Free AIOU Solved Assignment Code 967 Spring 2021

Free AIOU Solved Assignment Code 967 Spring 2021

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Title Name Development Support Communication (967)
University AIOU
Service Type Solved Assignment (Soft copy/PDF)
Course Msc
Language ENGLISH
Semester 2021-2021
Assignment Code 967/2020-2021
Product Assignment of MA 2021-2022 (AIOU)

Course: Advertising (967)
Semester: Spring, 2021
ASSIGNMENT No. 1

Q.1   Define advertising. Elaborate the role advertising plays in the contemporary society?   

Advertising is a marketing communication that employs an openly sponsored, non-personal message to promote or sell a product, service or idea. Sponsors of advertising are typically businesses wishing to promote their products or services. Advertising is differentiated from public relations in that an advertiser pays for and has control over the message. It differs from personal selling in that the message is non-personal, i.e., not directed to a particular individual. Advertising is communicated through various mass media, including traditional media such as newspapers, magazines, televisionradiooutdoor advertising or direct mail; and new media such as search results, blogs, social media, websites or text messages. The actual presentation of the message in a medium is referred to as an advertisementadvert or ad for short.

Commercial ads often seek to generate increased consumption of their products or services through “branding“, which associates a product name or image with certain qualities in the minds of consumers. On the other hand, ads that intend to elicit an immediate sale are known as direct-response advertisingNon-commercial entities that advertise more than consumer products or services include political parties, interest groups, religious organizations and governmental agencies. Non-profit organizations may use free modes of persuasion, such as a public service announcement. Advertising may also help to reassure employees or shareholders that a company is viable or successful.

Advertising is the paid promotion that uses strategy and messaging about the benefits of a product or service to influence a target audience’s attitudes and/or behaviors. Between online, television, radio, and print platforms, the average American sees hundreds, even thousands of advertisements daily.

Although many consumers find them annoying, advertisements play a prominent role in shaping opinions about everything from products to politics. A Forbes article (2012) stated: “Advertising plays the same role in your media diet that vegetables play in your regular diet; most of us would prefer to skip that course and go straight to dessert. But, just like veggies, advertising plays an important role in sustaining a body; in this case, a diverse body of content” (para. 1). Advertising heavily supports many institutions, including news media outlets, the television industry, search engine companies, and social media websites. For example, advertising contributes up to 80 percent of revenue for newspapers and therefore is critical to maintaining the circulation of the press.

The advertising industry is also lucrative. According to eMarketer (2016), the United States spent approximately $190 billion on advertising in 2015. About a third of that figure went to television advertisements, and another third went to digital advertising. With its economic and cultural function in society, the advertising industry has an expansive reach.

Advertising is a way to showcase one’s products or services and offer consumers a vast choice in terms of what they are offered and what they can choose to buy. For the consumers, advertising offers them a choice to get at the best in the market at the best price.

Today, it is unimaginable to expect people, especially in urban areas, to spend their money buying products of which they haven’t heard a thing. People know what is in the market and then choose what they want. Nothing can be more satisfying than this, for then one gets his or her money’s worth. But advertising has been not only a boon, but also a bane in many ways.

Advertising relies on consumerism to succeed and consumer’s judge by materialistic standards. Moreover, successful advertising means emerging triumphant in the face of tough competition, often without consideration of high standards or aesthetic tastes.

Advertising being crass and opportunistic in its very basis, the overemphasis on advertising today is a bane. Advertisers tend to appeal to popular (even ‘low’) tastes to appeal to a larger section of the population. Images of sex and violence are used to attract viewers’ attention—a kind of ‘negative’ appeal is produced to sustain interest.

Products become ‘known’ then because of the ‘hype’ or ‘advertising’ appeal that they have, even though the products themselves may not be of the required standard. Lies are resorted to when advertising, and with time no one objects to the trend.

AIOU Solved Assignment Code 967 Spring 2021

Q.2   Describe the development of advertising in Pakistan. How is it similar or different from rest of the world?

