December 2, 2014

It’s been a month since my last column and advertising is still on my mind.

My local NBC affiliate put on a lunch sponsored by the network television association. It was great because there was no selling but lots of information. Even with a declining audience, network TV rules the media. The fellow who put on the seminar was very persuasive about the benefits of network advertising. Basically, it has the absolute widest reach of any local media. The problem, as you probably know, is that spots are so expensive and cover too wide an area. If you have one store, it may not really serve your area. However, if there is something going on at your store that folks will travel for it may be worth looking at.

He busted me for spending more money on cable than on network TV. To a certain degree, he convinced me to spend more on some network ads. I bought spots in the morning from 6 to 9 a.m. weekdays at a pretty reasonable rate. Again, I am in a small market. Larger metropolitan markets will be more expensive.

We did get into a discussion about which is the better buy though, network or cable.

I can buy a 30-second spot during the national/local news, which has tens of thousands of viewers for about $400 a spot. I can also buy about 40 of the same spots on HGTV or the Cooking Channel or Lifetime for the same $400. I don’t have the exact figures but probably five to ten times more people watch the network channel than the cable channels but I can’t afford to run enough spots on the NBC news to make my ad visible to viewers. You need to run a spot many times before viewers remember it. That goes for radio, internet or TV.

So what I decided to do is run a flight of ads on NBC from the morning shows through the daytime and into the news. I am doing this on the first and third Tuesday of the month.

If I have gotten you to think about TV, please run as many spots as you can in one day, not spread out over the course of the week. You need saturation and you need to hit folks over the head with your ad. The argument was about spending $400 and getting thousands of folks seeing the ad versus $400 on a bunch of ads on cable which has a fraction of the viewers.

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