Early Birds + Ad Worms

August 18th, 2020

Why upfront media buying offers an advantage.

First dibs. If you’re a media buyer, that phrase makes you salivate like Pavlov’s pup. That’s because buying early comes down to that simple expression. Long-view national studies, in-depth magazine articles, college marketing classes – all of these resources explain why buying early puts advertisers in the driver’s seat.

And if your business makes media buys on an annual basis, you want to be able to say, “I got first dibs.” Here are three big reasons why:

  1. Negotiation

    The power of negotiation is key. Going to market with a full budget in hand and paying for a year’s worth of ads up front lets you lock in lower rates, which helps secure more impressions. Plus, inflation and higher rates won’t affect your business’s marketing budget – you’re set. That ultimately means more bang for your advertising buck, and more eyeballs will see your message.

  2. Timing

    Think about it this way: Popeye’s pal Wimpy liked to say, “I’ll gladly pay you on Tuesday for a hamburger today.” If you’re a media outlet (a TV station, website, popular app, billboard company, newspaper, etc.), you don’t want Wimpys. You want a business that pays you today for advertising on Tuesday. That helps the media companies meet annual quotas early. And, hey, who doesn’t like to be paid in advance? And now they owe you. This spurs media outlets to offer premium placements and sponsorships and, perhaps most important, block your competitors from doing the same.

  3. Planning

    When you invest in media a year in advance, that gives your business the luxury of synchronizing your marketing with strategic placements, as well as the ability to craft engaging messages that might take more time to plan. Now you can create that cool video series aimed at introducing your business to Gen Z, and your screen time is waiting and ready in the wings.

The “Why” is basic, the “How” is not

While understanding the “why” in up-front media buying is simple, executing it certainly is not. Strategic media buying is a skill where chess master-like media buyers plan and strategize several months in advance. That’s especially crucial in years that contain local and national elections, Olympics or other events that take up coveted ad space. Additionally, holidays, the Super Bowl and other annual happenings are in high demand, too.

Taking care of your company’s marketing buy for the year lets these chess masters do their thing – like negotiating lower rates in the best time slots and on the hottest online platforms, and helping you shape your messaging with out-of-the-box campaigns.

In other words, when a skilled media buyer makes up-front media buys for you, it allows you to focus more on your business and your products. Plus, when a competitor wants the same sought-after ad spot, you can say, “Sorry, I got first dibs.”

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