Advertising & Marketing

Can you launch a brand without TV?

TV has been the platform on which campaigns are built for so long that to contemplate launching a brand without it feels very uncomfortable, and yet declining budgets and increasing regulation in some countries and categories means that many marketers are faced with doing just that. So what evidence is there that a brand can be launched without TV?

Of course, TV is far from the only channel that allows you to deliver video to your target audience. Facebook, cinema and online video can all act as substitutes for TV. The question is, do they deliver the same reach and impact that TV might do? The next question is what other channels might help you get the news out? Outdoor has often been used as a means to extend the impact of TV, both in duration and close to the point of purchase. Might that work better than online display ads, radio or print?

In most countries around the world, your media agency is going to give you a pretty good idea of which combination of channels is going to create the most cost-effective means of reaching your target audience, but reaching them is only the first step. You need to be sure that your creative is going to work in different channels where ad format, consumer mindset, and expected response differ dramatically. And then you need to know how the combination of channels chosen actually works together. Do they deliver the necessary impact, and if not how might things be improved? This is where Crossmedia studies come in by assessing the contribution each channel makes to the brand objectives, identifying areas of synergy and over-spending.

One recent study we conducted looked at a new product launch that used a no-TV media mix, similar to the one I described above, supplemented by online display, events and POS. The results proved that you can generate impact without TV, but also highlighted how the individual elements of the campaign worked together and how it might be improved.

Targeted at a young audience, the combination of digital, outdoor and cinema reached the vast majority of the audience, with the video platforms reaching 85%. Facebook (both mobile and desktop)  drove digital reach. Importantly, however, outdoor had an important role in ensuring the campaign achieved its objectives. The video, while engaging, failed to highlight the brand and core impression well unless the audience had also seen the outdoor ads. The research found that while further investment in Facebook might have proved worthwhile, online video delivered more than its optimal frequency.

This study proved that you can launch a brand without TV. The impact observed was on a par with campaigns that included TV but, unfortunately, I suspect that the age of the target audience and the nature of the category had quite an influence on the results. So what do you think? Would you be comfortable with a no-TV media mix?


Authored by Nigel Hollis,Executive Vice President and Chief Global Analyst at Millward Brown 


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