Advances in buying media for the whole person

Advances in buying media for the whole person

Mood-based-buying-graphicWho are you?

In most of the media buying world, you are an adult 18-24, or you are a woman 35-44 or some other broad categorization, But does that truly describe who you are as a person? Is that broad demographic media buying designation really serving to find the right people for your particular product or service?

There’s a growing movement in the advertising world to reinvent the audience identification data so that advertising can much more accurately pinpoint the individuals most likely to buy. One such alternative to traditional demographic targeting is being developed by Sheri Roder from the WHY Group within Horizon Media. Sheri calls it Whole Person Marketing.

So, who are you, really? You might be a single mother with a teenage son, you practice yoga, you eat organic food, run marketing for a Fortune 500 company and you feel a particular way about your life and your future. But today, if someone wanted to buy media to reach you, they might classify you merely as an adult 25-54, single, living an a particular county, and owning a home. Not exactly the full picture of you as the person you are.

Sheri believes that these traditional demographic indicators are failing the buying world because they don’t capture the whole person. They don’t tell us important things about you like how you communicate, why you communicate, how you think and feel about your life, etc. Regarding your communication habits, you have a smartphone. Advertisers who know simply that you own a smartphone will use that fact to serve their content to you along with thousands of other smartphone owners.

It’s known around Horizon Media that if you attempt to enlist Sheri’s help in planning a buy, don’t simply tell her that you are targeting women 25-54. She’ likely to respond with, “Come back when you can tell me who we are targeting because that is not who we are targeting.” She will tell you that that basic gender/age data is an inefficient and non real-life way of targeting for a buy.

What is mood-based media buying?

While media planning uses a more sophisticated psychographic model, buying hasn’t yet caught up. But Sheri and others at Horizon Media are developing what they call mood-based targeting for audio (radio) buying. They’ve conducted a large amount of research to conclude that mood is the best way in to pinpointing the most relevant buying target for audio.

Partnering with iHeartMedia, research was conducted by Sparkler, a London-based brand strategy consultancy, of over 2,000 people as well as several academic and industry experts. The research identified and detailed the underlying motivations that compel people to choose different platforms and content. The result is a fresh approach that allows audio buying to be predicated on a person’s desired emotional or sensory state.

Horizon will marry its consumer emotion and mood insights with its recently expanded proprietary planning and activation tool, Audio BrandRatings, to gain insight into viable alternatives to target based on emotion in the right environments. It fuses syndicated and proprietary data along with specific emotional brand attributes to identify more targeted and engaging matches between a brand, its consumers and the artists they follow most passionately.

According to Sheri, “In the future, we will be able to make planning and buying decisions using mood and emotion as the pivot point, regardless of whatever new technologies and behaviors develop.”