Media mix: what it is and which types are best?

Nick Stoltz, Expert in Cross-Channel Measurement Strategy and Adoption

Published 09/12/2022

Media mix

A media mix modeling strategy offers more versatility and visibility than traditional marketing methods. By combining multiple marketing channels into a media mix, your business can access new markets, improve brand recognition, and increase marketing ROI.
Explore the benefits of a media mix and learn how you can use this method to improve your company’s marketing strategy. 

What Is Media Mix?

A media mix is the combination of all the communication channels a company uses to meet its marketing goals and promote its brand message. This may include the company’s website, social media, television, and email, as well as tangible forms of marketing like billboards or magazine ads.
When a company combines multiple marketing channels in a media mix, it becomes easier to communicate with numerous customer demographics at various stages of purchasing. With a media mix, you can tailor the channels you use to the consumer base you are trying to reach.
For example, if you want to reach a national consumer base, you could create a media mix that includes national newspapers, television, and radio. If you’re targeting a specific consumer group, like pet owners, you may wish to include magazines that cater to animal lovers in your media mix.
The versatility of mixed media marketing means a business can reach its customers (and prospective customers) at a low cost with minimal waste.

Why Is Media Mix Important?

A media mix is crucial for a company’s total ROI and allows a business to experiment with new marketing channels with less risk.
Creating a media mix is like diversifying your financial portfolio. Much like a savvy financier would not invest their entire savings in a single risky company, a company should not spend its whole marketing and advertising budget on one marketing method.
With a media mix, if one channel is underperforming, other channels can help balance the company’s total ROI. This gives the company time to decide whether to optimize or eliminate the inefficient method.
Since no single marketing strategy will significantly impact total ROI, companies that use a media mix have the freedom (and confidence) to try out new marketing strategies with a safety net in place.
For example, if a company wants to try streaming TV ads, it can allocate a portion of its advertising budget to streaming and the rest to channels that historically yield positive results.

How Do I Determine My Media Mix?

Media mix optimization is the process of determining the combination of marketing methods that yields the best results for your company.
To determine the effectiveness of each method, a company can use available marketing data and analytics to pinpoint when their intended customer base is most likely to engage with their brand.
It may be challenging to determine the exact efficacy of traditional media outlets like billboards or ads on public transportation; however, a company can learn a lot by tracking its digital advertising efforts.
Companies can gauge the effectiveness of mix media digital advertising by tracking metrics like click-through rates, opens, and views. These metrics allow the company to hone in on the exact content that leads to sales, which can increase ROI.

Media Mix vs. Marketing Mix

Most people use the terms media mix and marketing mix interchangeably, and for all practical purposes, they mean the same thing.
Historically, a marketing mix referred to the four broad levels of marketing decision-making: product, price, place, and promotion. An additional “P” for “people” was later added to account for customer wants and needs.

What Are the Five Elements of Marketing Mix?

The five P’s are the areas to consider when creating a marketing mix.

  • Product
    What products or services are you offering to the consumer? Before launching a new product, a company must consider key product decisions such as functionality, branding, quality, packaging, service, appearance, and warranty terms.
  • Price
    How much do your products or services cost? This calculation should include everything that impacts overall cost, including the product’s advertised price, discounts or sales, and credit terms or other payment arrangements.
  • Place
    How will you get your products or services to your customer base at the right time and place and in the correct quantity? This “P” looks at elements like a company’s distribution channels (including online), logistics, location, service levels, and market coverage.
  • Promotion
    How are you promoting your products or services to your target customer base? This element considers sales, direct marketing, advertising, public relations, social media, and sponsorship.

Since it can be expensive to promote a product, many companies conduct an ROI before making a promotion decision. You will want to identify:

  • Your target demographic
  • What media your target demographic consumes
  • The cost of using that media outlet
  • The number of sales you must make to cover your investment
  • How you will know if the promotion was a success 
  • People
    Consider your customers, your staff, and yourself. To grow a business, you must know what your customers want and need to set appropriate targets that will yield helpful marketing information.
    It is also essential to measure the effectiveness of your customer service strategy so you can attract (and keep) a loyal customer base. Investing in better staff training can help ensure that you meet customer expectations.

What Are the Five Elements of Marketing Mix

Media Mix: Case Studies

Explore how Coca-Cola, AT&T, and Nike harnessed the power of a media mix.

Coca-Cola

Today, the carbonated soda brand, Coca-Cola, sells over 1.9 billion drinks in more than 200 countries daily. However, this wasn’t always the case. Explore this media mix example of how Coca-Cola shot to the top.

  • Product
  • Coca-Cola is a soda beverage consumers can enjoy on its own, with meals or snacks, or at a celebration.

  • Price
  • The price is set reasonably low, so the target customer can easily afford to purchase the soda daily, though this pricing strategy is contingent on high volume sales.

  • Place
  • You can buy Coca-Cola anywhere, including physical storefronts, vending machines, convenience stores, and online.

  • Promotion
  • Coca-Cola’s goal is to reach as many customers as possible by using every marketing channel to promote the soda, including billboards, TV ads, and social media.

  • People
  • Everyone who likes soda is a target buyer, even those who prefer sugar-free alternatives. 

Coca-Cola also invests in trademarked packaging, such as its iconic bottle shape and red coloring, and its marketing strategy focuses on promoting feelings of joy and togetherness. Thanks to a media mix in advertising, Coca-Cola has become symbolic of happiness and celebrating with loved ones. 

 

AT&T

The telecommunication company AT&T generated over $168 billion in revenue in 2021 by creating a media mix that features convenient payment plans and widespread coverage.

  • Product
  • AT&T offers telecommunication products and services, including phone plans, broadband internet, digital security, and streaming.

  • Price
  • AT&T allows customers to tailor their plans to their needs by offering deals and bundles with convenient payment plans.

  • Place
  • Though AT&T primarily covers users in the United States, the company offers voice coverage in more than 220 countries and data coverage in 190.

  • Promotion
  • A combination of TV, social media, and print ads promotes AT&T’s products and services. Since AT&T has been around for decades, the company also enjoys word-of-mouth promotion.

  • People
  • AT&T offers customers the chance to stay connected with friends and family; with flexible pricing, anyone can become a customer.

Nike

From its signature swoosh logo to its “Just Do It” tagline, the multinational corporation Nike’s media mix focuses on promoting fitness as a lifestyle through consistent branding.

  • Product
  • Nike designs, produces and sells athletic shoes, sporting equipment, apparel, and accessories.

  • Price
  • Nike employs value-based and premium pricing systems for its many products.

  • Place
  • Nike has its own retail outlets and an online store and sells its products in third-party retail stores.

  • Promotion
  • Every year, Nike spends billions on TV and social media ads that promote their products as a lifestyle and fuel athletes’ desire to achieve success.

  • People
  • Nike’s marketing targets an athletically-inclined audience, though they also offer loungewear and lifestyle shoes. 

 

Grow Your Business with Measured

DTC brands worldwide rely on Measured’s award-winning media optimization platform to understand the incremental contribution of their advertising dollars.
Measured offers user-friendly, enterprise-grade software that allows companies to scale and grow their brand more profitably. Contact us and get a demo today to learn more about incrementality-based attribution

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