Make the most of these turbulent times

Our clients are already starting to feel the impact of the effects of Coronavirus: in the last week the number of responses they are getting to their press ads have dropped and we have clients with a lead/appointment/sale model who are seeing up to 30% of their appointments being cancelled.

Again we are faced with uncertainty, in particular with what the Government will do next and how that impacts our lives and of course how far and wide this virus will spread.

Most of our clients don’t have a retail presence and they are far more focussed on generating sales than building a brand, so how do we ensure that their businesses continue to thrive in the current time (given we don’t have any clients selling anti-viral hand gel or loo rolls…)?

Firstly, stay light on your feet.  We book the majority of space short term anyway, so that is easy – there will be less people out and about and buying newspapers, so it is highly likely that the circulations will take a hit in the next few weeks – especially if we go into ‘lock down’.  There will be lots of space available as many clients (travel companies are doing it already) are cancelling space.  People will still be buying newspapers though, so it just means you need to buy cheaper – stick with day to day short term and pick up some bargains

Secondly, up your TV advertising – there will be more people at home watching TV, the available inventory will increase and again there will be travel clients pulling airtime so it will be a buyers market.  Higher TV consumption, lots of boredom = online shopping heaven!   It is like the sweet spot between Christmas and New Year when the working population is off, you can therefore reach them with daytime time TV (far cheaper than peak airtime that you would usually have to buy to reach them) and more responsive as the programming is low engagement.  So if you have a TV ad and you are an online retailer then you could really make the most of a bad situation.

 

Are you copy ready?

Leaving things to the last minute was always a weakness of mine,  as several long-suffering relatives in receipt of questionable Christmas presents can attest to . Unlike gift-giving, when it comes to buying space, leaving it late is an excellent strategy and one that can deliver the best deals.

But as last minute space does not always come in straightforward sizes you need to be prepared if you want to reap the rewards. Having the ability to quickly adapt your copy to suit, means you can get cheaper rates, prime sites and better ROI.

Most of our clients have the standard full page and half page creative, but as well as that we have 10 x 8 strips (perfect for the front page of the Telegraph), 20 x 2 (ideal for the solus site next to the crossword in The Times), half page vertical (often available facing matter in Stella), and 10 x 2’s (share squares).

Having an adaptable portfolio of varied sizes gives you flexibility and allows us to take advantage of any deals that come up (not just for those in the standard sizes)  thus giving you the most value from your media spend. This is real short term buying – often literally 30 minutes from the deadline, making the office a hive of activity and enterprise even at the end of the day and this outcome will add great value to any schedule.

Contrary to getting to the airport on time and thoughtful present-shopping, buying space stands alone in the category of things you can leave to the last minute – admittedly with the correct prep work, and the right team, working with you.

To learn more about the effectiveness and the impact of holding a range of sizes, contact Lesley Bowman on 01225 758222 or email lesley@aja.co.uk.