Global Marketing
Management Consultants
Global Marketing
Management Consultants
Global Marketing
Management Consultants

The role of media vendor research

Considering the huge amount of money spent on media advertising, it is not surprising that the sellers, the media vendors and owners, invest a huge amount of money in undertaking research on the performance and strength of their media offering in delivering and engaging the audience. But in the flood of media vendor research, what is the best way to assess and use this market resources? Find out more here in Media Minutes.


DARREN: Welcome to Media Minutes. I am Darren Woolley
STEPHEN: And I am Stephen Wright
DARREN: In the next few minutes we will share with you our view on media vendor research. Stephen, media owners produce a huge amount of research, don’t they?
STEPHEN: They certainly do, Darren. As do their industry associations. And while much of this research is interesting and some is of value, the fact is, you must use this research with a clear view of the intent.
DARREN: What do you mean, Stephen?
STEPHEN: Well, Darren, media sales teams will use this research principally as a sales tool. After all, the reason for a media owner to invest in something like market research is to increase sales and capture a greater share of the media market.
DARREN: That goes without saying Stephen. I remember working on media trade presentations and lots of work went into getting the messaging just right. But are you saying that the research is misleading and deceptive then?
STEPHEN: No, not at all Darren. Just as we trust advertising, we can certainly trust the media vendor research. But what I am suggesting is that you should always review the research and the insights in more depth than simply take it at face value.
DARREN: A bit of critical thinking required here then?
STEPHEN: Exactly, Darren. And for two reasons. The first is that often there is really valuable insights in some of this media vendor research that is not so obvious. Occasionally from a sales perspective, they may overlook research insights that have particular meaning for you. Therefore, it is always worth getting the full report and potentially requesting the data if a particular research report shows promise.
DARREN: And the second reason, Stephen?
STEPHEN: Before you accept any research finding, media vendors or any third party for that matter, it is important to understand the methodology including sample size significance, sample selection and more to ensure there is no bias that could be influencing the results.
DARREN: That sounds heavy, Stephen. I mean, I have a science background and yet it has been a few years since I last did Statistics 101.
STEPHEN: Point taken, Darren. It always helps having your researcher or strategist look at the report in detail, but sometimes it can be little things you look for.
DARREN: Such as?
STEPHEN: Well does the report include details of the research methodology? Are each of the insights supported by the data and is the data clear in regard to numbers of respondents and not just rely on percentage? Is the language particularly subjective?
DARREN: Subjective? What do you mean, Stephen?
STEPHEN: Often reports are written in a way that the language, the way the point is framed, or the context is designed to make it appear more impressive than the data supporting it.
DARREN: Who was it that said, “Truth well told?”
STEPHEN: McCann Ericsson, but that is the point. For the research to be useful, you need to cut through any biases and hyperbole and get to the underlying insight. That is where value is.
DARREN: You are making me feel that media vendor research is not to be trusted, Stephen.
STEPHEN: Good media owner research can be incredibly valuable. But the point is being able to see through the sales story and see the market and media insight for yourself, rather than being influenced by the way it is being presented.
DARREN: Well we are only human.
STEPHEN: That is true, Darren. But when potentially millions of dollars are in play it is always worthwhile sorting the facts from the frame in which they are presented. In the case of media vendors, the frame will always be positive for the media involved.
DARREN: Sage advice, Stephen. For more sage advice, make sure you subscribe to Media Minutes. A weekly snack on all things media. Until then. I’m Darren Woolley, and he’s
STEPHEN: Stephen Wright
TOGETHER: And this is Media Minutes.