention the overstatement of random probability in calculating reach of related media. Further, frequency distribution deals with the numbers of persons who experienced each integral frequency, i.e. how many had one exposure, how many had two exposures. No individual may have a fractional exosure.

Friday, May 09, 2003 #5964
Dear Guru Would be interested in knowing if you have any info on online advertising models for financial clients. Any iformation pertaning to the approach for online advertising for financial clients would be welcome Thanks in Advance Johann

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 11, 2003 ):
Sometimes the Guru wonders at the use of the buzzword "model," apparently meant to make an approach seem formularized. A "reach model," for instance, is a mathematical formula meant to take variables and produce a reach number based on past variables that actually produced a measured reach result. The intended result of a media plan is not so quantifiable when you specify that it is for a particular category. The key is the result intended, this will change according to the narrow category as well as other factors.

A promotional plan to sell bonds to consumers would be quite different than a branding plan for a full service "big 5" accounting firm.

The "model" if any is based on consideration of goals and strategies such as target, and communication strategies. See the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan.

Tuesday, May 06, 2003 #5960
If someone desires to share a regional / global media project with a leading global media marketing company and after several attempts to reach the top bossess does not get a response or even an acknowledgement with or without regret then what opinion should the person taking the initiative must have about the "Gurus of the Industry?" Regards Zahid Hussain Khalid

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 06, 2003 ):
The first conclusion is that "the Guru's of the industry" do not deal with the sorts of inquiries you are making. This is not a global company's boss's concern. You need ot find the right person in the marketing department or the agency . . . who might still not be interested, of course,

Friday, May 02, 2003 #5956
What are the costs of 30 second spots on the top 3 Nielsen rated TV shows reaching the M/F 25-44 50K+(HHI) demographic? Also, what are the ratings for these shows and how big are their audiences. Thank you o guru...

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 04, 2003 ):
For such a narrow definition of top programs, you need to go to Nielsen, these won't be among the commonly published data.

In general, citations of specific program prices are meaningless. You may ask what was the average selling price of a :30 in "Program X" over the past year. But for planning purposes you must recognize that at any given time, a programs price depends on time of year, the size of the package within which it is purchased, the overall volume of the advertiser, etc.

Friday, April 25, 2003 #5950
Dear Guru, In response to your answer of question: Tuesday, April 22, 2003 #5945. I am grateful for this free service and respect your answers. However, your response, How did they determine that people who have injuries will watch these programs? HAve they looked at / understood reach and frequency, IF this is the right programming? This doesnt answer my question. Since their campaign uses a phone number and they get immediate response to their spots, we know the programs they are buying contain their prospects. My point is, they over-advertise in the same area day in, day out, week in, week out (my original over-saturation point). The easy way to prove my theory is to have them just cut back a small portion and buy other areas. They are reluctant to do so without other proof, first. So, my original question stands: How do you determine (using media formulas) that an advertiser has oversaturated a day part? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 26, 2003 ):
The simple approach, based on media formulae is to look for the point where the reach curve flattens (around 80% in the example below). This is where added GRP cease to add enough reach to be worthwhile, generally. But, your issue is one of definiton: What is "oversaturated?" In direct response terms, it's the point where response drops below an acceptable return on investment -- and apparently that has not happened. You would like to experiment with something new, which you apparently believe could have a greater ROI. If there has been any slackening in the response rate, that might justify a test.

Wednesday, April 23, 2003 #5947
Is there any way to determine reach and frequency for a television or radio schedule if the only variables you have are cost and grps?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 24, 2003 ):
Aside from how many GRPs are affordable, cost has absolutely no bearing on reach and frequency.

GRPs can give a rough estimate if you have tables or formulae of general results, and GRPs by daypart / station / program can be all the input you need if you have the right software or formulae.

Tuesday, April 22, 2003 #5945
I am trying to convince a personal injury law firm that they have oversaturated daytime television (court & talk shows) with their advertising. They regularly run in the same broad time period on each station daily. I am recommending cutting back a small percentage and spend it else where to build their reach. They are afraid to loose their dominant position. My question is, how do you determine overkill?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 24, 2003 ):
How did they determine that people who have injuries will watch these programs? HAve they looked at / understood reach and frequency, IF this is the right programming?

Tuesday, April 22, 2003 #5943
i believe there is a rule of thumb when calculating the reach of trade publications. something like the first major pub in the buy gets over like 75 or 80% and then there is a average increase per added pub. It's just a rule of thumb, but it sure would be useful since we cannot define the size of the overall industry's target universe. IF you do not know this rule of thumb, how would you suggest we calculate the reach and frequency of 5 trade pubs bought with differing levels of insertions over a year. Thanks for any help!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 26, 2003 ):
Crudely: Calculate each book's circulation's percentage of the sum of the goups' circs and make this each one's individual reach. Start with the largest and calculate the added reach contribution of the others by random probability.

Monday, April 21, 2003 #5941
apart from reach, frequency and continuity is there any subject that can be used in determining media objectives?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 26, 2003 ):
Seasonality, purchase cycle, effective frequency, BDI/CDI, awareness, wearout, etc.

Saturday, April 05, 2003 #5920
what is modal planning?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 05, 2003 ):
"Modal" planning is not a term familiar to the Guru. Perhaps you mean what the Guru referes to as "modular" planning. This means setting up the broad strokes of plan elements such as a month of print or a week of radio, with costs and audience values, so that a good approximation of a plan can be built with details filled in later.

Alternatively, but probably unrelatedly, certain reach calculations use a system called "modal."

Friday, April 04, 2003 #5918
How are the overall reach and frequencies derived in a buying program for a particular flight? It is not a sum of the r/f for individual stations, or an average thereof. Is there a formula for this?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 05, 2003 ):
The reach of each media vehicle must be combined with the others in a way that accounts for duplication.

You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Thursday, March 27, 2003 #5909
Dear Guru, I'm curious, as a media planner, buyer, how can I utilize information about a radio stations P1s and P2s to produce a more efficient and effective buy. Also,is this info readily available? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 30, 2003 ):
P1 and P2 are Arbitron concepts and are available in Arbitron data.

If you have made a value judgement about P1 and P2 such as the idea that the people among listeners to a station for whom it is first preference (P1) are an advertising audience reached more effectively, then you can evaluate the station in an additional way regarding its efficiency in your buy and perhaps have an advantage if you can justify a lower priced station, not that the Guru endorses this approach.

For details about interpeting P1 / P2, see Arbitron's How to read a P1 report.

Wednesday, March 26, 2003 #5908
Dear Guru, I am quite new to the field of media planning and currently experience the following problem: I am trying to find out what is the reach of uotdoor poster packages, but not for th whole population, as they present on the websites but more specifically, for example 25-54 ABC1. I may be approaching the problem from the wrong end, so any help on the matter will be appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 30, 2003 ):
The problem is that the actual measurement of outdoor is typically based on traffic, i.e. cars passing locations, multiplied by an average passenger load, with no opportunity to assess demographics of these people,

Demographics of outdoor are typically based on some assumptions from the daily activities of people reported in syndicated product usage surveys. Therefore, it calls for some assumptions and fusion of the two forms of research. This typically overlooks details particular to a specific outdoor buy in a given geography.

This issue might be addressed by overlaying a third type of research, geodemographic mapping, such as Geoscape

Wednesday, March 19, 2003 #5888
I'd like to know how you determine what your GRP goals should be for TV. I know that Total GRP's are equal to reach x frequency. However, if I want to reach 95% of adults 35+ each flight month while achieving a 4.0 weekly frequency, how do I determine those goals? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 22, 2003 ):
The fact that reach x frequency = GRP is merely an arithmetic relationship, it is not predictive. Not all combinations of dayparts and programs with the same total GRP deliver the same R&F.

You need to examine various schedules with reach & Frequency software, such as that from our sister company, Telmar.

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.

Sunday, March 16, 2003 #5882
Dear Guru: our client (a premium price mineral water with a great brand awareness, although years of absence in communication) is considering 2 different media plan for the relaunch campaign: first based on national tv + press and the 2nd on press+outdoor. The budget is 1/4, 1/3 of the top spender in the market. In tv there is a very competitive arena (200-300 grp's per week). The positioning of the brand should target affluent, dinamic and young women: in your opinion it's better to concentrate the media budget on media less used by competitors (targeted press and outdoor) developing a "great noise" or you think it's better plan tv like the 95% of our competitors, risking to not be visible? thank you very much (sorry for my english)

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 20, 2003 ):
In this case the Guru thinks being big in unique media has an advantage, if you can reach the people you need to reach. But do consumers think about relative frequency within media or are they simply exposed to what they are exposed to?

Can you make a case for one medium being more effective than the other?

Saturday, March 08, 2003 #5871
Dear Guru, I encounter some more questions which I am unsure. I learnt that we can calculate combined reach of different media vehicles in one medium and combined reach of different media (e.g. TV, Magazine etc.) and same for frequency. However, how can I applied tohse in an advertising flowchart? where I need to indicate monthly reach, monthly frequency and GRPs for different media vehicles+media (?) To do it manually, do we really calculate first combined reach and frequency of all media vehicles within 1 medium first than use the final combined reach % to calculate with other media to get the Montly reach & frequency & grps in the adv will be quite tedious....I am confused...please help!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 09, 2003 ):
The Guru does not understand your confusion. You say you understand how to calculate the reach of several vehicles in one medium and how to combine the reaches of several media.

One thing you must understand is that reach is always calculated over a specified period of time. The standard period is four weeks. Often, when print is the only medium involved, one month is used because this is virtually the same as four weeks and monthly magazines fit readily. However, it should be recognized that variations in issue dates muddy the time cycle, and that monthly magazines' audiences cume over a longer period than one month.

In any case, whether the flow chart is divided into 12 months or 13 four-week periods, the process is simply a matter of looking at the schedule that will run in each of these periods and calculating the R/F/GRP for each. The is not any kind of standard that establishes that a flow chart should show R&F for every month. When schedules are fairly consistent, it is probably more common to show the average 4-week R&F within each quarter, or whatever is needed to give a clear understanding of the plan's communications levels.

And yes, if you are doing the work manually, it is tedious.

Saturday, March 08, 2003 #5869
Hi Media Guru, I am preparing a media plan for a considered purchase product. Its target is businessmen. As my pocket research, we cannot communicate them via print or TV medium. Please suggest other media that I can put under consideration. Will appreciate should I have your reply by next monday ( 09 Mar 03). Thanks in advance for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 08, 2003 ):
If print and TV are out, we are left with radio, interactive and Direct Mail, assuming that:
  • out-of-home falls within print and that
  • a considered purchase by businessmen requires a more detailed and targeted message than outdoor can deliver.

More info about the product is needed to go further. Direct mail and interactive are potentially the most tightly targeted, radio probably the most efficient and broadest reaching among the choices, but details would help.

Wednesday, March 05, 2003 #5866
reach and frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 08, 2003 ):
Are you looking for definitions or more? Click here to see past Guru responses about reach and frequency

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.

Monday, March 03, 2003 #5863
Dear Guru, I learnt in school using only-only-both method to calculate the reach for media A only, media B only and both. However, if there are more than two media, how to calculate the reach of media A+B+C? And reach for media C only?....

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 03, 2003 ):
The trick is to look at the percent who do not see each medium. This is 100% minus the percent who DO see A. The percent who do not see medium A times the percent who do not see medium B is the percent who see neither. 100% minus the percent who see neither = net reach of both. Working this way the calculation can be readily chained as far along as needed.

In other words, if you have

  • reach of A = 20%
  • reach of B = 24%
  • reach of C = 31%
  • reach of D = 47%,

then the calculation for the net reach of all is

0.8 x 0.76 x 0.69 x 0.53 = 0.22

so net reach = 78%.

Remembering that as above, if reach is the probability of seeing a medium, then 100 minus reach is the probability of NOT seeing the medium, you should be able to calculate exclusive reaches as needed.

Saturday, February 15, 2003 #5841
Can you please tell me how to do the Sainsbury formula in order to calculate campaign reach & frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 17, 2003 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about Sainsbury.

To do the kind of calculation you probably want, you need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. For example, in print, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Friday, February 14, 2003 #5838
I am working on creating a hypothetical media plan for a class project, which entails targeting adults age 18-34 years of age, for a new product. I am lost as to how to set reach Frequency goals, and then once I formulate my plan, how do I calculate the actual reach? Also, how do I figure out cost per point for network tv late fringe and cable tv? Is there a guide that could help me estimate?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 14, 2003 ):
Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use "goals" or "calculate" or the other questions as your search terms.

Friday, February 14, 2003 #5835
I'm proposing 1 ad every day, M-F, in Wheel of Fortune for 5 weeks. My media software is calculating an average frequency which does not seem to take into account frequency built against this one program over a 5-week period. What can I do?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 17, 2003 ):
The Guru would expect almost no reach build after the first week, just a GRP increase. So if the program has 1 rating of 5, and reach of, say, 8 at the end of week one. the reach is 8 with a frequency of 3.1 (The 25 GRP ÷ 8).

After five weeks, reach might be 12 and frequency 10.4 (125 GRP). The range of possibility is not large, Minimum of one. maximum of 25. Get better software.

Friday, February 07, 2003 #5815
We've been asked to estimate reach/frequency/etc. for a plan that includes USA Today, newspapers in 8-10 major markets, spot radio in 5 markets, metro traffic in 8-10 markets, and national magazines. I think this is impossible, but can you think of any way I can provide the client with a decent estimate? I was thinking I could start by pulling delivery for USAT, magazines, New York Times, and then somehow estimating the rest.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 08, 2003 ):
The Guru sees no problem, and so does not quit understand your question perhaps. Assuming you know what reach and frequency is, you can readily determine the reach of each one of the media you mention. Most simply, you can combine them by Random Probability . Most reach and frequency systems on the market, like our own eTelmar, can do this for you. The only "trick" is accounting for the different geographies, but that's just artithmetic, and easy if you look at all the percentage reaches as their equivalent in thousands.

Tuesday, February 04, 2003 #5802
what does vertical media selection mean????

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 07, 2003 ):
It means within a category. To reach men18-34, for example, you might choose horizontally, e.g. a computer or trechnology magazine (PC World), a lifestyle magazine (Maxim), and Sports Illustrated. If you used only computer magazines, PC World, PC, and Wired, that would be verical selection.

Sunday, February 02, 2003 #5796
Dear Guru: A Recency question. Suppose I have 1 competitor. Suppose both of us use Recency for the advertising strategy at approximately the same level of, say, 35% weekly reach. What do you think is the effect of such strategy on the market? What if there are not 2 but 4 or 5 competitors using the same strategy? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 03, 2003 ):
Recency is just a communications strategy. Competitive environment is a separate issue. Recency theory may set a threshhold value of 35 reach, but the essence is in the continuity, not low levels. Competitive pressure may dictate a higher level.

Wednesday, January 29, 2003 #5778
Mr. Guru, I am the marketing director for a PI law firm. The firm has been on tv for the past 15 yrs. Of course, our target is anyone from age 8-88. I have read a ton on the recency theory and feel that it may work for us. In the past we have always concentrated on the highest reach with keeping freq. at at least 3. However, I feel that we've built brand awareness over the year and that the frequency level should not be a factor. In addition, I don't think that people really recognize an attorneys comercial unless 1. They've been exposed to it a lot, or 2. Are exposed to it when they are in the market. Can you comment, and possibly lead me in a direction to reports and studies concerning attorneys or similar industry? Thanks for you help.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 03, 2003 ):
The Guru agrees your commercial is only effective when someone is in the market, so recency is appropriate.

Wednesday, January 29, 2003 #5776
how to analyse a media strategy

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 01, 2003 ):
It takes considerable data gathering and analysis to determine the media strategy being used by an advertiser, if that is what you mean. For starters, one must be certain all advertising and geography is accounted for, which by itself is nearly impossible through published sources.

Once you have complete details of all advertising run, you determine who is in the audience of this advertising to learn who the advertser wants to reach. It can be quite difficult. You won't at first know whether vehicles are chosen for age/gender appeal, income skew or efficiency of box-car numbers. Complete correlations are necessary. Then the relative spending and scheduling must be considered, as well as geographic allocation and competitive picture.

Monday, January 27, 2003 #5764
Which media will have the most impact when targeting potential recruits for a public service position? Do you think that Print or Outdoor will reach the large target audience of 18-45 year olds?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 01, 2003 ):
Outdoor always has the most reach, but with a limited message. Radio is probably the next choice. "Impact" is a vague term. You seem to mean reach, but impact is more a copy measure, and TV is the "impact medium."

Monday, January 20, 2003 #5745
Dear Guru: Can you give some information about when is better to do enfasis in reach or frecuency. I mean we have to consider the marketing goals.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 26, 2003 ):
Yes, you must consider marketing goals, particularly communication needs. Do you need to communicate with more people (for example, in building brand awareness) of more often (for example, in a short term retail promotion)?

Friday, January 17, 2003 #5742
Guru- In the trade magazine category, typically what percent coverge will the primary magazine provide, and what additional reach is provided by subsequent magazines? There used to be a study on this by CARR (Cahners Advertising Research Reports), I can't seem to find them anymore. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 18, 2003 ):
One can't expect there to be a "typical" answer to such a question. If a category is large and highly competitive, there will be numerous magazines. If the category is small it will not support many. In the first case, such as computer industry publications, the largest may reach 20% and two dozen others range from 18% to half a percent.

A smaller category migh support only two publications, with one reaching 75% and the other adding another 15 or 20%.

Thursday, January 16, 2003 #5739
I am looking information about the relationship between SWOT analisis and reach & Frecuency goals. Can you hel me?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 18, 2003 ):
SWOT is Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats; in other words situation analysis. reach and frequency describe communications levels. After a SWOT analysis, one might be led to formulate goals and strategies which include R&F goals. There is no direct connection.

Tuesday, January 14, 2003 #5732
I have heard comments from media agencies that emphasize quality over cost for TV spots. However I am a little skeptical, especially when their compensations are tied directly with the budget. So I would like to ask you a few questions to help me get a better understanding. 1) Does a good relationship between the director of a TV station vendor and the media buyer strongly affect the quality of TV ads (in terms of POD position, etc.)? 2) Does buying above the SQAD mean a bad buy in comparison to others who purchased below the SQAD? 3) Are there ways to measure (quantitatively) the performance of a media buyer? Your opinion would be highly valued. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, January 18, 2003 ):
The Guru comments:
  1. In any buying / selling situation, a good relationship between the parties is likely to improve the deal as perceived by both sides. This will affect product "quality" for the buyer and quantity sold for the seller.
  2. Buying above SQAD is a pretty reliable indicator of having spent too much.
  3. SQAD is more of a benchmark than an absolute. Once some basics are set, you can tell the buyer has gone wrong if his/her costs go up when SQAD costs trend down, or go up much more than SQAD does. Likewise, a buyer whose costs go down more than SQAD's costs do has made good deals.

A media buyer needs to be given explicit goals against which to be measured. There are no absolute quality indicators of a buy, whether you look at cost, cpm, reach, rating, pod position, etc, unless these goals are set. Undirected, a buyer will probably go for lowest cpm/cpp or his own interpretation of best reach. If you wanted high ratings or heavy frequency instead and didn't make that clear up front, it is not the buyer's performance error when you don't get your secret desires. If you did give specifications and the buyer went a different way or didn't meet goals, then that's bad performance.

Friday, January 10, 2003 #5727
Dear Guru, I need to support a network TV buy with spot radio. The network buy is at 700 TRP over 6 week flights (frontloaded for each flight). HOw do I determine the appropriate levels of weekly radio weight? Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 12, 2003 ):
Determine what you want to accomplish. If it's a certain communication level, for example, reach and Frequency, it easy to use an R&F system to "back into" required radio levels. Your radio sales rep is one source of this kind of analysis.

Sunday, December 22, 2002 #5700
To broaden the customer base by inducing new customers what should be the media strategy? Should one look at having more reach or the frequency should also be considered?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 22, 2002 ):
One way to look at it is: think about whether the customers you don't yet have are unaware of your product/service or aware but unpersuaded. Then you can decide whether to speak to new prospects (reach) or try for more persuasion (frequency).

Wednesday, December 18, 2002 #5695
When developing a cable schedule, how is it possible that the cable companies are providing reach number of 70 - 80%. With so much fragmentation and with cable still in only about 70% of households, how can they deliever that kind of reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 19, 2002 ):
First, cable companies' figures are typically based on a cable-homes universe, so they are talking about reaching 70-80% of the 70-80% that are in cable homes. The fragmentation does make one question that any one cable net can reach that level, but there will be Nielsen data to suport or disprove the claim.

Wednesday, December 18, 2002 #5691
Dear Guru: We can calculate (or estimate or guestimate) how much reach we can get for every dollar we spend on TV. Question: Can we calculate how much brand awareness we can get for every dollar we spend on TV? If positive, how do we do that? Thanks, R.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 19, 2002 ):
It would be an after the fact estimate, as is reach, really. You would need top have measured awareness across a variety of schedules and built a curve.

But, reach is simply a head-count measure of media delivery, while awarenss is influenced by creative and other circumstance, so a predictive model would be much more complex.

Saturday, December 14, 2002 #5681
I am planning for an entertainment account. We have sold our clients a plan that emphasizes quality buys versus tonnage. I have a buyer who is insisting on buying Prime Orbits or Rotations vs fixed position prime in order to save costs. However for the plan, we value quality and delivery over saving versus year ago cpps. Can you help me explain why fixed position prime is better in this case than prime rotations and orbits?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 15, 2002 ):
First, it is the buyer's job to deliver the media according to plan and not according to the buyer's own personal goals. The Guru has often encountered buyers who bought something more expesive/less efficient to deliver better reach when the plan was focused on tonnage or GRP goals. A buyer's first goal is delivering planned media.

That being said, the Guru does not think there is anything better about fixed posiotns versus rotations inherently. If your prime schedule for a week on the NBC affiliate is 1 spot in "Friends", one spot in "ER" and 1 spot in Third Watch, why do you care if they were bought individually or delivered in a rotator of "3 prime spots."

It's a very good buyer who can deliver the programming you need at Orbit prices. Fixed positions are NOT "quality" because they cost more, but because your specification have mafde these programs more desirable

The issue may be that your targeting or program evironment needs make ER or Third Watch desirable and Friends less so.

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

Thursday, December 05, 2002 #5657
Where can I find information on Frequency and reach of major Network stations

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 05, 2002 ):
There seems to be some confusion about terms or metrics here. First, let's assume you are asking about network affiliate stations in major markets, such as New York's WNBC.

Then we could learn from Nielsen how many persons the staion reaches in a given period of time and the average frequency of exposure of these persons to the station.

But since frequency is a more useful measure of an advertsing schedule, the Guru expects that your question may have been something else.

Monday, December 02, 2002 #5651
How does our agency evaluate signage inside and outside an NFL stadium? We have a client that advertises in a NFL stadium and would like us to provide an analysis of their sponsorship. - How many people are they reaching, what would be the costs to other sponsors versus what they paid, benefits of having all of the signage in and outside the stadium. We are not getting much cooperation from the NFL stadium and we are have a hard time conducting this analysis.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 06, 2002 ):
As a rule, the Guru refuses to do business with any media vendor who will not provide audience estimates, so start by making the stadium understand that the decision for future business is in the agency's hands.

The Guru wouldn't expect them to reveal costs paid by other sponsors and your client shouldn't expect that information.

The value of owning all the signage is probably analogous to 'fully sponsored' magazine issues. It's an effort to appear more important on top of the judgement that sponsoring the stadium has a positive marketing effect, beyond name recognition. It goes beyond media issues.

Wednesday, November 27, 2002 #5649
How can I optimize a media plan based on advertising response curve???

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 01, 2002 ):
If your advertising response curve is assumed to be "S" shaped (as in many published studies), this means there are diminshing returns as frequency (repeated exposure) is added after an optimal point.

One approach to optimization on this basis might be to begin building reach in the most effective medium, and add the next most effective medium at the point of diminishing returns of the first. Then, the added exposures would be more likely to hit a previously unexposed group of prospects.

This assumes you will base your judgement of "most effective medium" on the one which generates the most results (sales / awareness / perception change, etc.) per dollar. . . and track incremental results on the same basis.

Tuesday, November 26, 2002 #5646
I have a client who buys only newspaper price & item inserts 26 weeks per year. In an effort to grow his business, he wishes to invest in inserts 52 weeks per year. Beyond reach and frequency, how can I demonstrate to him that his money would be better spent in another medium?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 26, 2002 ):
reach and frequency is the central argument. Other than that, propose short-term tests of alternate media.

Sunday, November 24, 2002 #5640
for the recency planning we need to set a certain reach level per week. Are we going to use the same week programs selected over the whole year or are we going to have alternative programs each week with the same reach result??? The target reach that we set for the Recency planning is it by TV station or a mix of TV stations??? are we going to use different TV station each week??? Thank you...

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 25, 2002 ):
Recency theorists would use 30 as a minimum base weekly reach. There is nothing specific about which schedule to use. It's about total schedule. It seems logical to extend cume reach by varying programming week-to-week. In this way your 30 weekly reach will grow to 90+ over time. Repeating the exact schedule every week will yeild a very low cume. The essential idea behind recency is that purchasers are in the market all the time, even though only a portion of the target is purchasers. With a w18-49 target, for example, you don't know what portion of your 30 reach overlaps the purchase prospect in any given week.

Friday, November 22, 2002 #5637
What's the definition of point of diminishing return and how it's applied?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 22, 2002 ):
This is not a purely media term. In general "point of diminishing returns" refers to the situation where additonal effort or spending begins to cause notable less results. A media example is the point where a reach curve "flattens." The first 10 GRP may generate 10% reach, the next 10 GRP adds 8 reach points. At 200 GRP, the next 10 adds less than 1 reach point. The curve below is illustrative, with the point of diminshing returns somewhere around 250 - 300 GRP

Thursday, November 21, 2002 #5634
I understand that % reach diminishes as the number of GRP increases, but over what time period is this based on? In other words, would there be a difference if a flight ran for a week with 500 GRP opposed to a month with 500 GRP.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 21, 2002 ):
This is better stated as "% reach increment decreases as GRPs increase."

The standard R&F calculation period is 4 weeks. In general, the same GRPs produce more reach in a shorter time, because of people's media use habits.

Wednesday, November 20, 2002 #5630
How do you determine the reach on TV and Radio schedules.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 21, 2002 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about reach calculation.

Saturday, November 16, 2002 #5622
Can you give me the name of research software that provides reach and frequency for tv broadcast, cable tv, and for a mix of media (tv schedule plus newspaper or magainzes)?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 17, 2002 ):
AMICs' sister company, Telmar is the leader in such software.

Saturday, November 02, 2002 #5594 do you measure the effectiveness of sponsorship? sponsorship more effective than other types of media

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, November 05, 2002 ):
You must begin by deciding what kind of effectiveness you want: sales, public opinion, image, awareness?

For some of these, e.g. public opinion, image, sponsorship may be more effective. Sponsorship is about depth of communication and its impact, media is about breadth of communication. Media gets reach and freqeuncy, sponsorship engages the hearts of those who care about what you sponsor, and will cost you in reach and frequency terms.

