7 Mistakes to Avoid When Ramping Up TV Advertising

Adopting and advancing a TV advertising program is challenging, especially without clear insight into performance. If you’re blind to what’s working and what’s not, you won’t be able to improve, you’ll lose trust, and your efforts will be more vulnerable to criticism and cuts. Yet still too many advertisers continue to spend large portions of their marketing budgets on TV advertising that they cannot properly report on or optimize. 

These challenges can be overcome with the right TV measurement and attribution tools. However, sometimes you simply don’t know what you don’t know. That’s why we’ve identified 7 common traps that should be avoided when ramping up TV advertising, along with recommendations for how measurement & attribution can be used to prove and drive ROI.

Move away from pay and pray

Don’t expect that you can just throw money at a campaign and it will automatically work. Without measurement, you’ll have no concrete proof that your advertising is making an impact and no insights to help you improve performance over time. And don’t settle for lagging indicators, such as GRPs and TRPs, and probabilistic spike models. Real-time measurement data is available for you to gain accurate insight into the reach, frequency and conversion rates of your TV ads right after they air, so you don’t have to wait to report on performance and make optimizations. 

Get rid of preconceived notions about TV reporting

Many advertisers come into TV expecting to get reporting like they do on the digital side, or they simply settle for getting no visibility at all. Throw away those expectations and focus on what your department needs to achieve your goals, then find the right tools to support you. If marketing is responsible for driving website traffic and sales, you’ll need measurement and attribution to prove TV advertising is a valuable part of the equation.

Don’t accept that TV advertising is just about reach

There is a misconception that TV advertising is not attributable to business outcomes, and that it is only good for reach and awareness. However, years of industry research has proved TV advertising can have a direct impact on consumer behavior and purchase decisions. New-age measurement and attribution systems are available to help advertisers go beyond reach and ratings, and start tying TV directly to business outcomes. This helps a brand’s internal teams, agency and the TV networks align on KPIs and be held more accountable for ROI. 

Avoid over saturation

Many advertisers will immediately default to ramping up frequency to increase results, but that approach can actually backfire without the right balance of creative versions and a sound media optimization strategy. For example, one iSpot client dramatically cut down airings and went on to achieve a 10% increase in sales from TV with 31% less spend. With granular media measurement, advertisers can identify the right mix of unit lengths and optimal frequency to reduce decay. Sometimes less is more. 

Don’t let the Upfronts handcuff you

Advertisers can lock up as much as 75-80% of their spend in Upfronts, and then their hands are mostly tied for the rest of the year. More inventory can be had in scatter than you think, especially right now as networks are inclined to compromise and offer flexibility in response to the disruption happening in the industry.

Don’t be afraid to negotiate

With less TV ad inventory booked up front, advertisers will have more agility to adjust media based on real-time performance data, leading to higher ROAS. Ask your network partners for options, push on rates and negotiate max flexibility. Then take the opportunity to optimize media spend throughout the year. 

Also, outcome-based TV buying is a great way to ensure performance as markets become more volatile. While the concept is still in its infancy, many networks are offering tests for advertisers to dip their toes. Watch the webinar for more insights on this topic.

Stop flying blind

These are all important questions that comprehensive, real-time TV measurement and attribution can answer. Take the first question… If you only run 30-second commercials on certain broadcast networks, don’t be afraid to swap in some 15’s as a test. Fifteen-second ads will cost around 50% less, so if conversion rates are just as good or better, then you will get more bang for your buck. The only way to make these improvements is to test and learn with the right level media measurement and conversion data. 

Interested in learning more about how measurement and attribution can help you justify and optimize your TV advertising investment? Fill out the contact form below to schedule a 1:1 consultation and demo of the iSpot dashboard. 


About the Author

Kassidy Keller is Director of Thought Leadership at iSpot.tv. She covers industry events, marketplace trends and all things Martech/Adtech. For questions and inquiries, please contact marketing@ispot.tv.

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