MediaWave Actionable Insights and Industry News for Media Professionals
Minor-league baseball player follows through on a swing during a game.

For Local Brands Making Big Buys, It’s All About the Swing

May 24th, 2017   ||    by Monta Monaco Hernon   ||    No Comments

For many local brands—or small or niche brands, for that matter—the thought of competing on a national scale might seem akin to a journeyman minor leaguer who dreams of making it to the big leagues.

A large campaign, complete with high-priced spots on national television, may be a necessary move to prove you are ready for the call. But first, there are several important things you must consider so you can hit one out of the park—instead of striking out.

Cup-of-Coffee Player or Hall of Famer?

In baseball, a cup-of-coffee player is someone who only plays one game in the majors—a stark difference from a well-known hall of famer. In the advertising business, you must determine your goal: short-term sales or brand awareness?

National television advertising offers a wide reach, but dunnhumby suggests that while a “big league” TV campaign can build awareness for a smaller brand, it might not offer an immediate sales bump. A smaller brand should manage expectations by taking this into consideration when making an expensive national investment.

Call the Shots

Babe Ruth was known for predicting his most famous home run by pointing to the center-field bleachers and then hitting the ball there on the next pitch. National television offers a wide audience, but does your brand need blanket coverage? How can you reach enough of your targeted audience to gain a return on a substantial investment?

Automated TV uses data from a variety of sources to pinpoint which spots will place your message in front of the most receptive viewers. You can then connect on the barrel’s sweet spot and hit a homer instead of striking out. If existing customers are the ones impacting short-term sales, figuring out exactly what those individuals are watching can provide substantial benefits to local brands.


Following through on a swing after making contact is important to the direction and power of the hit. Studies from Media Design Group show there’s usually an uptick in website activity after a commercial runs, according to an Entrepreneur article. An advertisement might drive someone to your website, but—as in baseball—the follow-through is crucial.

Fortunately, retargeting apps and other mechanisms allow a brand to keep in contact with these visitors through email or by presenting them with a digital ad. Data collection and analysis can help determine who these visitors are and what creative messaging will be the most effective. This information can also be added to a programmatic platform’s data cache to determine what else these consumers may be watching and facilitate cross-marketing across media.

More Than a Ballpark Estimate

Going back to Babe Ruth, what if—in addition to calling his famous shot—he also pointed out a group of 10 fans and then hit the ball directly at them? Addressable TV allows advertisers to target consumers on a household level and thus craft a creative story line that will appeal to a particular group, rather than an audience at large. According to Entrepreneur, 40 million households are capable of receiving targeted video on demand or linear ads, and this number only stands to rise.

Don’t Forget Your Fan Base

National ads do offer wide reach, but local has a lot to offer too. For starters, local stations offer natural and geographic targeting, which can be narrowed down further with the help of a data-driven automated platform. There’s also a natural sense of trust built up between local media and audiences, which can carry over to brands. And sometimes, the price of local advertising happens to be just right. So, you might make it to the big leagues after all.

Tags: , , , ,

Share this page:

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share via Email