Why multi-platform ad buys don’t happen

January 15, 2007 at 1:30 pm 1 comment

 James (MindShare regional team, Singapore) writes:

I love the simplicity of this study outlined at the Northwestern University media infocenter by Vivian Vahlberg. It also underlines that all problems are people problems.

In a nutshell….multi-platform ad buys don’t happen because print sales guys and TV sales guys from the same media company are different fish and don’t trust each other….


The study

found that broadcast and print reps were cut from different molds. The broadcast reps were strongest where print reps were weakest; they were intensely enterprising. And they were weakest in the one area where print reps were strongest: in the discipline needed to follow through with the details needed for an ad sale. Broadcast reps were also much more ambitious and had much better interpersonal skills. And they scored somewhat better on command of the room, positivity and problem solving skills…..

…because of their differences, when broadcast and print reps went into joint sales calls, the broadcast reps tended to dominate the presentations and, being intensely ambitious and competitive, wanted to take home all the marbles — but didn’t follow through well. That bred resentment and lack of trust, which was exacerbated by the commission structure that didn’t provide financial rewards for cross-media sales.

Sound familiar in Asia?

Read the full article to find out how they fixed the problem.

Presumably, as we see more consolidation of large media companies into multi-platform giants, and we see more marketers seeking multi-channel campaigns, there will be increasing need for media owners across Asia to fix this problem in their companies.

Entry filed under: media general.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. simon woodward  |  January 16, 2007 at 7:24 am

    Interesting article.

    There are very few sales groups that combine their offers across different platforms. Many are targeting the same advertisers and audience, but seem poles apart in sales terms.

    We, however, can begin to cooperate on cross-media deals, as the largest investor in the region.

    The obvious investment pattern is across digital, print and broadcast.
    There are many areas where we can offer services back to the vendors, especially in the area of digital cooperation and research. This will ultimately be corroborated through multi faceted trading.

    We are beginning to investigate the benefits to our clients of investing more at a both a regional and global level.
    One of the greatest barriers for cross-platform investments is the measurement criteria. Even at a TV level in Asia Pacific, the Target Audience Measurement (ratings) is very primitive.
    There is a requirement for the syndicated research suppliers to invest into this area. The broadcasters want it, the buyers want a currency, and planners and clients want a more viable measurement methodology.
    Although ratings, readership/circulation numbers and click-thru measurements are different research methodology’s, this should not prevent us from trading them together. The industry needs to cooperate further to ensure we can become more sophisticated with the assessment of value for clients, across multi platforms.
    I disagree that sales reps “have too much power and dominate” at the negotiation table. In most cases, there is unsold inventory across regional media owners. In a market (Asia) where Adspend levels are generally increasing, choice between competing media owners is critical to both sales and buying communities.
    3rd Party research needs to be improved if it is to be treated as a currency.

    Within GroupM, our proprietary research studies are becoming a highly demanded property. Now from media owners, as well as clients. I see this as a terrific opportunity to collaborate and co-invest. Understanding the consumer is becoming a more complex science. Media Owners and agencies need to trade and work in partnership on the measurement criteria just as much as trading in cash terms.
    This makes negotiations and multi platform investments more dynamic and ultimately more beneficial for advertisers.

    A combination of media vehicles, linked to a mutually beneficial trade can and should be structured across Owners.

    We will begin to encourage the media owners to trade across platforms on both a regional and global level, in order to gain deal advantages. The approach is to support them, as much as ensuring we gain value for our clients.

    GroupM will use our depth and breadth across the region as a collaborative tool, trading in a different way to drive new opportunities for our clients and agencies…..and our partners at the vendor side.

    It’s all very exiting – but the key to good deals is knowing your trading partner (the vendors) and knowing what you yourself are going to do!


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