When you first open your business you will have more advertising sales rep coming to your store than customers. So how do you determine where to spend your money? Radio, print, digital, cable, broadcast, direct mail? The list goes on… and on.. and on… and on…..
Instead of asking yourself what medium you should be advertising ON you should be asking yourself, what exactly am I wanting to accomplish? Yes your goal is to increase your overall sales, but we need to establish a goal for your advertising. If your sales rep is not having this conversation either call their sales manager and get a new rep or move on and work with an advertising rep that will. This is your livelihood and you want someone working WITH you, not selling to you.
First things first, let’s talk about the big dog, TV…
Broadcast Television Vs Cable Television
Local Television advertising is broken into two main categories, Broadcast television and Cable television and it is important to understand the differences between them.
Broadcast television are your local news stations which consists of the major networks ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, CW, MeTV, and many others listed here.
Broadcast television stations are going to be on every cable and satellite provider in your designated market area (DMA) and over-the-air through a digital antenna. DMA’s are broken out by metro’s and a full list can be found here.
So what is the difference between cable television and broadcast television? Broadcast television is on every cable, and satellite provider in your DMA. Cable, on the other hand, only delivers to their subscribers.
A great example of this, in my market we have roughly 5 cable providers in our DMA. So if an advertiser wanted to reach viewers in a cable show like The Walking Dead, they would have to go to all 5 cable providers and purchase ad time in that show. On the flip side if you wanted to advertising in an ABC show like The Bachelor, you would only need to purchase 1 spot from the local ABC Broadcast Network.
Each has its own advantages and disadvantages when considering which to use. Broadcast Television is going to be more expensive, but you will hit a much larger audience. The opposite would be cable, which is inexpensive but reaches a very narrow audience.
Each play vital roles in your marketing strategy but never think of them as the same medium. Cable is much different than Broadcasting, and Broadcasting is much different that Cable.