Tuesday, October 29, 2002 #5589
Our company works with separate media agencies for planning and buying. The method of evaluating TV plans is different by both - one follows 50% prog reach while the other follows spot reach within a commercial break, resulting in huge variance in GRPS for the same plan. Can you tell me what is the best method to do this?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 29, 2002 ):
Perhaps your ratings service measure differently than in the U.S. Spot reach seems perfectly reasonable, and directly applicable to the schedule. The Guru isn't sure what you mean by '50%' of program reach. In U.S. ratings, program ratings are an average of audience through the program and not far different than the rating of any spot aired within.

Tuesday, October 22, 2002 #5574
Dear Guru, I am interested in the perfect values of the following media parameters for one TV campaign of beer product (May be there is some standards): 1. Number of flights per year 2. TRP s per week 3. TRP s per campaign 4. OTS per campaign 5. reach 1+, 3+, 5+ per campaign I am interested which are the effective frequency and the effective reach. Thank you very much for your answers.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 27, 2002 ):
There are no perfect answers. Within whatever budget you have, you must consider what is possible. If you can afford 5,200 GRP per year, is it better to have 100 GRP per week every week or 146 GRP for 9 four week flights?

Part of the answer depends on how you set the effective frequency goal. Perhaps seasonality tells you you need the 150 in the summer but only the 100 the rest of the year. What level do the competitors run? What is your brand awareness? What are your awareness goals, sales goals, share goals?

In short, budget, and many circumstances need to be considered rather than any quest for abstractly 'perfect' answers

Monday, October 21, 2002 #5570
Dear guru, How is it that I would get a lower net reach in TV when targeting a specific CPP than if I target against affinity? I am trying to determine the best benchmark for buying against A18-49 in a country with a TV monopoly - no real channel selection, some programm choices for younger audiences. I am insisting on affinity, my agency maintains that when targeting CPP, the net reach is higher for this target. I understand that affinity targeting may increase my CPP but how is it that they feel by buying on CPP I will optimise net reach AND get the cheapest CPP (?) - with the warning that, yeah, you will get the Grandmas too, but hey, they watch everything, can't help that. Are they kidding me, or what?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 27, 2002 ):
The Guru is not sure what you mean by "affinity: in this case, but let us assume that you mean product users, such as ice cream eaters.

A given program has a given audience, no matter how you identify your buying target.

Suppose a program reaches 10,000 people among whom are 5,000 A18-49 and 4,000 ice cream eaters. And let us suppose that the universe od persons 18-49 is 100,000 persons, while the universe of ice cream eaters is also 100,000 persons.

A spot in this program costs $100.

The program has a rating of 5 against A 18-49 and a rating of 4 against ice cream eaters, right. So the same program has a cpp of $20 ($100 ÷ 5 rating) for A 18-49 and a cpp of $25 for ice cream eaters. So there is an apparent efficiency advantage when you look at it that way, even though you get the same people for the $100. And an apparently better net reach A18-49.

The Guru believes in the long run if the affinity group is the target, you are better off buying the group and not a statistical abstraction of the group.

Thursday, October 17, 2002 #5566
What is the reach and frequency of Cosmopolitan Magazine?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 19, 2002 ):
According to MRI, an average issue of Cosmopolitan reaches 17,110,000 adult women. Frequency is an aspect of a schedule, not of a specific magazine.

Thursday, October 17, 2002 #5565
Does the guru have any experience with the effective use of :10 IDs in syndicated programming? In general would it make sense for a limited budgeted advertiser to place 100% of his budget into this media form in order to maximize efficiencies?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 19, 2002 ):
:10s should cost about half of thirties, so the gain in reach and frequency is big. But the key question is whether you can tell the story in a :10. 100 bad commercials aren't worth as much as 50 good ones.

Thursday, October 10, 2002 #5557
Can you recommend any sites to reach Females 18-49 that suffer from allergies? Or a resource that could help direct me? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 13, 2002 ):
Sources that measure large numbers of websites don't include information about maladies. If the Guru were trying to approximate, he would cross tab MRI or Simmons findings on Female 18-49 users of allergy medications with website audiences. However, the mentioned sources do not go very deeply into the site-specific web arena.

At any rate, you are probably more likely to find better prospects by placing ads on the allergy-related areas of Web MD and similar sites or buying key words at search engines.

Friday, October 04, 2002 #5545
Hi folks, Has anyone come across any research on reach R(1+,2+,...n+) and Brand Awareness. Idea is to understand whether there are some coefficients, that would allow to forecast Brand Awareness given a R(1+) dez

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 06, 2002 ):
Try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Thursday, September 26, 2002 #5532
How can I calculate reach & frecuency?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 26, 2002 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. In print, for example, as input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Monday, September 23, 2002 #5526
I have been given a client's previous cable buy to critique. Given that cable is a frequency medium, I feel the client has spread himself over too many networks with too few spots. I want to prove this to him beyond saying 'because I said so'. We are going to pull a R&F report but I also wondered, is there any research to indicate a minimum frequency for cable networks? I was wondering about the turnover rate for radio. Does something similar exist for cable?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, September 29, 2002 ):
Turnover is simply the ratio of weekly cume to average quarter hour audience. This could be computed for cable, but it's simply a short cut indicator for buying towards reach.

Why is cable a frequency medium? Because you said so? Granted cable, because of its smaller ratings, develops more frequency than reach in relation to prime time network. But another, perhaps more important use of cable is to reach niche audiences that are drawn to the specific programming of certain channles.

First be sure you understand the planning goals. Is cable there to add frequncy or to reach the target is a specific environment? If you think purely as a buyer, you may miss the point of a plan. Perhaps the previous buyer was given goals other than frequency; you need to critique in terms of goals. The R&F report you get may be too high or too low. What are the goals?

Tuesday, September 10, 2002 #5510
Several of my AEs INSIST that there is a way to combine different media R/F over different time periods. Can you help me with what to tell them... why it won't work, how it would skew the numbers, etc... so I don't have to fight this fight every few weeks?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 16, 2002 ):
There is a way, mathematically at least. Conceptually, one medium reaches a certain group of people and the other reaches the audience which it reaches. There will be some duplication between these two groups of people reached. Broadly, the difference in time won't cause a major difference in the mathematical results.

The problem is that when planning combined media, we look for cumulative effect on consumer perception. Obviously, it's different when the consumer sees TV alone in February and magazines alone in April, rather than beinbg exposed to both over the same period. The difference is not in reach so much as impact. Perhaps it is important to keep the standard labels on your numbers, i.e. "Average 3 week reach," and "average 4 week frequency." When they don't occur together, the labels need to reflect that fact.

Friday, August 30, 2002 #5497
Dear Medai Guru: Thanks a lot for sharing your knowledge and experience! Question: Are there any estimated (or guestimated) GRP equivalents between different media. Example: Say, I am planning 400 GRPs on TV to reach about 50% at 4+. If I decide to use only outdoor, what R&F should I be planning for?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 02, 2002 ):
Different media have different strengths and uses; see the Guru's media strengths page

It is not appropriate to say that instead of "X" TV R&F one may substitute "Y" outdoor R&F.

400 GRP of TV would be a solid 4 week schedule. A light showing of outdoor develops 125-150 GRP per week, and 600-700 isn't uncommon. Such a schedule would deliver 90-95 reach with 30+ average frequency; perhaps 90 at 4+. Other issues of communication, such as message complexity and impact would outweigh the R&F comparison.

Friday, August 16, 2002 #5468
I need to know, What is the data that I can use to calculate newspaper reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 16, 2002 ):
As in your adjacent query, you need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. As input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables.

Try The Newspaper Advertising Association for some general estimates.

Thursday, August 15, 2002 #5467
Is there any specific form to estimate print media reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 16, 2002 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. As input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, August 14, 2002 #5462
Dear Media Guru: Let's say there are 2 competing chewing gum brands in the market that generate over 800 GRPs weekly each. Clearly they are fighting for a higher SOV. The awareness level of each is close to 100%. I would think that when you have such a high awareness level you just need to maintain it with about 100 or max 200 GRPs weekly which will give you 80-85% reach. Maybe there are merits in such huge GRP weights that I am not aware of? Thanks, R.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, August 14, 2002 ):
In communications levels questions, it is always important to understand that different target groups and especially differetn cultures have different expectations and needs.

You appear to be writing from Uzbekistan, so the Guru's experience may not apply directly.

Sometimes schedules seem high because ratings are enormous, perhaps 25%, so any kind of frequency runs to heavy GRP weights. If ratings are 2-5% than this probably isn't a factor.

There are more effects derived from GRP weights than just reach. At the levels of which you speak, frequency becomes the key variable. If chewing gum is a major staple in your market with users making purhcase decisions daily, extreme frequency levels might be justified. If gum brands have more significant social overtones - i.e. are culturally significant, unlike the U.S. perhaps the weight is justified.

In a U.S. context, these levels do seem mystifying.

Friday, August 09, 2002 #5459
Dear Media Guru, is there any clear relation (formula or something) between Effective reach and GRP? For example: if I have to achieve 3+ reach 60%, how much GRP do I need?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 10, 2002 ):
Different media and media element mixes yield different results. That is, 100 GRP of radio is different than 100 GRP of TV or newspaper. 100 GRP of daytime TV is different than 100 GRP of Prime and News.

reach and frequency models can deal with these differences, but there is no one-size-fits-all GRP number for a given effective reach.

Thursday, August 08, 2002 #5456
Do you know of any research that would show which is more effective in gaining audience attention: a medium length schedule with larger ads (6x with spread ads for example), or a longer schedule with smaller ads (12x with full page ads). Any insight is appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, August 10, 2002 ):
There will be many studies of this nature. The key is your definition of "audience attention." reach will be greater with the greater number of ads. Recall or noting is likely to be greater with the spreads. Ad or brand awareness might be the more decisive difference.

Try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter,

Wednesday, August 07, 2002 #5451
Hi Guru, how can we evaluate outdoor as a medium. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, August 08, 2002 ):
Like any other medium, you compare it to your goals and to the contribution of other possible media.

Some of these issues are efficiency, reach, impact, communication and geographic flexibility.

Tuesday, August 06, 2002 #5449
what is the best medium used to reach latino's home buyers?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, August 07, 2002 ):
Spanish radio has high reach and immediacy. Outdoor has the highest reach in absolute termes, albeit with a limited message. Depending on what you are selling to homebuyers, your may like the geographic flexibility of these media or the impact of Spanish TV. Or the ability to associate with relevant real estate or decorating editorial in print, despite its much lower reach.

Tuesday, July 30, 2002 #5443
If you are designing a pullout poster for a business magazine with a circulation of 35,000 and you want to add advertisments to it, what is the going rate for a 2 x 2 advertisement with the staying power of a poster?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 30, 2002 ):
The Guru is not aware of a "going rate" for such an ad. It does not seem to be worth more than a similar sized ad in the magazine's regular pages, unless the poster is of the sort to earn regular reference. In that case, perhaps 50% premium can be justified. Even then, the ad only adds frequency, not reach

Tuesday, July 30, 2002 #5442
What kind of tools or models do you have to define effective reach and effective frequency in TV ? How can I access to that tools or models ?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 30, 2002 ):
The Guru uses the tools of Telmar and eTelmar. eTelmar systems are easy to access on a pay-as-you-go basis, online.

Tuesday, July 30, 2002 #5441
Dear Guru, please solve our argument. We (media agency) are always arguing with creative agencies what size of the creative material should be. We prefer smaller ads or shorter spots, because they are cheaper and we can achieve better media results (reach and Frequency), and the creative people like a bigger ones. How could we estimate the optimal size?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 30, 2002 ):
By the theory you express, all ads would be the smallest possible, just to get big reach and frequency numbers. Of course, this is ludicrous.

Creatives like bigger ads because they have more impact, and this thinking simplistically disregards the impact of a total schedule.

You need to begin by establishing what will be the standard ad, one that communicates effectively and with adequate impact, however that is defined. Typically :30 TV of page, 4c magazines are such standards. From there, you can make sensible arguments about whether R&F gains with smaller ads are worthwhile or whether the losses through larger ads are.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002 #5432
What is an adequate number of points per weeek on television for a campaign that goes over a ten week period. It targets A25-54 and is not a "sale" retail account. This is a regional hospital and the television is split between two networks: NBC and CBS. Also how do you determine the percetages per daypart in your planning.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 27, 2002 ):
Start with communication goals: what reach and frequency or effective reach do you need?

These points will guide you to weight and daypart mix.

It strikes the Guru as odd that you speak in terms of "two networks" before any of the other decisions are made. The Guru would expect you are buying local, not network tv for a regional hospital.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002 #5431
How do you calculate cost of incremental reach? thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 27, 2002 ):
Simple artithmetic:

Base plan has reach of "X"

Spending "Y" additional dollars will produce a plan with reach of "Z"

Incremental reach = Z - X

"Y" is the cost of incremental reach.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002 #5430
Is there any research information available that explores a break-even analysis for local vs. national media (i.e. television). Evaluating how many local markets you could purchase before reaching a national CPP. Please explain why this type of analysis would be completed.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 27, 2002 ):
This is not so much "research" as a market place analysis. The answer changes over time, depending on economy, demographic, daypart and market rankings. It's a matter of comparing the specific costs you face. See past Guru responses.

Why do the analysis? If you are planning to buy advertising in a ranked list of markets for a national brand, and the do not need to vary levels by market, or need a given base level across markets, cost per rating point will eventually mount to a point where a network rating point is less expensive than the rating point purchased through the local media. At that point, you get the rest of the country "free" if you switch to network,

Monday, July 22, 2002 #5429
I am from the Philippines. We are bidding to get a bank as a client. They are relaunching their housing loan product. Their given budget is equivalent to twenty thousand dollars ($20,000.00) only. Size of the ad is 7 columns by 40 cms with long copy. A full color (launch) ad costs about $2,600 per newspaper. The sustaining black & white ad costs about $1,400 per newspaper. We plan to use the full color ad only for the first week, while the black and white ad would run from the second week up to the fifth week. This would be at the rate of 2 ads per week within three maor dailies. Is this right or should I use recency and just stretch the budget to 8 weeks at the rate of one ad per week? This is a relaunch and we want the ad to have impact in spite of the limited budget and the long copy of the print material.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 27, 2002 ):
Your answer depends on the reach of the newspapers used and the advertising climate for the industry. The Guru generally favors recency, but circumstances must be considered. You have not stated the relevant facts.

Monday, July 22, 2002 #5427
At my agency, we set media goals for many clients in terms of EF/ER & CPP. The correlation between EF/ER for a specific category/demo we get from past similar campaigns for which we are able to extract the necessary data. But eventually most of our clients judge our performance only on CPP. Yes, cost efficiency is important but so is EF/ER. The fundamental problem arises when our analyzed tv schedule and our actual own do not match in the execution pattern (e.g. portion of primetime vs fring.). My point is as a media planner, the EF/ER be taken into account as well (even if we were off mark on the CPP), right? The problem how to do this quantitatively. Please help.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 27, 2002 ):
The Guru observes:
  • Effective Frequency / Effective reach are planning goals
  • Cost Per Point is planning input and buying goal
  • Your problems seem to fall into two areas:
    - Educating the client to understand what you are doing, and
    - Educating your buyers in undertsanding your goals / their assignment.

If EF/ER are the communication goals for the plan, then achieving them at the planned budget becomes the primary standard. If this achievement is based on the media mix bought (as it should be) then the buyers must be made to understand that delivering that is what they must do.

Overall, the mistake is allowing CPP to become a goal instead of a tool.

Thursday, July 18, 2002 #5420
Does research exist, which addresses the probability of any individual article being read within a magazine having broad national reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 20, 2002 ):
MRI and Simmons have reported % page openings, etc.

Try The Magazine Publishers' Association

Monday, July 15, 2002 #5413
I would appreciate any feedback you can provide on the following....the client is looking for us to make a recommendation on how many print titles should be on their plan. What criteria should be looked at when determining this? I am sure a lot has to do with budget. They will be running in trade pubs in the biotechnology area and their budget is about $300,000. Also, how many times do you recommend running in a weekly publication? thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 17, 2002 ):
The number of print titles isa a result, not a goal. Goals should be reach, or frequency or coverage of specifc arenas, If there are twenty possible titles, there will be reasons to prefer some over others. The budget needs to be viewed in a context of the average ad cost.

There are some rules-of-thumb -- guidelines, not carved in stone -- which suggest once per month minimum in a weekly, every other month in a monthly, but these are about consumer perceptions of frequency. How many arenas do you need to cover?

Thursday, July 11, 2002 #5406
We are in the middle of planning a small trade plan in the science field. First question - do you know of any syndicated research that measures these types of publications? The client believes that somewhere one must exist. Also, we need to determine the communication goals. How would we go about calculating reach and frequency for our plan when these publications are not measured? And duplication studies are not available? Any help would be great! Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 13, 2002 ):
There are syndicated medical and technology daya bases, but the Guru does not know of one for basic sciences.

Click here to see past Guru responses regarding procedures to estimate print reach

Wednesday, July 10, 2002 #5405
Quick question, I have an AE who keeps bringing up "impact factor" with planning. And that the impact factor needs to be addressed when planning and GRP's and total R/F need to be adjusted. I have no clue what he means or an idea how to do this. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks again.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 10, 2002 ):
It sounds like your AE just arrived from working on an account which used such factors. Perhaps he never worken on any other acount and doesn'r realize this is ideosyncratic. Or perhaps he came from an agency with their own factors.

In any case, "impact" factors might be based on an index of recall or attentiveness or some other measurement of results specific to media types, from synidcated or proprietary research.

Typically, the "best medium" which is probably going to be prime time television has a 100 index and the others are set in relation to that. Also typically, the GRP are adjsuted and reach is then calculated based on the adjusted GRP.

None of this "impact factor" process is absolute or standard, but it can be done.

Wednesday, July 03, 2002 #5398
how could I create a reach curve if I dont have any information of "frecuency and reach" available. What kind of assumption should I suppose? Thanks Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 05, 2002 ):
"Creating a curve" is about graphing some data so that other data can be interpolated. In other words, when you know the reach or frequency from a few different schedules of GRPs, you then can predict the results of others.

Lacking any data, what assumptions might you make?

  • The general shape of a reach curve is more or less like the one shown below

  • Generally, the curve rises rapidly at first and then flattens, because it is 'asymtotic,' in mathematical terms
  • The top of the curve cannot exceed the reach potential of the medium.
  • The starting point will have reach equal to the rating of a single announcement, but the curve is drawn from a (0,0) origin.
  • The smaller the average rating, the slower the rise.
reach curves are usually created from the frequencies observed in the known schedules, because the graph of frequencies is a straight line, so its 'slope,' to use another mathematical term is easier to deal with.

reach with no observations is a complex calculation. You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar. In one example, as input you need average announcement audience, duplication between announcements of the same vehicle and duplication between each possible pair of different vehicles. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Wednesday, July 03, 2002 #5397
Hi: I Need to get "the reach and frecuency" of one cable TV`plan and for my understanding exists a curve generated by GRP and some assumptions which could tells me what I want. Do you know a web site where I could find this kind of information?? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 03, 2002 ):
Try eTelmar

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.

Saturday, June 29, 2002 #5384
I am working on a recruitment media plan, targeting ER physicians. Would you agree that the general media strategy should be to have increased frequency, in lieu of increased reach. For example, run FP4C ad in every issue of a trade pub instead of running every third month in three pubs. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 30, 2002 ):
There is nothing in your question's set up which would lead the Guru to make a recommendation one way or another.

However, the Guru would imagine that there are times when a prospect will be interested in your ad and other times when the physician would not. Under theses circumsatances, reach would seem more productive than frequency.

Tuesday, June 18, 2002 #5359
Is it relevant to calculate an overall reach / effective reach of a 3 flights campaign with 4 weeks OFF AIR period between?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, June 18, 2002 ):
What might "relevant" mean here?
Can the calculation be done? Yes.
Is it meaningful? That depends on your needs. Have you set a goal pertaining to the total numbers of persons exposed? Then it is relevant to that goal?
Is your only standard based on people being reached at a point in time? Then it is less relevant.

Monday, June 17, 2002 #5356
Have a recruitment client. They want to go on TV with full year support with limited funds. We suggested compression. Would you know anything about this? ie, advertising 3 days a week vs. 7, reducing dayparts, etc.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, June 18, 2002 ):
At its most simple, this sort of compression reduces reach and increase frequency. For those who follow the effective frequency style of thinking, this technique might add impact. For those oriented to recency, compression is counter-productive.

When funds are limited, the Guru would start with limited grography or timing and add funds if results warrant.

Monday, June 17, 2002 #5352
I have a very small ad agency that places local TV buys, is their a computer program I could purchase to help in computing say reach and frequency on these buys. I can't afford to pay Neilsen a monthly fee for TvScan. Any suggestions?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 17, 2002 ):
The Guru's organization includes Telmar which provides the software you need.

Sunday, June 09, 2002 #5340
Hello Media Guru I am a principal of an Online Radio (Internet based Radio broadcasting)and have a question about licensing of News Content. What If I go to a web site like and read that news over the online radio so that listeners dont have to go to 100 websites and read that content and give the courtesy to that website/company on a web page. Is there a copyright breach here? Thanks in advance for responding.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 09, 2002 ):
The Guru deals with Media planning/Media buying/Media research/Media managment questions, which this is not

. The Guru does not give legal advice.

As a layman however, the Guru does not see how this would not be a copyright violation. Why else do you suppose CNN puts a copyright notice at the bottom of each page?

Friday, June 07, 2002 #5335
I'm looking for a resource that compares different mediums of advertising and their effectiveness in the market (cost vs.numbers reached/caipaign success rates), where could I find the name of such a publication the publication.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 08, 2002 ):
The problem is in defining "campaign success rates." One definition might work in direct response and quite another in a package goods awareness campaign or a political or corporate image campaign.

It is a mistake to compare without considering the standards of succes for the category or without considering the importance of factors beyon the medium itself, like creative, for example.

It is reasonable easy to find media efficiency comparisons, using sources like AMIC's Ad Data area.

Sunday, May 26, 2002 #5309
Our company has recently appointed a new media planning agency. Are there any standard parameters on which the performance of planning agency can be evaluated? Since the planning agency is different from buying agency, the performance can not be measured on CPRPs or cost/spot etc. Secondly, is there merit in having separate agencies for media planning and buying? Your views. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 26, 2002 ):
Assuming your communications and advertising goals are coming from yet another resource, you might set up some objective standards for how well your media plan answers these goals, translating into reach, frequency, impact, image building, etc.

The Guru believes that separating planning and buying somewhat limits the planning agency in the support it will get from the media sellers regarding packaging media deals.

There is some benefit in letting a good planner buy, but no inherent benefit in separating the processes.

Wednesday, May 22, 2002 #5304
The Church I attended is looking into placing a commercial on a Cable Network Station. Please provide me with any low cost media service companies in the Los Angeles area. My Pastor has received rates from AT&T Media Services, however, I'm sure there are other low cost providers.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 26, 2002 ):
See the yellow pages for cable companies and 'interconnects' serving your churchs' service area. Remember that cost ought to reflect numbers of subscribers and reach of announcements.

Wednesday, May 22, 2002 #5301
In one of your responses to advantages of media mix and multimeedia strategies u have mentioned "Better distribution of frequency of exposure" as the advantage of using a media mix Can u pls elaborate on this Thanks for the help

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 23, 2002 ):
Each medium has heavier and lighter users. The heavier and lighter viewers of each medium duplicate at random, so that heavier print readers may be the lighter TV viewers. Consider the graph below, comparing a TV + print plan (1) to an all-TV plan (2). At the same budget, Plan 1 had a reach / frequency of 89.5 / 6.7 while plan 2 achieved 78.6 / 5.7.

Not only does plan 1 have better total reach and average frequency, but the portion of the target exposed to each number of ads (in the bar graph) is greater for plan 1. The proportional margin increases as number of exposures grows.

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

Tuesday, May 21, 2002 #5299
I'm a webmaster with exclusive Hollywood content and a nice audience in the tens of thousands. The daily, weekly, and monthly numbers are good, and most importantly, they're real. The main site is part of a large network, but I don't make good money from this network, and a HUGE portion of my advertising is going unsold. (All of the new sites I'm creating are pay sites and have no ads....) What is the best way to move and sell the unsold ads. I think the best way is just to get on the phone myself and start making the calls. Where can a I get free lists of people to call and sell to? Where is a good resource or list of people or companies that buy internet advertising? What is the best way to reach these ad buyers and let them know I've got some places they might like to advertise?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 26, 2002 ):
First ask yourself, what is the value of "free" lists? "Tens of thousands" is not impressive to major advertisers looking for mass audiences, you need to find those whose message resonates with your content. If you want it "free" you need to do some legwork and identify advertisers who will most benefit by association with your content. Check other related sites and see who is advertising there.

Tuesday, May 21, 2002 #5297
I am writing a POV for a client on radio frequency levels. Are there any guidelines or general principles on weekly and 4-wk frequency goals for national radio? I haven't been able to find anything through the RAB.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 26, 2002 ):
There are many theories. Other than buying 12 spots per station per week, in local radio, there are few standard points of agreement, and even the 12 spot theory is not absolute.

For example, in some situations, such as Black or Hispanic radio, where ratings levels can be 8 or better; GRPS for 12 spotrs can be 100 or more and you are really buying reach more than frequency, attitudes about frequency will change.

Then, are you talking about spots-per-week frequency or average frequency of exposure? The answer will again change depending on what other media are in the plan.

The Guru feels that all this and more need to be taken into consideration, rather than look for general rules.

Thursday, May 16, 2002 #5288
Hi, do You know of any publishing companies/print media which are using variable advertising pricing according to the reach of the media so that fixed CPT is offered instead of fixed rates? Are there any print media where You can buy GRP-s? If Yes; how is it done? Thanx, Marko!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 18, 2002 ):
The physical form of print media don't really allow this. You may buy geographic pieces of circulation, demographic editions or A/B (every other copy) splits of the circulation. You seem to want a random placement akin to online.

You can evaluate print media by GRPs but not buy audience chunks this way.

Tuesday, May 14, 2002 #5284
Hello, I am looking for some help on determing ROI for a print media campaign I've had running for about 8 months. Unfortunately, I cannot include sales as we are a B2B company and our product is pricey (read millions of dollars). So advertising is not going to make the phone ring with sales but I would like to put something together to determine how effective the print campaign is at awareness/perception. Or at least reach/frequency. Is there any rules of thumb I can go by or incorporate besides just circulation and cost per pub? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 18, 2002 ):
Click here to see numerous past Guru responses, posted for your reference, regarding estimating reach and frequency.

Awareness / perception may be a useful metric in evaluating a plan, but unfortuately you really need to have a benchmark base level from before the campaign began.

Tuesday, May 14, 2002 #5279
DEAR Guru, advertising a car model can you explain the connections between the target market, the product and the communictaions campiagn? also what are the ad/disadvantages of each method of media when preparing a media campiagn?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 18, 2002 ):
Most simply: Various brands of products have appeal to specific demographics. For existing brands, these ddemographics can be discerned by analyzing survey research, often syndicated studies such as MRI, Simmons and The Mendelsohn Media Research Affluent Study. Proprietary, "custom" research is also used.

The working theory is that the best advertising target is people similar to current purchasers. New models or programs aimed at changing the purchaser appeal may have variants based on the profile of competitive models, speculation or other research, including qualtitative types.

Communications is then planned to reach the same target, and to place advertising in a supportive environment, that relates to the product, target lifestyle, image goals of the brand, etc.

For some comparisons of media, see the Guru's media strengths page.