Six hundred years ago most of man’s communication was conducted one-to-one in homes, at marketplaces or places of worship. This communication was always relevant. In the 15th century, Johannes Gutenberg’s printing press ushered in the advent of one-to-many communication, and the telegraph kicked off the Information Age in 1840. Within less than 100 years, society was gathering information from newspapers, radio and television. These advancements in media drove the concept of promotion and thus, advertising was born. Interestingly though, history shows that advertising has always been slow to utilize new mediums. From the first newspapers, it was nearly 100 years before advertisements were sold. It was nearly five years until radio was sold to advertisers, and the first television ad was sold 13 years after the first broadcast. Advertisers were—and are—enamored with reaching millions of people with a single buy…relevancy be damned. Cable television was no different. In the 1980’s and 90’s cable promised specialized programming and targeted audiences, but media buyers were reluctant to move away from the one-to-as-many-as-possible communication model. While its niche audiences allowed for communication with a more finely-tuned target audience, advertisers were reluctant to invest dollars for a smaller, possibly limiting demographic reach. As advertisers slowly adopted proof that the likes of ESPN and MTV were more effective outlets to direct particular messages to a clearly defined demographic, it signaled the first step towards the next evolutionary leap. While the sophistication of television ad buys and creative has greatly increased (not to mention the cost!), the advertising world has maintained the one-to-many model for nearly 75 years, despite niche programming and the proliferation of personal technology that now make 1:1 marketing possible. We, as consumers, are blind to the hundreds of advertising messages we see per day. We resent the infiltration of unwanted ads in our personal technology, from the pair of sneakers we bought online that follow us from site to site, to the creepiness of Google gleaning keywords out of our email in an effort to increase ad relevancy. Relevancy shouldn’t be a guessing game anymore— especially not over personal mediums like our mobile devices. We can leverage stated preference, and in the case of mobile devices, location, to deliver hyper-relevant and timely advertising that encourages engagement and strengthens brand loyalty.

In June 1836, Émile de Girardin editor of the Paris newspaper La Presse was the first to rely on paid advertising to lower its price, extend its readership and increase its profitability. His formula was soon copied by all titles.

Early print advertisements were used mainly to promote books and newspapers, which became increasingly affordable with advances in the printing press; and medicines, which were increasingly sought after as modern people rejected traditional cures. However, false advertising and “Quackery” became common. British newspapers in the 1850s and 1860s appealed to the increasingly affluent middle-class that sought out a variety of new products. The advertisements announced new health remedies as well as fresh foods and beverages. The latest London fashions were featured in the regional press. The availability of repeated advertising permitted manufacturers to develop nationally known brand names that had a much stronger appeal than generic products.

A leadership position in British advertising was held by Cope Bros & Co tobacco company, founded in Liverpool in 1848 by Thomas and George Cope. Smoking, of course, had been common for centuries, but the innovations consisted in brand names, heavy advertising, and market segmentation according to class. An innovative appeal was to health consciousness; the ads directed at the middle-class men promised that “smoke not only checks disease but preserves the lungs.” A rugged heavy taste was pitched to working men, soldiers and sailors, while “delicately fragrant” was part of the appeal to the upper-class. The packaging was attractive, posters were omnipresent to show that smoking was a normal part of English life; lobbying was used to undercut the anti-tobacco lobby

In London Thomas J. Barratt was hailed as “the father of modern advertising”. Working for the Pears Soap company, Barratt created an effective advertising campaign for the company products, which involved the use of targeted slogans, images and phrases. One of his slogans, “Good morning. Have you used Pears’ soap?” was famous in its day and into the 20th century.

An advertising tactic that he used was to associate the Pears brand with high culture and quality. Most famously, he used the painting Bubbles by John Everett Millais as an advertisement by adding a bar of Pears soap into the foreground. Barratt continued this theme with a series of adverts of well groomed middle-class children, associating Pears with domestic comfort and aspirations of high society.

