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Media for Recovery: re-evaluation of Ebiquity’s 2018 paper

In December, Ebiquity released a timely re-evaluation of their 2018 paper, ‘Re-evaluating Media’, designed to identify the effectiveness of 10 different media types, locate the disparities between the perceptions and reality of media channels and highlight the most critical attributes to grow brands. These pillars are certainly interesting, but also particularly crucial to appreciate during the current prolonged time of uncertainty and upcoming recovery that we’re all eager to grasp in the year ahead.

Their study was broken down into four main phases:

  1. Media perceptions: interview over 100 media decision-makers (at advertisers and agencies) to gather views on the most critical attributes to deliver a campaign that grows a brand during a period of recession.
  2. Media reality: review these ‘critical attributes’ against over 100 research reports to define the actual performance of different media.
  3. Compare these two to identify the gap between perception and reality.
  4. Develop an overall relative ranking value of each medium.

From their findings, it’s interesting to note that the top five media attributes from 2020 align strongly with those in the 2018 study, with ‘building brand salience’ now the most valued attribute (up from 4th in 2018).

As COVID-19 has had the greatest impact on the UK’s GDP since records began in 1955, it’s not surprising that brand salience has taken the top spot; as purchasing power is becoming more limited for many and consumers are becoming more discerning on ethical and environmental grounds.

The study found that perceptions of media performance across advertisers and agencies are far from reality, with digital media in particular ranking highly in perception, but far lower than traditional media channels in performance reality:

The perceived view of media channels has fed greatly into the projected spending behaviours for 2021 across the interviewed agencies and advertisers, with newer media types ranking the highest for increased spending compared to original 2020 pre-COVID budgets (despite radio, newspapers, and magazines ranking higher in performance reality). This shows how subjectivity can win against hard evidence for some media buyers, especially when data isn’t at the heart of media planning.

All Response Media viewpoint

Ebiquity’s study highlights the importance of collating and regularly analysing data to get the best return from your media spend, which is always recommended – but particularly important in times of crisis and recovery. At All Response, we use a combination of internal data systems and external sources to make evidence-based, data-driven decisions to ensure that our media perceptions align with reality. By building strong goal orientation partnerships with clients we help to achieve both short and long-term objectives, to guide us through these unstable times and beyond.

For more information on the services we offer, click here.