Friday, May 10, 2002 #5275
What is the difference between program reach and program rating? What is the difference between spot rating and spot reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 12, 2002 ):
Program rating is the average audience at a point in time during a program, expressed as a percentage of a target group.

Program reach is the total of different audience members accumulated over the duration of the program, which may be more than at one point in time. In another context, "program reach" may refer to accumulation of different audience members over multiple episodes of the program.

Spot rating distinguishes the audience of the commercial ("the spot") from the audience of the program. Channel switching may decrease commerical audience from in-program audience.

Spot reach is the accumulation of reach of the commercial over its schedule.

The above uses spot in its sense of referring to a commercial unit. A different meaning of "spot" distinguishes local airings from network / national airings.

Sunday, April 21, 2002 #5237
Hi Media Guru, Our product is a toy box and our primary target is mothers of young children between 1-2 years of age. Our secondary target is grandparents and children. 1. What's the best way to reach our primary target? 2. Should we allocate media budget to target kids through cartoon shows on TV although the purchase takes place when they're too young to influence the decision? 3. We do not have access to either Simmons Choices II nor MediaMark, what would be an alternative to support our choice of titles/channels and to get reach and frequency data? 4. Is there a standard way to split the budget between priamry and secondary targets? Thanks Amal

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 28, 2002 ):
The Guru's recommedations:
  • Forget targeting 1-2 year olds. As you say, " they're too young to influence the decision"
  • Your target may be reached in any medium, and efficiency against the target will tell you something, but parenting magazines and web sites are probably most effective.
  • The media you might buy will have access to Simmons or MRI and should be happy to provide these data
  • One way to split budget is in proportion to your assessment of the portion of sales which might be made to each target.

Thursday, April 18, 2002 #5230
Dear Guru, Thank you so much for this GREAT website, really it was very helpful for us. I have a question, I think it was previously asked but I couldnt find the answer I want. How outdoor mediums are evaluated? Such as Mupi Road Dividers signs, Billboards, and 4X3 signs. We are from Jordan located in the Middle East and we have a software which we use to evaluate other mediums such as TV, Radio, and print but not outdoor. I would really appreciate if you can work on this example: From the software: Total population is 2131000 (all the figures are from the software - research) The TG audience is Married Females SEC ABC&D: sec = monthly income 200JD + Total # of TG is 398,200 19% of the total population. We are selecting 100 faces of the 4mx3m signs across the Capital City. The total number of cars in the capital city Amman is 1,131,860 53% The period of the campaign is 1 week. I wonder if the above information might help you giving me the answer in evaluating this campaign and getting the figures for GRPs , reach , AOTS. In anticipation of your kind reply & thanks in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 20, 2002 ):
Generally, outdoor media are based on "DEC" or daily effective circulation, which is an estimate of the traffic passing the average posting and is oriented so that it can see signs. In the US, when Total DEC of a schedule equals the population, that is called a #100 showing or 100 GRP.

Techniques for estimating DEC vary from place to place and according to type of sign. A month of 100 GRP ought to have a reach of 95% or so. The Guru could not possibly have specific data on all the signage and demographic variants of all the countries in the world.

Thursday, April 18, 2002 #5229
Dear Media Guru, Do you have any research or date that studied ideal budget allocation between main media and sub media? Or, How much of budget is good for sub media in order to maximize advertising impact?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 20, 2002 ):
One common rule of thumb is "use the primary medium up to the point where it becomes inefficient to add incremental reach." This rule works in reach oriented plans. Another might be ". . .until the submedium adds reach __% faster than more money in the main medium." A frequency or tonnage plan would have a different approach.

In any case, the rule will be based on media delivery measures, not some abstraction of budget percentage. The budget percentage split which results will vary greatly depending on the main and submedia involved, and the communication goals that define "impact".

Wednesday, April 10, 2002 #5216
Is it the same advertising in two totally different places? Where everything is different (culture, media, number of people etc.). Does the consumer react the same whoever he is?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 15, 2002 ):
Definitiely not. Take a simple example, such as US Hispanic advertising.

It is well established that advertising can not simply be translated and used otherwise unchanged. The cultural cues, and context, including everything from the look of sets and actors through how products are used, past consumer experience with the products, and flavor/scent prefernces make too many differences.

On the media side, reach levels of the various media are different, for instance Spanish TV has a four week potential below 70% of Hispanics for any reasonable schedule, radio has a higher potential, and magazines are not a strong medium at all, generally (with one or two exeptions) having circulation coverage only 10-25% as deep as the US general. market. Newspapers compare similarly, with 10% HH coverage of a market being almost unheard-of.

Taking advertising from country to country raises even more problems.

Thursday, April 04, 2002 #5197
is there a standard ratio between media spend and media tools? said another way, does spending on media research tools typcially represent x percentage of media budget? i am a media planner at kenneth cole. we are a small in house agency with no research tools and i am trying to figure out if it is cost effective for me subscribe to telmar and mri. thank you, joe andrews

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 05, 2002 ):
The Guru doesn't believe there is a standard. The pricing of research reaches a cap well below the totola billings of some of the giants, so averages would not be meaningful.

You need to look at the media decisions you will make, and the cost of potential errors or misjudgments that could happen without the tools. Particularly with a concentration in print, the tools you mention should easily pay for themselves.

To keep costs down at first, begin with the pay-per-use option of our parent company's eTelmar.

Sunday, March 17, 2002 #5157
how do you find the reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 17, 2002 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about media calculations

Thursday, March 14, 2002 #5151
how do i best explain reach and frequency to a new media student

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 17, 2002 ):
The Guru doesn't see the difficulty. reach is the number of Different persons exposed to advertising, expressed in simple numbers or as a percentage of a target audience. Frequency is the number of exposures experienced by those who are reached.

Click here to see past Guru responses on the topic.

Tuesday, March 05, 2002 #5136
Thank you Media Guru for your response to my last question. Now I have a another one for you: A hypothetical advertising situation I'm working on involves a client who wants to invest in some specialty advertising, specifically pencils, coffee mugs, toy tractors and other things of that nature. Is it possible to determine the reach and frequency of such a medium?...or are reach and frequency better left to descriptions of broadcast, print, and other media

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 05, 2002 ):
The first step in measuring reach and frequency is defining the target so that you can eventually say that "X" number or "Z" percent of this target has been reached. In your hypothetical, the number might be the quantity distributed, but it will depend on how well the distribution is controlled to go to the target and to prevent duplication.

Direct mail is not a good analogy, because that depends on percent who open/read to filter the reach.

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.

Tuesday, February 26, 2002 #5121
If an advertiser cuts their typical TV schedule in half for three months, can we guage any residual effect in the following three months even if they return to normal levels.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 27, 2002 ):
One old rule of thumb was that about 10% of the previous week's awareness is lost each week without advertising. A collateral rule was that about 10% of the GRPs were added back to reach if some advertisng ran.

So, if awareness was 80% and you had been running 100 GRP per week, after one week without advertisng, awareness would fall to 72%. But if you ran 50 GRP instead of nothing, you could gain back 5 points.

Obviously, this scenario will always show an awareness loss in any week with less than 100 GRP, no mattere the ratio to prior weeks GRPs. It is overly simplistic, but may be directionally useful.

Tuesday, February 26, 2002 #5120
Dear Guru, In building reach for a retail chain we have put the emphasis on daily targeted campaigns featuring high TRP levels. For example 350 trps over two days. Would we be better off to spread this over one week. Would the reach be any higher. Can you show me the difference in reach of 350 trps over two days, one week and four weeks. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 27, 2002 ):
The answer will depend upon target, daypart mix and other variables.

Broadly, some expanison of schedule days increases reach, by virtue of the opportunity to catch people whose media use habits vary over different days. Differences in shopping habits will aslo impact effectivness. Spreading too far may diminish reach if you concentrate in fewer dayparts.

reach differences should be small if nothing else varies. Effectiveness is also sustained by the frequency change which will balances any reach change. You need to play with schedule variations in some felxible media software, such as eTelmar's.

Tuesday, February 26, 2002 #5117
Dear Guru! Sorry for unclear question about media mix. I would like to know is it a possibility to estimate the whole advertising campaign in different media by using common indexes (GRPs, frequency, reach etc) if there are no data from the same source - people-meters (TV), diary (press and radio)?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 27, 2002 ):
Yes. It is a standard procedure to combine media and has been for decades. There are some basic assumptions of statistical overlap, making a crude combination through probability arithmetic fairly indicative, and making modern media software, such as that offered by Telmar, reasonably specific.

Sunday, February 24, 2002 #5111
What is the most effective advertising to reach a Senior Target - Adults 55 and over with Income under $17,000/yr. The product is apartments, the market is Greenville County, South Carolina. The budget is only $10,000. What do you recommend other than Sunday Real Estate Newspaper Ads that will be efficient and effective?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 25, 2002 ):
Even assuming that your prospects are all local, the budget doesn't seem serious. You might afford 200 GRP of radio or a similalry indeaquate local cable scehdule. If your prospects might be northerners looking for retirement homes, which seems unlikely at that income level, small space national magazine ads in smaller, senior-oriented magazines might be effective.

Bottom line, you need a real budget, or you're stuck in the real estate section and maybe pennysavers.

Thursday, February 21, 2002 #5104
Dear Guru, how can I appriciate the effectiveness of media mix (TV, press and Radio)?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 23, 2002 ):
The Guru is unclear on what you mean by "appreciate."

Among the benefits of media mix are

  • Gerater reach
  • Better distribution of frequency of exposure (flatter quintiles)
  • Ability to focus on different elements of communication; e.g. the immediacy and impact of full sight, sound and motion through tv plus the detailed descriptions of print

Monday, February 18, 2002 #5092
I have a National Cable TV plan that we estimate will deliver a reach/frequency of 33/5.5 if run for four consecutive weeks. I have 7 networks planned. My question is this: What would happen to reach and frequency if I scheduled the same 180 GRP's as two weeks on, two weeks off, two weeks on. My estimate is that the reach may increase slightly.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 18, 2002 ):
On the theory that there are always a very few people who do not watch in any finite period, but may be caught across a longer period, you are probably correct. The opportunity to capitalize on this aspect of reach is probably better by spreading the weight over the same weeks than by flighting, but the differences are likely infinitesimal.

Friday, February 15, 2002 #5087
I am planning a magazine campaign which is over a period of 6 months with a reach emphasis. Can you please explain how the frequency builds along with reach.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, February 15, 2002 ):
Each magazine has a rating. The rating is equal to target readers target universe. GRP = sum of the ratings of all the insertions.

The first insertion will have reach equal to its rating points and a frequency of 1.0.

When GRPs accumulate, reach increases at a decreasing rate, as in the curve below.

A print reach "curve" builds more quickly at first; especially when there are more different titles and less so when there is repetition in fewer titles.

GRP reach = Frequency. Frequency, if graphed, would be a straight line.

Monday, February 11, 2002 #5080
How do I figure reach and frequency? If I know that I want to buy 2000 TRPs over the course of a year, 20 weeks of 100 TRPs flighted. I need to tell how many people I am reaching 10 times. I do know the population and TV HH numbers.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 11, 2002 ):
This is very complex and has numerous variables, including daypart mix and target.

The eTelmar starter package is a quick, inexpensive resource.

Click here to see past Guru responses

Monday, February 11, 2002 #5078
Hi - My client wants a general guideline for scheduling strategies for a maintenance versus a launch campaign. The obvious answer is continuity versus burst, but could you advise on the number of weeks on and off air for both approaches? Including ideal GRP levels? Thanks a lot!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 11, 2002 ):
The primary factor here is budget. With adequate budget, continuity is always better even if levels vary at specific times. You need to determine what is an "adequate level" which you might define in terms of reach, or frequency or media mix, etc. For additional guidance, Click here to see Guru comment on recency.

Thursday, February 07, 2002 #5069
Guru - I need to price the sale of advertising on Wireless phones? Are there any benchmarks for the service when X number of subscribers have agreed to recieve X number of messages per day? Thanks for any and all help!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 10, 2002 ):
Pricing sould be based on cost per thousand messages delivered. Other advertising is priced from under $1 to over $200 per thousand depending on the audience's desirability to the advertiser or the difficulty of reaching it.

Tuesday, February 05, 2002 #5059
Dear Guru (by the way, thanks for your earlier answers, they are really helpful !) : If I reach 3 differents profiles of people with 1 outdoor campaign, is it correct to say that reachxfrequency for each target equals the TRP (target rate points), and that the GRP is reachxfrequency over the entire population. So the GRP would be composed out of several TRPs?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 10, 2002 ):
First, GRP and TRP are equivalent terms. Some people reserve use of TRP (Target Rating Points) for cases where a speciific demographic is targeted, such as Women 18-49, College educated men, or Employed teenagers, and then only use "GRP" (Gross Ratings Points) for a Household target. Others use GRP for any target. In either case, the term means gross percentage of the specified target universe.

Arithmetically, reach x Frequency = GRP or TRP. GRP or TRP for different targets may not be added.

Tuesday, February 05, 2002 #5056
I've heard reach/frequency curves described as asymptotic curves. Can you please explain what that means? Thanks again.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 10, 2002 ):
Asymptotic, in this sense, means approaching 100% at an ever decreasing rate. In reach terms, if your first ad has a rating of 10%, it reaches 10% of the target. The next ad with a rating of 10 will have some duplication with the first and so possibly add only 9 reach points. The next will duplicate with both and perhaps add only 7 points to reach, etc. This is why reach curves (see below) "flatten" as they rise.

Monday, February 04, 2002 #5050
Is Telmar's multi-basing system the same thing as Fusion? And, if I'm currently doing the random probability formula to get total reach percent, what is the difference between that and Telmars calculations? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 06, 2002 ):
According to Telmar:
Multibasing preserves the integrity of a survey. It does not ascribe answers, and as such, avoids what we call "regression to the mean", washing away everything to averages. It preserves the leverage of a media element against any target group, not just those that leverage on demographics.

Telmar's R&F formulas use the actual turnover and duplication between media that are inherent in the survey. When there is real data, we use it.

Thursday, January 31, 2002 #5039
calculate reach and frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. As input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Thursday, January 24, 2002 #5033
Is there any data out there that provides ROI information on Radio/Print/TV/Cable Schedules. Just some basic numbers. For example, we mostly know that direct mail averages about a 2% response. Is there a formula or somewhere I can go to get info for Radio or TV? For example #2 My client is placing a certain number of grps on Radio and wants to know of the people reached, how many will attend the event advertised (like a one day seminar). What they want to know is on average how many people reached respond to an ad (Print/Radio/cable/TV). Any where I can find a rough estimate or some research- This is kind of like the "Ad Effectiveness Lab" that Arbitron is working on , but is not finished with.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
There are too many variables to generalize. It depends much, much more on the message and product than on the medium. An event is different than a movie, which is different than an inexpensive household product which is purchased frequently, which is different than a big-ticket item bought every few years.

One good resource is an article, "Advertising Wearin and Wearout" in the September/October 1998 Journal of Advertisng Research.

For much more try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

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.

Tuesday, January 22, 2002 #5026
Now that Outdoor can be mixed with other media, what is your thinking on how do the number of uses effect the frequency distribution? Should we be transferring GRP's, number of days or number of boards times days? How does this effect the frequency of the programs?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
Outdoor could always be mixed with other media, so the Guru presumes you mean that the media software you use now has the ability to calculate reach and frequency for the combined media. Your question is probably answered in the software's manual.

Tuesday, January 22, 2002 #5025
What do I need to calculate reach for print and what is the formula?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 23, 2002 ):
You need a computer with software such as that offered by Telmar.

The calculation is extremely complex. As input, you need average issue audience, duplication between issues of the same publication and duplication between each possible pair of different publications. These must be combined using a complex formula such as the Beta-binomial function. There are variants of this formula, which might be preferred, depending on media type and other variables

Monday, January 21, 2002 #5023
Dear Guru... What is your opinion on the following: How long should a Teaser ad run and how far ahead should it run prior the Anouncement ad? Can you advise on research sources...all I run into is reach and freq data, but none really on Teaser ad effectiveness, etc. Thxs! CTS

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
The Guru doesn't thinks this is really a media issue. It's copy and marketing. Different message types will call for different strategies. So, too, will other marketing issues. A store opening, with a definite start date, but infinite duration is different from a two-day sale, which is different than a movie opening, which is different froma new product in a low-interest category, which is different froma new product in a high interest category, which are all diiferent than the introduction of a new flavor / size / model / of an existing product.

Monday, January 21, 2002 #5022
Hi Guru, I've been asked to do a media plan for radio buys in the DC market. I've never done a media plan for radio before and have never even purchased radio ads before. Can you tell me where I should go for more information on how to buy radio ads and how it all works. I guess I'm looking for a radio101 or something. Please help! Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 31, 2002 ):
Get in touch with an experienced sales person from one of the top stations with which you will be dealing. Stations have marketplace and general radio planning tools. A good salesman can give you more education quicker than any other source

If you are starting from an assumption that you are only using radio and only one market, you are not really "planning," just selecting a schedule.

Your big-picture elements are meeting reach / frequency goals, format choices, and added value.

Tuesday, January 15, 2002 #5006
I have been asked to provide the impact of advertising by medium, for a multi-media retail plan. The advertising consists of TV, Radio and Outdoor. The percentages are: TV 80%, Radio 14% and Outdoor 6%. The communication is both branding and price/item. During the TV campaigns the creative split is 60% branding/40% price & item. The radio is almost exclusively price and item and the outdoor is 100% branding.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 17, 2002 ):
First you need to define the 'civilian' term 'impact'. Is it
  • Sales contribution
  • recall
  • awareness
  • or something else?

    Are the percentages Budget, impressiosn, reach contribution or . . .?

    This is not a reasonable question.

Saturday, January 12, 2002 #5000
Dear Guru, where can I find information about multi media planning (when I buy all media for GRPs and plan them together to gain aggregate effictiveness: reach, Frequency, etc.)

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 15, 2002 ):
Planning per se is about multimedia combinations, or reasons to use only one. Start basic media planning texts, you will find in theAMIC Bookstore (in association with

Friday, January 11, 2002 #4998
Broadcast planning; I work in the digital space and was trying to learn more about how broadcast is planned, specifically television.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, January 15, 2002 ):
Planning is a process of matching media choices to advertisng goals.

The biggest differences for traditional media versus digital are

  • Planners don't think in terms of a single medium; the plan is theoetically open to any medium at the start.
  • Audience measures are typically more detailed and finite, especaily in regard to reach.
  • Outside of direct response planning, audience exposure estimates, rather than any analog of clicks is key.
See media planning texts in the AMIC Bookstore (in association with

Friday, January 11, 2002 #4995
should there be more emphasis on either reach or frequency depending on the level of involvement associated with the advertised product? also, is reach or frequency more important for standing out within a saturated market? cheers

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, January 14, 2002 ):
Frequency, in both cases.

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 #4979
How can I estimate response rates to ads for a new product in a given region in various media (print and radio primarily) based on known data such as population, reach, etc. I need to make forward projections for marketing budget decisions.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 06, 2002 ):
There are too many variable with this vaguely stated question. Industry average for comparable products are the only reasonable quide.

Thursday, January 03, 2002 #4975
how does reach and frequency build

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 04, 2002 ):
Click here to see past Guru responses about reach build.

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.

Thursday, December 20, 2001 #4956
how does reach and frequency build?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 21, 2001 ):
This differs from medium to medium and among specific combinations vehicles.

Generally, the audience of each added advertisement has increasing duplication with those already reached. The curve below is typical.

Monday, December 17, 2001 #4951
Guru - Where can I learn about maximization of radio and TV buys? What is overkill?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 21, 2001 ):
Begin by setting communication goals in reach and frequency terms. Click here to see past Guru responses about effective frequency.

Thursday, December 13, 2001 #4944
We have a client that insists on running :30 LOCAL radio spots instead of :60 spots. We have done a significant amount of network radio, where the "standard" unit is, in fact, :30. Standard units for local buys on the other hand are :60s. The client still challenges our recommendation for :60s in LOCAL markets. Do you have an opinion on this subject, or can you tell me where to find some independent research that addresses the topic?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 13, 2001 ):
Today, not only is the local standard :60's, but most stations sell "units" meaning their charge is the same for :60 or :30. In this situation, there seems to be no reason to use a :30 unless specific copy research proves that the 30 is more effective.

In other cases, where :30's cost 80% of :60's, the added reach and frequency achievable trhough :30's may be worthwhile.

For research, try The Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB)

Tuesday, December 11, 2001 #4938
Greetings. You previously answered a question for me regarding calculating R/F for a trade print plan (question #4900). Based on your answer (which included calculating ratings and using industry standard duplication figures), I am calculating overall reach for each publication and for the entire schedule. Once I have that information (reach%, Rating%), can you confirm what formula I would use to get the Frequency (both for each publication and for the entire schedule). I have searched many years of your archives and can't find an answer that addresses that specific question. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, December 11, 2001 ):
Frequency = GRP reach

GRP is the sum of all the Ratings which go into the reach.

For example, if publication "A" has a 12% rating, three insertions = 36 GRP.

A schedule of 3 times in publication "A," plus 4 times in publication "B," which has a 16% rating = 110 GRP.

Tuesday, December 04, 2001 #4924
What does 'reach' mean?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 05, 2001 ):
reach as a noun is defined in Query #4921, below. As a verb, it means to deliver a message to a target consumer.

Tuesday, December 04, 2001 #4923
If I want to reach medium to large size (Fortune 500) advertisers interested in new growth areas, what publications are best to advertise in? Thank you very much.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 05, 2001 ):
This is too nebulous a description of a target. What might "new growth areas" mean? The general business publications like Forbes, Fortune and Business Week probably reach the right people in the right companies, but a better definition might allow narrowing the scope of audeince morre efficiently.

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.

Wednesday, November 21, 2001 #4901
I am considering selling a simple, novel, kitchen handtool using national newspaper advertising to reach an audience of several million potential purchasors. The advert will have a black and white photo of the handtool with a simple, clear selling message and call to action (telephone orderline to place credit card payment). Assuming my product is correctly priced and has reasonable appeal and my advert is reasonably well constructed and effective, what range of order response rate can I reasonably expect to see (i.e. what percentage of the newspaper readership could reasonably be expected to order based on experience of similar advertising campaigns?). A percentage range (low to high) would be a useful answer rather. Many thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 21, 2001 ):
There is not really enough information for an accurate projection. The results might be anywhere from 0.1% to 3% of persons reached.

Try Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Tuesday, November 20, 2001 #4900
I am trying to estimate past reach & Frequency for a transportation trade industry print campaign -- and based on that set R&F goals for 2002. I have gathered the following information: Target universe in US, Asia and Europe; each publication's circulation to that target (where available); duplication (very limited availability of this from these pubs). Given this information, what formula could I use to (gu)estimate reach & Frequency for this Trade plan? Alternatively, what other measures could I offer to my client to measure a recommended media plans effectiveness (i.e. Competitive SOV)?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 21, 2001 ):
The simple formula begins by calculating audience-divided-by-universe to estimate ratings (probability of exposure). Multiplying together all the negative probabilities gives you the reach, disregarding specific duplication. In other words, if you get a rating of 14% of target, the negative probability is 86%. Then, two issues of that publication have a combined negative probability of 0.86 X 0.86 or 0.7396. Thus the probable "reach" is 1 - 0.7386 or 26%. This reflects a rando likelihood of dulication of roughly 14%. In reality, there is more than just this random duplication between two issues of the same trade title, probably 50%+, so a better estimate of the reach would be 14% + 50% of 14%, or 21% reach.

For a good guestimate, combine all your insertions this way, using 60% duplication between repeats in the same title and 30% between different titles. Use judgement about titles from different countries which may have virtually no mutual duplication.

SOV is another comparitive tool. Going beyond relative communication and relative spending gets quite speculative.

Thursday, November 15, 2001 #4894
Will you please explain the math and rationale for equivalizing :15s in broadcast tv? I keep hearing the term, but my buyer couldn't clearly explain it. She also said she didn't believe in doing it. Do you? Thanks as always!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 15, 2001 ):
Buyers and planners look at this process differently. In actual fact, a :15 and a :30 in the same program have the same audience, but different costs.

To planners the audience is more important, in its relationship to reach, etc.

Buyers, however are more cost and efficiency focused at the program level. They will simplify avails by assignninig everything the :30 price and using a factored audience to reflect the :15 efficiency.

Tuesday, November 13, 2001 #4886
We are deciding between 2 DRTV ad companies. One suggests buying nationwide spots on a cable network. Another company states that's a waste of money. They suggest buying spots on nationwide cable networks in only the top 10-15 markets. What are the benefits of the 2 and how much cheaper do you think buying in single markets would be than buying nationwide? I didn't know how in depth this process could be. Thanks in advance for throwing me a life vest in the vast sea of DRTV

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 14, 2001 ):
Assuming your cost of selling and delivery is equal across the country, buying networks will be much more cost efficient on the media expenditure side of the equation. The out-of pocket dollars will be more, but the audience reached will be much more. If the one company that favors buying top markets can show you that these markets produce a better return from these markets, that may be worth listening to. Network buying is much less labor intensive.

Sunday, November 11, 2001 #4876
Dear Guru, I am developing a local cable buy for adults 18+, and working with two cable systems for coverage in one county. Can you provide me with some insight to accurately project cable tv reach and frequency, when the cable systems may not be able to provide ratings data for the county targeted. If I do receive estimated ratings from these systems, can I figure this the same as network buys are estimated, R X F = grps? I was also wondering if cable systems will typically "post" buys, as network stations do? Any insight you can provide in relation to estimating cable effectiveness would be appreciated. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 12, 2001 ):
  • The arithmetic defintions of reach, Frequency and GRP assures that R x F = GRP always "works." But this doesn't help you figure anything out until you have two of the three terms.
  • Your best assumption, lacking all other data is that R&F develops the same as CableNetwork
  • If there are no actual ratings available, there is no basis for a "post."

If you are limited to only those cable channels with local availability, reach will be limited. If your target is narrow and matches the profile of some of these channels, which you will buy, enough frequency can produce an effective schedule. Remeber, it may take 500 spots to accumulate 50 GRP, and reach will only be equal to some small portion of GRP.

Thursday, November 08, 2001 #4871
If we provide a basic demographic profile of our customer (age, gender, geography etc.), are there any services that can match that profile to a database of magazine demographics and present us with a list of magazines that best reach that audience?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 12, 2001 ):
You should be able to do this analysis uding the crtoss-tab and ranker sytems of companies like Telmar

Monday, November 05, 2001 #4865
Guru, what's the methodology for reach & frequency. I have two schedules, one gets an 77 reach/3.1 freq, the other 85 reach/4.2 freq. and a cume of 87 reach/5.6 freq. A client just asked why such a small increase from year to year.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 07, 2001 ):
The Guru's answer is based on the assumption that you mean:

"In year 1, I ran a schedule which cumed 77 reach, with 3.1 average frequency (and presumably about 240 GRP), and

In year 2, I ran a schedule with a cume reach of 85, and an average frequency of 4.2 (about 360 total GRP), and

the cume across the two years reported as 87 reach / 5.6 average frequency (487 GRP). So why is this cume only 87 when I had 85 in year 2 alone, on top of the 77 in year 1?