Barratt introduced many of the crucial ideas that lie behind successful advertising and these were widely circulated in his day. He constantly stressed the importance of a strong and exclusive brand image for Pears and of emphasizing the product’s availability through saturation campaigns. He also understood the importance of constantly reevaluating the market for changing tastes and mores, stating in 1907 that “tastes change, fashions change, and the advertiser has to change with them. An idea that was effective a generation ago would fall flat, stale, and unprofitable if presented to the public today. Not that the idea of today is always better than the older idea, but it is different – it hits the present taste. The start in 1994 of the North American Free Trade Agreement had a dramatic impact on the advertising industry in Mexico, with its 130 full service agencies and 270 smaller operations under the auspisces of the Mexican Association of Advertising Agencies. The flood of American brand-name products greatly expanded the scope of the advertising industry, and the Mexican agencies faced new competition from branch offices of international firms.

A key to the new market was that upscale consumers in Mexico typically display “malinchismo”, which is a preference for imported American brands rather than local Mexican brands. As a result, American products are sold mostly to the middle class market, and their advertising agencies generally avoid working class and rural areas. They concentrate their efforts instead on Mexico City, Monterrey, and Guadalajara, which purchase 70 percent of the American imports.[118] Advertising battles in Mexico, include not only issues of quality, but issues of national authenticity. For example, in Mexico in the 1990s, two American exporters Procter & Gamble and Frito-Lay fought an advertising battle concerning whose potato chips are tastier, more natural, and more Mexican. Procter & Gamble challenged Frito-Lay’s Sabritas which controls 80 percent of the $1 billion chip market.

AIOU Solved Assignment 1 Code 967 Spring 2021

Q.3   Write notes on the following:

  1. i) Economic Aspects of Advertising.

Companies spend money on advertising because it increases sales of existing products, helps grow adoption of new products, builds brand loyalty, and takes sales away from competitors. Although the exact return on investment (ROI) varies tremendously across industries, companies, campaigns, and media channels, studies have found that a dollar spent on advertising returns $3–20 in additional sales. To compete and grow in today’s diverse, ever-changing marketplace, businesses must reach their target customers efficiently, quickly alerting them to new product introductions, improved product designs, and competitive price points. Advertising is by far the most efficient way to communicate such information. Economic role of Advertising

Value of Products:

The advertised products are not always the best products in the market. There are some unadvertised products also present which are good enough. But advertising helps increase value for the products by showing the positive image of the product which in turn helps convincing customers to buy it. Advertising educates consumers about the uses of the products hence increasing its value in minds of the consumers. For e.g. mobile phones were first considered as necessity but nowadays the cell phones come with number of features which makes them mode of convenience for consumers.

Effect on Prices:

Some advertised products do cost more than unadvertised products but the vice versa is also true. But if there is more competition in the market for those products, the prices have to come down, for e.g., canned juices from various brands. Thus some professional like chartered accountants and doctors are not allowed to advertise.

But some products do not advertise much, and they don’t need much of it and even their prices are high but they are still the leaders in market as they have their brand name. e.g., Porsche cars

Effect on consumer demand and choices:

Even if the product is heavily advertised, it does not mean that the demand or say consumption rates will also increase. The product has to be different with better quality, and more variety than others. For E.g., Kellogg’s cornflakes have variety of flavors with different ranges to offer for different age groups and now also for people who want to loose weight thus giving consumers different choices to select from.

Effect on business cycle:

Advertising no doubt helps in employing more number of people. It increases the pay rolls of people working in this field. It helps collecting more revenues for sellers which they use for betterment of product and services. But there are some bad effects of advertisements on business cycle also. Sometimes, consumer may find the foreign product better than going for the national brand. This will definitely effect the production which may in turn affect the GDP of the country.

The economic aspects are supported by the Abundance Principle which says producing more products and services than the consumption rate which helps firstly keeping consumers informed about the options they have and secondly helps sellers for playing in healthy and competitive atmosphere with their self-interest.

  1. ii) Types of advertising

The following list is an introduction to advertising tactics that you could use. Remember, you can always be creative in your advertising to get noticed (within advertising regulations).

