With new media cropping up all the time, it can be difficult to know which channels to jump into and which to scale back on. But if you organize your brand’s media mix effectively, you’ll be able to achieve well rounded brand awareness and communication that reaches the people you’d like to engage with. Read on to find out how to create an effective media mix in 2021.

What is a media mix?

Media mix is a marketing term that describes the channels a brand uses to reach its audience and achieve its marketing objectives. These can include online and offline media, such as websites, email, social networks, billboards, newspapers, radio, television and direct mail.

Brands can communicate effectively with their target audience by using the right combination of channels in their media mix.

Why is your media mix important?

Using a mixture of media as part of your marketing strategy is essential as different segments of your audience are likely to tune into different channels.

Even more importantly, different media can be used to target those who are at different points in the consumer journey. For example, billboards can help build brand awareness, but email is key to building loyalty among past customers.

Reaching the right people at the right time is key to driving conversions and having a media mix is an essential part of doing this.

If a brand is too reliant on one medium, it can leave their business vulnerable. If a channel goes down, changes their communication policies, or if there’s a sudden increase in competition, it will lead to a steep drop in conversions.

Having a well optimized media mix will guard against this and provide your brand with the confidence it needs to experiment with new channels. Brands can invest in innovative new tactics without putting too much at risk.

Benefits of media mix optimisation

Just having a media mix isn’t enough though. Brands need to optimize the channels they use to deliver relevant marketing messages.

With careful monitoring and analysis, brands can understand how changes affect each channel’s performance. Clear data allows marketers to invest in strategies that suit both their customers and their goals. They can also revise their ads to deliver smart, timely, sequenced, personalized and effective messaging.

Tracking and understanding every media channel and how they fit alongside each other, requires a lot of time and effort. It will also be months before you have enough data to confidently apply changes to your strategies. In the end, what matters most is that your marketing teams can identify which channels are most effective and allocate resources accordingly.

Media mix optimization should increase conversions and reduce the cost per acquisition, giving your brand a better return on its marketing spend. So this is a great strategy for businesses that are working with a limited budget.

How do you determine the right media mix?

Using multiple media to promote your brand’s products is always wise. You want to strategically put together a web of marketing messages that will guide prospective customers right through to conversion.

To get the media mix right, it’s important to come up with carefully thought out strategies based on your brand, budget, audience, product, USP and in-house skills.

Media Mix Plan
Carefully planning your media mix strategy is vital for brands.

Here are some tips to help you along the way:

1. Consider your goals

What are your primary goals right now? These will influence the media you choose and the metrics you measure.

Startups that want to build awareness of their brand should focus on SEO, social media, OTT ads and traditional channels like TV, radio and print media. While established brands that want to increase conversions should focus on reaching consumers who are ready to buy. They can do this with the likes of PPC and retail media advertising.

2. Think about the marketing funnel

As we already mentioned, different media channels are effective at different points of the consumer journey. So start off by looking at the sales funnel. What media types can influence awareness, interest, decision and loyalty for your brand?

But don’t think about each stage of the funnel in isolation. Plan ways to connect them and create pathways to conversion.

For example, brands could use PPC channels to present consumers with a sequence of ads that will take them from awareness to interest. Then, retargeting is a great way to take store visitors from interest to conversion.

Your media mix will be more effective when all the components are integrated. Just make sure to use consistent messaging, themes and design across your media mix, because this will help build brand recognition and reinforce your message.

3. Invest in tracking and analytics

To determine the right media mix, brands will need to invest time and money in analytical tools, UTM tagging and automated marketing reports.

Using a mix of traditional and digital media in your marketing campaigns is a great way to reach a large audience. But it can be difficult to accurately track the impact your offline marketing tactics have. So try to gain some insights by using trackable short links, QR codes, unique coupon codes and landing pages.

To track behaviour and conversions on third-party sales channels like Amazon, eBay, Argos, Tesco, Target or Walmart, you can use ’Where to Buy’ technology. This technology enables you to gain extraordinarily detailed customer journey insights.

The more information you can track from each channel, the more you will be able to improve current and future campaigns.

4. Always monitor the same metrics

Choose a standard set of eCommerce KPIs to monitor over time. These can be compared to inform future campaigns.

Select metrics for each channel, ad format and audience segment. Ideally, they should be linked to your ultimate business objectives. It is a good idea to choose different metrics for each market too.

If you create the same report week after week, you’ll be able to see changes in media performance and clearly identify what contributes to your goals. This is key to media mix optimisation.

5. Validate what you learn

Media mix optimisation can be quite complex, especially if you use a lot of different distribution channels as part your marketing.

Before making major strategy changes based on your data analysis, it’s a good idea to run sales lift tests and other isolated experiments to verify the impact it will have.

By determining your media mix in this way, you can feel confident about making transformational decisions.

What is media mix modelling?

Media mix modelling, which is also known as media mix marketing or MMM, is used to forecast the impact marketing activities will have on sales and performance metrics.

It goes a step beyond media mix optimisation and allows for even better budget allocation. However, media mix modelling also requires more precise monitoring and analytical processes.

Brands can only develop accurate forecasts by carefully tracking every single variable that can impact consumer behaviour and conversions. Looking at price, distribution, seasonality, trends, channels, competition and product cannibalization is all crucial.

Years’ worth of data is usually required to create predictions. But other influences, like economic activity, need to be taken into account too.

Many large brands use media mix modelling. P&G, Coca-Cola and Pepsi have all made it a core part of their planning.

Final thoughts

Modern marketing can be overwhelming at times. New marketing media are coming on-stream all the time. There’s OTT advertising, TikTok, shoppable video platforms and many more.

It is hard to have oversight of them all, but if you carefully monitor the impact of each medium, you’ll soon be able to make calculated decisions that will benefit your brand’s bottom line.

For more information on how to keep track of your marketing campaign or to discover how you can optimise your eCommerce strategy, talk to a member of our team today.