When it comes to buying broadcast media, there are a lot of acronyms being thrown around. It’s no wonder when clients come to us, they are usually pretty happy to hand over that job. Combined with the constant addition of networks and the ever-changing digital landscape, there are more than enough options to make even our heads spin. In an effort to simplify what’s becoming a rapidly changing buying environment, here’s our media buying 101 crash course:

Know the market.

Whether you’re in media sales or media buying, there is nothing more frustrating than a rep that hasn’t taken the time to learn the market. Let’s look at our market, Gainesville, as an example.

Our neighbors in Ocala and Lake City rely heavily on Gainesville to deliver their news and entertainment, but they are technically in the Orlando and Jacksonville Designated Market Area (DMA). Not taking the time to learn the extra efficiencies you can buy here could end up costing you or the client a lot of extra (and inefficient) dollars.

Learn the acronyms… but don’t lose sleep over them.

When you’re talking national media buys, you live and die by the numbers. But on a smaller, local and even regional scale, combining a little common sense goes a long way.  Knowing which sports and specials are going to out-project the quarterly ratings (yes, we are still in a diary market — archaic we know!) can help you place a better buy, even if the numbers don’t always show it.

Find the right combination.

We’re not just talking about programming here, although that’s important. Learning through media buying 101 what other mediums will pair best with your buy will help create a more cohesive and overall effective campaign.

Pro Tip: TV and online are becoming BFFs.

Leave it to the professionals.

Unless you have a weird obsession with small numbers on a big screen (it’s cool, we do too), hire a professional to place your buys. Sometimes there’s a misconception that it will increase costs, but in most cases, their payment comes in the form of an agency discount from the media instead of from you. Professional knowledge and experience will take your buys and your business to the next level.

 At the end of the day, you want to make sure your message is getting to the right people, at the right time, in the most efficient way possible.  While there are many more facets to buying media than this media buying 101 crash course, but hopefully these tips can help you navigate the ABC’s of GRP’s.