Newspaper

Newspaper advertising can promote your business to a wide range of customers. Display advertisements are placed throughout the paper, while classified listings are under subject headings in a specific section.

You may find that a combination of advertising in your state/metropolitan newspaper and your local paper gives you the best results.

Magazine

Advertising in a specialist magazine can reach your target market quickly and easily. Readers (your potential customers) tend to read magazines at their leisure and keep them for longer, giving your advertisement multiple chances to attract attention. Magazines generally serve consumers (by interest group e.g. women) and trade (industry/business type e.g. hospitality).

If your products need to be displayed in colour then glossy advertisements in a magazine can be ideal — although they are generally more expensive than newspaper advertisements.

Magazines do not usually serve a small area such as a specific town. If your target market is only a small percentage of the circulation, then advertising may not be cost-effective.

Radio

Advertising on the radio is a great way to reach your target audience. If your target market listens to a particular station, then regular advertising can attract new customers.

However, sound has its limitations. Listeners can find it difficult to remember what they have heard and sometimes the impact of radio advertising is lost. The best way to overcome this is to repeat your message regularly — which increases your costs significantly. If you cannot afford to play your advertisement regularly, you may find that radio advertising does not generate strong results.

Television

Television has an extensive reach and advertising this way is ideal if you cater to a large market in a large area. Television advertisements have the advantage of sight, sound, movement and colour to persuade a customer to buy from you. They are particularly useful if you need to demonstrate how your product or service works.

Producing a television advertisement and then buying an advertising slot is generally expensive. Advertising is sold in units (e.g. 20, 30, 60 seconds) and costs vary according to:

  • the time slot
  • the television program
  • whether it is metro or regional
  • if you want to buy spots on multiple networks.

Directories

Directories list businesses by name or category (e.g. Yellow Pages phone directories). Customers who refer to directories have often already made up their mind to buy – they just need to decide who to buy from.

The major advantage of online directories over print directories is that if you change your business name, address or phone number, you can easily keep it up to date in the directory. You can also add new services or information about your business.

If your target market uses print and online directories, it may be useful to advertise in both, although print directories are being used less.

Outdoor and transit

There are many ways to advertise outside and on-the-go. Outdoor billboards can be signs by the road or hoardings at sport stadiums. Transit advertising can be posters on buses, taxis and bicycles. Large billboards can get your message across with a big impact. If the same customers pass your billboard every day as they travel to work, you are likely to be the first business they think of when they want to buy a product.

Even the largest of billboards usually contain a limited amount of information; otherwise, they can be difficult to read. Including your website address makes it easy for customers to follow up and find out more about your business. Outdoor advertising can be very expensive especially for prime locations and supersite billboards.

AIOU Solved Assignment 2 Code 967 Spring 2021

Q.4   Evaluate the differences between an advertising Department and an Advertising agency.        

1. Contact Department

This department is responsible for getting new accounts and also for maintaining the existing ones. The Account Executive is the key man of the department who acts as a link between the advertising agency and the clients.

2. Media Department

This department is entrusted with the work of selection of appropriate media for the advertiser. It could be on the basis of

  • client’s direction,
  • the budget allocated for this purpose by the client or
  • The one that serves the purpose best to the client’s product.

In these circumstances, the media department selects the best possible medium. It chooses the appropriate channels of communication through which the message is to reach target consumers. The media analyst decides over the number and kind of potential customers and accordingly chooses a medium / media to carry the message.

3. Copy Department

The copy director, preferably an art minded individual, is the head of this department. The advertisement copy is the heart of advertising programed as it contains the message.

This department coordinates the work of copy-writing that requires skill, imagination, flair and fluency of language. The department works closely with the account executive and research department.

4. Art and Visualization Department

The head of this department is the Art Director. An art director is assisted by artists, layout men and visualizers. It is the duty of this department to get the visuals and layouts prepared for press advertisements, posters, calendars, and other outdoor advertising.

