More Bang for Your TV Buck
With DRTV short-form media buying, it’s a tricky balancing act between securing the lowest rates and attaining a reasonable level of clearance. If you submit rates that are too low, your clearance could be low, and if your rates are too high, your show might not pay out. Good DRTV media buyers know how to balance these two aspects of their buys to optimize results.
Long-form rates did not increase much from the third to the fourth quarter [in 2005], so we have seen improved response, which translates into a more profitable ROI for our clients.
TM: What is the penetration of personal video recorders (PVRs) doing to how companies buy DRTV spots?
PK: We haven’t yet changed the way we buy DRTV to counteract the penetration of PVRs, since the penetration is still relatively low. It’s estimated there are currently only around 6 million households with PVRs, so the effects aren’t apparent yet. However, by 2010 DVR penetration is expected to reach 40 percent of TV households. This will have a significant impact on the way people watch TV, and could result in a large segment of the viewing audience zapping through commercials.
I’ve seen some recent research that viewers of cable news and sports channels have the highest percentage of “live” viewers, so buying more of this type of programming is a way of counteracting higher PVR usage.
TM: What strategies should companies employ to find cost-effective time slots for their DRTV campaigns?
PK: Employ an experienced DRTV media buyer. [These professionals] understand the value of inventory, they have leverage with the networks/stations due to the volume of time they buy, they know the networks/stations/dayparts that perform best, and [they] know how to effectively track and optimize their buys by moving money to higher performing media and dropping less responsive media vehicles.