Media Flowchart Definition

Media flowchart

What is a media flowchart?

A media flowchart is an integral part of any media plan. This document should show the media execution plan at a glance, including the various media (AKA where your ads will be placed) along with the timing and durations of the ads. Media flowcharts are also commonly referred to as advertising flowcharts or blocking charts.

Why are media flowcharts necessary?

Media plans are comprehensive, and can be difficult to keep track of, particularly when you have multiple parties involved (such as a digital marketing manager, paid acquisition specialist, and a designer).

They’re called flowcharts for a reason—they help your plans flow smoothly, reducing any confusion or chance for mishaps. Advertisers can utilize media flowcharts to help visualize their media plans.

What does a media flowchart look like?

Flowcharts are typically laid out in the format of a Gregorian calendar or a Broadcast calendar; the former is the traditional yearly calendar while the latter differs in date ranges due to it revolving around TV and radio advertising.

Marketers who are familiar with viewing their project management lists in the form of Gantt charts can relate to most media flowcharts, as they tend to take on a similar format; modern flowcharts tend to consist of long blocks built upon the chosen calendar style and color coded to whatever parameters best suit the defined array of channels and tactics.

Below is a very simple example of what a media flowchart can look like. As you’ll notice, it’s broken out by media channels, with campaign budgets and durations.

Advertising Campaign Calendar

How should I test and present media flowcharts?

Media flowcharts, like media plans, take a lot of evaluation and configuration to get right. The basis of both media plans and flowcharts is budget, so be sure to understand the limits of your budget and the scope of your campaigns when creating an initial media flowchart.

It may be valuable to create a few different versions of your media flowchart to find what looks and feels best for your team to understand. And when presenting a media flowchart to clients, it’s in your best interest to get the budget calculations correct and aligned as best as possible, so that any potential changes to the flow of the plan can be incorporated seamlessly.

Building a media flowchart within a more modern platform or program will allow you to modify it on the fly and ensure that no version gets left behind. Even if you create several incarnations of a single media plan’s flowchart, it would be beneficial to save old versions so you can revert or reference them if and when needed.

How do media flowcharts benefit ROI?

Representing a complex media plan in a simple, visual manner makes tracking a plan’s effectiveness easier. With a comprehensive media flowchart, you can connect your chosen KPIs and track the success of your campaigns visually. This means that you’ll be able to understand, at a glance, the way your media moves are lining up with your original plan and budget. That makes optimization and reporting even easier, and your ROI is bound to reflect that.

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