Untangling the confusion of TV scheduling theories

Date of publication: August 1, 1999


This paper discusses the distinctions that should be made in media scheduling between the theories of how advertising works (response functions and decay) and the tactics of media buying (cover and frequency). It draws on the modeling analysis work of Simon Broadbent (1997-1998) commissioned by Leo Burnett Media that includes both single source analysis and time-series modeling of adstock. It positions scheduling as a strategic choice about aggregate sales effects under the conditions specified while it places decisions about high or low repetition and cover criteria as micro or tactical choices about the quality of TV time and the way we think a campaign works on individuals. It also suggests a practical multi-dimensional framework in which to deal with both ideas better linking overall brand communication strategies to media buying tactics.

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