Some ad agencies get this work done through outside artists. The important point here is that there should be a close co-ordination between Art and Copy departments.

5. Production Department

When a copy is ready, the agency goes ahead with its production, headed by a director. Ad Agencies generally use outside units for these production services.

6. Finance Department

This department is responsible for

  1. maintaining accounts, billing and collecting the dues from its clients,
  2. verifying the appearance of advertisements in different media in individual cases,
  3. checking media invoices against release orders,
  4. settling the bills of the media owners; and
  5. Looking after all the routine matters relating to accounting; recording, etc.

7. Research Department

This department of the advertising agency is engaged in the study of the effect of selling activities at the last point of distribution of a product. The research director takes the assistance of analysts, investigators, etc.

A research may enable the agency to get more business by making stronger presentation to more desirable clients. The contact department makes an extensive use of such research outcome while contacting its clients and convince them.

8. Public Relations Department

The growth and survival of an advertising agency depend very much upon the public opinion and its support. Favorable Public opinion raises the morale of the agency personnel and builds goodwill for the company. This department is headed by a Public Relations executive.

Generally, an advertising agency maintains all the above mentioned departments but the exact name and the number of departments may vary from agency to another, depending upon the size of its business.

An agency may take help from outsiders or specialists instead of establishing a full-fledged department. Moreover, the activities of two or more departments may be combined and carried out only by one department.       

AIOU Solved Assignment Code 967 Autumn 2021

Q.5   Discuss the function performed by an advertising agency. Also describe the selection criteria of an advertising agency.                                                                                          

An advertising agency is composed of creative and business people – the writers and artists, showmen and market analysts, merchandising and research people, advertising specialists of all sorts.

But with all this, they are business people, running an independent business, financially responsible, applying their creative skills to the business of helping to make their clients advertising succeed.

Advertising Agency – Definitions Provided by Philip Kotler, Rozer, Borton and American Association of Advertising Agency

A firm engaged in providing services of advertisement for clients to create awareness and market for them is known as advertising agency. These agencies involve people with specialized skills and knowledge who are well versed in marketing, advertising and consumer behavior. These experts combine their talent to create advertisement for their clients. Therefore, an advertising agency is a specialized organization helping its clients to adopt advertising for marketing their goods and services in most effective manner.

According to American Association of Advertising Agency an advertising agency is one –

  1. Which is an independent organization.
  2. Which is composed of creative and business people.

iii. Who develop, prepare and place advertisements in media.

  1. Which is for sellers seeking to find customers for their goods and services.

Philip Kotler opines that “Advertising agency is a marketing service firm that assists its clients in planning, preparing, implementing and evaluating various activities of advertising campaign.”

Another view expressed by Rozer and Borton is that “Advertising agency is a group of persons who have a specialization in advertising. It includes ad copywriters, ad designers, media selectors and advisors for various advertising issues”.

From the above definitions, the common features can be identified as:

  1. Advertising agency is an independent business organization.
  2. Agency provides services to its clients who are searching customers for their goods and services.
  3. Agency employs the experts, researchers etc.
  4. Agency performs the functions like planning, implementation of campaign, research, follow up advertisement, measuring effectiveness of various media for its clients.
  5. It charges fees, service charges and commission from its clients.

It is emphasized that an advertising agency is an independent business organization independently owned, and not owned by advertisers or media or suppliers—which brings to the clients’ problems an outside objective point of view made more valuable by experience with other clients’ sales problems in other fields. It is independent of the clients so as to be always an advocate of advertising (seeking to apply advertising to help clients grow and prosper); it is independent of media and suppliers so as to be unbiased in serving its clients (the sellers of goods and services).

An advertising agency is composed of creative and business people—the writers and artists, showmen and market analysts, media analysts, merchandising and research people, advertising specialists of all sorts. But with all this, they are business people, running an independent business, financially responsible, apply­ing their creative skills to the business of helping to make their clients’ advertising succeed.