  1. First, if the cume is the combination of the two schedules, there is an arithmetic error somewhere in the cume. The GRP (reach X frequency) of the cume must be the sum of the two individual schedules, which would be about 600 GRP.
  2. reach grows more slowly as you near the potential. Why? When you reach 85% of the target, most of the people reached are among the 77% you reached previously. At it's simplest, based on pure probability, your 85% reach in year 2 means that year 2's schedule reaches 85% of the 77% already reached and 85% of the 23% not yet reached. This would add 20% to year 1's 77% for a cume of 97%. But the nature of media is that some people consume some media regularly and others not at all. So duplication in a given medium is more than pure probability. Thus reach is only 87% in cume.
  3. If you had used completely different media in each year the cume would more nearly apporach the 97% probability.
reach methodology differs between media types.

Monday, November 05, 2001 #4863
Our agency sell advertising and sponsorship for the Mille Miglia (, one of the main international event for classic car amateurs: how can we effectively reach our focus target (affluent classic car amateur) in Usa? Thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 07, 2001 ):
There are magazines aimed at this audience (see PubList) and there may be some ESPN programs worth using.

Wednesday, October 31, 2001 #4854
Dear Guru, I have an super affluent target and want to recommend the use of selective national TV vs. print and other media given my budget of $2MM. I know print will deliver a higher reach, but can a case be made for TV given the impactfulness of the medium?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 01, 2001 ):
There is no argument that TV is the most impactful of the media. But where is the trade off? For your target tv may so much less efficient that it can't deliver its impactful messages to enough people. The Guru would far prefer to reach 2 million target people with good impact than reach 100,000 with great impact and that may be the degree of difference you face. Try to quantify impact vs audience to really evaluate.

Tuesday, October 30, 2001 #4852
What is the formula or methodology for calculating reach and frequency in print media?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 30, 2001 ):
There are various formulas, such as beta bimodal, Metheringham, etc. The complexities call for computeres or a lot of time. Try Telmar or eTelmar.

Monday, October 29, 2001 #4844
I am doing a comparison study of two local weekly print vehicles in Cleveland and am looking for some assistance in reading The Media Audit reports that both have provided me - mainly cume rating vs. index. Let's take for example a comparison on the following target audience: Attended Past 12 Months - Rock/Pop Music Concert. The percent of the target audience as a factor of the whole audience is 23.7% or 376,300 people. Paper A reaches 154,900 (41.2% rating) while Paper B reaches 140,100 (37.2% rating). Therefore, Paper A has the larger rating or "total eyeballs" per say. However, when we switch gears and look at the Index, we see that Paper B has an index of 208 (49.4% composition) while Paper A only has an index of 168 (39.5% composition). We've been trying to talk this situation out all day to determine which number is more important in deciding who to go with -- since we can only choose one for next year's plans. can you help me to understand in plain english the difference between the 2?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 30, 2001 ):
Composition is the portion of the readers of a publication who fit within your target.

reach / rating is the portion of your target who are within the audience of the publication.

Compostition, therefore is an indicator of the degree of focus on your target while rating is popularity among your target.

Playboy or Maximum PC will have a very high audience composition who are Men 18-34, but People Weekly has more readers in that demographic group.

If two publications have more or less comparable content, as daily newspapers would prefer rating to composition, but cost efficient should also be considered. If overall reach is a goal, including both has merit.

Sunday, October 28, 2001 #4839
I'm the author of a new book on investing called "If It's Raining in Brazil, Buy Starbucks" Please suggest an advertising strategy to reach active traders and investors on the net

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 28, 2001 ):
The Guru would advertsise on stock price or stock trading sites, like Morningstar or Nasdaq.

Saturday, October 27, 2001 #4835
What wins ad size or frequency? Are there any case studies or research available that proves either theory? Your assistance is greatly appreciated to help settle this debate.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 28, 2001 ):
What wins what?

The Guru finds that frequency will do better at generating awareness, recall or reach. Size may convey a different impression of "importance." Frequency is probably better for sales, but ad size may be better for image or to convey certain highly graphic ideas.

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.

Wednesday, October 24, 2001 #4827
I have a few questions regarding advertising to children between the ages of 9 and 12. I am a Xavier University student working on a project for my Media Planning class and would really appreciate it if you could answer any of the following questions or if not, please direct me to someone who can. 1) What options are available for advertising to children between the ages of 9 and 12? I'm looking for creative ideas as well as anything that may be considered standard. 2) How do these options work and who do they reach? Are there any internet sites that may be helpful in locating this information? 3) What are the strengths and weaknesses of these options? Are any better than others at reaching this specific target? What would you recommend as far as frequency is concerned? 4) Hold are these options sold? Monthly, weekly, daily, etc.? On a spot by spot basis? Where could I get quotes for these to include in my presentation? 5) How much do they cost? 6) How are these mediums measured? Who provides measurement? For example, Arbitron measures radio in average quarter hour ratings. Do you know where I can go to find statistics on these? How many people are reached over what time span etc.? 7) Lastly, who should use these mediums? Is it better for one industry/company than another? Why? If it is easier to respond to me directly to my e-mail account please do. I would really appreciate this. Thank you VERY much.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 25, 2001 ):
The Guru thanks you for the opportunity to do your class project.
  1. There are numerous TV shows on the broadcast networks, as well as Nickelodeon and other cable networks. There are publications from Scholastic Magazines and Radio Disney and many more
  2. These work pretty much as do comparable media for other ages. Visit the sites.
  3. Strengths and weaknesses generally parallel the same media for all ages. See the Guru's media strengths page. Broadcast tv will have the greatest reach, others may be more targeted or efficient. The Guru imagines frequency will be more important for this age group.
  4. Timing and pricing varies, visit the sites. Request kits. You may have to talk to vendors for realistic pricing. You will encounter varying willingness to help a student.
  5. See #4
  6. Nielsen measures the tv options. Print and radio are not measured by the standard sources such as MRI and Arbitron, except on rare occasion. The vendors will have some proprietary studies, possibly online.
  7. Who should use them depends on the marketing strategy. No doubt figuring this out is the point of your learning.

Wednesday, October 24, 2001 #4819
I know you have addressed this question many times, but I could not find an answer to help me in your archives. How can I determine reach & frequency for my television buy without buying software? I do not know reach or frequency, only total TRP's. Please help.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 24, 2001 ):
reach and frequency is a complex calculation. Without software, only tables of results based on averaging actula caluculation will be helpful. Complexities of dayparts, demographics, and timing can mean a 2:1 range in results for the same GRP. If the media vendors can't help you, eTelmar is a low-cost, pay-per-use alternative.

Wednesday, October 24, 2001 #4815
I just started free-lance media buying, Is their a software program I can buy to compute reach and frequency, CPP etc, without purchasing Arbitron or Nielsen? I would submit my own numbers for each program. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 24, 2001 ):
Try our own Telmar or eTelmar.

Tuesday, October 16, 2001 #4798
Could you please give me all examples of TV flights pattern: GRP min/max levels, guerilla tactics, else ?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 16, 2001 ):
Flight patterens can be any imaginable combination of active and inactive weeks from 1 on / 12 of to 12 on / 1 off. Anything more extreme shouldn't be considered flighting. The on/off patterens do not have to be equal or consistent.

Some think GRPs should be at least suffieceint to reach 30% of target weekly in a continuity plan. There is no real upper end except the "point of diminishing returns" where adding reach is prohibitively expensive or no longer possible. Even then, some would add weight just for frequency in promotions.

Guerilla tactics are marketing, not media issues.

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.

Wednesday, October 10, 2001 #4772
I am going to the planning process for a new b2b client at our agency. The client has a very specific audience it is looking to reach, thus buying by the numbers is becoming less of an option than cherry picking programs and flight dates based on the small and very high brow target. Any suggestions on how to request rates without buying on GRP's or CPP? I don't want to get taken on the rates as a result of our obvious interest in very specific programming only. Additionally how do I then prove the buy later since it was bought on a qualitative basis?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, October 13, 2001 ):
  • At some point, you preumably are using some sort of numbers to evaluate the presence of your target in program audiences to support your cherry-picking
  • Rates are usually quoted as cost per spot for programs whne you are buying programs, so you can apply whatever numbers you have to compare these programs
  • If your audience is so small and rare in broadcast, perhaps you shouldn't be using broadcast in preference to more selective media
  • Or, if there are a specific network or two which focuses on your target, they may well be prepared to cater to someone buying this target

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, October 09, 2001 #4763
What's your opinion on Recency planning (Low weekly GRP levels) in a market with no People Meter data only diary data (1 week survey twice a year). Having in mind that Diary data usually overestimates TV ratings. Are 80 to 100 Weekly TV GRP to low in Diary data market?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 09, 2001 ):
Recency is about maintaining minimal continuous reach levels, not 'low GRP levels'. 30 is about right for weekly reach. If you have a reach model keyed to diary measurement, that's your guide.

Monday, October 01, 2001 #4742
Dear Guru, I am interesting in IMS Modal reach and frequency model. As far as I can understand they use beta-binomial model for plans with one vehicle, but what model is used for plans with more than 1 vehicle (so called between vehicle duplication problem). Could you give me any references or ideas? Sincerely, Lena M

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, October 02, 2001 ):
Contact IMS

Thursday, September 27, 2001 #4738
Is there a resource to help plan an on line campaign to reach healthcare professionals, particularly MDs.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 27, 2001 ):

Click here to see past Guru responses on the topic.

Tuesday, September 25, 2001 #4735
All about CUME reach. What about the recency & net duplication planning?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 27, 2001 ):
Cume is about longer term, recency is about a week at a time.

Click here to see past Guru responses about cume and recency .

Friday, September 21, 2001 #4727
Hi Guru, I am looking for a resource that provides the amount of marketing and advertising dollars spent on various demographic segments. Any ideas?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 24, 2001 ):
No, the Guru has never a source toalling spending by dempographic. How would an outside source know the demographic target of an ad in broad reach vehicles like People Magazine or on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Such vehicles account for a lot of the spending. If an advertiser spent only in similar niche media, a conclusion might be drawn, but the lion's share of dollars would go unaccounted for.

Friday, September 07, 2001 #4703
How to arrive with reach and frequency

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 07, 2001 ):
Try eTelmar

Friday, September 07, 2001 #4702
I am looking for info on awareness decline to defend continuity scheduling. I have found in the archives your reference to 5-10% decline per week of no advertising and would like a bit more meat than the rule of thumb. Can you tell me more about it? And how does the 5-10% decline come off of the awareness: 60% *.95 or .9 = 54-57% or 60% -5 or 10% = 50-55%? I'm also referencing recency. These questions are to help me build a model of some sort. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 07, 2001 ):
The meaning is 60*.95 or *.9. This way it's asymtotic, like reach. The other way, no awareness would remain from any starting level after 10 to 20 weeks.

Thursday, August 30, 2001 #4685
Guru, I have this client in the Wealth Mgmt/Financial industry who has been using natl. print solely over the past 3 yrs. There budget is only $3 million. According to Monroe Mendleson, our campaign reach is around 70% against the super affluent. The client would now like to switch gears to Natl. TV and sponsor/own one program with a high concentration of their target. I don't believe they could achieve the same reach as with print, but am not certain how to present the differences. Can you help?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 04, 2001 ):
Any program with a high composition of your target is likely to have a very tiny rating and little reach development. Monroe Mendelsohn should provide the data to analyze this.

Tuesday, August 21, 2001 #4671
I have a client that wants to build awareness and they are already have a 30% awareness so is there a way we can translet building awareness to a reach %?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 26, 2001 ):
No, too many variables. Some rules of thumb, when you consider awareness directly correlated with reach, are:
  1. Awarenss is never higher than cume reach
  2. Awareness begins to decline as soon as advertsing stops

Wednesday, August 15, 2001 #4658
Guru, Could use some help framing questions for my agency relating to the effectiveness of a media campaign. We recently ran a test cell for a new campaign (our first)in which the agency provided information on total TRPs, total reach and total frequency over the life of the test. I need to determine how the frequency builds over time. Are there any formulas/rules of thumb for calculating build over time? If not, what specifically should I ask them for? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, August 15, 2001 ):
reach relates to GRP in a curvilinear function. Frequency relates to GRP in a straight line. This doesn't mean that each week adds the same amount of frequency, merely that it's fairly easy to work with.

The easiest thing however, is probably to ask the agency to calculate cumulative reach and frequency, week by week, over the course of the campaign.

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.

Tuesday, July 31, 2001 #4621
Hello Media Guru Is there software available that will have reach and frequency information for Trade publications. If not what is the best way to calculate this information?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 31, 2001 ):
Programs like Telmar's print planning systems can process Intelliquest (computer and tech trades), as well as some others which exist in the medical and other fields. The software can also estimate R&F for other, unmeasured trade titles if you have circulation and reader-per-copy estimates.

Wednesday, July 25, 2001 #4607
Hi ! Two questions 1. how do you decide which cume (1wk or 13 wk or 52 wk etc) to choose. 2. where can I find the details of the ostrows grid actual one with the scales etc. Thanks and regards

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 25, 2001 ):
1. Four week R&F is standard. Otherwise, if you need to examine a specific time period related to your marketing, use the closest cume.

2. The Ostrow model aims at establishing the minimum level of frequency to be deemed effective so that the plan can maximize reach at that level of frequency. The model can be traced back to his speech, "Effective Frequency" at an Advertising Research Foundation Key Issues workshop, June 4, 1982.

Typically, the model involves evaluating a series of relevant factors on a scale of say, 2 to 6, and averaging the factors to determine the appropriate level of frequency to set as effective.

In the 1982 speech the factors discussed were of three kinds: marketing, message / creative and media.


  • Established brand vs new entry
  • Brand share
  • Brand loyalty
  • Purchase cycle
  • Usage cycle
  • Share of voice
  • Target group learning capacity

Message / Creative

  • Complexity
  • Uniqueness
  • New vs continuing campaign
  • Image building vs specific sell
  • Message variation (copy pool)
  • Wear out
  • Copy unit size/length


  • Clutter
  • Editorial / program environment
  • Attentiveness
  • Continuity vs flighting
  • Number of different media
  • Repeat exposure opportunities

For the full speech, the transcript proceedings of the workshop are available from the Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Tuesday, July 24, 2001 #4603
I was wondering if you have any ideas were I may be able to find some sort of template for RFPs that involve media buying like requesting C.P.P. or reach & frequency? We have been working on many media bids for a department of the state and they do not request specific media numbers so the media buyers are only submitting the information that makes their plan look the most favorable. We wanted to reccommend something to them so the comparison of the different agency plans would be more like comparing apples to apples. Thank you for any help

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 24, 2001 ):
First we need to distinguish between requesting plans and requesting buy proposals.

A media plan is a document that details what media should be used at what budgets, to accomplich sets of objectives and strategies which meet advertsing objectives set for the planners. If you are soliciting media paln proposals, you should be setting advertising objectives and asking for plans to meet them. Some judgement in addition to quantitative comparison will be appropriate. You could use the relevant portion of the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan as an outline of what is to be included in proposals reveived.

If, however, the media plan is completed and you are taking proposals on media buys, that is what stations, newspapers, magazines, etc fulfil the plan, that the analysis might be simply numerical, as long as all meet the plan's specs, which should be in your rfp.

Beware of comparing reach and frequency analyses that have been created by different software, and are not therefore comparable.

Monday, July 23, 2001 #4599
I'm trying to find out the national inbound, outbound and in market spending to determine how much is being spent in each of the below markets: Atlanta Boston Chicago NY Dallas Houston LA San Francisco Do you know what the best resource would be?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 24, 2001 ):
Your best resource is probably CMR (Competitive Media Reports), but there are going to be issues around rules and definitions of terms:

Does "inbound" mean purchases of media which reach audiences within the market or media that are owned within the market? Think of superstations.

Does outbound mean placements by agencies based in the market or by buyers based in the market or advertisers based in the market? How do you account for Dallas activity of an advertiser corporation with headquarters in Boston using an AOR agency based in New York that places buying regionally from an Atlanta office?

Thursday, July 19, 2001 #4594
Hi Guru, I have a set of queries: 1. What is the difference between program reach and program TVR. 2.How can reach curves be used in planning media 3.What skills apart from negotiation does a media buyer need 4. The gross weight of a tv plan can be a. sum of all spot tvrs b. product of 1+ reach and average ots of the entire plan These values for the same plan are not always equal- why? 5. Why dont u allow advertising on your site? How do you make money from your website currently Please let me know Thanks Ajit

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 19, 2001 ):
Your terminology is a bit different from US usage, but with given assumptions the Guru's answers are as follows:
  1. Assuming "TVR" is rating, program reach and rating are identical for a single ad unit. reach and ratings accumulate differently because reach discounts audience duplication from one ad unit to the next.
  2. As an example, reach curves show where the reach added by additional advertising in the same medium diminishes and a new medium should be added to the mix to optimize the effect of more spending.
  3. Aside from negotiating skills, a buyer needs good communication skills to convey the benefits of his buys. Otherwise, the skills are the same as any for business, perhaps emphasizing math.
  4. Assuming again that "TVR" is ratings and that "average ots" is average frequeuncy of exposure, then the sum of tvrs must equal the product of 1+ reach and average ots. Any tiny difference will be rounding.
  5. Of course AMIC accepts advertising! Ads do not appear on the Guru's "current answers" page, because it is dynamically generated by scripts, from a data base.

Wednesday, July 18, 2001 #4590
I know there comes a point of diminishing return on advertising investment. What is the maximum reach you can obtain through media advertising considering that some people may be out of the country or unreachable do to unfortunate health issues?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 18, 2001 ):
The Guru has always made it a policy not to report reaches higher than 98%.

Tuesday, July 10, 2001 #4565
Thank you for an invaluable service. Help!! A client wants to know how many times they should advertise in a publication to get effective reach? He wanted to know if there is a good rule of thumb? Is there anything like that? I tend to think that this number is different depending on the size of the target audience. How would you detemine an effective reach level for a trade plan/publication? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 11, 2001 ):
An old planner's rule of thumb in consumer publications was 4 times per year in a monthly and once a month in a weekly.

The Guru doesn't see a reason why effective reach should depend on the target. Factors like competitive climate, clutter, product interest, complexity of message all seem more relevant. At any rate, "effective reach" is about how many times the target is exposed to a message. If you are working in a narrow trade arena, where the authoritativeness of the book is crucial to your effectiveness, you'll make a book-by-book decision, not work from a rule of thumb.

Tuesday, July 10, 2001 #4564
Hi Guru! I am looking for any statistics on the use of piggybacked :30s (to make one :60) in radio and :15s (to make one :30) in TV to increase awareness/ effectiveness. Does this technique help?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 11, 2001 ):
The Guru doesn't follow your reasoning. Are you expecting that repeating a :15 twice in thirty seconds will have more effectiveness ore build more awarness than stand-alone :15s at the same budget or more than whole :30s at that budget?

Pairs of piggy-backed :15s in TV will no doubt yield less awareness than stand-alone :15s, because the reach will be less. As to effectiveness, you need to define that in terms of awareness, intent to purchase, sales results etc. Pairs of piggy backed :15s versus whole :30's would yield the same reach. There might be more awareness because of the apparent error, but there will be reduced message content.

For research try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Monday, July 09, 2001 #4563
Increasing Budget and Web Response: Is there research showing that if I double (triple, whatever) an overall promotion budget to drive click-throughs on a Web site, I'll double--or more than double -- the rate? Is there a formula that can be presented to the client. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 11, 2001 ):
Like the reach curve, "response" functions are typically curvilinear, that is, once they reach a threshold level, each added dollar adds less return than the prior efforts.

As far as research that might yield a formula, try The Internet Advertising Bureau or The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Monday, July 09, 2001 #4562
Dear Guru, Our client has asked me to produce a "payout scenario" that they would be able to expect in sales based on a national plan that I have done for them. I don't know what the creative will look like because it is done in house. How can I calculate the sales potential of a media plan? Thanks again.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, July 11, 2001 ):
Except in direct reposnse scenarios with considerable past history, this can only be very approximate. Try the following steps:
  • What percent of the target will buy the product over the period of the plan if there is no plan?
  • What percent of persons will you reach at effective levels during the plan?
  • What percent of non-target persons will buy the product over the period of the plan if there is no plan?
  • What percent of non-target persons will you reach at effective levels during the plan?
  • Can you assume that current non-users will be moved to purchase by exposure to the plan?

Of course a lot depends on whether the advertising is aimed at new-user trial, increasing use among currentusers, using up, etc.

Once you have all these assumptions organized, then comparing the value of projected added sales to the cost of advertising leads to payout estimates.

Sunday, July 08, 2001 #4560
Dearest Guru, i'm trying to build a media plan (include its strategy for a market leader product). what do you think about put 'product purchasing cycle' is one consideration on making tv strategy? (the product has weekly-biweekly purchasing cycle). currently, the brand is using the SOV strategy (for about the last three years), but there are no significant effect on the competitor's market share. so i start to think about - i called - reach strategy. the basic idea of reach strategy is reaching as much audience in a single week. and then i arrive to R&F weekly : 3+(70%) for maintenance activity, and 4+(80%) for launching or relaunching activity. but i have a little confidence on my strategy. what do you think ?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 08, 2001 ):
Purchase cycle should be a consideration. Obvously a brand with weekly purchase calls for different support than one with quarterly purchase, or strong seasonality.

Friday, July 06, 2001 #4555
Our agency handles a lot of business to business accounts how would one go about calcualting reach and frequency for each particular business sector ex. one account makes catheters. How would you calculate in various value-added opportunities into reach and frequency like links on a site, direct mail lists etc. Thanks for the great service.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 06, 2001 ):
To calculate reach and frequency two data points are necessary:
Unduplicated audience within the target (sector, in your case) and total population for the target. The media type or unit size are not relevant; reach is pure arithmetic; relative impact and other creative judgements are separate.

It should be basic to estimate the numbers of audience for any media vehicle, site or mailing in your plan. You certainly must have an idea of the size of the sectors you are targeting. The tricky part would be estimating the duplication between advertisements. In the medical field, possibly PERQ has some useful estimates.

Once you add the gross audiecne of all your ads and eloiminate the estimated duplication, you divide by the population to determine reach.

Thursday, July 05, 2001 #4546
Dear Guru: I have recently been told that in order to determine reach and frequency accurately, it is required that the competitive set in a market be also known. For example, it costs more to get reach in a market with lots of competition than it does in a market with none. I thought that the answer would be the same regardless, i.e. that I could get a 75%/3 R&F for X$$, but that the effectiveness of the ad would be less in the market with more clutter? Can you confirm or refute?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 05, 2001 ):
The Guru endorses your position. reach calculation is only about audience accumulation and does not factor competition at all. If a station sells a news announcement with a 10 rating for $1000, it gets a 10 reach, no matter what any competitive advertiser might do. Competition could be a factoer in the cost of reach only if the competitors are so demanding of the same media inventory that the cost of the spot rises in response to demand. But this relates to demand for the commercial, whether by your competitors or buyers in an unrelated category.

So, competition has no effect on reach of a given schedule. It may indirectly and incalculably affect the cost of that schedule. As you surmise, it probably affects the impact.

Thursday, July 05, 2001 #4545
Dear Guru: I have an advertising plan for a new product launch that has a substantial reach and frequency for the first quarter of the launch. I have been asked to look at taking the second quarter down to 50% of the spending at launch, and 3rd and 4th quarters to 25% of that spending. Is there any rule of thumb that I could use to translate the relative reach and frequency at the reduced levels? For example, if I have a 90% R&F at 100%, could I assume 90% and 5 at a 50% spending level?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 05, 2001 ):
If you have the reach curves of the media you are using, you could find the coordinates for 50% or 25% of the dollars or weight vs a new reach easily.

However, different media elements, mixes and schedules develop differently. In one plan, say radio, where a heavy budget is generating added frequency for the last 50% of weight, a 50% reduction might reduce reach only 5%. In a lighter plan, or in a higher turnover medium, 50% reduction might mean 40% loss of reach.

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.

Friday, June 29, 2001 #4536

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 29, 2001 ):
Please begin by reviewing the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan.

A good media plan

  1. Sets Media Objectives to answer the marketing or advertising strategies that have been given as input
  2. Logically connects Objectives to Strategies to tactics and execution (media selections).

This means that any marketing/advertising objectives mentioned in the backgroun for the plan must be addressed by media objectives and/or strategies in the plan. Some plans go wrong by reviewing too much marketing background that isn't relative to the media decisions.

Every stated media objective must be answered by strategies aimed at meeting that objective. By the same token, every stated strategy must related to soem stated objective. For example if a strategy is to concentrate advertising in the southwest, there should be an objective to build sales in weak areas or support sales in strong areas or some such. This strategy should also be suported by sales data for regions, or whatever is relevant to the point.

Similarly, media selections should be supported by their relationship to strategies. For instance, media should not be included to "reach working women" unless some objective or strategy calls for this emphasis and shows why this is a segment meriting special support.

reach or efficiency of media or combinations should be demonstrated, if asserted, but neither should be a decison factor unless a strategy calls for it.

Thursday, June 28, 2001 #4533
What are the best media to reach government and public school employees?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 29, 2001 ):
Consult PubList

Wednesday, June 27, 2001 #4527
I have a Telmar Maestro run on M25-54 watching weekend sports. What is the difference between "Exposed (000)" and "Exposed at least (000)"? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 27, 2001 ):
Note that the first column of the run is labeled "freq" or frequency. So that each number of (000) in the columns you are asking about is in a row with a frequency number from 1 to 15 or higher. The number "exposed" is the number of persons who see exactly the specified frequency of commericals (number of spots), while "Exposed at least" is the number of persons who see that many commericals or more. "Exposed at least" to 1 frequency therefore, is equivalent to your reach.

Monday, June 25, 2001 #4515
Dear Guru, I have found out that media plans made by planners was not based on what we have learn about the concept of Marketing, and that is planning based on specific target market/segment that their clients wanted to reach. For example, a client wants to reach woman 20-45, and children 5-10 middle to upper (Social Economic Status Classification A, B). What planners will do is running ACNielsen's software combining those demographic caracteristics all together : Woman/Children/AB/5-10/20-40 to find the best media/program that would reach the highest rating and reach instead of running it separately : 1. Woman 20-40, A 2. Woman 20-39, B 3. Children 5-10, A 4. Children 5-10, B My proffesional opinion on the way planners plan, was wrong! They would end up with : 1. Combination of reach (Woman, AB 20-40, Children 5-10, AB) 2. Not knowing the exact result of how the product reach at Woman A, an B, also at Children ; not to mention the age yet! 3. A reach that is actually low for each segments, because of insufficient media selectivity. I understant that planners will not like this fact, because they would have put more effort in the future. But tell me your opinion on this ? (theoretically & proffesionally)

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 25, 2001 ):
First, as the Guru sees it, you are not thinking about a media plan, you are talking about determining the schedule of a media buy, resulting from a plan.

Once a target is determined, how to best reach that taget withing the media selected can be approached in various ways. Here you are talking about two compleletly separate targets, not levels of specificity; a group of children and a group of adult women.

One would not expect there to be programs with appeal to both groups. But if single televison homes were common in your country there could well be programs watched by mothers and children together.

Nevertheless, it should be far more effective to buy the best programs for the adult woman group and the best for the kid group than to try for programs getting both audiences. If the software to which you refer is an optimizer it would theoretically examine various programs to find the best schedule, not judge each program on its owm. The key to optimizers is especially to consider what each Added program contributes to buying goals, not each program in a vacuum. Recenf articles in the U.S. indicate that optimizers are used much more as conceptual new business-getting tools than in actual buying situations.

