I came across this quote the other day and it made me think about the end goal of our job as media buyers. “Creativity without strategy is called art, creative with strategy is called advertising” – Prof. Jef L. Richards.
In my opinion, “strategy” falls in the media buyer/planner‘s hands. We come up with the best placements on radio and television to attract the right audience and can add print and digital media to best suit our client’s needs. We can place social media and print campaigns as it best suits our clients’ industry. However, we all know that if the creative isn’t good enough to communicate to the preferred audience, all of our expertise and precise placement are for not. While this is not in our overly taxed wheelhouse of responsibilities, how does one communicate with clients or marketing teams the importance of their message? How do we share our experiences without damaging the relationship?
After talking to some media buying buddies, the only answer I could come up with is…it depends. It depends on the relationship with your client and how well your personalities mesh. If you are dealing with someone who can handle constructive criticism, you have not only hit the jackpot, but you have a greater opportunity to have an open line to discuss changes that need to be made for increased success. When these stars align, you can almost sit back and watch the money roll in for your clients.
However, what do you do when you have a client that is adamant that they write the best commercials and you know they stink? It has been my experience that the best course of action is (sadly) no action at all. Sometimes there is no point in arguing. So rather than waste my breath, I will make one last comment about the importance of the message and then I will just do my job. It hurts my psyche making it difficult not to anticipate the inevitable severing of contracts and being blamed for placing media on their behalf. But sometimes, you just can’t argue with an “expert”.
I wish all of our clients’ commercials could be as funny as this link. Enjoy!