March 4, 2021 inMedia planning

Choosing Your Media Planning Tool: What To Look Out For

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There are so many types of digital marketing platforms out there to handle your daily marketing tasks it can be hard to tell which you should choose.

So, it’s high time to switch focus to the media planning and management software that’s optimizing how businesses coordinate their marketing at strategy-level.

But, what kind of online marketing tools and automations exist to help with higher-level tasks like planning, budgeting, and pulling reports? How can you oversee the performance of your entire marketing campaign in one place, especially when you’re running multiple campaigns spread over global regions?

If the above pain points sound familiar, you’re in the right place; cloud-based media planning and management software is now a thing. They have powerful integrations to track enterprise-level marketing and advertising campaigns in surprisingly granular detail. The result: brands and advertising agencies can now plan, track, evaluate, and optimize their marketing campaigns all from one user-friendly hub!

What are media planning tools and who are they for?

Media planning and management tools are a step up from digital marketing software, meaning they focus at organizational level to help brands plan, review, and optimize their entire marketing from a single authoritative source.

Media planning software is used by enterprise-level brands running multifaceted performance marketing campaigns that include online and offline channels (e.g. TV, print, and radio ads). They’re also highly beneficial for advertising agencies to manage multiple client accounts in one place.

Key benefits of media planning software

Having a trusty media planning tool by your side is a real asset because:

  • Everything is aggregated into a single online source so you can work smarter and more efficiently
  • By using a single authoritative source, you spend less time manually compiling and sending reports and more time on what matters like planning and optimizing
  • You can create distinct media plans for each campaign
  • Enhanced approval processes offer a more efficient way to work and collaborate
  • You’ll vastly speed up your workflow including servicing, changes, and revisions.

When picking media planning software, you owe it to your business to decide which platform is best suited to your brand. Read on and we’ll reveal the top factors to consider plus the key features to look out for so you pick the right tool for your needs.

Key features and things to consider when shopping for media planning software

Pre-campaign planning

For global teams working from home, nothing is more important for productivity than stripping down your many SaaS tools to streamline your work process. Integrated platform features like team chat, shared calendars, and cloud storage help teams work and collaborate in the same space. Advanced features include approval flows so you can easily send media plans to clients or in-house teams and check progress.

Check that your team can collaborate effectively within a single platform to help you improve processes and lighten workloads. Top-level visibility for things like targets, budgets, and customizations is also important so double-check the platform you go with has the strategic planning features you need.

Structure and organize your data in one place

Control over taxonomy is vital for making sure all your valuable data is in the right place and nothing is missing. When you’re shopping for media planning software, look out for customizable taxonomy and naming conventions so you can choose exactly how to classify your data. This way, you’ll improve the quality of your data and feel confident your teams are all using the same structure.

Mediatool’s naming conventions and data taxonomy features.

Campaign tracking and optimization

Integrations and features to create custom tracking codes are crucial to effectively track your marketing activities.

Make sure the media planning software you go with has the integrations you need, such as Facebook, Google Ads, Twitter, and LinkedIn so you can accurately track your campaign performance and identify areas to optimize. Even better, look out for a platform that can generate UTM codes so you can analyze how your content is performing on a granular level.

Mediatool’s growing repertoire of integrations.

Results and reporting

Probably the most important part of your campaign is measuring your projected spend, engagement, and budget with actual results. The best enterprise-grade media planning tools generate custom dashboards that visualize your campaign data so you can easily review planned and actual performance and quickly pull reports.

Be sure to check if the media planning software can incorporate your KPIs and has adequate budget oversight controls and reporting features.

More modern features and things to get excited about

Security

Preventing unauthorized access to your marketing data is critical. Make sure your media planning tool includes user access permissions as well as industry specification encryption, data logging, and traffic monitoring systems.

Online-offline connectivity

For brands and advertising agencies competing for ad placements in traditional media, having a single platform to manage your online and offline media is a true asset. Think about the offline channels you use—such as TV, radio, and print ads—and check how media planning software incorporates this data.

Customer service and support

There is an inevitable learning curve with new platforms and enterprise-level media management tools almost certainly require custom setup to suit each brand’s specific needs. Having a dedicated Customer Success Manager to help you deal with customizations, a responsive support team, and detailed FAQs are the hallmarks of excellent customer support.

Always check what support is available and how easy it is to get in touch when something goes wrong. Mediatool has comprehensive FAQ pages with detailed instructions and video guides for all its features plus a dedicated Customer Success Team to support clients throughout their marketing activities from setup and planning, to mid-campaign optimizations and reporting.

Streamline your approval process

Arguably the biggest benefit of using a cloud-based media planning software is everyone in your team sees exactly the same data. If you’re running in-house marketing campaigns, or if you’re an agency managing multiple clients, Mediatool can help you collaborate, track, and review your campaign from one cloud-based platform. You can view all your marketing activity from weekly spend right through to aggregated impressions. Chances are you’ll even save hundreds of pointless hours emailing Excel media plans back and forth and second-guessing the approval process!

Check out Mediatool’s extensive list of features and see for yourself how a media planning and management tool can take your marketing to the next level.



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