(All competing for our attention and time.)
In an increasingly fragmented media landscape, it’s no longer just what you say or how you say it. It’s where and how you deliver the message in ways that are compelling, interruptive and relevant to today’s consumer behavior and lifestyle choices. More than ever before, successful media strategy depends on taking an integrated approach to message delivery across traditional, digital and social media platforms.
That’s where we come in.
Despite the rapid growth of digital platforms, U.S. consumers still spend more than 27 hours per week watching their favorite television or cable programming. We harness the power of the platform to build brand awareness and understanding, and to create an emotional link between brand and audience.
Radio efficiently reaches and connects with audience segments as defined by demographic and lifestyle differences. Whether to build traffic and sales or further build a brand personality, we know the strengths of the platform lie in its ability to capture and intimately engage listeners.
Despite loss of circulation to digital platforms, there is still a place for print media – including magazines, major metro newspapers and community papers – in the marketing campaign mix. Newspaper readers tend to skew older and more educated. Magazines afford the opportunity to efficiently reach vertical consumer segments. Fact is, ads in print allow the reader to spend more quality time with the message.
In a world gone digital, consumers now spend more time with their digital devices – computer, tablet or smart phone – than with any other media platform, including television. Over 60% of U.S. adults 18+ are regularly online. We utilize online advertising to reach and impact consumers contextually and behaviorally across the entire spectrum of their online habits.
Among U.S. adults who use the internet, 87% access the platform via a mobile device and the trend is growing. Connecting to your audience through mobile devices gives you the means to establish an intimate one-to-one connection. As the world becomes mobile, advertisers who do not plan for mobile-optimized customer interfaces will be left behind.
Likes. Shares. Tweets. Posts. Today, more than 75% of online adults are actively engaged with social media. And, believe it or not, the highest audience growth for social media over the past five years has been among adults 50+. Social media strategies magnify the impact of campaigns that use traditional and digital media, and expand brand engagement to help build consumer loyalty.
Even accounting for the astounding growth of social media, search engines are still the most frequently visited website types. When SEM is employed in the media mix, it measurably amplifies the impact of the other media platforms, channeling brand awareness and interest into measurable action.
Freeway bulletins, billboards, bus sides, mall posters and a near-infinite list of other out of home media options allow for highly efficient, geographically targeted messaging that reaches and engages target audiences as they go about the business of living their lives, reinforcing brand or product media strategies.
(We're nothing if not frank.)
"Consumers aren’t waiting to hear what you have to say."
In a world in which the ways we get our information are endless, perhaps the toughest job for any marketer is to find their way into the mind of their prospect. When no one was looking, the proliferation and convergence of new channels, new platforms and new devices has fragmented the media landscape beyond all recognition. Your prospects spend their time across more communications platforms than ever before, making them harder to reach. We help our clients navigate this milieu so their marketing messages actually hit their mark, and achieve an intended result.
"The further you open the kimono, the better we are at ROI."
The best marketing partnerships are built on candor and trust. We’ve learned from experience that we do our best strategic work when we can team with clients who share as much marketing information as possible as the framework around our assignments. Our own broad marketing pedigree helps us to know the right questions to ask when answers aren’t self-evident. The more we know, the more effective our solutions. And that leads to better ROI results.
"Negotiating added-value is a part of our DNA."
After the media strategy and budget are in place and after we negotiate the best possible rates, we take the additional step to leverage media spend into further added-value – extra spots, extra impressions, extra ads – that winds up significantly increasing the impact of the campaign. All at no additional cost to the client.
"Even if you’re on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." (Will Rogers)
Putting a media strategy in place – even a well-thought-out strategy – and just letting it sit there playing itself out is a major mistake made by many leading advertisers. Fact is, the marketing dynamic is constantly changing in the marketplace: competitive noise, shifting consumer behavior and emerging media platforms all dictate that every media strategy needs constant real-time analysis. The analytical tools in our toolkit ensure that we evaluate and adjust media strategy to achieve optimal success.
"Yes, the world is going digital. But not totally digital."
Online media, mobile platforms, social media, search engines, apps and more. The digital media landscape is growing at light speed and, while we believe and can demonstrate that digital media are an essential underpinning to any successful marketing plan, we can also point to empirical evidence gained by our own media efforts that shows the importance of retaining traditional media as a foundation for media strategies.
"Every marketing dollar is a scarce marketing dollar."
We work with humungous media budgets and we work with very small ones. The common denominator: regardless of budget size, there will always be more media strategies and tactics available than there is budget to cover them all. So, regardless of budget size, we treat every marketing dollar as a scarce resource, and work to focus available budget on the options best suited to reaching campaign objectives based on results gained by our past experience.
"We work hard to gain the respect of our media providers."
We will negotiate fiercely to achieve the best rates possible for our clients. But we do so without treating the media as adversaries. The trust we build with them pays off in far more ways than simply achieving beneficial rates, ways that include optimal ad unit placements, negotiated added-value and non-paid promotional support. And that means significantly increased bang for the buck.
"Media stewardship is like getting your car waxed."
Perhaps an oversimplification, but you have two choices after deciding to get your car waxed by someone else: you can run your car through a carwash and get a spray-on wax as part of the wash cycle, or you can find someone who hand-waxes and polishes the car. In both cases, the car gets waxed. The first way is less expensive and the quality of the result reflects that; the second way may cost more, but the care and attention to detail produces a significantly better result. The same with media stewardship companies. As an advertiser, you can always find cheaper, but in the end you’ll get what you pay for. We like to think of ourselves as the hand-waxed equivalent of media stewardship. Happy to explain the implications of that in greater detail when we meet.
(About the changing world of media.)
Measuring effectiveness across devices and content platforms is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor. Key performance indicators (KPI’s) can vary widely by advertiser, device, campaign objective and even daypart.
There’s no question that the internet has completely transformed the marketing landscape. However, that doesn’t mean offline marketing is a thing of the past.
Many observers, including the authors of this article, believe that Big Data is the new, new thing that will see some companies leapfrog others to become best in class. There are a few skeptics, but readers will find a compelling case and a toolkit for the smart use of Big Data in this article.
(But in a nice way.)
CerasoliStafford was founded in 2003 as an antidote to the impersonal media-buying conglomerates that have seemingly lost sight of the importance of true media stewardship and client care. With experience gained from managing more than a billion dollars-worth of media for local, regional and national clients across our careers, we provide marketing-based media solutions that move the needle. We work best with clients who value strategic thinking and who embrace the importance of building and sustaining their brand.
Our company structure is designed so that our senior team of managers remains face-to-face, engaged with and accountable to each client in order to produce uncommon results. No hand-offs to junior staff. We are equally effective working either directly with client companies or in concert with their advertising, public relations or public affairs agencies.
Our client companies tend to fall into two groups. Our general market clients span a broad range of sectors including consumer products and services, cultural attractions and health care. And our political/public affairs clients include companies and practitioners who manage local and regional political campaigns and public policy initiatives.
We’re happy to report that our clients keep telling us that we’re quite good at what we do.
(Let's see if we can help.)
2251 San Diego Avenue, Ste A-130
San Diego, California 92110