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TV Advertising Agency vs Full-Service Agency - What's the Difference?

Jonathan Rolley
Jonathan Rolley Posted on Feb 29, 2016, 12:59:42 PM

TV advertising has changed dramatically in the past few years. Just six years ago, TV advertisers in Australia had only four free-to-air networks plus subscription TV to choose from. Fast forward to 2016 and advertising agencies now have over 22 free-to-air networks and over 62 pay TV networks to work with. The most recent free-to-air inclusions are 9Life and 7flix, which launched in late February. 

a media agency with people working on laptops and flipcharts 

Previously, it was very easy for an advertising agency to buy and plan TV ads, as most full-service advertising agencies only had a few networks to select from. Media planning decisions typically revolved around how the network aligned to the client's target demographic, (e.g. 25-54 year old females), which network had the largest TV share of this demographic and, ultimately, which TV network offered the most efficient media schedule or deal. These efficiencies were based on either a Cost Per Thousand (CPM) or a Cost Per TARP (CPT) metric. Media planning and media buying were much simpler, especially as there were really only three major networks to choose from.

With advertisers in Australia now having well over 80 networks to choose from, has this changed the way we buy TV advertising? With so many options, how do you make the right decisions to ensure your branding achieves the maximum result? When you compare how a dedicated TV advertising agency executes media planning and media buying, compared to a full-service agency's methodology, the process is vastly different.

A dedicated DRTV agency builds marketing strategies based on what will deliver the highest response rates. The full- service media agency typically builds their marketing strategies on a network deal. If a client is focused on lead generation and sales from its TV activity, it should be very wary of a network deal as this typically does not align with direct response.

These are two very different strategies that marketing agencies deploy:

1. RESPONSE: The client wants immediate and measurable results. When a spot goes to air, the client wants to see consumers logging onto their website, submitting an enquiry, making phone calls and/or visiting their retail shop.

2. BRANDING: A brand will want consumers to build familiarity and buying preference, so that when the consumer is looking to purchase, the promoted brand will be forefront in the consumer's mind. 

Once a client has a clear objective as to what they would like to achieve with their TV advertising, then identifying the appropriate marketing strategy and marketing agency partner becomes very easy. Branding campaigns are still best delivered from a network deal and can be easily implemented by a full-service creative agency. Branding campaigns are becoming more challenging though, as TV audiences become more fragmented with all of the additional channels available, which does make it harder to achieve ROI and reach objectives.

If you are looking to drive response, then the specialised services and custom data analytics platform that a DRTV advertising agency can offer will drastically improve your lead generation and ROI. In contrast to branding campaigns, the fragmentation of TV is actually having a positive impact on response clients. Response clients are experiencing better results than ever before, which has been driven by the rapid adoption of smart phones; people are choosing to engage on their mobile device, whilst also watching TV. The fragmentation and dramatic increase of Australian TV networks allows for less wastage and highly targeted spot ad placement.

The increased use of mobile devices has completely changed the way that response clients are measuring, tracking and optimising TV advertising campaigns. As clients can now measure the impact and effectiveness of every single spot that goes to air through data analytics, we know which networks are driving the highest ROI. A DRTV agency does not base their media planning and media buying on audience reach and network deals, rather they base them on the real world results of data science. DRTV advertising agencies continually optimise media schedules to increase lead generation, as this is on the only way to improve results every month. Dedicated television advertising agencies often observe that networks with slightly higher costs deliver up to 2-3 times the performance. It is not about how much a spot costs, it's about the result it delivers. 

If you're open to discovering the secrets of Direct Response TV (DRTV) from a leading Melbourne advertising agency and learning how to drastically increase your ROI and lead generation, please register your interest in a FREE Performance TV Assessment below:

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Jonathan Rolley
This post was Written by Jonathan Rolley

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