As a business owner, you have a lot on your plate. From running the day-to-day operations to managing all of your employees, there is only so much time in one day. One area you cannot forget about is marketing. After all, how will you grow your business without exposure? Adding all of that together, you may need some assistance, especially in the beginning when you are just getting started. That is where media buyer agencies come into play.
These agencies possess valuable expertise in getting brands in front of customers at the right time and place. You may be thinking that hiring a digital marketing agency sounds expensive. However, you would be surprised at the ROI you will see by doing so. On top of that, you will save yourself from the headache of purchasing media space yourself. Thus, saving you time and money. Let us guide you through media buying and the advantages of media buyer agencies.
Table of Contents
What is Media Buying?
Before we discuss media buying agencies, let us take a step back to what exactly these agencies will accomplish for you. Media buying is the process of purchasing space and time on a wide variety of marketing channels. There are different types of media buying. It is not just restricted to traditional outlets like television, radio, and print. In fact, most brands are purchasing space on digital media channels like websites and social media. From the commercials you see on TV to the banner ads on your favorite mobile app, someone had to purchase that placement. Depending on your business, certain channels are better than others. You may feel overwhelmed with all the paid media options. A media buyer will help alleviate that pain.
Media buyer agencies’ goals are to optimize your marketing efforts. They will find where the best places for your ads should be and work with those publishers to get your business out there. At the same time, media buyers want to ensure your advertisements are appearing at the optimal time and for the lowest cost. Media buying agencies are experts in the ad exchange. They will work closely with your business to understand your marketing goals and target audience. From there, they will execute the actual negotiating and purchasing of the advertisement space. More so, media buyers use performance tools to track metrics and ensure campaigns are meeting goals.
Media Buying vs Media Planning
Many people assume media buying and media planning are the same thing. However, the two processes have distinct characteristics, even though they also do rely on each other. Think of media planning as the strategy that precedes media buying. The planning stage involves researching the audience, establishing goals, creating a budget for an advertising campaign, video production, and more.
From there, media buyers will execute the plan and begin purchasing the targeted channels. Most media buying agencies focus on both stages and will work with you throughout. Nevertheless, some agencies, typically ad agencies, only focus on the media planning and strategy side. It is worth confirming these details with an advertising agency before signing a contract.
Purchasing Methods of Media Buyer Agencies
How exactly do media buyer agencies purchase media space? There are a few tried and true methods many media buyers utilize. First, manual bidding is direct bidding made on a platform. Think of Google AdWords for this method. Some business professionals skip an agency and try to learn this method on their own. However, unless you dedicate a lot of time to learning it, you might not be as successful. Also, you probably do not have the time because you are busy running your business. In this case, you should allow for a professional to come in and handle this for you.
The next purchasing method is one that most businesses cannot leverage themselves. It is direct buys or working with specific advertisers to negotiate ad rates. Most media buyer agencies have the advantage because they have already established a relationship with these advertisers. A majority of the time these partnerships have already settled on the best price and know how to work with each other. In the world of advertising, connections and networking are everything. Do not feel discouraged about direct buys and instead see it as a perk of hiring an agency.
The last purchasing method requires the most technical know-how. Programmatic buying involves artificial intelligence (AI) and complex algorithms for real-time bidding on advertising space. Generally, programmatic buying will match predetermined consumer profiles with similar channels. For example, this could be a restaurant automatically bidding on ad placement on food blogs and review websites. More and more media buyer agencies are specializing and offering this service. So if you are wanting to stay current with digital trends but do not know how to, an agency can help.
Benefits of Hiring Media Buying Agencies
By now, you may be seeing that media buying is a complicated process that can eat up your time and money. But looking into media buying agencies may actually help build your business in a better way. Let us highlight the major benefits of hiring these types of agencies.
Lower Cost of Advertising
When you are new to something, sometimes it is best to let the professionals handle it. Media buying agencies have several benefits. We know as a business owner or operator, costs play a big part in all your decisions. Most business owners are averse to hiring outside help because they see it as an unnecessary additional cost. But most media buyer agencies have strong relationships and negotiation skills with media outlets. They can secure you the best price and time slots for your marketing efforts. Doing this all on your own may result in higher costs with a lower ROI on wasted ad campaigns.
Media Buyer Agencies Have a Wealth of Expertise
All the same, media buyer agencies are experts in the field. You are the best at running your business. They are best at getting your business known. The advertising and technology industries are everchanging and it is hard to keep up to date. An agency possesses extensive experience working with different businesses and offers efficiency that is hard to come by. Moreso, you may want to consider hiring local media buying agencies as they will have insights into your local market. For instance, a business targeting the Chicago market should look into media agencies in Chicago. These agencies will know what are the best local publications, television, and radio stations for your business.
Easy to Understand Results and Analytics
After launching ad campaigns into the market, you will definitely want to see how well they performed. Media buyer agencies have access to many performance tools and third-party services that you probably do not. They are experts in using these tools to track your campaigns. It might not be worth it for your business to purchase these tools or sign a contract with another vendor. Instead, allow your agency to handle all that and you focus on the important tasks.
Media Buyer Agencies Considerations
Hopefully, at this point, you are realizing how media buyer agencies can help your business and all that they do. You may even be considering now going out and hiring one. But before you do that, we wanted to present you a few points to keep in the back of your head when choosing an agency.
Set Your Budget
First, you must create a budget and understand how much you are willing to spend. Ad spending is a big decision. When researching media buying agencies, knowing how much you are willing to utilize is a huge determinant. You would not want to go over the budget that it starts eating into your profits. Conversely, you do not want to spend so little that you will not see improvements. Think of a range that fits your business and its objectives. Then you can begin retrieving quotes and negotiating with agencies.
Determine Your Objectives
Narrow down your goals and set your expectations. Having a good idea of what you want to accomplish will help greatly when vetting different media buyer agencies. Let us say that you are really interested in the programmatic buying that we previously mentioned. Some agencies are stronger than others with that technology. Or you are targeting hyper-local customers. If you are a business in Chicago, like us, you will want media agencies in Chicago. They will understand you, your needs, and your audience better. Come into those initial conversations with these agencies having your eyes set on something. They will work with you and hone that strategy.
Outline Your Needs
Recognize your creative needs. Do you already have creative assets like print ads or videos? Some media buying agencies contain a wide range of services including creative development. However, some do not and will expect to leverage whatever you may already have. Possibly, you have an in-house designer who can work with the agency in drafting up new materials for your campaigns. Or you may need a more full-service agency to help you throughout the process.
Finding a Media Agency in Chicago
Media buying has a lot that goes into it. But by using a media agency, your business will grow through increased exposure and attracting new customers. Although, we understand that you may not have all the resources to dedicate to those efforts. Media buyer agencies are the solution to this dilemma. They will take the weight off your shoulders of purchasing ad space and maximizing your ROI. If you are looking for one of the best media buying agencies Chicago has to offer, come to SEO Design Chicago. Though Chicago is in our name, we are a national company and are also the best media buyers Los Angeles has to offer. We have the means to help grow your business with our many digital advertising solutions and media buying services.
- What do media buyer agencies do?
- What are the benefits of media buying agencies?
- How to purchase advertising space?
- How is media buying different from media planning?
- What is programmatic buying?