Media Plan Definition

Media Plan

What is a media plan?

A media plan is a document that outlines the strategy of how, when, where and why an organization will distribute its media content to their target audience.

Media plans typically include details such as:

  • An analysis of the target audience
  • The type of media that will be shared
  • The media channels that will be used to distribute the messaging
  • Current media and marketing trends
  • The budget
  • How results will be tracked across multiple platforms

Creating your media plan

Creating a media plan is a valuable practice for organizations, as it helps them identify their target customers and make the right media buying decisions to reach those customers in an effective way.

Here are a few key factors to take into account when developing a media plan:

Reach – How many individuals do you want to view your message during a given timeframe?

Impact – What form of media will have the greatest impact on your target customers to help reach your desired outcome?

Frequency – How many times do you want your target customers to view the ads that you are putting out? More viewings tend to lead to better results, but the cost of distributing more ads must be taken into account.

Budget – How much do you plan to spend on media? What is the approximate cost per view for the various media channels on which you will be advertising?

Selectivity – Which media outlets are effective for your specific product? It is important to ensure that you are broadcasting your messaging in a space that reaches your target audience. For example, a fast food company would likely not want to place their ads in a fitness magazine.

Pacing digital advertising

Have you ever watched a show on TV and seen the same advertisement on nearly every commercial break? Advertisers have the choice to set a pace for their ad campaigns. Do they want their target audience to see this ad A LOT in a short period of time? Or do they want to spread it out for more of a slow burn? This same premise can be applied to digital advertising. 

There are 2 core types of ad pacing to consider, although advertisers can set whatever pace they want.

  1. Aggressive: Ad impressions are delivered at a fast pace.
  2. Governed: Ad impressions are delivered in a slow, but strategic pattern.

What does OTS stand for in media?

Opportunity-to-see (OTS) is used to measure, on average, how often a person will view a specific advertisement. OTS is calculated by dividing the total gross rating point (GRP) by percentage reach (OTS = Total GRP/% Reach).

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