Friday, June 22, 2001 #4512
I am putting together a media plan for a new product. It is a new pill dispenser that is targeted to A45-64, who are active. I am trying to research consumber publications that would reach my target audience. I was thinking about Florida and Arizona as geographic target. But I am in need of finding publicatons to effectively advertise this new product. It is an Iowa based company, but we are trying to do a proof of perfomance and get the product sold. Then build a better image. What would be the nest way to go about planning this campaign?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, June 23, 2001 ):
If you target these states, presumably you are finding a concentration of the age target, because these states are retirement centers. But are "retired" people the active ones you want?

Also, you may be mostly limited to newspapers in this targeting.

Nevertheless, try MRI+

Wednesday, June 20, 2001 #4500
Dear Guru, Where can I find the report from Ron Lawrence,"Uniform Target Delivery:An Illusion,"Marketing and Media Decision,Desember 1987,in the internet?. The definition of target audience is still too vague for me because of some reason. An example : if i have a product with target audience ABC15+, and I want to find the best possible TV program to get higher reach and optimal GRP for my campaign at this target audience. Should I go directly to ABC15+ program or I go to A program first, second to B program and third to C program?. If I go to A program first, should I divided it again to Male and Female program?. This is very 'crucial' because most media planner in my country usually go directly to target audience ABC15+. Is it right or wrong?, what is strong and weakness for each methods?, where is the best methods? (go directly to ABC15+ or go to each segment first).thank/ AM-Indonesia

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 20, 2001 ):
Assuming no part of the target is more important than the rest, you will most likely buy more efficiently on the specific target. It should not be difficult to examine different scenarios. Marketing and Media Decisions has been out of business for years, but back issues might be on file at The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230. or ESOMAR, the European Survey, Opinion and Market Research Organization, or universities.

Sunday, June 17, 2001 #4492
Hi Guru - I have a few cable TV questions. 1. Can reach/frequency estimates be done for cable schedules. My rep keeps giving me everything but. 2. Does Nielen measure all cable stations. 3. Why can't I get FX numbers on Telmar, just ESPN. 4. If I can get R/F for cable what are some of the major differences from Network numbers. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 17, 2001 ):
  1. Yes they can. Some smaller networks may not have the facilities to calculate R&F, but that doesn't seem likely.
  2. Yes, but not all cable networks have enough measured audience to be considered reportable by Nielsen
  3. Telmar systems which use your own Nielsen tape data will allow you to examine any reportable network. Systems like Market Maestro, which use established generalized data can only incorporate networks old enough and large enough at the time of the system update to have establish patterns, but not all the 100+ imaginable networks
  4. Because cable ratings are a fraction of broadcast ratings, and turnover is less, cable reaches cume lower in relation to GRPs. SInce cable universes are smaller than broadcast, reach potential is lower as well

Wednesday, June 13, 2001 #4485
I would like to evaluate and/or add some new execution models to my cache for our local retail clients. Models for television such as "bookends" or "roadblocks" seem to be either tired or useless these days. I realize that the efficacy of any execution depends on the goals, strategies and tactics of my plan, but would like to learn of other methods employed in other markets. Any suggestions on where I might find some other multi-media ideas for different categories of clients?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 17, 2001 ):
When you cite "bookends or roadblocks" you are talking about the finest final fine points of buying your schedules. These are simply tricks to optimize reach or frequency, and which have catchy sounding labels.

When you talk of multi-media, ideas you return your thinking to the prliminary planning level.

Cross-media promotion is the sort of approach which best fits. Start by talking to salespeople at the media conglomerates. Companies like AOL-Time Warner and Viacom, for example, have sales specialists to help you develop these approaches.

Wednesday, June 13, 2001 #4484
how to approach a media plan for automotive lubricants, where emphasis given on truck drivers, fleetowners and mechanics

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 17, 2001 ):
  • which media reach this target
  • what media environments are most effective
  • and what schedule is feasible within your budget.

Monday, June 11, 2001 #4469
Which media are recommended to test a hair growth product.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 11, 2001 ):
Media are selected primarily because they reach a desired target audience. You need to define your target of "users of hair growth products" in terms used for media measurement, such as Men 35+, for example. Then use media measurement resources like MRI to identify media which have these people in their audience in appropriate numbers or concentrations.

Additionally, such resources will directly report numbers of users of various products who use specific media.

Monday, June 11, 2001 #4468
My partner and I were asked by our clients to prepare a "communication strategy" for a government-sponsored responsible gambling strategy. We have already designed a brochure, a logo and we're currently working on their website. We've been looking for examples of a "communication strategy" but have come up empty handed. Our clients are not trying to sell something tangible but instead are trying to promote an idea - gamble responsibly. Any ideas where we can get a template or an actual communication strategy? We've looked through the archives and noted that you often refer to strategies only as a way to sell a product. Should we consider the idea of "gamble responsibly" as a product? Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 11, 2001 ):
The Guru uses the word "product" in such discussions as a generic term including prosucts, services, image campaigns, etc

"Communications strategy" is a term that can have various meanings in different contexts. In the context of a media plan, it is covers the definition of the target, media envoronments and levels of communication (reach, frequency, etc). See the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan

"Communications strategy" can have broader meanings in the context of an overall advertsing plan or marketing plan.

Thursday, June 07, 2001 #4460
Hi, I was wondering if you hace any informationa about the effectiveness of running ads - on tv screens- in supermarkets and fast food restaurants. My client would like to explore this way, in regards to reaching people in a new way, but we suffer from the lack of information in this area.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 07, 2001 ):
These concepts have been around for 25 years or more without becoming established,

Try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Wednesday, June 06, 2001 #4458
I'm working on a plan that includes cable and network television. I have been asked to present a rational for different schedules on three levels of spending. If i know the programs rating point, the average CPP and the cost per spot, how can I use this information to put together the total reach/frequency of sample schedules. I'm trying to get general information at this point without contacting reps to run several schedules. I need to know how to do the math by hand without a program if it's possible. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, June 06, 2001 ):
It's no longer really reasonable to do the math by hand. The Guru has described calculating reach by "Random probability" in the past. But the unique duplication patterns within tv schedules need to be accounted for either with tables reflecting many schedules' reaches or computer models.

Our own eTelmar offers low cost, single use, online reach calcuation.

You might try the R&F generator at U. Texas .

Monday, June 04, 2001 #4453
dear guru i am looking for a researchqor any information that refering to the reach levels needed by advertising in newspapers to diffrent categories of brands like fmcg, convenience goods, and so on , i am intresting especialy at the real estate market. thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 04, 2001 ):
Visit The Newspaper Advertising Association and The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, June 01, 2001 #4452
Hi Guru! I am currently developing a media plan for a client that is interested in reaching the hispanic population of the New york - New Jersey area. I have not been able to get a list of the newpapers aimed at hispanic audiences and their circulation. Where would you suggest I might be able to get this information?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 01, 2001 ):
AMIC affiliates include Abbott Wool's Market Segment Resources. Abbott Wool is the research and media editor of Hispanic Market Weekly. Abby's weekly articles are posted within his the site. One recent article "The Mystery of Hispanic Newspapers" discusses resources which list Spanish newspapers by market.

Friday, June 01, 2001 #4451
Hi Guru. I've read through your responses to questions relating to "reach and frequency" and "awareness", but haven't found exactly what I'm looking for. In setting up goals for a new product launch media plan, we've determined that the overall goal is to generate awareness. What we don't know is the correlation between r/f and awareness. In other words, if we know that we're gong to have an effective (3+) reach of 82.85% and a frequency of 8.63, what % of unaided awareness could we expect to achieve? Will Ostrow's effective frequency model help in this case? Is there a model / matrix used to determine awareness levels? Thanks so much.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 01, 2001 ):
Awareness does not correlate absolutely with reach. There are too many other factors, like the quality and memorability of the creative and the advertising environment. Obviously only those reached by the advertising will be aware of the advertising. But there can be wide variance in how many of those reach a given number of times can report awarness in research. Even if awareness corresponded well with reach, there could be varying results due to differences in awareness research technique. Advertisers who do a lot of awarness tracking can build reliable models for thier own use, by tracking results of comparable research studies against known R&F. Similarly, research houses which frequently field awareness studies could get reach and frequencies, for the campaigns tested, and build a model.

Thursday, May 31, 2001 #4443
Given the complexity involved with the IP addressse , how does on emeasurs the reach of the Net , especially in cases where Registartion are not required

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, June 01, 2001 ):
Registration is a site centric system and can only help with the measurement of individual sites.

reach of the net needs to be a user-centric measure such as surveys or panels with tracking software, for example Nielsen//Netratings or MediaMetrix.

Wednesday, May 30, 2001 #4441
This is in regard to automotive advertising. A schedule is bought for each franchise/product. Let's use 3 products for this question. Each schedule is a modest R/F of 65% / 3.5. The creative is one spot for each product, a "donut", the open and close are identical or have the same theme but with a different product in each of the 3 spots. All three spots run within the same flight dates. Is the reach and frequency actually greater on each product because of the "common" open and close or does the common open/close just build the "brand"?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, May 30, 2001 ):
Though there may be some synergy in brand awareness, "reach" is simple statistics. The middle of the donut reaches only those who see it.

Friday, May 25, 2001 #4428
How can I best locate the affluent hispanic community leaders and the affluent hispanic community in Los Angeles?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 25, 2001 ):
If you mean how can you reach them through media, newspaper is the typical vehicle for such a target and the daily newspaper "La Opinion" is the L.A. leader.

Other options include carefully selected TV such as KMEX and KVEA or all news KBLA-AM.

Check Scarborough for Los Angeles.

Thursday, May 17, 2001 #4412
Where can I find a template or example of Televsion buying guidelines (i.e. client dictated programming to stay out of) to give to my broadcast buyer?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 21, 2001 ):
Some advertisers have ratings minima, some have restrictions aimed at better reach, such as limiting episodes of strip programming.

Some have content restrictions, such as sex, violence, social or political issues or other controversies. In any case the details are usually treated as trade secrets and no "template" should be neccessary, just clear language. Also, since any restrictions work against efficiency, none should be used withouot good reason. For example, sometimes there is a bar against ratings below "X," on the theory that statistical tolerances will sometimes mean that rating dps to nothing. In reality, statistical tolerances swing one way as often as the other and the overall tolerance of a schedule's GRPs won't be much affected by the inclusion of some lower rated programs to make packages efficient.

Tuesday, May 15, 2001 #4404
I am an a media planner, looking for opportunities to sponsor various web site opportunties for OTC brands interested in reachng MDs. I have been looking at Medscape - a pharmaceutical consumer portal. They sell advertising space and sponsorships on their site. When we look at Media Metrix data to see traffic, and determine whether we want to advertise with them, we see a fairly low number of visitors. We are told that that is because Medscape has an alliance with AOL, and when members go through AOL to Medscape, these visitors are not included in Medscape traffic counts. Rather, they are counted towards AOL traffic. We're talking about over 1 million visitors. Is this true? How can this be addressed? Is it possible to change the way Media metrix counts these visitors or is this standard. I have asked Media Metrix for a response as well, but have not heard back from them yet. What do you think and how would you proceed to address? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 21, 2001 ):
AOL, per se, is not on the internet, it is a bulletin board service that predates the popularization of the 'net. Most members dial up directly into the AOL system. AOL provides a gateway out to the 'net for its members and there is also an site which is part of the net.

MediaMetrix, which measures internet behavior, might well be unable to track areas within the AOL system. However, it appears that when an AOL user accesses Medscape, the user is taken to the internet, to Therefore, the MediaMetrix traffic for Medscape would be complete.

With a total universe of under one million MDs in the US, traffic of one million visitors seems quite high.

Monday, May 14, 2001 #4396
Is newspaper used as a reach or frequency vehicle?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 20, 2001 ):
reach. With only one daily exposure opportunity in most cases, the frequency possibilities are far less than broadcast, online or out-of-home media.

Saturday, May 12, 2001 #4389
What would be an acceptable rate to charge for TV advertising during a horse racing simulcast? The signal reaches 255 betting locations including racetracks, casinos, and off track betting parlors.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 12, 2001 ):
You need to know the audience size. If you have advertisers who particularly want to reach bettors, perhaps a cost per thousand of $30-$40 could be charged. If the average audience per location, per commercial is 10 people or a total of 2550 people, then the cost per ad unit would be about $75 to $100. If the audience is bigger, then a proportionately higher rate is reasonable.

Saturday, May 12, 2001 #4388
dear sir, may i know what are the limitations of internet advertising!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 12, 2001 ):
Different ad units will have specific limits, but as a medium, some key limitations are:
  • Total reach: only 50% or so of any population are internet users, some groups much less, some a bit more.
  • Individual ads on specific sites have very low reach potential; a high reach schedule can be very expensive
  • Click rates are vanishly low; a problem if generating traffic, rather than awareness/branding is your goal
  • Acceptance of internet advertisng is controversial, many consumers seem to object to its presence.

Friday, May 11, 2001 #4386
Guru, can you please point me towards research on the effect of pay/cable TV in the home on channel zapping ? Specifically do more channels reduce the amount of advertising viewed ? Have you heard of an Equalisation model to account for this in reach and frequency calculations. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 12, 2001 ):
It should be simple enough to directly reduce GRPs according to any measured reduction of ad viewing versus program viewing.

For research try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, May 04, 2001 #4368
Media Guru, please help. How do I calculate reach and frequency for a two-week, two-newspaper buy? We are placing 4 ads per week (total of 8 ads for the schedule) on Newspaper #1, which has a maximum reach of 9% of our target. Newspaper #2 will carry 2 ads per week (4 ads for the schedule) with a maximum reach of 23% of our target. Please advise. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 06, 2001 ):
Find some example newspaper R&Fs at The Newspaper Advertsing Associations Marketscope site.

In very general terms, you can estimate some parameters. If newspaper A has a 9% maximum reach, it probably has a single copy reach of around 7%.

If B has a maximum of 23%, then it likely has single copy reach around 20%. So the outside bounds of reach for your schedule are a minimum of 20, but more likely closer to 25, the random combination of the two papers' single copies. The outside maximum is 32 ( the 9% plus the 23% maxima), but more likely closer to 30 (random again).

A solid estimate of 25-30 reach for your schedule should be good enough, but you could use the eTelmar pay-per-use system for a specific calculation.

Frequency, of course, will be the sum of the single copy audeinces of all insertions (GRP) ÷ the reach estimate.

Friday, May 04, 2001 #4364
When planning network television versus spot, why are the TRP's planned per week typically so much lower?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 05, 2001 ):
This may be true in some circumstances, but not as a general rule. If you look at network TV plans where TV is part of a larger media mix versus spot TV plans where TV stands alone, this might be true.

If you look at plans where there are multiple national media and spot TV is the one local medium, used to bring markets up to heavy-up or "ideal" weights, this might be true.

If you look at national plans, which are more often for package goods or other national consumer products, where reach and continuity are emphasized, vesus retail or promotional local plans where totla noise level over specific periods is more valued, then again you might find the situation you describe.

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.

Monday, April 30, 2001 #4348
Have a client that questioned the use of Recency planning for a packaged goods product launch in spot market television. I've read all questions/answers from 2000 in the archives and found it curious that no one questioned the fact that the levels used for standard recency planning of 60-80 TRPs per week refer to MEDIUM EXPOSURE not ADVERTISING EXPOSURE. Considering that probably only 40% of the commercial message will even register, aren't these levels low (clutter factor), even if they are spread across multiple weeks (in this case 9)?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 01, 2001 ):
A: Medium exposure is the readily available planning metric.

B: Recency has been keyed to measured results from media exposure levels.

C: The media exposure levels referenced in Recency are -- and this is important -- reach, not GRP. The reach threshhold is thought to be about 30 - 35, which might tie to various GRP levels, depending on media mix.

D: If best sales success is tied to sustained reach minima of 35, then that is the metric to connect with. The fact that the less readily available ad exposure or attentiveness-weighted GRPs are some other number is an artifact of the process, not a contradiction to the theory.

Friday, April 27, 2001 #4347
What incremental level of brand awareness can feasibly be generated by a TV and Internet buy as opposed to a TV only buy?. i.e. will adding an online component to media buy help to build better brand awareness?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 29, 2001 ):
It depends, among other things,
  • On the current level of brand awareness
  • On the level of awareness among internet users
  • On the levels of the media used
  • On the reach obtained in each medium

In short, this question needs to be very much more specific to answer usefully. But key facts are that TV has reach potential better than 95% and internet only about 50%. Thus with no budget limits, TV could add enough awareness so that any added benefit of internet might well be immeasurable. At some budgets, internet contribution could be significant.

Thursday, April 26, 2001 #4345
Are there any accessable studies showing the enhanced reach and frequency by using a media mix of direct mail in conjunction with targeted b-to-b print advertising, rather than direct mail and email only?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 27, 2001 ):
Obviously email has a limited audience potential and many business people have developed filters to avoid such spam.

For studies, try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Tuesday, April 24, 2001 #4340
What is the Best advertsing method for the country of Irland? I need information on Irland's advertising expenditures thank you

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 27, 2001 ):
There is no one best advertising method anywhere where ther are tow methods. It always depends on goals. One medium might have the best reach, another the best efficiency and still another some required format or flexibility.

MediaMonitoring offers ad expenditure info.

Monday, April 23, 2001 #4336
Hi GURU. On what target group should I focus my online store in special spices spices from all over the world? And how can I reach them with a low marketing budget? Thanks in advance! Greetings, Ruud.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 25, 2001 ):
Use MRI or Simmons to learn who cooks from scratch as a target.

Depending on how small your budget is, you can consider small space ads in cooking magazines or on cooking-related sites.

Thursday, April 12, 2001 #4326
What is the definition of effective reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 15, 2001 ):
Click here to see numerous Guru responses defining and discussing effective reach.

Thursday, April 12, 2001 #4324
Dear Guru, we are working on a sort of educational document for an important client. What we have in mind is: what should the ideal media briefing look like, som basic media terms (GRP, OTS, coverage,...), what is the difference between strategic and tactical planning, media-memorisation, ... I was wondering if you have some examples of such documents that could give us an idea of such a presentation. Thanks for your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 12, 2001 ):
To determine the right media briefing, you must know your audience:
  • What do they already know?
  • What do they want to know?
  • What do they need to know for future interactions?

From the syntax of your query, you seem to use British media terms (like OTS, rarely heard in the U.S.), but your email address is in Belgium. Therefore the Guru is hesitant to try to list the media terms most relevant for your needs. As a broad guide, see the Guru's Parts of a Media Plan and the Guru's Media Terms, keeping in mind that these are often U.S. - specific.

You may click here to see past Guru discussion of strategy versus tactics but briefly, tactics are specific courses of action taken to implement strategies. For example using TV is a tactic to achieve a strategy of attaining high reach towards and awareness-building objective.

Wednesday, April 11, 2001 #4323
Dear Media Guru, my client is a massive audience tabloid newspaper that needs to sell advertisement. Up to now, its excesive mass profile has been a problem in selling ad space to poweful brands. What kind of campaigns to the advetisers and the media agencies do you recomend? How can I keep the newspaper in their top of mind? Could you help me with outstanding campaigns? Cecilia

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 15, 2001 ):
Pure size should not be a problem for major, reach-oriented brands. Perhaps it's your demographics. But these are marketing and not media problems.

It's no secret that advertisers and media planners can be reached in trade media like AdWeek / MediaWeek. Something more targeted like our own AMIC might also be effective.

Sunday, April 08, 2001 #4318
Dear Guru : Please help me, my companie is looking for a new softaware supporters, one of these is Steve Perry in London, another is Telmar. Plase give me a phone,fax or email of Steve Perry software consultant based in London

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 10, 2001 ):
Acording to our sources in London:

"Steve Perry used to work at IMS, he writes systems for TV reach and frequency. He has now sold his company SPC to BMRB and moved to South America."

Thursday, April 05, 2001 #4315
which kind of programs tend to develop large reach and high frequency? Sarwar -Lintas

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 09, 2001 ):
Generally, programs which are more different in content from one episode to the next, and thus are more likely to draw a different audience, each time get high reach.

In the U.S. this has meant programs like prime time, feature movies, a fading genre.

Of course, GRP for GRP, the higher the reach the lower the frequency. Therefore in media planning, a mix is used if the goal is to optimize both reach and frequency.

Sunday, April 01, 2001 #4303
If a TV prg. were measured for 52 weeks consecutively what would the shape of the reach curve for that program probably look like

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 01, 2001 ):
Generally, it would start at the program's rating, rise through 4 or 5 or so episodes to perhaps double, and be nearly flat from there on. Strip programming rises less, weekly movies or other variable appeal programming rises more.

Thursday, March 29, 2001 #4295
We are doing research for a media plan and we can't find the reach and frequency numbers for any of our magazines, newspapers, and television shows. Is there someplace that we can look that can give us the reach and frequency with out us having to pay a subscription fee?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 29, 2001 ):
Individual ad's reach can be found in some places, like our own AMIC's Ad Data. In these cases frequency always = 1.0.

For various specific schedules, it's not reasonable to expect all the infinite possibilities to be posted anywhere; this calls for calculations by software with a price attached.

For inexpensive, single use, pay-as-you-go software, visit eTelmar.

Tuesday, March 20, 2001 #4275
How can I find research regarding historical analysis of R/F trend on television. Specifically, I am looking to find out for example: if you looked at a generic demo maybe W18-49, and wanted to find out the difference between the number of spots in Primetime TV it took to reach 80% of W18-49 in 1970-1980-1990-2000. So basically, the idea is that today it takes more commercials to reach the same % of the population. I just need help finding actual numbers to support that concept. Would know where to find that information?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 20, 2001 ):
Since today's average primetime ratings are perhaps half of what they were in 1970, it certainly will take at least twice as many spots for the same reach.

R&F systems have changed over that time, too, so you should really compare the schedule a planner thought necessary in 1970 to the one considered necessary today. Planners will have been more likely to work with GRP than number of commercials, though.

Perhaps there is such a retrospective available from The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Tuesday, March 20, 2001 #4273
Dear Guru, Can you guess at an estimated reach for a 4-week radio schedule at 150 TRP/WK (W2554)? Also, do you happen to know the formula for manually figuring reach/frequency? Thanks for your help!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 20, 2001 ):
The formulas for radio reach are enormously complex and must take into account number of stations, daypart mix, average rating and other variables.

Your 600 GRP schedule might generate (roughly) from 35 to 70 reach, depending on these variables.

Click here to see past Guru responses abourt calculating reach.

Monday, March 19, 2001 #4266
What is the best way to do a spot cable radio analysis?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 20, 2001 ):
Compare the facts you want to compare: geographic coverage, rating, cpm, cpp, reach, impact, etc.

Monday, March 19, 2001 #4262
Hi there I am a media planner from India and would like to know the various mass media options to reach Non-Resident Indians in the UK Where would I find information of this nature ? Thanks Regards Desperately Seeking NRIs

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 20, 2001 ):
This seems a rather difficult target. Try contacting travel services in India dealing with the UK for suggestions.

Thursday, March 15, 2001 #4257
Mi, If i am putting together a radio schedule what would the ideal reach be? For any buy, any market? is it 60%?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 16, 2001 ):
There is no such ideal.
  • What will the budget buy?
  • Are there other media in the plan?
  • Is reach the goal or effective reach or frequency?
  • What is the reach potential in the market?
  • For the target?
Why settle for 60 when for some targets 90 is readily attainable.

Thursday, March 15, 2001 #4255
Hello - We are trying to reach- on a national basis - people who have recently been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease, or the loved ones/caregivers of these people. Do you have any suggestions for media in hospitals, pharmacies, treatment centers, etc - that would be available to purchase on a national basis? Thank you for your attention.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 15, 2001 ):
Try PubList

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 13, 2001 #4250
My ad agency is putting together a media plan for a client. Currently, the client is spending about 15% on radio and 85% budget on broadcast television. I am recommending a combination of radio, cable and broadcast. I am trying to show a combined reach and frequency. I am able to do this for radio and broadcast tv with my media software. How can I add in the reach and frequency of cable (since universes are different)? My cable rep says she can enter my entire schedule (broadcast & cable) to come up with reach and frequency. Is this possible? Won't I be neglect in showing reach to those HH without cable???Please respond ASAP. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 13, 2001 ):
The Guru can recall when some managers opposed the introduction of computers because people would no longer know basic media math.

Keep in mind that the real story is how many people you reach. Once you determine that, it is simple arithmetic to express that number as a percentage of a target group, as we are used to seeing reach.

It is also standard to show reach within the cable universe and in the remaining U.S. For example, you might show that you reached 75% of the cable universe and 60% of the remaing U.S.

And. . . if the cable universe is 80% of the U.S. then your average U.S. reach is 72%

0.8 x 75
+ 0.2 x 60 =

Thursday, March 08, 2001 #4247
Dear Media Guru, I have a client who is interested in an advertising campaign to change the public's opinion of them. I would like to know what would be more effective, a sustained low frequency campaign over an 18 month period or a short 3 month flight with both high reach and high frequency. The budget level is the same either way. The goal is at the end of the 18 month period, the target market should have a MUCH better opinion of the the client. I revere your expertise and look forward to your answer.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 13, 2001 ):
The simplest answer is that if you run a heavy, three month schedule, and then measure target opinion 15 months later, your message is likely to be all but forgotten.

If you spread your schedule over the entire 18 months then you will probably be in a better position at month 18.

A good compromise is probably a brief -- possibly one month -- schedule to establish presence and sustaining spread over the 18 months. Since you appear to be focused solely on image rather than sales, some flighting should not be a problem.

Wednesday, March 07, 2001 #4243
Media guru, hopefully you can help me. I am trying to obtain definitions for the following. These phrases get thrown around so often here, but I am not completely sure what they mean; 1) Media strategy? 2) Communications strategy - how does it differ from media strategy? 3) Brand communications as opposed to advertising? Appreciate the help.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 13, 2001 ):
You are right that these phrases get thrown around loosely. Part of the problem is that they have common English meanings and another is that, like many advertising terms, they have different meanings in various English speaking countries.

Looking "from the top down" may help understanding. First of all, generally "strategies" are courses of action designed to meet objectives.

  • Marketing objectives are big overall goals like increasing sales 10% per year.
  • A marketing strategy aimed at meeting this objective this objective might be to use consumer advertising.
  • An advertising objective within this marketing strategy could be to increase trial of the brand.
  • An advertising strategy within this could be a budget for consumer media.
  • A media objective under this strategy could call for building awareness among a new target segment.
  • Media strategies to achieve this objective might include a communications strategy of achieving X% reach in each four week period at a minium of Y average frequency

Brand communications is a broad concept including all messages delivered to consumers and trade via advertising, promotion, public relations, etc.

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.

Saturday, February 24, 2001 #4204
what is and how do you use television optimization

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, February 25, 2001 ):
TV optimization is a process by which the best schedule of possible spots to acheive a specific goal is selected. It may be best reach against the target or other measured aspects of TV audience.

The process is executed by proprietary, multivariate computer models.

One example is Telmar's TRANSMIT.

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.

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, February 16, 2001 #4187
Dear GURU.... I am in the process of developing a business plan for a start-up internet company. I have reached a bit of a wall... I am trying to find a way to put together an est. budget for on-line advertising as a liability and also as a source of revenue... Any ideas where I can get some ideas? Or do you have any numbers in mind... what is costs to advertise, and what to expect to earn. Thank you, Joe R.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, February 19, 2001 ):
Visit Ad Resource

Wednesday, February 14, 2001 #4180
Hi! Dear Guru thank you for your last ansewrs! How do You think is it possible to estimate budget/GRP limit with wich there is no sence to advertise on TV (ad. cmp. will be lost in ad.clutter). Or there is no any limits at all? For instance could 10 spots placed in prime-time on national channel(with av. rating 10%)give some results? Spasibo!(means thank you in russian).

