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Media Buying 101 – Basic Terms & Definitions

Updated: Mar 21

There’s a vast amount of advertising jargon out there, and it can be intimidating when you hear terms you are unfamiliar with. This can also lead to miscommunications that create problems. In the advertising world, understating the “industry speak” can help you have better-informed conversations with your specialists and give you an advantage in reviewing your dealership or group’s marketing performance. Below are some commonly used terms that will assist you in the world of traditional media buying.

Dayparts When the day is separated into different blocks of time; advertisers can then adjust buying strategy based on things like programming, demographics and ratings.

Flight Dates Refers to a period over which an advertising campaign runs, including a start and end date. To optimize the effectiveness of each schedule, advertisers take things like holidays, sales events and creative content into consideration when planning.

Frequency The number of times an advertisement is served to the same consumer or home within a specific period.

Impressions The overall number of times an advertisement is served to an audience or household.

Ratings The measurement of an audience expressed as a percentage of the total population. This allows the advertiser to choose programming that reaches target audiences.

Reach The number of people or percentage of a population who see an advertisement during a specific period.

Dayparts, flight dates, frequency, impressions, ratings and reach are all moving parts that come together to help create a strategic marketing campaign for your dealership or group. Marketing agencies manage all these moving parts both to find the right balance and also with the goal of maximizing schedule efficiency. If you’re working with your agency to make decisions, or perhaps you’re buying media for your dealership or group on your own, understanding the industry jargon will help facilitate better conversations and decisions.

Any media-buying partner should take the time to answer questions you have about something you are unfamiliar with. If you’re not being treated like an equal, or you’re not getting the performance you need from your media-buying team, let’s have a conversation about how CBC Automotive Marketing can make a positive change for your dealership or group.

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