How to Design a UK-wide Marketing Campaign

Designing a marketing campaign that responds fully to your client brief and ultimately delivers successfully on every aspect, is no minor challenge. What about doing it on a UK wide scale? Managing several regions, many demographics, and varying sales objectives within one campaign?

We recently designed and delivered a UK wide integrated marketing campaign for the Andre Rieu album release and 2020 tour ticket sales and it has been a great success so we thought it might be useful if we run through our tips for achieving marketing outcomes on a grand scale.

Competitor Analysis 

The first step is to drill down into your competitor research.  Perhaps you’ll use a research data tool like Nielson or something similar. The objective is always to gather as much information as you can on relevant competitors and their voice and presence in the media. Find out how much your competitors have spent on media in the specified period in the UK and which media platforms they have used during that time. Having an idea of what they have spent, and where, gives you a huge amount of information to design your own UK-wide campaign.  With this guideline on how much you need to spend in order to keep up with the competition, you can hope to achieve cut-through.

Design your media plan

Based on your research, take your time to build out a full media plan, just as you would with a smaller-scale campaign. Consider all target audience groups, which media platforms are priority and why, and how the budget should be shared between them for weight and impact. Target audiences will be specific to your client but also need to be tailored to the various regional areas in your plan, so be careful to give each equal attention to detail.

Plan, Book and Negotiate TV

TV is hugely powerful when it comes to UK-wide media planning, so prioritising this component in your strategy is key. Trying to secure prime time is a priority (particularly at peak viewing periods like Christmas) and negotiating the best rates to deliver maximum bang for your buck is essential. Whether you’re buying TVRs (TV Ratings) or specific spots, do what you can to maximise your campaign exposure at the best times, for the best value.

Move to press and radio

The next step is to set up your presence in press and radio. Understanding your target audience and where they live within these platforms is key. What are they reading and listening to and when? We use E-Telmar (an in-house radio planning tool) which shows us the most up to date radio figures for all radio stations in the UK. We can see reach, demographics, and have an idea of the budget necessary to access these audiences.  We can plan all of our radio marketing via this tool, so it gives us better clarity across all stations and the ability to select fewer frequencies with better reach.  This is where a professional media planner and buyer comes into their own for delivering not just smarts but true added value against a budget.

When it comes to press, demographics are key, as well as circulation and readership figures. We work directly with newspapers to plan the best coverage for each target audience. We book directly and negotiate the best rates and package deals which ideally includes a print ad, editorial, and digital coverage. This mix of online and offline media is a huge plus when it comes to developing a successful and holistic media plan.

Dial-up the Digital

Paid-for digital advertising can often be the easiest and most cost-accessible way to target UK wide with one simple click. However, it’s important to be selective with digital and again, to get expert help.  If you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s very easy to get carried away spending a budget, with not great results. Not every digital platform is suited to your marketing objective or target audience group. To be sure that we deliver best practice we refer to the SOSTAC framework which simplifies our digital planning process. We conduct full situational analysis including digital SWOT, campaign threats, and online objectives and then work together with our client to deliver the recommended digital strategy.

Constant evaluation

Once the media plan is locked in place and the campaign is live, evaluation begins almost immediately and it has to be continuous: we will monitor, check, adjust and build as we go, to make sure everything is delivering exactly what we want it to achieve.

We keep in close contact with the client, reviewing website traffic, analytics, sales figures and other KPIs to assess which components of our campaign are having the best impact and if not, why not. In a multi-region campaign, if we find areas that are underperforming as compared to others, we will push those regions until they catch up. We always look for ways to improve and optimise the campaign whilst it’s underway. And, when the campaign is complete, we review and evaluate, reflect on successes and use our findings to reframe next year’s campaign.

So, have you booked your tickets for the magical Andre Rieu yet?  Trust us, they’re selling VERY fast! #marketingworks #wedogreatthingsandwecanproveit

Barbara Specchia 

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