TV Still “Single Most Important Medium” For Number of Brands

Man with big hair watching television


A new report has shown that television is still a bloody big deal when it comes to advertising.

Hannah Edensor
Posted by Hannah Edensor

According to Forbes Insights and Simulmedia, four out of five of the companies surveyed consider TV advertising a “must have”, either as a key part of their branding strategy or in conjunction with other marketing methods.

The report, commissioned in the US, gives an insight into the kind of trends we can continue to expect down under, such as the way brands prefer to segment their ads by audience, something six in 10 advertisers support.

Mercedes-Benz USA vice president of marketing Drew Slaven said, “TV is the single most important medium in which we work”.

“It is an awareness machine. Despite digital and social media, TV is the medium that gets people to understand our brand.”

Brands recognise that the rise of digital in the past three to five years has affected how companies allocate their advertising dollars, with budgets for digital climbing at a higher rate than TV.

Expedia is one company that is following this route, while still keeping television as an integral part of its marketing strategy.

“It’s a see-saw,” senior director of brand marketing Vic Walia said.

“Digital can’t scale as fast as TV. One end is television—with high reach, low CPM and a lot of content. The other end is digital—with low reach, high CPM and not much video content. It’s a question of how do I continue to be relevant for my audience.”

“We think a lot about TV advertising. It is a good platform for us and has the highest reach. It is the core, with respect to our brand marketing.”

While TV advertising once meant only broadcast or cable seen on a television set, only a third of companies in the survey define television advertising that way now.

Half consider TV advertising to be linear advertising (broadcast or cable) seen on any device, and a fifth think of it as any video on any device. This new normal challenges how the industry thinks about TV, and shows that brands still recognise television as a dependable way of getting brand messaging across.

For placing TV ads, Mercedes-Benz USA relies on program content to guide it. “We place our ads specifically on programs, not on networks,” Slaven said.

Indeed, for the rest of the companies, audience targeting, which helps brands more effectively measure ROI, looks to be the way of the future: 37 per cent want to focus more on placing advertisements based on audience targeting.

“There continues to be a shift—from our ability to force-feed messages to consumers to a world in which consumers are able to avoid messages they don’t care about,” Slaven concluded.

“What it comes back to is this—if the message is interesting, the consumer will engage. We need the consumer to care and listen.”