How should marketers use media channels for brand building?

Campaigns are almost three times more effective with the right media mix. Discover the fundamental steps to optimising your cross-media marketing spend.
12 January 2023
Cross media

Global Thought Leadership Director, Media

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The rise of social media platforms means a growing cornucopia of media channels available to consumers and marketers. While more traditional media channels such as print, television, and point-of-sale continue to serve brands well, in today’s landscape it’s vital for brands to stay up to date with new and emerging media channels as well as optimise the use of traditional channels. Achieving this can be both difficult and time-consuming.

The importance of multi-media marketing is indisputable, but what is complicated is how to optimise it. Analysis of our CrossMedia database shows that campaigns could be 2.6 times more effective with the right media spend allocation. Yet, our Media Reactions 2022 survey shows that marketers’ confidence in their media mix has declined (from 67% to 61%).

Optimising multi-media campaigns

A multimedia campaign takes advantage of what different media channels have to offer, creating a strategy to maximise the potential of each one. The aim is to reach the intended target audience with effective messaging in a variety of ways. It’s a meticulous plan to design a cohesive customer journey, and one of the first steps to a successful campaign is the right media mix.

Leveraging the platforms where consumers are most receptive to advertising is a crucial element of a successful cross-media campaign. Our research shows that campaigns are seven times more impactful when consumers are receptive to the context. And our annual Media Reactions study identifies the media channels and brands where people are most receptive to advertising, with digital media channels, such as online video, music streaming and influencer content, improving their receptivity every year. In addition, in this year’s study, global digital platforms, Amazon and TikTok, topped the ranking followed by Spotify, Google and Snapchat in terms of advertising appeal to consumers.

Global Top ranking media brands

Top ranking media brands

Preferences differ significantly by market though, and in 14 markets out of 29, local media platforms are the most preferred brand. And interestingly marketer’s preferred media brands differ from consumers.’

Top ad equity performers by market

Top ad equity performers by market

With an overwhelming number of brands putting out advertising messages at speed, it is easy for your brand’s message to get lost in the crowd. Consistent brand presence is paramount, but sticking with exactly the same message across multiple mediums can miss the point of multi-media marketing. The task becomes then, to tailor messages for specific channels and ensure the right campaign and the right ad is placed into the right platform.

Consider your brand identity, comms strategy, campaign and ad objectives to find the right balance. Each media brand has its own personality, just as each advertiser brand does, and the authenticity of the ad placement matters immensely to get the context right.

Johnnie Walker’s Keep on Walking campaign (2022 winner of Kantar’s Creative Effectiveness Awards in digital, TV and static) is a great example of how to tailor a clear message to target different cultures through different channels.

Johnnie Walker’s Keep on Walking multi-media campaign

Evolving a brand’s creative identity, whilst adhering to its DNA

Focusing media investment

So it matters where brands place their advertising, but the key question is where exactly should you focus your media investment?

There are many factors to consider, but another good indicator of what channels can do for your brand is how much impact they bring for your investment dollars. We did some new analysis on our CrossMedia database to see which channels are the hardest hitters, and which are the most cost-effective.

How should you focus your media investment?

How should you focus your media investment?

Source: Global Kantar CrossMedia database (Q3 2022–1,214 campaigns)


Some channels, such as TV and OOH, have a lower return in terms of brand impact on awareness, associations and motivation for their investment, as a percentage of the overall investment. And other channels, such as Point of Sale and Facebook, are the other way around. So, you need to understand who your target audience is, who you're trying to reach and really understand the combination of channels that work best for you. But bear in mind that it is easy to overinvest in some channels and it's easy to under invest in others.

And of course, the basics of understanding your effective frequency in your campaigns still apply.

Building your paid media marketing strategy

An integrated media strategy requires marketers to step back and look at the bigger picture. Integrating multiple media channels to tell one coherent story.

The Media Reactions 2022 report is the only global advertising equity evaluation of media channels and brands among both consumers and marketers. Download the report or watch the on-demand webinar to:

  • Uncover the top-ranking media channels and media brands and their strengths and weaknesses among consumers and marketers
  • Explore media trends, and see which media channels are growing in terms of popularity and receptivity
  • Build the foundation for your media planning strategies

Developing a successful multimedia campaign also involves measuring success. Our multimedia campaign effectiveness solution, CrossMedia can help you evaluate the impact of each channel and determine how to optimise your media mix to deliver brand success and that all-important return on investment.

Please get in touch to find out more.

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