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Book Review: Media Buying “Demystified” in New Advertising Book

Media buying is a fast-moving, complicated process that demands a mix of both hard data and intuition to be executed successfully.

It’s not as easy as making a few phone calls and plugging some numbers into a spreadsheet, neither for ad agencies nor the businesses and organizations that plan and buy their own advertising.

Each media channel is measured differently, and the formulas used to determine the best placements vary depending on the advertiser’s goals, the different media used, and how the campaign results will be measured. And if you stare long enough, the formulas can turn into one big circular reference.

There’s a mountain of information to collect and manage that—if printed out and piled—would rival the height of the campaign budget in dollar bills.

To make sense of it all, Michael J. Massey and Chrissie VanWormer offer their media buying experience and expertise in their new book Your Ad Here: De-Mystifying the Business of Media and Advertising. Your Ad Here The Book

In fewer than 100 pages, the book provides a high-level overview of basic advertising concepts and how to implement them in a media plan. The chapters are laid out in an order that follows the process of a media buy, making it a quick read with easily digestible tips, tricks, and examples. It’s worth the time spent following the case study of retailer Crazy Boy Jeans, who is making a buy to promote an upcoming denim sale.

Not only does the book demystify the esoteric language of media buying by providing clear definitions for words like flighting and makegood, it also offers practical tips on negotiating placements and for managing and organizing all the information related to a media buy.

In the first section, Massey and VanWormer cover

  • Audience profiling and targeting
  • Budgeting
  • Account management
  • Avail requests
  • Data management
  • Trafficking and creative

The second section reviews all media and the strategy and tactics behind the ads—from broadcast to word of mouth—and provides tips for incorporating those media channels into an advertising campaign.

Your Ad Here captures some of the key challenges that media buyers face, especially when working with a tight budget. There’s also an overriding theme of “win-win” that applies to everyone who participates in getting the message out there—agency, media outlet, the business, and even the interns looking to get into the advertising space.

And above all, note Massey and VanWormer, the message needs to be good, too, to help it spread.

Read the rest of this book review at Avenue Right’s blog, including my top 10 tips from the book.

Learn more about De-mystifying the Business of Media and Advertising and purchase the book at


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