LONDON: Advertisers and agencies routinely overvalue digital media channels and undervalue traditional ones when it comes to brand building, new research suggests.

Marketing and media consultancy Ebiquity conducted in-depth research on the relative value of media for commercial radio industry body Radiocentre. This involved asking 116 senior executives working for brands and agencies to rank 12 attributes of media for brand-building campaigns and to indicate which media they perceived to be the best performer for each attribute.

Ebiquity then trawled through 75 research reports and their proprietary data sets to find evidence about the actual performance of different media against these attributes.

The resulting Re-evaluating Media report showed that radio, newspapers and magazines performed significantly better than they are perceived to for brand-building campaigns.

TV and radio were by far the strongest advertising media for brand building followed by newspapers, magazines and out of home.

But industry decision-makers believed that online video and social media were the second and third most effective media after TV.

Targeting was viewed as the single most important media attribute for a brand-building campaign.

And, according to the evidence marshalled in the report, radio is the top medium for targeting the right people in the right place at the right time. But the perception among advertisers and agencies is that direct mail is best at this, while radio is perceived to be one of the least effective.

And while the data showed that TV and radio are the top media for return on investment (ROI), advertisers and media agencies heavily overestimated the value of online video and social media for ROI.

Meanwhile, interviewees placed online video and display top for transparent third party audience measurement, where the evidence showed that traditional media comes out top and online video is bottom.

“Our analytics research is repeatedly showing that advertisers are not getting the best possible return on their media investment,” said Morag Blazey, Ebiquity managing principal.

“The findings [of our research] reveal that it is time for the industry to re-balance their use of media to optimise advertising budgets.”

Radio, which ranked second overall to TV on the evidence, was the most strikingly undervalued medium, coming only sixth in the ranking of advertiser and agency perceptions.

Sourced from Ebiquity; additional content by WARC staff