Marriott Alumni Magazine

Fall Winter 1977 Exchange

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A MEDIA PRIMER For Managers BY JOHN A. TAYLOR Reading Improves the Mind In large marketing organizations with multiproduct responsibilities, a corporate person or staff maintains liaison with the organization's advertising agencies. In both large and small companies, advertising agencies are expected to handle all media details, including helping to develop media support budgets; preparing recommendations for national, local, and test-plan operations; readying artwork and copy; purchasing space and time; controlling and distributing advertising materials; verifying that planned support actually ran as scheduled; paying media; measuring media impact in reaching the selected audience; evaluating the cost efficiency and effectiveness of media support elements and total plans for individual products or activities; and interpreting the myriad details to the satisfaction of the client organization. The level of complexity reached in these various functions depends on the experience and expectations of client managers and the expertise and initiative of the advertising agency personnel. Yet it is vitally important that managers and their media advisers-however they interact-speak the same language. Long-established marketing organizations and their advertising agencies have conquered obstacles in the selection of media and the measurement of media performance. As a result, a useful and standardized vocabulary-the jargon of media supervision-has been developed. With the increasing importance of media in our society (newspapers, magazines, television, radio, etc.), many media terms are familiar to lay individuals as well as to managers. However, even within client/agency circles, confusion about the meaning of some words and phrases occasionally hampers perfect communication. This obfuscation will continue as words are coined to serve changing needs. The lexicon of media terms is not immutable. Nevertheless, following are a few selected topics, phrases, and brief descriptions used by key media research organizations. These are basic to understanding current media relationships. The importance of understanding media relationships is clear in view of the fact that advertising in the United States in 1975 accounted for $28 billion in marketing support activities. Total U.S. Advertising Expenditures: Of the $29 billion invested by advertisers in 1975 (the most recent year for which data are available) $15 billion was invested by national and $13 billion by local advertisers.

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