Agencies and marketers have been considering the relationship between building brands and riving sales for decades. What has changed rel- atively recently is that more rigor — rather than
pure instinct or theory — is being applied. As a result, direct
response and even brand advertisers are applying a blended
brand response approach to their marketing efforts, driven
not only by the relentless need for accountability but also to
build brand awareness.
The blended approach combines both brand tracking
directly with direct response metrics, rather than in a siloed
position. Augmenting response with awareness extends the
life of a brand, provides air cover
for digital engagements, and drives
down metrics. Established brands
are craving enhanced accountability
and are adopting many of today’s direct response practices to help break
through the clutter.
To determine whether you would
benefit from an amplified brand response approach, there are four key
questions you must ask yourself:
1. If you’re currently a direct
response marketer, how much value are you placing on
2. Are you leveraging the power of first-party data beyond
current key performance indicators (KPIs) to better
optimize your plans and buys?
3. Does your media agency buy fixed and direct response
media out of separate groups?
4. Can your agency effectively calibrate buys between
It’s time to amplify the brand response model and take
it to a holistic viewpoint by developing programs that concurrently drive awareness measures and
performance — without sacrificing either
Just as important, there is nothing more
valuable than a client’s data that can inform
every aspect of these programs. The insights
gained can be used to refine targeting, iden-
tify relevant media channels, optimize media
buys, and make better-informed creative messaging decisions.
Another key component is the utilization of brand studies,
which bring everything full circle as they provide key client
awareness measures. A results-oriented approach — incorpo-
rating brand health metrics — provides a full view on how to
make better decisions that drive business results.
From the onset of the planning process, it is essential to
use targeting segmentation techniques to identify, rather than
simply test, your way into working media. From there, adjust-
ing the brand response mix based on overarching business
goals, and setting aggressive measurable goals for both brand
and direct response metrics, are critical guardrails for deliver-
ing on promise.
This planning process requires a
specialist well versed in both brand
planning and response planning.
While the planning process is
unique and critical to the success
of the program, the internal buying
process itself brings brand response
To accomplish this, you need an
agency with buying specialists who
can purchase each form of media
under one roof, ensuring the right
inventory is secured based on the following characteristics:
consumer insights, market intelligence, historical perfor-
mance, and low rates. With this comprehensive approach,
the right deals can be made without compromising clearance
Not all media agencies are equipped to buy both brand
and direct response media — and properly track all results.
These are still considered separate disciplines at most agen-
cies, structured as siloed planning and buying groups. With
an integrated model, one can effectively calibrate between
both disciplines to secure the best performing inventory and
help achieve clients’ acquisition and awareness goals.
Whether you’re a direct response advertiser that has stalled or you’re a brand that
is seeking true accountability for your media
investment, using this amplified, interdisciplinary approach will deliver the best of
both worlds — one that will achieve optimal business results.
Amplifying Brand Response
BY ZACH ROSENBERG