We know there is a lot of strategy that goes into media planning and placement. Which media will best reach our desired clients? What position will achieve the highest recall? Where can I put my message as consumers are making their buying decisions? All great questions that media buyers strategically plan out leading up to making a buy and securing placement.
Even though we can control almost every aspect of placement, there are always times when something that you can’t control, such as editorial content or other advertisers, derail your well thought out and strategic placement, and land you in an unfortunate ad placement article.
In a fair number of these, the buyer and the creative team should have been aware. If you are wrapping a bus and your creative includes the upper half of a lady, shouldn’t you ask where the umm, tires, are going to be placed?
In other cases, such as the Nestle girl licking the garbage or the three felons on the loose in Monroeville, you can only chalk these placements up to bad timing.
However, if it’s a situation where you’ve placed your “Ahhhh, marital separation” ad, and the team in charge of layout, positions you right below the “man plunges to his death” article, you’ve got a qualified makegood on your hands. Someone either over looked the inappropriateness of the placement, or simply enough, thought it would be funny. While it is funny to the rest of us, probably not for the marketing team responsible for the ad.
While buyers do often requirement a minimum level of separation between competitors and possible offensive content, you can’t request separation between yourself and every advertiser, who is only offensive when they are positioned beside you. I think most sales reps and sales managers would easily offer a makegood of at least one free ad placement, but you’ve got to catch the error in judgement by reviewing tear sheets and requesting photos for OOH placement. If not, the next unfortunate ad placement article may feature one of your ad placements.