These people develop, prepare, and place advertising in advertising media, seeking in every way they can to apply advertising to advance their clients’ business. Every­thing that goes before and everything that comes after the adver­tisement is preparation of advertising follow up to help make it succeed. The agency does this, not for itself, but for sellers’ goods and services. To prepare and place advertising—successful adver­tising for the advertiser—is the primary purpose of the advertis­ing agency.

Advertising Agency – What Advertising Agencies do?

The work that advertising agencies do is described in the “Agency Service Standards” of the American Association of Advertising Agencies. These Service Standards, a delineation of fundamentals of successful agency operation, enable advertisers and media to know what to demand and agencies to know what may be expected of them in dealing with the problems of advertis­ing. Agency service, according to the “Agency Service Standards,” consists of interpreting to the public or to that part of it which it is desired to reach, the advantages of a product or service.

This interpretation is based upon:

(1) A study of the client’s product or service in order to deter­mine the advantages and disadvantages inherent in the product itself, and in its relation to competition.

(2) An analysis of the present and potential market for which the product or service is adapted –

(a) As to location.

(b) As to extent of possible sale.

(c) As to season.

(d) As to trade and economic conditions.

(e) As to nature and amount of competition.

(3) A knowledge of the factors of distribution and sales and their methods of operation.

(4) A knowledge of all the available media and means which can profitably be used to carry the interpretation of the prod­uct or service to consumer, wholesaler, dealer, contractor, or other factor.

This knowledge covers:

(a) Character.

(b) Influence.

(c) Circulation –

(i) Quantity.

(ii) Quality.

(iii) Location.

(d) Physical requirements.

(e) Costs.

AIOU Solved Assignment Code 967 Autumn 2021

Acting on the study, analysis, and knowledge as explained in the preceding paragraphs, recommendations are made and the following procedure ensures:

(5) Formulation of a definite plan and presentation of this plan to the client.

(6) Execution of this plan –

(a) Writing, designing, illustrating of advertisements, or other appropriate forms of the message.

(b) Contracting for the space, time, or other means of adver­tising.

(c) The proper incorporation of the message in mechanical form and forwarding it with proper instructions for the fulfillment of the contract.

(d) Checking and verifying of insertions, display, or other means used.

(e) The auditing and billing for the service, space, and prep­aration.

  1. Cooperation with the client’s sales work, to ensure the great­est effect from advertising.

These are the elements of agency service, whether all of the functions above are shared by a few persons of each function is carried on separately by a specialized department. Into this pat­tern fit account executives who contact the client, art directors, copywriters, space and time buyers, researchers, production peo­ple, and others who work in advertising agencies.

Advertising Agency – Basic Principles: Client-Agency and Agency-Media Relationship

Basic Principles of Client-Agency Relationship (Car):

These principles are:

(i) The agency avoids advertising a close substitute competing product. The client, too, avoids engaging the services of another competing agency.

(ii) The agency receives the green signal from the client for all the expenses incurred on its advertising.

(iii) The agency keeps the media commission for itself and the client undertakes to foot the bill promptly.

(iv) If the media grants any cash discount, it is passed on to the client.

(v) The agency is not taken to task for media lapses in terms of scheduling, positioning, etc.

Basic Principles of Agency-Media Relationship:

These principles are:

(i) The agency alone is responsible for payment to the media.

(ii) The agency does not allow any cut from the commission received from the media to go to the client.

(iii) The media do not discriminate amongst the agencies dealt with and follow a uniform policy for all the agencies.

(iv) The media do not alter the advertising material without the prior consent of the agency.

The average tenure for a client-agency relationship is 9-10 years in India and about 5-7 years in the developed countries. The frequent client-agency breaks now are attributed to more involvement of top management in ad decisions and more changes in the top management itself. Global alignments also affect the local accounts.

Some clients keep separate agencies for handling different categories worldwide. A client may walkout whenever there is a brand or creative fatigue. Creative agencies generally have shorter tenures, because they tend to continue a particular creative even when the market situation changes.

When an agency is changed, generally a brand is repositioned, e.g., Thums Up was a fun brand. Then it became a “taste the thunder brand”. Now it is ‘I want my thunder’ brand. While such repositioning is done, the core values of the brand are kept constant.