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 14, 2001 ):
Any advertising has some effect. There is a threshhold of awareness where a noticable difference in consumer response occurs.

Some say those exposed more than three times respond noticably more. Others speculate that once the three exposure threshold is past, continuous exposure wit a reach of 30+ per week is the key to sales.

Your 100 GRP schedule is a good starting point.

Monday, February 12, 2001 #4174
Dear Guru. I was wondering who I should build up frequncy and reach, for a company in the financial sector, were the target is both, individuals and businesses. Should I plan for a week, or a month? What would be the minimum GRP needed..or maximum? Is TV the primary media?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 14, 2001 ):
Not enough information given to say TV should be primary. Generally, TV will not be efficient for a business target. Some financial cable may be efficient but won't meet the entire reach goal.

There are numerous considerations in setting levels. Click here to see past Guru responses about establishing levels.

Tuesday, February 06, 2001 #4162
Hallo, Dear Media Guru! Can You please help me to solve the following problems:

1 - I know that my TVcmp should get effective reach of 50% with effective frequency 4+. How can I get(count) the number of GRP I need to buy and TRP I need to reach?

2 - what concrete methods do can You recommend to define the levels of reach&frequency for concrete product's/brand's TV cmp. Thak you a lot.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, February 07, 2001 ):
The Guru is not clear as to what distinction you are trying to make regarding GRP and TRP.

To determine the GRP/TRP needed to achieve a specific reach / effective frequency goal, you need a media software like that provided by Telmar or eTelmar.

Click here to see past Guru discussion about establishing levels.

Tuesday, February 06, 2001 #4161
Dear Guru: Where could I find a complete explanation about the Sainsbury Method? Thanks in advance

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, February 06, 2001 ):
Sainsbury was a media researcher in England. The "Sainsbury method" you refer to was probably his adjustment to TV reach to acount for understatement of duplication between TV dayparts in the basic statistical procedure used 30 years ago.

More detail should be available from The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Monday, February 05, 2001 #4156
Dear Guru, We are preparing for launch to a Parking Meter project, and i need to know which are the best medium to use in the media plan to (People takes a ticket from it and park their cars where the meter is installed. Its a new project in our country and people never saw such a thing so we need to educate them and announce that there will be a number of parking meters installed in specific areas, and who doesn't have a ticket and parked the car next to the parking meter will take a fine). There are no competitives as it is the first company who is doing this. Appreciating your reply A.S.A.P Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, February 06, 2001 ):
"Best media" in your case will depend on what media are consumed by your target people in your country. Unfortunately the Guru is not very familair with media audiences in your country (Jordan).

You should define who is most likely to be the driver parking in the geographic area where the meters will be located and then find media which efficiently reach that sort of person.

Friday, February 02, 2001 #4153
Dear Guru- What is the best way to Geo target online? The client wants to do a test in two markets, and he wants it to be translatable nationally. He does not want to buy any local or newspaper sites. Geo-targeting through doubleclick seems to have problems becasue of the AOL situation. Do you have any suggestions? Are there any other web-based ways I can reach a specific market (e.g., advertising in downloaded software geo-targeting by product registration?) Thanks for your help as always.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, February 03, 2001 ):
Broadly, there are only two web-based ways to geo-target.

1. The site somehow detects the location of the visitor, for example by registration records or IP address. Or

2. You advertise on sites with a local appeal.

You have acknowledged the problem with #1, and ruled out #2. Your though about advertising in downloaded software (PKZip, Eudora, or Infogate perhaps?) would possibly have too small an audience.

The AOL problem is that sites' servers don't recognize the specific user's geography for AOL's Virginia-based internet entry points. So you would miss out on advertising to the many AOL users. But the Guru believes that AOL can sell you advertising to their userswithin their system, based on user geography. This would fill your AOL user gap.

Tuesday, January 30, 2001 #4137
Please help. One of my clients started a TV campaign YESTERDAY and wants to know why sales haven't gone through the roof yet. Where can I find research explaining R/F, etc. to help him answer this question? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 31, 2001 ):
This is not a matter of reach and frequency, just common sense.

If first day schedules usually put sales 'through the roof' why would anyone ever advertise all week or for several weeks?

Look at your GRP per day: is it perhaps as many as 20? If so, perhaps day one's schedule reached 12 or 15% of your target.

What's a reasonable proportion of those exposed to your message just one time immediately wanting to buy that day (assuming killer creative)? 1% as a generous estimate? Thus on day one, if there were one-tenth of one percent of the target as new customers, that would be a raging success. Over the course of the first week, more of those who heard it on day one may get around to buying, plus those from day 2,3, etc. Plus those who hear it 3 times by day 3 or four may finally become persuaded.

If you are doing direct response, you might expect the build to be flatter and resonse to be more immediate.

Saturday, January 27, 2001 #4129
Dear Guru, I'm looking for information concerning Fair Share in television. Is there any other way to tell how much % one should invest in a television channel? Since the Fair Share formula is taking the amount of breaks one channel has into account, the more breaks a channel has the more % of the media budget will go to this channel. So even if a channel has let's say 30% of bad breaks (not viewed by the audience) this channel will score good in terms of Fair Share. What's your opinion on this? Thanks in advance!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, January 28, 2001 ):
The Guru does not support buying based on stations' share of viewing. This practice undercuts the point of negotiation. If a station sales person thinks he/she is entitled to "X" share of your budget, then the incentive is to keep unit prices high.

It is even less logical to reward a station for having more inventory, which is a disincentive to viewing.

Share might be a starting point. Efficiency, reach/rating and composition should be essential adjuctments from there, and number of breaks of little or no impact.

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 #4123
Hello. Hoping you are able to answer this sooner than later. . . I am trying to generate a ratio that compared the CPP (across Dayparts in Tampa and Orlando) among total people compared to a CPP among the just the Hispanic population. I do not work for an agency or have the $ or consistent need for a service like SQAD. Hoping that you are aware of some "rule of thumb" that gets at an average difference between the two populations in terms of what it costs to reach them at different intervals of the day (ON TELEVISION). Thank you very much!

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, January 26, 2001 ):
There is no rule of thumb here. The markets you're looking at do not have Hispanic audience measurement, so GRP can't be calculatd hence CPP won't exist. If you are thinking about the Hispanic audience of the General Market TV stations, than a rule of thumb could exist if there were measurement. But if you are thinking of comparing CPP of Hispanic TV to General Market TV, these are two independent media and no specific, predictive relationship would exist, even if there were measurement. If there were then buying experience or SQAD could offer ratios from past buys.

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.

Thursday, January 18, 2001 #4107
Dear Guru, I am writing from Istanbul,Turkey.I have two questions. 1. Would it be a good idea to place tv commercials on Monday, Wednesday and Friday one week, and Tuesday, Thursday and Friday next week. And repeating this cycle for three months. Since the product is a FMCG, I want to keep Fridays continiously so that just before weekend shoping our ads will continiously be in front of the consumers. Is this a wise use of alternating technique? This way I am hoping to have more effective frequency on three days of a week but leaving the four other days "empty". What's your opinion and guggestion? 2. As we all know, GRP =FREQUENCY X RATING. Therefore, it doesn't take the length or size of the ad into account. In other words, the GRP for a 10" commercial is considered equal to the GRP of a 45" commercial, which is not fair. There must be a way that doesn't ignore the length or size of the ad and reflects it , one way or the other to the final GRP figure. What do you think about this problem? Do you know any solution? Thank you very much for your kind assistance. Muammer Oztat

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 18, 2001 ):
Concentrating on Fridays may be beneficial, but the Guru thinks the other alternation is insignificant.

Regarding GRPs, "fairness" is not a media concept. In some calculations, such as reach, they are a way of counting people, not impact, and GRPs are simply headcounts. In other situations it is common for planners to make adjustment to GRPs for schedule comparisons. These adjustments may be based on commerical length, daypart attentiveness or other factors.

Wednesday, January 17, 2001 #4103
When was the last time the reach & Frequency Curve was updated? And what is the significance of that?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 17, 2001 ):
reach, as we use it, is a mathematical calculation, based on average performance of actual schedules similar to the ones for which we are trying to estimate audience accumulation for a plan. A large number of actual schedules are evaluated from survey research such as Nielsen. Because reach is a factor of duplication, as a schedule grow in size, the reach added by each increment is less and less. When reach is graphed against an axis of GRP or insertions or dollars, an asymptotic "curve" like the one below, is drawn. The actual formula which descibes this graphic curve is what is in reach evaluation software. Typically it is a regression of the frequencies vs GRP levels, because frequency, too, is linear.

The Guru imagines you are thinking of TV reach, but could be referring to radio, magazines, or internet, etc. There are different "curves" for any given medium / daypart / demographic / mix situation. If you use Nielsen actual data, the "curves" are -- in effect -- continuously updated. If you use other media software like Telmar or its competitors, you need to ask your representative how recent their update of formulae is. Curves based on reach vs GRP are not very variable over time unless there is a major change in the medium.

For example, Telemundo's Hispanic TV reach system "STRETCH2," was updated in 1998 (by running new Nielsen actual schedules), 5 years after its introduction . There was no significant change in reaches.

But looking at general TV reach curves from the days before cable was significant, versus today's would show big differences.

Tuesday, January 16, 2001 #4101
Dear Guru, I am a print planner trying to evaluate national network radio proposals. Other than CPM, what other criteria can I use to compare various proposals? Any advice you can give me about evaluating and negotiating this buy will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, January 17, 2001 ):
All the same standards as you would use in print can apply:

Coverage, composition, reach contribution, content/environment, value added/merchandising, etc.

Monday, January 08, 2001 #4087
Guru, First off, just wanted to let you know that I find this to be one of the most usefull sites on the web - as a management consultant in need of a crash course on media planning, the information found in these pages has proven invaluable...Now, on to my question: I am working on the launch of a branded consumer services play (auto related), and am trying to build a marketing budget from the bottom up, rather than as a strict % of sales. I have modeled an overly simplified media plan, and am looking for guidance on placeholders to use for weights (TRP) for TV and Radio, # of weekly inserts for newspaper, and showing level for outdoor. I know there are numerous factors and considerations I am leaving out (I know the GURU doesn't like sweeping generalizations), but I need a place to start. Goal: generate "substantial awareness" (think Midas, Maaco). Thanks for your insights.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, January 11, 2001 ):
The Guru thanks you for the compliments.

Keep in mind that while "substantial awareness" may be a snappy phrase for discussion of plans, you need to quantify such a term in order to quantify the building blocks of getting there.

Let's suppose we decide the goal is 80% ad awareness among the target within a given campaign period. Therefore, your advertising must reach at least 80% of the target in that period, with enough frequency for the message to penetrate and stick, let's say at least three times.

Now, you can calculate that generating that reach in TV will call for a certain number of TRP (you can use the media software at eTelmar for calculations). Or you can examine getting that reach with radio or a combination of TV and radio.

Outdoor will generate high reach more efficiently than either, with a #25 showing, but outdoor's necessary simplicity of message may not stand alone in filling your needs.

Newspaper has its own contribution and you need to judge from a marketing perspective whther you need a small store-locator ad every day, a full page branding message once a week, or some other approach, if any.

Wednesday, December 27, 2000 #4068
Hi Guru I want to know if there is a software in the market that you can proyect awarness based on your grp goals? Last month I saw something like that but I do not know were can I have. I will appreciate your help.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, December 29, 2000 ):
There may be software purporting to do this. The Guru would expect reach to be more relevant than GRP. The Guru would be quite dubious of any such simple, all purpose, solution.

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.

Wednesday, December 20, 2000 #4058
What is net reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, December 21, 2000 ):
Net reach is the number of different people exposed to the advertising.

I.e. Your first commercial may have a target rating of 10, which means it reaches 10% of the target. The second commercial might have a rating of 8, reaching 8% of the target. But some of the people reached by the second commercial will duplicate some of those reached by the first. If half of the 8% in the second commercial duplicate people reached by the first, then the net reach is 14%; the first 10% plus the unduplicated 4% in the second.

Thursday, December 14, 2000 #4044
Hi Guru, it's the media buyer w/ little broadcast resources again (other than you). Can you tell me how to find out cable providers in a specific market and the percentage of HHs they reach? As always, thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, December 18, 2000 ):
Again, try Katz Media Group or perhaps the Cable TV Ad Bureau

Wednesday, December 13, 2000 #4041
My question is regarding print measurement. For a consumer print campaign (magazines, regional) I've been asked to provide a pithy statement (to be read by a board of directors with limited marketing savvy) adressing the effectiveness of the proposed print campaign. Our account planner asked for reach and frequency, which I don't believe I can provide. I can provide circulation and readership (which would equate to reach, I believe, but that doesn't account for duplication). I am to complete the sentence "This plan results in..." Am I missing something? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, December 17, 2000 ):
You have not made clear why you believe you cannot provide reach and frequency. Once you have the readership of individual publications you can begin to combine their audiences in a rough way, by "random probability." This method will understate duplication somewhat, because related publications and particularly multiple issues of the same publication duplicate more than merely randomly. Using duplication between simialr national magazines, as documented by services like MRI, you can reasonable estimate the duplication in your own schedule and thereby estimate your reach and frequency.

Wednesday, December 06, 2000 #4020
I gave a client a R&F for two years of advertising plus the cume. They asked me if the cume is an average of both years. I know its not but I really couldn't explain it so they would understand. Can you simply an answer.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 06, 2000 ):
The term "cume" refers to audience accumulation over a specified period of time. A two year cume should be the net audeince reached over the entire two years of campaign. The Guru doesn't see why anyone should confuse that with an average of two years' cumes.

Perhaps the confusion occurs when you say "R&F for two years of advertising plus the cume." Presumably the "R&F for two years of advertising" is the average 4-week R&F over the two year period and the cume is the total over the two years?

Tuesday, December 05, 2000 #4018
What are the pros/cons of 30 minute infomercial-type spots compared to :15, :30, or :60 spots with respect to production, unit cost, response, reach/frequency, target audience, etc.? Would the type of product be a factor in deciding whether to run :30 minute spots? Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, December 06, 2000 ):
The questions are essentially direct marketing issues, but as to the media points included:
  • Unit cost: In the same time periods, :30s cost about half of :60s. :15s cost 50-75% as much as :30s. Half hours cost much more but not proportionatly more. This become tricky, because half hours are usually only sold at less popular, lowere price tiems so comparisons to standard, ROS commercials are decieving. Similarly short commercials bought at direct response rates are supposedly priced at half of normal rates but run in less desirable times and are highly pre-emptible.
  • reach/frequency: A :15 spot has the same reeach as a 30 minute program at the same time. Since there will be many more different announcements with short commercials than half hours, for a given budget, the short commercials have better R&F, the shorter the better on this score. But direct response isn't usually evaluated on an R&F basis.
  • Target audience depends on time slot and not advertising length.
  • Response varies, based more on offer and execution than on format.

Friday, December 01, 2000 #4009
I handle a small investment advisor service client who's target is super affluent. They currently have decent awareness on the east coast but are virtually unknown on the west in LA where they just opened an office. They gave us a $1MM budget and we told them to use local cable on financial networks/programs, & other networks which generally reach a more affluent audience(A&E, Bravo, Golf Channel, etc). They are not convinced that TV will help them penetrate the market and assist with sales calls. Is there any way to convince them that TV is the best and most effective offensive media based on budget and awareness concerns. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 02, 2000 ):
You should start with a comparison of target compostion of all the options. Almost anyone accepts tv as the most impactful medium, all else aside. Financial networks are appropriate. However, some print will be far more authoritative than simply affluent cable networks. Wall St. Journal, Barron's, Financial Times, etc.

Thursday, November 30, 2000 #4005
What are the strengths and weakenesses of using a :30 television spot vs. a :10 television spot. And vice- versa?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, December 02, 2000 ):
The sole advantage of a :10 is that it is cheaper than a :30, usually about half the price. This advantage may be turned into added frequency and reach.

But it is a message that may be half --or less -- as effective.

:10s are not as freely available so using the added frequency potential may not be realistic. :15's are the more commonly available short form.

Monday, November 27, 2000 #3993
A client has asked for information pertaining to the level of advertising required to increase awareness and positively affect the perception of their company on an on-going basis. Is there a source for information regarding required grp levels for radio and television to maximize awareness. Our client is based in Phoenix, Arizona, with an interest in statewide coverage?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 29, 2000 ):
Awareness relates most to the reach and frequency of a plan. You must reach more people more often to increase awareness. You must reach more people than are currently aware.

Click here to see past Guru responses about awareness and levels

For research, try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Monday, November 27, 2000 #3991
I am looking a an article by Erwin Ephron - "Propinquity/Recency and Now Avoid Paying Premium for Top-Rated TV Programming, for Cost-Effective reach". DO you know where I can get this? Thanks!!!

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 27, 2000 ):
That specific article is not in AMIC's Erwin Ephron on Media area, but several of Erwin's others on Recency are. There is also direct contact information for further inquiries.

Monday, November 27, 2000 #3988
Hi, I am working on a toothpaste brand in India which is a national brand and has limited market share . It faces competition from Levers and Colgate Palmolive who spend many times more. The sensitivity analysis says that for 1% increase in trial, there is a 4% increase in volume. Need to know if u could advice me some models on GRPs to awareness and awareness to trial correlations Many many thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 29, 2000 ):
Awareness relates more to the reach of a plan than GRP. You must reach more people more often to increase awareness.

Click here to see past Guru responses about awareness and GRP

For research, try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Friday, November 24, 2000 #3983
I am constantly being told that the banner is dead and that clients are moving away from banners to e-mail marketing. Do you think that this demise has been due to lack of targeting and hence ineffective campaigns. Shouldn't the Internet be able to provide one to one advertising?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, November 24, 2000 ):
The Guru doesn't believe the banner is dead. The Guru doesn't see an upsurge in email marketing.

lack of targetting would be a failing of the online planner, more than the internet. Possibly the appeal of big sites over well focused site is a drawback. Or the pursuit of reach and frequency which are not the best use of internet media. "one to one" advertising sounds more like an email than web function. The Guru believes that anti-spam feeling continues to grow. Email "advertising" offers far more annoyance than sales power. In email, like banners, a fraction of one percent reponse rate is all that can be expected. When goals are not realistic, this rate of return is more likely to to be acceptable in email than banners, given the ad rates.

Saturday, November 18, 2000 #3975
How can we reason for the phenomenon that usually longer campaign period(e.g. 3 weeks) could build a better reach for a certain effective freq. level, say 3+, as compared to a short campaign period like 1 week??

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 19, 2000 ):
Over a longer period of time, more people become available to be reached, whether once or three times. The reach potential or people who have actually watched TV, over a three week period is greater than the potential in one week.

Friday, November 17, 2000 #3974
Guru- I posted a question on Tuesday, October 24, 2000 #3907 about Cable advertising and you told me to: "Make sure you buy the cable outlets which duplicate least with your broadcast buys." What do you mean by this? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 19, 2000 ):
In that query, you asked about justifying buying cable because of the concern that the broadcast networks undedelivered cable HH. So presumably your desire is to assure that your advertising schedule covers the cable homes which are not reached or exposed to adeqate message frequency through broadcast. Some cable networks tend to be more viewed by ("duplicate with") the same homes which are heavy viewers of broadcast tv and others attract viewers more different ("less duplicated") from the broadcast network viewer. These latter cable outlets better serve your purposes in considering cable.

When going from a plan to a buy, you move from the general (broadcast underdelivers) to the specific (cable network "A" or "B" delivers) to accomplish your goals.

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.

Wednesday, November 15, 2000 #3972
I'm a newcomer to the site and I very much enjoy your bright responses. Re recency, you write >a core concept of recency is that once the third exposure is delivered, all additonal exposures are at 3+.< That concept belongs to Herb Krugman, ("Why Three Exposures May Be Enough.")whose work was misread as supporting effective frequency. The corresponding core concept of recency is a single exposure within a short planning interval is most cost-effective. These results in moderate TRP's and more weeks of advertising. When heavier weight is called for (i.e., new product introductions), instead of accepting random frequency, recency shortens the planning interval and maintains a solus reach goal. Planning for continuous reach produces a better distribution of frequency. My apology for this somewhat truncated explanation. I can provide greater detail if you'd like. Erwin

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 16, 2000 ):

As the leading industry writer on the topic, your comments are greatly appreciated, and you'll have to excuse the Guru for using your own writings in his reply.

Maybe "seminal" concept would be a better term than "core" concept when the Guru cites this Krugman principal, since it is more part of the evolution than structure of recency.

Perhaps connecting the concepts himself, but gathering them from your own articles, such as Learned Any Ads Lately?, the Guru sees the concept that all additional exposure are at 3+, as part of the underpinnings of Recency. Because this idea gets us past the effective frequency issue, the -- superior, in the Guru's opinion -- Recency theory surmounts objections from the effective frequency camp.

Monday, November 13, 2000 #3966
how do you calculae radio reach and frequency by hand?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 16, 2000 ):
The calculation is complex, because it describes a curvilinear function and considers several factors, such as grp, dayparts, turnover, quarter hours in a daypart, # of stations, etc. Sometimes agencies run computer calculations of several schedules with varying components and print tables summarizing these to allow quick, rough calculations.

Visualize a left hand column of GRPs from 50 to 1000, in 50's
and adjacent columns for 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5+ stations.

Read across the appropriate GRP row to find the reach under the correct number of stations. But wait, you'd better make a different table for schedules running only 6am-7pm Monday to Friday and another table for Mon-Sunday 6am - midnight. But wait, you'd better make extra tables in each of those categories for when average rating is 1 and when average rating is 2, 3, etc.

Years ago, some reps and ratings report offered slide rules for the calculations.

Monday, November 13, 2000 #3965
Can you give a definitive explanation of media quintiles (radio, tv, newspaper)?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, November 16, 2000 ):
Quintiles are used in two key ways:
  • Quintiles of media, and
  • Quintiles of schedules

Quintiles in either case involve dividing the people under consideration into five (quint-) equal groups for analysis. Why five? Why not? it has become the established method. Three groups would often be more useful: "average," "above average" and "below average" are easier to conceptualize. And some advertisers have considered "nine-tiles."

In media quintiles, the users of a medium, like radio, are divided into five equal groups, arrayed according to their heaviness of use, for example, the 20% of the population who listen to less than 3 hours of radio per week, those who listen to 3 to 6 hours, up through those who listen to 50+ hours. The range of hours of listening are set so that each range takes in 20% of the population. Then, other aspects of the behavior of these groups may be evaluated and lead to media or marketing decisions.

For example, if the lightest radio listeners are also light TV viewers, but the heavy newspaper readers, newspaper may be the best way to add reach to a radio plan and more evenly distribute frequency of exposure across all the people reached.

Quintiles of schedules are similar, but only consider those reached by a media schedule. For example if you had a radio schdule of 500 GRP in four weeks with a reach of 70 and a 7.1 average freqency, you might find that the lowest frequency 20% of your schedule reached (14 reach ou of the 70) had an average frequency of 1.0 and the highest frequency quintilehad an average frequecy of 19.8. When you add newspaper to the plan you can examine each quintile of the combined reach and will likely find the least reached group of the new total has a better average frequency.

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 09, 2000 #3958
What is the definition of dispersion and what is the formula? We are looking at various demos, their indexes across two programs to find out how stongly the shows are affiliated demographicaly. Is it a valid method to achieve such an objective.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 12, 2000 ):
You haven't stated an objective. "Dispersion" refers to the degree of difference in media outlet selection in your schedule. In TV it ususally refers to the number of different programs, in radio to the number of different stations, but may mean different dayparts. The usual basis for specifiying dispersion is how the reach models were constructed.

Wednesday, November 08, 2000 #3951
I am in the process of making a media plan targeting Germany and UK, but have had problems finding resources for those areas. What I would really like to find is something comparable to an SRDS book that gives the prices along with ratings, reach, Index, frequency. etc. Thankyou for your help!

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, November 08, 2000 ):
International Media Guide is the analog to srds, but don't expect ratings or reach and frequency from either.

Wednesday, November 08, 2000 #3950
Dear Guru, How is reach and frequency determined for a print (magazine) schedule?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, November 12, 2000 ):
The average issue audience, measured duplication between issues of the same publication and between different publications are compiled using various formulas. Generally commercial media software like Telmar's or that of the magazine measurement vendors is used.

Wednesday, November 01, 2000 #3935
Where do I find information on weekly GRP levels to use in radio for a service that is constant throughout the year, with no seasonality?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, November 06, 2000 ):
  • Determine GRP from desired reach and or frequency
  • Determine desired reach / frequency from awareness or sales goals; you can only sell to people who are aware of the service.

Monday, October 30, 2000 #3926
Very basic: Why can't I add the weekly frequency for each week in a 13 week flight and have it total the frequency for the total 13 week flight? I know that I can't do this; but I couldn't explain it properly to someone. Help

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, October 30, 2000 ):
If you mean the simplest definition of "frequency," that is the number of ads in the scedule, then you can do what you say. But most likely you are referring to average frequency of exposure, as in "reach and Frequency."

Like reach, this kind of frequency is not additive. Why? Because it refers to the average frequency of exposure among the people reached. Suppose your campaign looks like this:
Week # Weekly reach

Weekly Freq.

Cumulative reach

Cumulative Frequency

1 20 1.2 20 1.2
2 20 1.2 27 1.5
3 20 1.2 36 1.7
4 20 1.2 40 2.0
5 20 1.2 43 2.3
6 20 1.2 45 2.7
7 20 1.2 46 3.0
8 20 1.2 47 3.4
9 20 1.2 48 3.8
10 20 1.2 49 4.1
11 20 1.2 50 4.4
12 20 1.2 50 4.8
13 20 1.2 50 5.2
If you added weekly frequency, you would get a frequency of 15.6 by the 13th week instead of the correct 5.2. The trick is that the average frequency is the average among a different group of people each week. As more people are reached, the group grows. So the frequency of week number one is the average among 20% of your target, and in week number two it's the average among 27% of your target.

Tuesday, October 24, 2000 #3903
hi guru I have two questions 1)Is a rating for one telecast of a TV program equvilant to a one-telecast reach 2) If a TV program were measured for 52 programs (consecutively) what would the shape of the reach curve for the program look like Thanx Sarwar Khan (Lintas:Pakistan)

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, October 25, 2000 ):
1. Yes

2. Like all reach curves, it would rise rapidly at first and then flatten. Depending on the rating size and program type, the point of flattening will vary. Five-day-a-week programs tend to have loyal viewers and quickly flatyening curves. Once a week movies have more variable audience and flatten later. At 52 episodes, any single program is likely to have ceased any significant addition of new reach.

Thursday, October 19, 2000 #3897
Dear Guru: My events department asked my how to estimate the "media value" of a product metion during the lead story of a primetime show like entertainment tonight. I told them that this was a very broad question, and it would vary depending on who the target was, what the ratings were, and what value really meant (i.e, dollars? contirbution to product sales? % contribution to frequency of a campaign, etc. They didn't know. Can you confirm how to go about this? What info do I really need? Am I on the right track? Do you have any math formulas to estimate this? Thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, October 19, 2000 ):
Your thinking is exactly right. The Guru kows you as a regular and recognizes that you have followed his thinking from replies to past queries.

