In Our Own Words
Happy Six Month Anniversary to Me: Five lessons I’ve learned as an AMP/B at Morgan + Company
March 13 marked my six month anniversary as an assistant media planner/buyer with Morgan + Company. Fresh out of college, I joined Morgan + Company in September with no idea that an entire world centered on the planning and buying of media existed. Creativity is what drew me into pursuing a marketing education but with all this media math I was learning, was any aspect of this position ever going to require any innovative thinking?
Fast forward a month and half, I found myself on a field trip with Jenn Huber, our Director of Communication Planning. We drove on I-10 to look at billboards and determine the good from the bad, stopped at gas stations to find unique out of home placements and finally, we ended at The Bulldog for a beer. Putting my glass on the coaster I noticed it had a Bud Light logo on it- Bud Light was advertising to me via coaster. Whoever planned that placement successfully integrated the brand into my life.
Any reservations I had about choosing this career path as an assistant media planner/buyer were proved wrong. Media planning and buying IS creative and it does require innovative thinking in addition to number crunching and mathematical skills. That was my first lesson, media can happen anywhere, anything you think of can be possible… sometimes even places you didn’t think were possible. If you want to advertise on the tray tables of airplanes (which Morgan + Company did for the New Orleans CVB) you can; the possibilities are endless and placement is just as important as the creative artwork and messaging.
CYA is another very valuable lesson I learned over this past six months. Eric taught me this acronym on my first day but it was not until I came into my first media crisis that I understood the importance of Covering Your, well, you know. As an assistant, you are frequently asked to send that e-mail to the client or vendor and while at the time it may seem like that e-mail is just a quick question or answer, it is that very e-mail that saves you a month down the road when someone is claiming they never got _____ document or were never told that _______ was due a week ago. Make sure every agreement, negotiation, plan, adjustment, detail has written documentation and proof.
Lesson number three is probably the most obvious set of skills that all new entrants into the media planning and buying world learn- know how to work numbers, what numbers to work, what numbers to ask for, and what numbers mean what. GRPs, TRPs, reach, frequency, impressions, CPMs, are things that you need to understand, know, and memorize as a media planner or buyer. Eventually these things became second nature to me but it definitely took time for me to become comfortable with all the numbers involved with media. This leads me into my fourth lesson…
Know what questions to ask so you get the answer you need. I have called many sales reps over the past six months and I hated nothing more than having to call back three minutes later because I forgot to ask for a certain number or for clarification about something. I quickly learned that in order to provide the account execs with the information they are asking me to find, I need to ask the right questions. The saying “no question is a bad question” may be true but it does not mean that every question is an efficient question. But even when asking the right questions, I found I usually got the same inconclusive answer of “it depends.”
Lesson number five: “it depends.” During my month of training at Morgan + Company I noticed a trend, whenever I asked a general question about media I usually got the same answer- “It depends.” Every client and every advertising vehicle is different and how they relate is also different. Sometimes radio makes more sense than print or digital should be the main focus but I learned it all depends on the situation- the client’s goals, messaging, budget, and audience.
It is our role to extract from market, audience and competitive research and insight recommendations to our clients for smart media plans and buys. And when I look back at these past months and the lessons I’ve learned, I see the foundation of becoming a great communications planner and buyer taking shape. It’s all part of a journey down a long, exciting path that is continuously developing. And not just developing in terms of new or social media, but also with technology and its implications on traditional media (digital billboards, DVRs, etc.). Exciting it is.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
by Lindsey DeLeo
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- Media Buying Monopoly
- 15 Years
- Traditional Media - The People Paradox
- Magazines Still Have Value
- Why Launch A Magazine Now?
- A GRP is a GRP, right?
- A New Digital Dimension
- Don’t Touch The Jerseys
- Happy Six Month Anniversary to Me: Five lessons I’ve learned as an AMP/B at Morgan + Company
- Give Me Liberty or Give me A Do-Not-Track Button!
- I’m Just a Girl: Taking gender specific marketing to a whole new level
- Tweet Dat: How Social Media adds to the fan experience
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- Cookie Monster
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- Award Season Continues
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- Time to move on?