AIOU Solved Assignment 1 Code 967 Autumn 2021

Do’s and Don’ts While Selecting an Agency:

Do’s:

  1. Do look for a big idea or else your ad will be lost in a clutter.
  2. Do ensure that the ad is relevant to the product.

iii. Do hanker after the desired brand image.

  1. Do resist the temptation of creating an ad yourself.

Don’ts:

  1. Don’t bargain hard on agency’s compensation.
  2. Don’t drop the agencies for the hack of it.

Advertising Agency – 2 Major Types: Full Service Agencies and Specialized Agencies

There are mainly two types of agencies based on the type of services offered by them.

They are:

  1. Full Service Agencies:

These are the medium or large sized agencies capable of conducting complete advertising campaign. The main agency may be assisted by many subsidiaries engaged in various other related activities like market research, sales promotion, advertising, public relation, media buying, film production etc. Thus, these agencies are capable of handling all the various related activities of advertisement from beginning to end.

  1. Specialized Agencies:

These are the agencies which provide only one or selected services out of the entire range services. Those agencies do not have specialization in all services or not supported by other specialized subsidiaries. The firms willing to get only a part of whole range of services may go in for specialized agencies. For instance, creative Boutiques and Media Buying Agencies.

These agencies get their charges in any form of – (i) Commission – A fixed rate of commission (ii) Fees – In addition to commission, it may insist for payment of fees, (iii) Percentage charges – agency charges some percentages of charges as mark up when agency buys some services from outsiders, (iv) Incentives based system – The fees here are based on how best the agency performs in achieving the pre-determined goals.

Advertising Agency – Top 4 Functions: Research, Creating Advertising, Media Buying and Ad Placement and Providing Ad-On Service

Function # 1. Research:

Advertising agencies carry out various types of researches to facilitate the advertising process. These research activities relate to consumers, market and the product. Through consumer research, agencies determine consumers’ perceptions about the product’s strength and weaknesses.

Also, the way a product is positioned or a new product to be positioned in consumers’ mind is being determined on the basis of research inputs only. The understanding of consumers’ level of awareness, their attitudes, beliefs and knowledge about the product helps agencies in determining communication problem(s) and the formulation of appropriate communication strategy relating to the product concerned.

The formulation of communication strategy also depends on the understanding of market dynamics such as its size, composition, and geographical spread, preferences for the type of media, media reach, the competitors and their communication strategies relating to the market and so on.

Agencies try to work out the communication strategy in the light of market dynamics so as to have desired approach to the market and also to negotiate for buying the appropriate media.

Agencies also undertake product related research to develop knowledge for developing creative concepts. The product knowledge relates to ingredients, quality, features, design and packaging of the product. Though creative concept is based on product’s strengths relating to these aspects of the product, developing a creative concept is a matter of creativity.

AIOU Solved Assignment 2 Code 967 Autumn 2021

Mostly, creative process is followed to develop the creative concept which contains five steps:

  1. Immersion, which means gathering information and raw material through background research and immersing oneself in the problem.
  2. Digestion, is taking the information, working it over, and wrestling with it in the mind.
  3. Incubation involves putting the problem out of one’s conscious mind and turning the information over to the sub conscious mind to do the work.
  4. Illumination is the stage of the birth of an idea—happening of ‘Eureka’ phenomena.
  5. Reality or verification is the studying of the idea to see if it still looks good or solves the problem and then to shape the idea to practical usefulness.

Agencies gather information about consumers, markets, competition, and any other relevant information both informally and formally to assist in preparation incubation and illumination stages. Formally, proper research is conducted either by the agency itself, or by the client, or by media or by some other specialist source.

The agencies provide research based information to creative specialists for use as an input to creative process. Agencies also provide them the books, trade journals, clippings, newspaper articles, etc. containing the information relevant to product, market and consumers.