In terms of "media value" you would best stick to media metrics, like dollars, reach, frequency, etc. In considering dollars, you can relate the length of the metion --full context, not just brand name mention -- to price of commercials.

If thinking about impact, the Guru believes such a mention, is worth twice as much as advertising because of its implied indorsement. This of course assumes it's a positive mention, not something like "the strangler's weapon was a pair of Donna Karan pantyhose."

Friday, October 06, 2000 #3873
Hi Guru. Do you have any information about "Decay reach" or "Decayed reach"? My client asked me about it. I know "Decay GRP" but I've never heard of "Decay reach". Does reach decay? Is it a popular concept?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 08, 2000 ):
This is not a familiar term to the Guru. It might refer to awareness decline after consumers are reached.

Tuesday, October 03, 2000 #3859
Of the approx 230 billion dollars spent by advertisers in the U.S., how much of that amount is spent to reach the teen market?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, October 08, 2000 ):
It is not really possible to identify advertising targeted to teens other than ads placed in teen-specific media, like certain magazines.

Thursday, September 28, 2000 #3851
Oh great and powerful guru... I've just read a series of responses concerning GRPs and wearout. Most questions seem to be based on X # of GRPs but no mention of reach or frequency. The real answer may lie in average frequency. If your GRP of 1000 is 1000 reached 1 time wearout is not a factor. If the GRP is 50 frequency for 20 reach, it's time to change spots. Am I'm living on a different planet or am I close to understanding something?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 29, 2000 ):
You are quite correct; the key audience metric in examining wearout is frequency.

But media people use boxcar GRP numbers as a general reference for schedule magnitude. Any reasonable TV mix of 1000 or more GRP will deliver about 85 - 95 reach for a typical demographic, making the average frequency about 11. The range in this discussion is therefore pretty narrow.

Some set a wearout standard according to frequency in the next-to-highest quintile, something like "when the next-to-highest quintile has a frequency of 20+." Even this kind of standard doesn't give greatly varying results across reasonable mixes of high numbers of GRP.

Thursday, September 28, 2000 #3848
Do you know what is the most powerful radio signal in America?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 29, 2000 ):
Numerous AM stations radiate 50 KW. Because stations are assigned to markets, there are limits on power. No commerical station is intended to reach the entire country (except late at night with a good headwind).

Wednesday, September 27, 2000 #3844
Dear Media Guru, Off the top of your head, what would you say are consumer "target groups" that are the most difficult to reach through television advertising. In other words, what are "target groups" that marketers of consumer packaged goods companies would like to more effectively reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 28, 2000 ):
"Off the top of the Guru's head" the most difficult targets to reach are not neccessarily the targets for consumer package goods. The toughest ones are probably young men and male teens.

Thinking more broadly, there is the Hispanic market, which is highly desirable to package goods marketers, and not reached effectively by general market TV nor at high reach levels in Spanish language TV.

Wednesday, September 27, 2000 #3843
Do you know if there is some other web-based reach/frequency analysis tool for creating media plans . . . in Latinamerica?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, September 28, 2000 ):
eTelmar has the tools, but the audience measures for Latin America based sites are up to you to bring along.

Monday, September 25, 2000 #3837
newspaper unduplicated reach

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 26, 2000 ):
The Newspaper Advertising Association

Monday, September 25, 2000 #3836
I have been asked to conduct Media 101 Camp. This camp is so the AEs have a better understanding of media, the time it takes to plan and buy, and its importance to the overall adverising objectives. (Yes I need to explain this. Can you refer to me a place where I can find a general workbook to use that would include examples?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, September 26, 2000 ):
You would be better off to think through what your specific AE's need to know. Workbooks for this purpose probably all tend to be like the one at The Small Business Administration, out of date, and full of ill-informed media thinking, without concepts like reach taken into consideration.

Thursday, September 21, 2000 #3821
Guru, what are your thoughts regarding optimum flighting for a low interest, non seasonal product (household insurance) that is purchased only once to twice per year ? Burst or continuity ? Thanks for your service - itz great.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 23, 2000 ):
When there is no seasonality, there is no justification for bursts. There may be a break-through minimum threshold of awareness such as 30% reach per week. Beyond that, having a presence whenever a purchase decision might be made is probably most productive.

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).

Tuesday, September 19, 2000 #3810
What do you think the minimal amount of market coverage a business should have to consider advertising in a market? For examply, in the retail business, how many retail outlets do I need to have in a market before it makes sense to advertise with broad reach mediums (radio, outdoor)? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 23, 2000 ):
It's not simply a matter of number of outlets, it also involves competiton and desirability. For example there may be only one BWM or Hatteras Yacht dealer in a metro area, becasue the number of sales, while high-ticket are few and people will travel some distance for a unique product. If you have a restaurant or hardware stoer where choices are many, then it's more about dispersion across the market than pure numer of outlets. You need to decide how far people will go for what you're selling and compare that to coverage of the media considered. IN some parts of the country, people will drive 2 hours for dinner.

Keep in mind that there's a big difference between 'broad coverage" media and big reach media. For example, outdoor can be readily purchased to have a very high reach of a small area, like a single store's 3-mile trading circle. In some situations, local suburban radio can match a single store's trading area as well.

Friday, September 15, 2000 #3799
Hi Guru - Hope you are well. I am taking on a side project and would love to get your input on how to go about it. A prosthetic parts manufacturing company is looking to increase sales. They primarily sell direct to doctors who then sell to patients and the bills are paid by insurance. The market is very small, and to date they have gotten their awareness from trade shows and trade journals. Do you have any ideas on how to develop a marketing strategy for a product like this? WOuld looking a prescription drug advertising help give me some direction? Do you think there is an opportunity to reach customers after surgery in hospitals? Any input you have would be helpful. Do you know of any research shources for this type of thing? Market size, etc.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, September 18, 2000 ):
Why not create a "gift pack" for post surgical patients, like those typically given to post natal patients? It could include care instructions, dressing changes, antibiotic cream samples, etc.

Contact the maternity gift pack distibutors.

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.

Thursday, September 07, 2000 #3783
What are the benefits of Spot TV versus print for a 3 month launch campaign?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 09, 2000 ):
TV is a more active, impactful medium than newspaper. There is a greater range of flexibility in schedule, reach and frequency, especially in achieving quick, up-front high levels. 95% reach at 20+ frequency in week 1 is possible in TV, with nothing close possible in local print. But budget will be a key issue.

Tuesday, September 05, 2000 #3776
hi guru...what are the best months to target new home buyers with direct mail. thanks!

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, September 09, 2000 ):
The big months for moving to new homes are the summer months, so as not to interrupt kids' school years. Judge your mail months depending on whether you want to reach home shoppers or new move-ins.

Wednesday, August 30, 2000 #3769
i'm working on a plan that exclusively uses television and has a attained the reach cap- at what point is it generally effective to add a second medium?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 01, 2000 ):
The rate of reach building can be graphed as a "curve." You find a flattening curve as the potential of the medium is approached. (See example below for reach over time). If you plot the reach curve of your tv schedule, with dollars as the x axis, you will see where you begin to add money at a far faster rate than you add reach reach. The spending rate increase is always faster than the reach increase, but there's always a time when the spending increase notably accelerates. That's when to use a secondary medium

Wednesday, August 30, 2000 #3768
M.G. - please advise how to perform an analysis of TV HUT levels using MRI syndicated research tools? We want to evaluate HUT levels in our market in order to confirm that our daypart mix will be effective (to influence a purchasing action when our target is home using television). Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 01, 2000 ):
does not compute.You really can't and shouldn't anyway.

"HUT" is Homes Using Televison. That is, the percentage of all Television-owning homes which have the set turned on at a point in time.

MRI does not report data about households and does not report point-in-time data about TV, but rather data which might be interpreted as cumes.

The analysis you propose, that judging effectiveness based on the portion of the audience which is using television in the dayparts which you purchase, is off the mark. A simple reach evaluation is much more sensible. You can reach 95% of the people in prime time, which has the highest HUT level or 95% of the people with the same GRPs dispersed though several, more efficient dayparts. Or you might reach more perple in dayparts with a lower HUT but efficient enough to afford lots more weight.

Use tools intended for TV, such as Nielsen, and reach ansd frquency tools like Telmar's

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.

Tuesday, August 29, 2000 #3761
We are a business to business agency, and one of our clients is considering releasing a consumer product. Without investing in Nielsen, Arbitron, and Consumer SRDS- what would you think would be the most effective approach in reaching female teenagers?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, September 01, 2000 ):
Without using any of those resources, and without knowing a budget, the Guru would recommend teen female magazines, such as Seventeen, YM or Teen.

Thursday, August 24, 2000 #3746
Media Guru(s), Hopefully will not humiliate myself with this question: When planning a trade campaign (target is Neurologists,and GPs) how do I determine the time frame for reach/frequency? I have set effective freq. at 4. Is this over a 4 week period? Can it be over a quarter? I cannot achieve a 4 week freq. of 4 against the Neurologists, but I can against the GPs. Does this mean that using trade print to reach the neurologists is not effective/appropriate? How do I rationalize a 4 week r/f delivery time frame for the one target group and a quarterly time frame for the other? Or am I totally missing the mark in both cases??? R.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 28, 2000 ):
The "standard" period for evaluating reach and frequency is 4 weeks or a month, if all print.

When considering effective frequency, some thinkers believe that every exposure after the crtical number is achieved is delivered effectively. This is a cornerstone of the "Recency" theory. So, you can think abouit your effective levels on a rolling, cumulative basis, and merely state that effectivene reach is being delivered to GPs as of "X" point in time and against neurologists as of "Y" point in time.

Wednesday, August 23, 2000 #3739
Guru -- How can I establish an Internet budget as part of an overall media mix? Lets say for the sake of argument that the plan in question is for a traditional package goods advertiser who wants to reach A18-49.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 28, 2000 ):
In the Guru's opinion, reach goals against mass targets can't justify internet budgets for package goods. Virtually all traditional media do a better and more efficient job of reaching such targets.

The internet budget might be justified by a need for an interactive plan element, such as data collection, offering recipes, coupons or other inducements, etc.

Wednesday, August 23, 2000 #3737
I am trying to figure out the wearout for print. My target is African Americans 12-24 and 18-49. All I have is the FY reach, freg and TRPs. What would be my next steps?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, August 28, 2000 ):
There are no accepted standard formulas for wear-out. By the nature of print, which tends to yield high reach adn low frequency, there is generally less concern about wear-out than in broadcast.

Some of the broadcast rules-of-thumb for wear out include "over 20 frequency in the second highest quintile" or "2000 GRP.

Niether of these are likely to occur in print. Custom research may be the only real way to evaluate this. Start with Starch.

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.

Tuesday, August 15, 2000 #3705
A retail client of mine is planning a short media campaign to support a 4-day event (Thu-Sun). I'd like to show a reach curve or the like to illustrate the reach built by a 7-day media support (Mon-Sun) and a 4 1/2 day support (Wed - Sun Noon). Vehicles will be radio, TV, and newspaper. How can I do this?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 18, 2000 ):
In total, there is not likely to be much demonstrable difference between identical quantities of media delivered over a Monday-Sunday period.

If you want to illustrate reach accumulation day by day, then you can calculate the reach of the schedule that runs on the first day of the campaign in each case, the schedule that runs on the first two days of each campagn, etc. Then you can plot the two curves, with reach on the Y axis and days on the X axis, using the charting tools of Excel, Powerpoint, Corel, or whatever you might have.

It might look something like the chart below (not actual reach data).

Monday, August 14, 2000 #3703
Do you know where I can find some published articles about how to determine the media investment base on Optimal reach & frequency level ?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, August 18, 2000 ):
This is a very basic aspect of media planning. Probably the most common approach to formal media planning is setting a communications goal in reach and frequency terms and then examining the reach delivered by various plan options.

The richest source of articles might be Journal of Advertising Research.

Friday, August 04, 2000 #3676
Do you have any research that shows how using multiple advertising medium (e.g. using radio plus outdoor) can increase effectiveness?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, August 08, 2000 ):
The first purpose of multiple media is to improve reach / frequency for the dollar. Otherwise, there can be many definitions of "effectiveness," such as brand awarenss, ad awareness, sales, etc.

For a range of research, try The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Thursday, August 03, 2000 #3673
Dear Guru, I'm trying to find ways to reach the travel trade on-line. I've checked with most of the travel agent magazine web sites, but most do not offer any advertising at this time. I've also checked web sites that are "tools" for the travel agent, but those sites do not allow on line advertising unless you are an agent. Is there anywhere I can look to try to reach the travel trade on line? Your help would be appreciated.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, August 06, 2000 ):
If all the travel agent magazines and "tools" sites that traget travel agents are unavailable, the next best idea would be to buy keyword on search engines. The trick will be to imagine keyowrds that are specific to travel agents versus other users, such as travelers. Presumably that is your area of expertise.

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 26, 2000 #3654
Please provide formula to manually calculate reach & Frequency for press. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 29, 2000 ):
This calculation is very complicated. If you don't have detailed tables of duplication factors between different publications and between various numbers of multiple issues of the same publication, only fairly crude formulae are available.

Click here to see past Guru responses about reach calculation formulae.

Tuesday, July 25, 2000 #3650
I'm working on a business-to-business media schedule for a client. To build awareness, is it best to buy two books (that reach the same people) 6 x each in a year or buy one book heavy (12x/year). And if you buy the two books, how much duplication would you be getting?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, July 25, 2000 ):
Awareness is usually analogous to reach, thus using two books would build awareness better than multiple insertions in one, because there is greater duplication between any two issues of the same title than between any two different titles.

The specific duplication between two different titles can vary considerably.

Monday, July 24, 2000 #3647
Whatis the correct mix between on -line and aff-line for a vertical internet site, particularly in the start-up phase.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, July 29, 2000 ):
There is no such thing as a "correct mix" for all occasions. Considerations include

  • Is your target currently more reachable online or offline?
  • Are the best sites to reach your target mostly competive verticals which wouldn't take your advertising?
  • To whay extent does your budget allow for completely free choice of (typically) far less efficient online opportunities?

Monday, July 24, 2000 #3642
What are the advantage/disadvantages for local websites vs. national websites? Ex: vs.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 24, 2000 ):
If you are advertising a locally-oriented product or service, then a connection with local media can be beneficial. If you are merely targeting in people in a certain geography, large websites can usually select visitors by their location, leaving the comparison the usual one of reach, efficiency, positioning, etc.

Wednesday, July 19, 2000 #3632
Are there any traditionally accepted reach & frequency benchmarks for TV?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 23, 2000 ):
The Guru wonders what you really mean.
  • Do you mean "Are there minimum R&F benchmarks when TV is the sole medium of a plan?"
    - Those who follow the effective frequency approach might ask for 50 reach at 3+ frequency
    -Those who favor "recency" might say 'as much continuity as possible with a 30 reach per week minimum'.
  • If you mean "What should be the TV reach level used when TV is the primary medium in a multimedia plan?"
    - Some might point to the reach level where the curve of accumulation 'flattens'.

Tuesday, July 18, 2000 #3625
Can you please explain what "Optimizers" do in media planning? Is it a separate program from media planning software or part of the package (e.g. Tapscan, SmartPlus, etc.)? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, July 23, 2000 ):
Generally, an optimizer is a buyers' analysis tool using respondent-level data, to select a media list which has the greatest reach within a budget or achieves a reach goal most efficiently.

There can be considerable detail specified as to target, reach at "X" level of frequency, etc. The current use of "optimizer" most often specifically refers to network TV analyzers using Nielsen data tapes as input and examining "actual" versus modeled reaches.

Media planning packages generally don't include such optimizers. Optimizers typically cost more on their own than media planning software suites and also require purchase of relatively expensive Nielsen tapes. Similar buyers' analyses of print schedules, are typically built into these planning suites but rely on users' possession of Simmons or MRI data.

Friday, July 14, 2000 #3619
Hi Guru, I'm writing from India.One of our clients related to the travel industry is interested in advertising to Indians in the US and UK.The client feels that print is a good option to get conversions.The client wants to use ethnic publications targetted towards Indians in US & UK. Could you please let me know which are the publications one could use along with reach numbers if possible? Thanx in advance.

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, July 21, 2000 ):
Some U.S. Indian publications are listed at Abbott Wool's Market Segment Resource Locator. One source in the U.K. might be the Indian embassy.

Thursday, July 13, 2000 #3618
On July 5 you responded to a question regarding the decline of brand awareness due to reduced advertising activity. You indicated that the "formula predicts that a brand running low GRPs per week loses awareness and a brand with no activity loses 5-10% of the previous week's awareness each week." I would love to pass this information along to some clients. Is there a source I can quote?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, July 13, 2000 ):
"5-10%" is a general summary of experience with various estimates the Guru has found over many years.

The Guru has been told that some people are quite comfortable citing the
"AMIC Media Guru,"
as an information source.

It shouldn't need documentation to understand that awarenness will decline when there is no advertising. It also seems easy to assume that it will be like an inverse reach curve:
constantly approaching 0% in constantly decreasing increments.

No doubt many supporting studies are available through The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230.

Monday, July 10, 2000 #3611
Are you aware of any research studies that have tried to estimate the average or typical reach of general market media across multiple ethnic groups (Asians, Latinos & Blacks)?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 10, 2000 ):
Many studies have done this. Nielsen for TV, Arbitron for radio, Simmons for print and mutlimedia. Often such studies address one group at a time, particularly when language is part of the defintion of the group.

Monday, July 10, 2000 #3608
hi where can i find researches or information about drugs advertising? which media have the best influence on patients? t.v? press? Radio? which reach & frequency levels are recommended ? thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, July 10, 2000 ):
The answers will vary depending on typical media planning / marketing issues.
  • Who is the target?
  • What is the competitive situation?
  • What are the legal restrictions
For example, in the U.S., there is one set of rules that applies when you are marketing prescription drugs and another set for "over the counter" pharmaceuticals.

For prescription drugs, you can mention a drug name without discussing the problems it treats or its results, or you can mention a problem to treat without mentioning a drug name. In these cases there are fewer rules to observe. When you mention a drug along with its disease or results, you must also provide the "patient information" (PI) which is all the side effects warnings, counterindications, etc. This typically means broadcast advertising must be accompanied by print to carry the PI. Or that print must devote a portion of space to this detailed information.

Thursday, June 22, 2000 #3571
What is the difference between: advertising objective vs. media objective vs. communication objective? What is the best way to do an online branding campaing for a car manufacturer? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 25, 2000 ):
Advertising objectives are a broad set of goals which include media opbectives. Media Objectives are a broad set of goals for a media plan, which include a communications objective.

For example, advertising objectives may include a brand image to establish or a specific level of brand awareness to achieve. Neither of these are media objectives.

Media objectives may include a media target, a media budget, a region of the country or sales index standard for geographic concentration. These are not communications objectives.

Communications objectives may be such goals as minimum average four week reach, frequency, effective frequency, etc.

There are many ways to do any sort of online branding campaign. There is no "one size fits all" best solution. A branding campaing for "the safest car" would certainly differ from one for the car whic is the "best value for a family." It is important to have firmly in mind what "branding" means:

According to marketing consultant Rob Frankel, "Branding is not about getting your prospects to choose you over your competition; it's about getting your prospects to see you as the only solution to their problem." (sm)

This means that most of what makes a campaign a "branding" campaign is outside of the domain of media. Study the marketing elements of the campaign and judge how you can make the media plan support it.

Wednesday, June 21, 2000 #3566
Dear Guru, I've heard about buying space on Fruit Labels - bananas, apples etc. What company sells this? I'd like to contact them. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, June 25, 2000 ):
From a Yahoo search:

Fruit label advertising was created in 1997 by Tarzana, Calif.-based The Fruit Label Company. According to Irv Weinhaus, chief executive officer of The Fruit Label Company, this innovative medium provides a two-fold service. ``The labels work for the advertiser who is looking for a unique and informative way to reach consumers, and the PLU (price look-up) labels are used by the retailer to accurately charge for the produce. Our labels eliminate the need for two individual stickers, one of which has to be on the fruit regardless if there is advertising on the fruit or not.''

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?

Monday, June 12, 2000 #3547
I am buying radio in two different markets - one is a large market which is measured by Arbitron. The other is a small market where I get the ratings through Arbitron county measuring. The two cities are only 45 miles apart and there is a large amount of radio overlap. Is there any way to figure an accurate combined reach & frequency? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, June 12, 2000 ):
First, define "market." If these radio markets are both in the same DMA, and you want DMA R&F, add the two stations' reach in thousands and divide by DMA universe. If they are in two different Metros, calculate reach within each and do a weighted average of the two:
  • Metro "A" target population = 100,000
  • Metro "B" target population = 20,000
  • Metro "A" target reach = 40% (40,000)
  • Metro "B" target reach = 55% (11,000)
  • Combined, total coverage area reach = 40,000 + 11,000 100,000 + 20,000, or 42.5%

Wednesday, June 07, 2000 #3537
I'm new to media software. If my agency is planning all media, is Donovan a better package than Telmar. Are there any others that I should consider? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 08, 2000 ):
No. Donovan software is for buying and stewardship. Telmar (AMIC's sister company) offers programs used for planning, such as reach and frequency estimators, print cross-tabbing and rankeing, flowcharts, etc.

Sunday, June 04, 2000 #3528
Do you know where I could find some media statistics about online usage and habits? I am looking for any research, studies, etc. that can provide how consumers are using this medium, specifically how Corporate Management is using the interenet. After exhausting the "usual" sources (i.e. syndicated studies MRI, IQ, etc) I have reached a dead end. Please if possible, could you provide some insight to this area? thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 08, 2000 ):
You haven't mentioned MediaMetrix and Nielsen//Netratings, which are probably your best syndicated resources.

Beyond that, The Advertising Research Foundation InfoCenter. For details about the InfoCenter, call 212-751-5656, extension 230. will have a compilation of assorted material.

Sunday, June 04, 2000 #3527
Hi Guru,What will be the right measure to evaluate niche media channels : reach,GRP's or Share.This keeping in mind that the niche channels are traditionally viewed and used as frequency channels and are traditionally decided after the mainline reach channels are selected.Regds RKB

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 08, 2000 ):
The right measure will depend on your goals in a given plan. If you are considering niche channels to extend reach among that niche, then the reach added by the potential schedule is the standard. Note that this means how much reach you can add for the dollars available for niche channel investment, and not the total reach of the niche channel itself. It is a common miustake, in the Guru's opinion, to compare media based on an abstraction of their total performance rather than what they can realistically contribute to a specific plan.

By the same token, if the niche channels are to be used as frequency vehicles, then efficiency is probably your best comparison. Share will rarely be most pertinent metric in any case.

Thursday, June 01, 2000 #3517
What is the general rule of thumb (in terms of number of :60 radio spots per week) in a non-metered market? The goal of the advertising campaign is awareness over a 7 month period (no weekly promotion to talk about - just letting people know about our business). In the past we have been running anywhere from 14 to 16 spots per week.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 01, 2000 ):
The "overkill" level of frequency will depend on continuity among other things.

In a market too small to measure, the Guru imagines that there are relatively few radio stations, perhaps 12 or fewer, and average ratings might be 5 or better. So suppose 16 spots is about 100 GRP. FOr reach you would still want to use more than one station, at least 12 times each.

Are you sure your market isn't measured, perhaps as part of a larger market as defined by Arbitron? Even tiny Lima, Ohio, the 201st of the 210 DMAs making up the entire country has ratings twice yearly. Check out Radio & Records.

Thursday, June 01, 2000 #3516
How can you estimate the reach and frequency (or even TRPs) of a radio schedule in a market that is not metered?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, June 01, 2000 ):
In any county, there should be at least an occasional Arbitron coverage study data to use for audience estimates.

Tuesday, May 30, 2000 #3503
Media Guru, I'd like to clarify my question from last week about national media vs. spot media planning. Based on the marketing and communication goals of our client, we have determined that network television is a necessary part of our media mix. We are in the process of aquiring reach/frequency software for national media, but don't currently have it so I can't do a run to determine TRP levels that will generate effective levels of reach/frequency. So, in order to get a feel of what other national advertisers planned, I looked at other plans that contained network television. In looking at those plans I noticed that the TRP levels are significantly lower than spot television plans. Have you noticed that same descrepancy in media plans that you are familiar with? If so, why?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 30, 2000 ):
You must be comparing all-TV plans where one is all spot and the other is all network for these comparisons to make sense, in the first place. If there are other media involved, naturally that will affect TV levels.

In national plans containing both media forms, the network will be mostly low-readh daytime and high-priced prime. So there are reasons to limit investment in each. Spot ususally is concentrated in fringe times, which offer better reach potential than day and better efficiency than prime, so that is one reason for higher spot levels.

In other plan where there is network as well as spot, spot may be used to give extra weight to markets with greater sales or greater sales potential or to fill in market that are underdeliverd by network versus national averages. In any of these cases, spot is typically used at higher levels, but in a short lis of markets.

There is nothing inherent in spot versus network to make spot levels higher than network when either one is the sole medium.

Friday, May 26, 2000 #3500
Guru, I have had a lot of planning experience for spot television and local cable television and am now being asked to plan network television, network cable television and syndicated television. I've noticed after looking at several example plans that network GRPs are often lower than spot GRPs ... Why is that and what are effective GRP levels for network media? Please help.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 29, 2000 ):
The Guru would surmise that in spot, you have seen more promotional or retail-oriented schedules, where noise level is the basis. In network plans, more sophisticated assessments of communications goals may have been made, focused on reach and frequency.

The concept of "planning spot tv" or "planning network TV" is also puzzling. The media choice is the result of planning, not the going-in assignment. Are you part of the buying process moving to network tv where multimedia plans may have been assembled by others, prior to your involvement with a single element?

Thursday, May 18, 2000 #3486
Hi. I writing a media plan for a B2B .com The target is small businesses and the marketing objective is "to build the brand". Should I use reach as the primary media objective or frequency? For example, the online portion, should I use larger banners and sponsorships on fewer networks and single sites or smaller banners on more nets and sites? Also do you know of any research that details the crossover among magazine hard copy readers and that same magazine's online newsletter? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 21, 2000 ):
Some research has shown that banner ads wear out very quickly, at least insofar as generating clicks. So reach would seem a more useful benefit of online ads. If your goal is branding, one presumes you have significant information content in the banners themselves, rather than relying on clicks.

Cahners has posted some research on crossover in a B2B context.

Tuesday, May 16, 2000 #3479
Are there parameters (highs and lows) for effective reach and frequency? In other words, is there a particular reach and a particular frequency that are considered "average" as they relate to broadcast media? How would one determine whether an advertiser is spending adequate funds to meet these "averages" when airing a broadcast schedule on a Mon-Sun basis?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, May 19, 2000 ):
The Guru finds the concept of average irrelevant in this context.Such measures are relevant in relation to competition and one's own communications goals. What does it benefit an auto brand if the "average" advertiser has a reach of 50% at 3+ frequency when all automotive competitors are delivering 75% at 3+?

As to turning spending into effective reach and frequency, that's typically part of a media plan. Budget gets expressed as schedules of TV, radio, print, etc. reach and frequency are calculated by available software for these GRPs. Effective reach / frequency is an inherent part of the calculation.

