Audio Planning 2023 - What makes a good planning?
Last week the very successful 10th edition of the Radio Advertising Summit took place. Just before that, Spotify went into a successful 2nd round with the ALL EARS Podcast Summit. And in this year's OMR Festival, there are also a pleasing number of audio-related Master Classes. From radio to streaming providers to podcasts to in-game audio, we now have unprecedented diversity.
When I started my first job in audio planning nearly nine years ago, things looked a bit different. Online audio was still niche, despite some very dedicated colleagues, and podcasts or similar were not yet on the horizon.
The question of what constitutes good audio planning was easily answered at the time: 4-5 average contacts per week and a target net reach of 50% in the planning target group. So there were clear, unambiguous parameters that had to be taken into account, if possible, and which could be easily communicated and explained to customers and agencies on the basis of advertising impact studies. ma Audio was implemented in 2015. For the first time, it was possible to include classic radio and online audio offerings together in one planning. This was a success that in my opinion was not seen positively enough in the industry. We as the audio industry made something possible that had not existed in this form before, a real convergent planning. Of course, ma Audio also caused challenges. Do we evaluate a digital audio contact differently than a traditional one? What about pre- and in-stream, or how much more valuable is a targeted contact? In addition to classic performance KPIs, additional indicators in need of explanation therefore became necessary to create successful audio planning. In recent years, another auditory channel followed and no other audio topic attracts as much attention as podcasts. With the additional channel, of course, we face numerous additional challenges all over again - native or producer read, classic ad and dynamic, baked-in or adserverbased. Admittedly, some of these issues were quickly resolved. Others can be discussed at length. And now that certain market standards have been established, another auditory channel is already in the starting blocks - in-game audio. All challenges and issues considered, audio is more versatile than ever. We can serve the entire funnel with audio, create a wide variety of usage scenarios, and reach every target group in the ideal situation for them. However, the challenges we face as agencies are far more diverse than they used to be - and what does this now mean for our initial question?
It means that far more is required than looking at a few KPIs. Successful media planning requires an orchestration of all auditory channels. To be able to guarantee this, a high degree of expertise in all auditory channels is necessary, a constant exchange with different marketers and an open ear for all innovations and trends. Each customer must be considered and analyzed individually and an audio plan with customer-specific KPIs must be created.
Besides that, it also means - and I'm extremely happy about this - even after 10 years in the audio industry, I will not get boring easily and I'm looking forward to all the developments and challenges that are still ahead of us.