Quality through targetted buying

Using two case studies, Lauren Richards shows how clients can greatly improve the odds of reaching their target audience by using more than just ratings data to evaluate a tv buy.Meet Fred and Wilma Fred Wilma- 38 years old - 36...

Using two case studies, Lauren Richards shows how clients can greatly improve the odds of reaching their target audience by using more than just ratings data to evaluate a tv buy.

Meet Fred and Wilma

Fred Wilma

- 38 years old - 36 years old

- Salesman - Head nurse

- $65M personal income - $45M personal income

- Married, no children - Married, no children

- University-educated - University-educated

Fred and Wilma are in the market for a car. Which tv schedule would have more impact on them?

Schedule A



Prime: World Beat News 5×2

(75%) Wheel of Fortune 5

Evening Shade 5

Unsolved Mysteries 5

60 Minutes 9

City Pulse News 5×2

Roseanne 8


Fringe: Arsenio Hall 1×2

(25%) Oprah 4×2

Geraldo 3

Breakfast TV 1×2

Designing Women

late strip 1×2


Total: 69

Schedule B



Prime: Jeopardy 6×2 (75%) Murphy Brown 8 Star Trek Next Generation strip 5×2

Seinfeld 11 City Movies 8


Fringe: Night Beat News 4×2

(25%) Young & Restless 7

Canada AM 1


Total: 65Fred and Wilma do not watch much tv, just like 36% of the population who make up the light tv viewers (Quintiles I & II).

They have more of a tendency to listen to the radio, read magazines – yet they represent a perfect target opportunity.

Schedule A is probably the best purchase. It has more news programs, more prime ratings, more reach. Wrong.

Fred and Wilma do not see any of the shows in Schedule A because they skew to the heavy tv viewers.

No attempt was made to ensure reach of viewers like Fred.

Schedule B offers 38% more ratings of Quintiles I & II viewers, while maintaining the overall adult ratings. A much better-quality purchase accessed through current data via MicroBBM.

It has been standard practice at Cossette for many years to ensure coverage of the all-elusive light tv viewers (Quintiles I & II), and reduce over-saturating the heavy tv viewers.Meet Sally

- 32 years old

- Government clerk

- $29M personal income

- Two children

Sally is a typical laundry softener purchaser. Either of these tv schedules could be bought to reach Sally; which one would have dramatically different results?Schedule A



Prime: Evening Shade 6 (75%) Murphy Brown 10 Unsolved Mysteries 5 Wheel of Fortune 5

City Pulse News 4 Star Trek Next 6

Seinfeld 12


Fringe: Canada AM 1×3

(25%) Geraldo 4

All My Children 3×2

Arsenio Hall 1×2


Total: 63aSchedule B



Prime: City Movies 7 (75%) Married w/ Child. 5 Simpsons 12 Fresh Prince 6

Jacksons’ Special 10 Rescue 911 7


Fringe: Night Beat News 3

(25%) Oprah 5

Donahue 2×2

Breakfast TV 1

Another World 3


Total: 63

Both offer similar: rated programs, percentages of prime, appropriately scheduled fringe properties, cumulative grps and frequency distribution

Although on BBM Bureau of Measurement book ratings, these two buys are the same, Schedule B produces 76% more target grps.

What is the magic?

An astute, dedicated buyer improved the quality of this purchase by going beyond bbm book ratings.

The MicroBBM data bank was used, to get an overall rating delivery on women with children under 18.

Women with children do not have a tendency to watch programs in Schedule A.

Although both schedules deliver the same ratings for women 18-49, by examining women 18-49 with children, Schedule A delivers 37 ratings, Schedule B, 65 ratings.

With over 10 years of available MicroBBM data and the emergence of the Nielsen Television Index and Compusearch, the challenge now is to deliver the commitment and the talent to provide a quality tv purchase.

Lauren Richards is media director at Cossette Communication-Marketing in Toronto.