Sunday, May 14, 2000 #3470
Question: Would you please advise how audience accumulation builds over time? For: (A) Weekly Consumer Magazine (B) Monthly Consumer Magazine (C) Business Publications (D) Out of Home Media. I suppose that based upon the type of media -- daily newspaper versus monthly magazine, that audience accumulation will vary quite differently. But from the standpoint of audience accumulation over the course of time from Week 1 to Week 2 to Week 3, etc., because of duplication, the accumulation figure will decrease --- with reach maxing out. Could you please provide a run down by media type (A, B, C, D) as to how accumulation figures build over time?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, May 14, 2000 ):
To really evaluate this you need the specific respondent-level data from individual media, such as that provided by MRI or Simmons.

Generally, in any print medium, the audience builds quickly at first, within the medium's cycle. For instance, a weekly builds the vast majority of its audience within the week following issue, and virtually all of its reach within 3 weeks. A monthly has a similar shape to its "reach curve" over time, but the 3 week time line extends to perhaps 2 months. Business publications would probably compare similarly for weekly versus monthly.

Out-of-home media are quite a different story. Since they are not media with content, and are incicentally encountered in life as opposed to the audeince seeking it out, there is no aging content to affect readership. Because out-of-home, at least in the case of outdoor posters, is bought at enormous GRP levels ( usually 25 to 100 GRP per day), reach accumulates very quickly, reaching 85 to 95% of an audience in the first month. The medium itself does not get measured, the campaign does.

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.

Tuesday, May 09, 2000 #3454
What are the essentials of media buying? How can one plan an optimum media buying (all media) ?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, May 13, 2000 ):
Of course, this can take years to learn this fully or everyone would be doing it for themselves. At its most simple, the "essentials of media buying" are getting the right media at the right price.

The right media involves considerations of

  • Target coverage
  • Target composition
  • Environment
  • Positioning
  • Timing
  • Scheduling
  • reach / duplication
  • Gross audience
  • Etc.
The right price is more than just the lowest price when all the above have been considered. Too low a price may lead to preemptions. Too low a total investment with one vendor may let you miss out on advantageous packages and merchandising.

Monday, May 08, 2000 #3453
Which TV programs have the largest number of male viewers 18-34? Which Cable station reaches the largest number of viewers in this demo?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, May 08, 2000 ):
These questions can be answered best by Nielsen.

Monday, May 08, 2000 #3452
hi i am a media planner in pakistan working for R-Lintas the problem that i face while planning is the clitter and how to deal with specially in TV we have tried different solutions but none worked so i need your in this regard .

When i mentioned clutter i ment the overload of advertising on television where your message is lost. in Pakistan few years back we just had one government owned TV channel so it was easier to attract big chuncks of audiences through advertising but in the past few years the media scene in Pakistan has changed alot now we have three TV channels (24 hour), cable and satellite channels are also very popular so now it has become really difficult to attract same big chuncks of audiences now every individual dwells in his or her own domain of interest and the question now arises 1-How to reach these people who are no more receptive and has more options. 2-How to get maximum mileage out of the limited resources(advertising budget) that we normally have. 3-How to increase the reach and break the advertising clutter 4-How can we make consumers sit and watch our ads?

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 09, 2000 ):
Part of the answer will depend on how advertisng is delivered. If one minute of programming alternates with one minute of commercial time, the Guru would say it's hopeless. If your TV commercials run in pods, that is, 2 or 3 minute blocks of commercials after every ten or fifteen minutes of programming, then there are a few tricks:

  • Buy multiple commercials in a program
  • Buy the opening and closing position of every pod in a program
  • "Sponsor" a program to get opening and closing and pod-bumper billboards.
  • One technique to increase audience 'chunks' is "roadblocking" which means buying at the exact same time across multiple channels.

Making the consumers 'sit and watch your ads' though, is not a media issue. At best it's a creative question.

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, May 02, 2000 #3439
Regarding effective reach and effective frequency, are there general accepted boundaries of these measurements as they relate to radio and television? How do you compute effective reach and frequency?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, May 04, 2000 ):
The Guru has seen effective frequencies from 2 to 9 used in plans. Most often, 3 is the "bogie" but 4 and 5 are not uncommon.

In the Guru's opinion, the effective levels make sense when applied to a majority of the target, that is, 50%+.

As far as computing effective R&F, the capability is typically built into reach and frequency calculators. As part of calculating reach, the frequency distribution is calculated. This is a calculation of the discreet number of persons reached by each ad in the schedule. Thus one can compile the number (or %) of target persons reached "at least" the set number of times.

Monday, May 01, 2000 #3434
I am trying to determine how best to manually calculate reach and frequency for Out of Home Media. Would you be able to help and provide me with reach curves and turnover ratios for OOH media. Thank you.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, May 02, 2000 ):
Out-of-home (outdoor poster media) is usually bought in #25, #50 or #100 "showings." These are based on daily effective circulation, or traffic, equal to 25, 50 or 100 GRP per day, respectively.

Within the state of the art, in rough terms, these levels usually mean 4-week reach and frequencies of approximately

  • 80 / 8.8 / 700
  • 87 / 16.1 / 1400 and
  • 92 / 30.4 / 2800.

As should be apparent, there is not much room for fine tuning, nor much reason for considering other GRP levels.

Friday, April 28, 2000 #3428
I'm working with fast food client in Puerto Rico(PR). PR is very competitive in this category. I like to know what is the effective frequency and reach in sustainning level and promotional period. I know that exist many theorical procedures to found the reach and frequency goals. But i'm very confuse what is the more accurate to this reality(very competitive environment)Please help me.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, April 29, 2000 ):
Competitive environment, e.g Share of Voice, is one key variable.

Click here to see the Guru's discussion of the Ostrow model for setting effective frequency goals.

Thursday, April 27, 2000 #3425
Are there general guidelines for media planners so that they will know how and when to consider ethnic or cultural groups in the planning process? Are there any planning tools?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 27, 2000 ):
The three major ethnic/cultural groups are currently almost one-third of total population ( see AMIC's Abbott Wool's Market Segment Resource Locator ): African American is 13%, Hispanic is 12% and Asian American is 4%. The rule of thumb is always "consider" ethnic and cultural groups. There are several common or basic product categories in which these groups have a 150 - 300+ index of usage versus the remainder of population. These include fruit juice, baby products, rice, corn meal, and many brands of beer, popular foods or over-the-counter pharmceuticals.

General advertising doesn't reach the linguistically isolated portions of these markets (50% or more of Hispanics and various Asian national groups). Even those reached, among all the ethnic/cultural segments, are less impacted due to lack of appropriate cultural cues in the general advertising or the media environments.

Upon due consideration, the planner may find that for his or her particular advertiser, no special effort is required. But, the planners may also find that there is a 12% segment of their universe consuming 25% of their product, and reachable through efficient media. It is not really unusual for the "first mover" in one of these market segments to gain 10% market share among the segments, which equates to a gain of more than 1% national share, something that couldn't have been achieved for three times the budget in general advertising.

Non-ethnic segmetns such as the mature market may also bear consideration.

Telmar's media software includes a Spanish TV reach and frequency system, called STRETCH, created by Telemundo

Hispanic Broadcasting System (formerly Heftel) has created En Total which does general Hispanic radio calculations and media combinations.

The African American, Spanish, and Asian-American media all offer research analyses.

Wednesday, April 26, 2000 #3424
I'm doing a campaign for a small restaurant chain with a relatively small budget. The goal is to drive traffic for lunch. I'm going to run in the AM and afternoon drives. Is it really necessary to have a 3 frequency if I'm going to be on the top 3 stations on the same programs each day at the same time over a period of 8 weeks? The schedules that I'm getting back show in the low 2's.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, April 27, 2000 ):
The common reference to a goal of "3 frequency" which you may have heard stems from century-old learning theory which found that 3 repetitions of information were required for it to be "learned" and acted upon. Many media planners use this theory and so specifically consider how many members of their target they are reaching at least 3 times.

You, however, seem to be looking at the average frequency of a schedule, which is different. Any schedule with at least three annoucements will have some portion of its reach exposed to 3 repetions. You need to decide what portion of your audience should be reached three times. YOu need to judge this by looking at the combination of all stations: you may be looking at individual stations reach and frequencies.

Finally, you may consider the full 8 week schedule. A station may be reporting to you only the one week reach and frequency, if you haven't specified, all stations, full cume.

With a schedule of just two dayparts on three stations you are probably getting a fairly low reach at high frequency and this is a completely different sort of consideration than the "3 frequency" issue.

Many planners today are abandoning the effective reach (3+) approach in favor of "recency," the concept that the exposure closest to a purchase decision is the most effective one. You plan might agree more with this approach if it has enough weekly reach.

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 24, 2000 #3417
Dear Guru: When buying radio, do buyers get better rates just by selecting all Adults 18-54 vs. selecting a more specific demo? Does specifying the demo drive rates up? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, April 25, 2000 ):
Stations typically set their basic prices by the cpm acheived against a broad demographic which buyers often want, such as Adult 18-54.

A station with great competitive strength in a specific and hard-to-reach demographic might raise its pricing if a buyer asked for a proposal on that demographic. Conversely, a buyer might get better prices by asking for a proposal on a demographic where the station is less competitive.

Monday, April 24, 2000 #3413
Which medium (TV, radio, print, direct mail)does the Internet have the highest duplication with in terms of usage?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 24, 2000 ):
This question isn't really answerable as stated. TV, Radio, Print and (in theory) direct mail reach everyone, including all internet users. So, with this broad question, all media are tied at 100% duplication.

Specific schedules of traditional media , specific DM lists and specific web sites will have different duplication rates, and different frequency distributions. Or, you could determine something like "webusers are less likely to be heavy viewers of TV than heavy readers of magazines."

Wednesday, April 19, 2000 #3410
What is your opinion on using out-of-home (30-sheets or bulletins) as a stand-alone medium for a brand-building campaign? On a related note, are there any "rules" for adjusting different types of media for their "impact" versus other media (e.g., impact of an all-newspaper campaign versus an all television campaign given the same TRP levels and the same "likelihood of use" by the target market)?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, April 21, 2000 ):
The Guru has seen impact adjusments across media based on recall, on attentiveness and on an advertiser's proprietary research, but no general rules-of-thumb.

Unfortunately, such adjustments are too often based on one unit of the advertising, such as a TV spot versus a radio spot, and don't take into account the crucial difference in number of spots or GRPs per dollar.

As for brand-building in outdoor, there are two principal considerations in the Guru's view:

  • Definition of "brand building:" The term, one of those nebulous buzz-words which seems to mean whatever the speaker wishes, implies, to the Guru, the creation of a brand image and positioning from a low-awarness start.
  • Limited message: How much can a brand be "built" by the few words and large graphic allowable in out-of-home media?
  • Yet, the Guru is very favorably inclined to taking advantage of the enormous reach and frequency possible via out-of-home

In short, the Guru's gut feeling is that outdoor can contribute greatly to brand building, but that the process needs at least one longer-form medium.

Monday, April 17, 2000 #3401
Dear Guru, I need to develop a cost estimate and approx. reach/freq. for a US television buy in the top 40 markets. Here's what I have and what I still need to know: I have the markets and approx. CPP per daypart from SQAD. I need to know how to calculate a rough estimate of reach & freq for 1 week to 1 year based on 200 points per week in each market. Can a network (CBS etc)place the entire buy, or do I have to do this per market. I'm one person and can't spend too much time executing this (if it happens). Any advice would be great. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, April 17, 2000 ):
No, networks don't place spot buys. You can use spot reps or media buying services. Find these in Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS) or The Standard Directories of Advertising Agencies and Advertisers ('The Redbook')

Either one can help you with reach and frequency, or offers an inexpensive, online reach calculator.

If you are buying 200 points per week for a year in the top 40 markets, you are spending in the 10's of millions, at least. This is ample to hire a buying service or at least some experienced free-lance help. Either one would save you far, far more in media costs than the expense of their fees.

Sunday, April 16, 2000 #3399
dear guru, iam developing a marketing plan for a india based travel portal.this portal is designed to serve the needs of indian tourists as well as foriegners visiting do i identify and best reach my target audience namely,people around the world who travel or have strong intentions to travel and are on the net? thanking you in advance,maverickrr

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 16, 2000 ):
Travel-oriented sites and cultural sites featuring India are the obvious choices. In various countries, local, syndicated, product usage studies, such as MRI or TGI might allow you to cross-tabulate travel and online behavior.

Wednesday, April 12, 2000 #3396
What is the Saisbury method?

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 16, 2000 ):
Sainsbury was a media researcher in England. The "Sainsbury method" you refer to was probably his adjustment to TV reach to acount for understatement of duplication between TV dayparts in the basic statistical procedure used 30 years ago.

Wednesday, April 12, 2000 #3393
What is the radio industry standard for a denominator such as CPM in print media. The C/RP is fine for comparisons in the same DMA, but what about cross-DMA comparisons?

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 12, 2000 ):
CPM works in radio, too, and it's the right metric to use across markets. Arbitron reports thousands as well as rating, so it's always available. To get a rough estimate of CPM, divide CPP by 1% of the target universe expressed in thousands; Cost Per Point is the cost of reaching one percent (one rating points' worth) of the universe.

Wednesday, April 12, 2000 #3392
Guru, I've never used a planning program as most of my planning has been national print and outdoor, local broadcast, and things I've felt I can handle on my own.I've seen so many planning programs and websites for planning it's hard to tell the good from the bad. Have you ever evaluated planning programs and, if you have, can you recommened one or two? Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, April 12, 2000 ):
To the Guru, the term "planning program" means programs like Telmar's AdPlus or Telmar's full set of individual media analysis programs or the eTelmar online suite of media programs.

Such programs calculate reach, frequency, effective reach, frequency distribution, and quintiles for individual media plus combinations of media as well as cross-tabulations and rankers from media audience databases. Flow charting is also a typical option.

These programs don't actually create media plans, that is determine how much budget to invest in each medium, ad units to use, and scheduling. There are such programs on the drawing board, but require that the planner quantify and factor those concepts which would be subjective judgements.

Monday, April 03, 2000 #3365
how can i evaluate sponsorship of tv and radio programmes and what's the best way to present it to the client. thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, April 09, 2000 ):
The basis way to evaluate any media opportunity is to compare it to your goals and strategies. This may be about reach or impact or targeting a specific audience.

Click here to see past Guru responses about evaluating sponsorships.

Friday, March 31, 2000 #3362
Can we accurately measure branding online in the current marketplace?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 31, 2000 ):
Branding is a long-term concept, and perhaps on-line media are too young or too quickly changing for valid measurement today.

The Guru dosen't believe on-line is the best branding medium, because it doesn't deliver it's full message to a significant percent of the already small reach potential on on-line. On-line can enhance branding for well established brands, with a logical connection to possibel on-line environments, like Microsoft, or IBM. Click here to see past Guru responses about branding on-line.

Tuesday, March 28, 2000 #3349
Dear Media Guru: I am the publisher of a very niche oriented magazine called International Longboarder. We are a year old and the magazine is found in surf, skate and snowboard shops throughout the world. We appeal to men 18-34. Here is my question: what would be three inexpensive ways to let media buyers know about us - specifically those buyers who are looking to reach this demographic? thank you michael brooke

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 28, 2000 ):
"Inexpensive" is a matter of opinion. The least expensive (free) is a listing in Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS). Next might be an ad in SRDS. Next, an ad on a media planner's website, like AMIC .

Monday, March 27, 2000 #3341
Hello I am currently enrolled in the 3-year advertising program at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. In response to a class project and of great interest to me, I am in search of answers to the following questions regarding obtaining a career in the Internet advertising field. 1. What programs are used in the creation of Internet advertisements? 2. What are the job titles and descriptions of jobs within Internet advertising? 3. What are the specific qualities looked for when hiring a person for Internet advertising? 4. How does Internet advertising differ from other forms of advertising? 5. What should a student keep in mind and focus on while attending school in order to further their changes in Internet advertising related career? 6. Is there an organization solely devoted to Internet advertising? 7. What forms of Internet advertising are offered? (Ex. WebPage design yes, banners, etc) 8. When should a company inquire about Internet advertising as a form of advertising? 9. How long has Internet advertising been around and how has it grown throughout the years?

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 27, 2000 ):
Since this is the Media Guru, we will address those of your several questions which relate to media issues.

  1. Not a media question
  2. Other than "webmaster" all internet advertising media titles are approximately the same as in other media: General manager/publisher, sales manager, sales account executive on the website side; Media Director, Media planner, media buyer on the buying side. Some companies may have invented special titles either to reflect their individuality or special business structure, such as "Channel manager" when selling multiple sites that can be grouped topically
  3. There should be no specific qualities sought in hiring media people for internet purposes rather than any other media, other than possibly better computer skills and internet familiarity. It was not unusual, in the early days of internet advertising, for employment ads to be signed only with a website or email contact information, so that those who didn't understand such information wouldn't apply.
  4. The chief differences of internet advertising versus other media include:
    Interactivity: Any consumer action in response to an ad generates a reaction by the internet
    Combines the full animation potential of TV with the detail capability of static print
    Consumer action in response to an ad 'place-marker', i.e. the banner, is required before the full ad, i.e. the click-thru target, is exposed
    Unlike other media where the medium's full audience is attributed to each ad, the internet allows us to count actual ad exposures
  5. A student should take any internet courses offered in addition to the full standard advertising curriculum, if working in internet media is the only goal.
  6. There are several organizations devoted solely to internet advertising: The Internet Advertising Bureau, which is the Web site owners trade group, C.A.S.I.E. (The Coalition for Advertising Supported Interactive Entertainment) which is primarily, if not exclusively internet focused, is the advertiser/agency internet trade group. Of course there are numerous internet sales representative organizations and ad agencies/media services.
  7. Internet advertising forms include websites, banners (meaning any less-than-full-page ads displayed on websites) interstitials, and e-mail advertising. Within e-mail advertising are three principal types: ads as sponsorships, inserted into subscription email newsletters and discussion group posts, Opt-in email, where the recipient has actually agreed to receive by email commercial information from the sender, and SPAM, or Unsolicited Commercial Email, which is commercial messages posted to newsgroups or sent by direct email. This last is completely disreputable and banned by most consumer ISPs.
  8. An advertiser should consider internet advertising alongside all other media when selecting media for any plan. Internet media should be used when it offers an advantage in efficiency (quite rare), an opportunity to reach an otherwise difficult-to-reach prospect, or the opportunity to deliver a message of a kind or in an environment which enhances message impact.
  9. Internet advertising of one sort or another has probably existed since the early days of the internet. As a real medium, internat advertising is traced to the beginnings of the commercialization of the World Wide Web at the end of 1994. The year 2000 will generate over US$5 billion online ad revenue

Friday, March 24, 2000 #3338
dear guru, could you tell me what aperture theory is? cant seem to have heard this before. Thanks

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 27, 2000 ):
Some see aperture theory as a companion to recency, some as a contradiction.

Most simply, aperture theory holds that there is a point in a brands purchase cycle when the consumer is most susceptible to advertisng persuasion regading the next purchase, and that is when to concentrate message delivery. The connection to recency, is that recency theorists hold that, to the extent that advertising affects purchase, the exposure closest to the purchase decision is most influencial in the purchase decison. When purchases are occuring constantly, the best plan distributes exposures continuously, which achieves the most consumers reached relative to purchase occasions, as compared to palns with hiatuses or occasional big peaks in weight.

Wednesday, March 22, 2000 #3334
Challenge: How do we reach recent movers/home buyers? What media vehicles are available that would reach this target audience? Direct mail, magazines, etc.? Any information you have would be very helpful in my media planning. Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 22, 2000 ):
Direct marketing through resources such as Welcome Wagon are a starting point.

Many telephone companies have special packages with new telephone book deliveries. Other utilities, such as gas, electric, cable, etc are also potential partners.

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.

Thursday, March 16, 2000 #3326
Dear Guru: I would like to know if there is any equation to calculate media mix reach?

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 16, 2000 ):
There are several, equivalent ways to express the arithmetic to combines media according to random probability, which has been found generally adequate for the purpose of multimedia combination.

Here's an easy one:

  1. Work with two reaches at a time
  2. Treat the reach of each medium as a decimal (50 reach is 0.5)
  3. Add reach of medium A and medium B
  4. Multiply reach of medium A by reach of medium B
  5. Subtract the product of the multiplication from the sum of the addition


  • reach of medium A = 40, reach of medium B = 55
  • 0.4 + 0.55 = 0.95
  • 0.40 x 0.55 = 0.22
  • 0.95 - 0.22 = 0.73
  • Combined reach is 73

To add additional media, treat the combination as medium A and the next medium as B.

In some cases, a planner may have access to research which shows that an adjustment should be made for actual, measured, duplication between different media, rather than use the "random probability" formula above. In that case, more sophisticated reach calculating software packages, such as those from Telmar allow you to make the calculation and build in known adjustments.

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.

Wednesday, March 08, 2000 #3296
Guru, does the sum of individual monthly effective reach equal the total compaign effective reach? (e.g. 3 month campaign - month 1=10%, month 2=10%, month 3=10%. Total campaign = 30% effec. reach?? Should/could there be a discrepancy as large as 10% between the sum and the total? Thanking you in advance, R.

The Media Guru Answers(Wednesday, March 08, 2000 ):
The Guru wonders how you could get such an idea. In your theory, reach would be 120 after a year! reach, as you surely know, is a percentage of the universe, and cannot excedd 100%

As in any other combination of reaches, there is some duplication between the effective reach of one month's schedule and the next.

The difference between reality and your addition could easily surpass 100% over time.

Tuesday, March 07, 2000 #3293
In a budget meeting ID been asked to reduce the number of stations planned for certain cities, in order to have money to cover other markets......My argument is that we need to buy at least 35% of total PUR (persons using radio) to have an effective impact with the promotional radio campaign...Ill appreciate your comments...AZ (MEX CITY)

The Media Guru Answers(Tuesday, March 07, 2000 ):
The Guru has never encountered a share-of-PUR-standard, nor have a couple of his senior, radio researcher colleagues.

The big issue is what you determine makes an effective impact, in concrete terms so that you can make a case. Is it reach, effective reach, frequency or what? All these issues relate much more directly to consumer communication and impact than the abstraction of share of PUR. If you can buy GRPs and reach to your needs, but have to do it with fewer stations, it doesn't strike the Guru as a very significant issue.

Tuesday, March 07, 2000 #3291
Is there a formula which calculates effective reach and frequency? I know that reach x frequency=grp's, but how can I determine what the effective reach and frequency would be for 100 grp's or 150 grp's?

The Media Guru Answers(Friday, March 10, 2000 ):
Of course there's a formula, but it can be immensely complicated. In fact, media planners rarely, if ever, considered effective frequency before computers became a part of everyday reach and frequency calculation in the 70's.

Your "reach x frequency=grp's" is not a formula, but merely the arithmetical relationship of these quantities as they are defined.

GRPs are the convenient weights and mesures we use in media buying. They are simple statistical measurements, whereas reach and frequency are more complex statistical models In some cases, there are relatively simple reach formulae derived from compiling the actual, measured reaches of actual schedules with known GRPs. The formula is non-linear.

To find the effective reach of a schedule, you first determine level of frequency to consider "effective" and then examine the frequency distribution of the schedule to see how many people have been reached that number of times The frequency distribution shows exactly how many people have been exposed to each integral number of announcements in a schedule.

The math is based on non-linear functions. For any given reach and GRP set, the frequency distribution can vary considerably depending on the media combined and the dayparts within the media.

Monday, March 06, 2000 #3288
I am doing planning for an image campaign on TV for this Spring (May-June). The are going to be 5 separate spots running under the same theme, but with different messages. Since there are so many spots, about how many GRPs per spot per market should I consider to be reasonable for delivery of each message? Thanks.

The Media Guru Answers(Thursday, March 09, 2000 ):
This is one of those "how high is 'up'?" questions.

Do you need for each spot to be seen by some number of different people? Then buy GRPs adequate to build that reach for each spot.

Does each peice of copy need to be remembered rahter than just the overall theme? Then establish effective reach goals for each execution and buy to required GRP's for that goal.

There are no real magic numbers like "a minumum of 100 GRP's to do X."

It's a matter of setting communications goals either for a campaign or for specific pieces of copy, and buying the needed media to achieve the goals.

By the way, in an image campaign, the Guru would expect that the overall theme is more important than the individual messages.

Monday, March 06, 2000 #3285
I am considering becoming an internet consultant for an established media-buying agency who currently does no Internet/banner advertising work, but wants to start. I have many years experience in Internet, web site production, and marketing, but I know little about media buying. Where would be a good place to start? I will be attending Thuner Lizard Web Advertising 2000 conference in Ny in April.

The Media Guru Answers(Monday, March 06, 2000 ):
The Guru is quite opinionated on this concept. His opinions include:

  • It is far easier for a media professional who knows buying to learn about the internet than for an internet / web site production person to learn about media buying

    Conferences like the one mentioned are likley to offer an experienced person a few new insights, but not likely to confer job skills.

  • There are far too many people currently selling web media who toss around web jargon but have no idea of the meaning of key media concepts, like reach, frequency, duplication, efficiency

Your best hope is that the company you are joining, if they are hiring internet specialists from outside the media buying world, is putting on some sort of training / mentoring program, where you can learn by doing.

Sunday, March 05, 2000 #3283
hi guru is there any place that i can read about media strategies? ( flighting, continuous,pulsing ,recency)? can you guide me what are the right reach/ frequency levels in FCMG ? shooping goods? others? best regards

The Media Guru Answers(Sunday, March 05, 2000 ):
There are many Guru comments about these topics. Go to the Guru Archives Search Engine. Use your keywords as your search terms.

Thursday, March 02, 2000 #3275
Guru, any thoughts on how to estimate % trial as a result of advertising (effective reach 50% at 3.6+ effective freq. print plan, only medium).The brand has done little advertising,has limited awareness(8% unaided) in a moderately competitive category(indigestion remedies). I have factored the target group pop.(W55+) by the incidence of the condition, then further adjusted by % likely to treat the condition, to arrive at a "Total Potential Prospects". At this point I would like to estimate the % that can be persuaded to trial, to determine estimated prospects and potential sales, but I have no historical advertising or client data on which to base the expected return. Would you base return on current awareness levels, or current SOM? No growth expected in the category,assume trial at the expense of the competition. I am attempting to devise a systematic method of determining ideal effective reach,linked to sales objectives, as I am not content to leave it at "maximum affordable at effective freq. level" Sorry for all the blather, but your thoughts and wisdom would be much appreciated. R.

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 04, 2000 ):
What you seem to need is a persuasiveness measure: what is the percent who would try the product (purchase intent) with and without advertising exposre? Many marketers have done such research and, if available, it can be factored against your "total potential prospects."

Thursday, March 02, 2000 #3274
What are the criteria that a media planner has to consider when planning for advertising on the internet?

The Media Guru Answers(Saturday, March 04, 2000 ):
The criteria are the same as in any media planning: reach, environment, composition, consumer response, etc.

In the internet there are merely different sources, standards, and formulas in dealing with these elements and thousands more options.

A couple of the most important differences are

  • One "page" of a web site gets only a fraction of the audience of the total site, as compared to a page of a magazine, which is treated as if it had the same audience as the entire issue
  • Audience ranking is much less relevant for the same reason: If Yahoo reaches half of all web users, but your banner is only exposed to one million of those unique visitors, how is that different than you banner being seen by one million uniques visitors to a web site which only gets one percent of all web users?

Sunday, February 27, 2000 #3254
I would like to have information about typical rates of fre