The informal sources of information, on the other hand, include general reading, talking to those who are involved in product as designers, salespeople, engineers, consumers, listening to what people talk about the product, experiencing the product and becoming familiar with it, and working in and learning about clients’ business.

Besides fact finding research on consumers, product and market, advertising agencies are now conducting psychographic studies to construct the lifestyle or psychographic profiles of product users. Moreover, a numbers of agencies are now even conducting branding research to help better understand and identify clients, customers and how they connect to their brands.

Agencies and particularly large agencies with strong research departments have their own research programmes and techniques to conduct qualitative researches such as in-depth interviews or focus group studies. These qualitative researches provide valuable insights into the early stages of creative process.

Function # 2. Creating Advertising:

It is the core competence of most of the agencies whether large or small in size. The creation of advertising function includes various activities relating to its writing, designing and producing ads. The copy writers develop the message copy, its headlines, slogans, tag lines, and body copy.

The art directors carry out the designing of an ad in terms of its colour, contrast and pictures. The production of the ad as per the specifications given in the layout is done by the producers. Advertising agencies provide the environment and facilities to these people having specialized skills as it is through their interactions and elaborative efforts that the creation of advertising takes place.

Function # 3. Media Buying and Ad Placement:

In view of growth in media option/opportunities causing media fragmentation, placing an ad with media has become one of the important decision requiring whole lot of data based discussions and deliberation. Agencies role in placing ads with the media goes back to its traditional association with the media.

Being sellers of space in media, overtime agencies have evolved into buyers of space and buy media time and space on behalf of the advertiser. Being in the business of creating advertising, agencies are generally more close to media and hold more information and knowledge about media scenario. Because of specialized skills, agencies are also better equipped to negotiate while buying media time and space.

Function # 4. Providing Ad-On-Services:

Clients now expect from their agencies to provide additional services and not just advertising. This is another functional area of advertising agencies which includes the provision of services concerning preparation for printing of sale material, publicity campaigns, other sales materials, sales meetings, etc.

Since clients expect a package solution to their varied communication needs, more and more agencies, especially large agencies, are getting into the business of providing one-stop-shop offer to their clients. They either acquire or hire the specialists divisions having competencies in regard to various additional services.

The advertising agency co-ordinates between various specialist divisions and, thus, provides integrated solution to the communication needs of the client. Overtime, agencies have become the provider of total communication solutions and not just advertising as a solution to communication needs of the client.

Depending upon the functions performed by the agencies and the services rendered to the client, these agencies are grouped either as large or small size agencies. The large size agencies are usually the full service agencies providing the entire breadth of services to the client. Small agencies, on the other hand, are the specialized kind of agencies which offer only one or few of the services to their clients.

Advertising Agency – Factors Affecting the Selection of Advertising Agency: Agency Team, Range of Services Rendered, Research Activities, Success Rate and a Few Others

The advertisers should consider the following factors while selecting an advertising agency:

  1. Agency Team – An agency has to possess management experts, market researchers, production managers, art directors, copy writers, media experts and others. The quality and expertise of these specialists team is considered while finalising the agency.
  2. Range of Services Rendered – An agency may be full services agency or specialized agency. An advertiser should keep in mind the type of services required to be hired.
  3. Research Activities – Advertising agency should consider the type of research activities conducted by companies. Because there are market research companies or advertising research companies or both.
  4. Success Rate – The advertisers may look at the various accounts already handled by an agency and the success rate.
  5. Need of Marketing Plans – It is necessary to see whether the assistance in preparing the marketing plans can be provided by the agency. In case of clients with new products, it is necessary to consider this factor.
  6. Compatibility – It means the personal equation of the advertiser with the client. There can be perfect harmony and cordial relation between client and agency when there is compatibility.
  7. Stability of Agency – The selection of agency depends upon the regular and stable services provided in that line. Its commitment in fulfilling the accepted tasks is noteworthy. The known agencies are preferred to the new ones.
  8. Creativity – Advertising needs creativity. An agency having good team of creative persons is selected. Because, it is main factor in making advertisements different and attractive.

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