Here’s WHY you need to know about combined media…

If you work in marketing or you’re looking to explore new communications channels for your brand, you may have come across the term combined media and wondered not only what it means, but why it’s so important in today’s media landscape.

In its purest form, combined media is simply using more than one channel to communicate your brand and its key messages. Channels and tools can vary, from social media to print advertising and PR to SEO; but the important part is to drive consistent campaigns – albeit presented differently – through multiple channels as part of a cohesive strategy.

In today’s fast-paced world people consume media, news and brand messaging on more channels than ever before – the fragmentation of media channels today is undoubtedly impressive and presents a great opportunity for brands.

The rise of multi-screen viewing means that traditional TV adverts are not always the most impactful marketing tool; and shouldn’t automatically be considered the ‘holy grail’ of marketing, as was the case in the 60s, 70s, 80s and even 90s.

Should I consider a combined media approach?

Put simply, yes.

A combined media approach will garner much more attention than using a single channel, because consumers are actively connecting with more types of media. Why focus just on a PR story, when you can target through social, advertising, etc and reach more audiences or people more than once?

For a modern brand, using just one medium is nowhere near as powerful as creating a brand campaign that is spread across many channels, reaching different target audiences with different purchasing habits.

Knowing what your target audience looks for will help you better understand how they respond to marketing messages and can then inform your strategy and creative.

At No Brainer, we believe all campaigns should be driven by data. It’s important to spend time at the front of any campaign understanding your objectives, your audience and the existing insight that’s already available to you. This will help to better define what combined media approach will have the biggest impact.

Evaluating your campaigns regularly will also make your efforts more cost-effective because you can gain moment-to-moment data from your target audience, across most combined media channels – from there it’s a constant cycle of learning and adaptation.

By taking into account how each campaign and channel performs, you can detect patterns that affect when and how you chose to promote your brand in the future and what channels you’ll use.

Will combined media help me reach my goals?

A combined media approach allows for different objectives to be reached, but also allows you to analyse the most effective ROI and engagement across your channels.

Combining paid television adverts with a low-cost social media campaign, for example, is a great way of reaching an audience, as they see your brand in different formats at different times. However, in order to understand what’s most effective you should utilise the analytics gained from each channel and compare these to your overall campaign objective.

Timing should also be considered when utilising a combined media approach. If we’re to take our earlier example of a paid television advert that goes live at 7pm, an ideal time to place a social media advert may be 8pm; targeting viewers of the TV show your advert appeared around. Partner both these tactics with some optimised keywords to attract searchers and search engines rankings and your approach is now well-rounded with multiple touchpoints for a customer to remember your brand. Staggering your ads means you’re also more likely to stay front of mind with your audience, as you’re consistently sharing your messaging, meaning you’ll likely reap the long-term rewards.

By targeting your audience on all multiple media fronts, you can gain valuable data that allows you to focus future campaigns. A combined media approach lays the groundwork for you to collect insight over time, helping you to understand how to create the best campaigns possible and communicate your brand’s message in the most effective way.

What combined media channels should I be exploring?

For us, when we’re thinking about combined media, we refer to our Creative Intelligence® model, as this allows us to deliver in an integrated way, maximising channels and techniques – both traditional and modern.

We consider Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned (PESO) tactics as these help us to deliver multi-channel ideas and campaigns through which we can prove (and sometimes disprove) their ROI.

So, if you’re thinking about channels in silos then now is the time to evolve.

We truly do believe a brand’s value lies in effective communication and through ‘combined media’ strategies you can really bring your brand to life and connect with the audiences that most matter to you.

Let us know if you’d like to chat through a new approach and find out how we can help!

Gary Jenkins

Gary Jenkins

I’ve been a journalist and PR leader, working with high growth start-ups to complex multi-million-pound businesses for more than 20 years. My heart lies in landing brilliant international and national coverage for clients and helping take strategy through to delivery and seeing the results!

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