Media Planning & Buying for the Holidays

Is your agency or media buying organization fully prepped for the holiday season this year? Q4 is always a busy time for marketers as Black Friday/Cyber Monday closes out November and Christmas closes out December. Holiday shoppers and businesses looking for new products and services at the close of the fiscal year lead to increased opportunity for B2B and B2C. It’s no surprise that media spending reflects this trend across all channels, with some of the most inflated budgets reserved for the last quarter. 


With an increased media spend during Q4, there are several factors to consider. Are your campaign objectives clearly defined, and do you have your budget allocated best to hit those objectives? Do you have a strong media plan laid out? Are you able to easily scale up your media-buying operation for the season without fear of increased human error? 


Here are some effective measures you and your team can take to make sure you’re prepared for this holiday season:


Know Your Goals & Audience

Having clear objectives from the jump and knowing how to achieve them, can make the difference between a successful holiday season and a series of underwhelming or even failed campaigns.


So, what are your objectives? Like most retailers during the holidays, are your goals simply to drive sales? Or are you using a seasonal message to build brand awareness? Know your objectives and plan accordingly. 


In the same vein, you need to know your target audience. Knowing demographic data will help you narrow down your selection of tactics and channels to utilize. For instance, you might want to focus more on digital campaigns that include CTV if your target audiences are cord-cutters or cord-nevers.


Once you have your objectives and target audiences nailed down, you can turn your attention to how best to achieve those objectives and reach your audience. To best craft your media plan, make sure you’re equipped with the most up-to-date data on trends across broadcast, digital and other channels. As quickly as the advertising landscape evolves, you can’t always rely on the same mix of channels and vendors as Q1, Q2, Q3 or even last year’s Q4. 


If you know what your goals are, you’re halfway to reaching them. Once you establish a media plan with a mix of tactics and vendors across all relevant channels, you’re two-thirds of the way to your goals.


Plan Early

“The early bird gets the worm,” says the old proverb. Most people use this to advocate for an early start to the day, but the same logic can be applied to planning out your media buying for Q4. Getting a good jump on your holiday media planning will help you prepare for the increased volume of media orders and the seasonal inflation of associated costs. 


What’s the best way to do this? The answer is simple: find a solid media planning platform. Good media planning software will empower you to work quickly and efficiently, automating processes as you plan. You should also be able to populate client-ready graphs and flowcharts to accompany your media plan. And above all else, with the ever-changing landscape of advertising, you should be able to adjust your media plans with ease, ensuring that you can adapt to any changes in the market heading into the holidays. 


Making your media plans early can save you headaches and late nights. 


When planning for the massive increase in media spend during the holidays, it can’t be emphasized enough how vital efficiency and accuracy become. A misread decimal place from a media plan can result in a faulty media order that can cost your agency and disrupt the year-end budget you so carefully crafted. 


Automation can reduce the risk of human error and can save time. Your media planning and buying platform should have automated features like instant media order creation from your media plan. Once orders have been made, you’ll also need an efficient way to send the order to the vendor and bill the client.


During a season when you and your team are thinking more about your holiday parties and what gifts you still need to pick up, streamlined media management can give you much-needed peace of mind.  

Advantage’s Media Management Software

Advantage was built by agency vets and media buyers for agencies and media buying organizations. We know all too well the end-of-the-year chaos for folks working in the ad industry. And that’s why Advantage Media is designed to be an efficient, single-platform, media management software perfect for agencies and media buying outfits of all sizes.


With templated and customizable media-mix templates for digital and broadcast research tools, Advantage has everything you need for your media-planning process. Build media plans and client-facing flowcharts for all media types –including broadcast, digital, OOH, print and more. Our software empowers media professionals to manage the lifecycle of every order from start to finish and pull user-definable reports whenever needed, all within the same platform.


What’s more, Advantage Media offers a range of time-saving features that help to prevent human error. With automated media order creation from your media plan, Advantage Media ensures that your media planning and buying process is as quick and efficient as possible. \




The Advantage agency management system is an all-in-one solution purpose-built for agencies and creative teams of all sizes.


We’ve been exclusively focused on helping our clients maximize productivity, efficiency and profitability for over 40 years, with almost a thousand agencies counting on us to help run their business every day.


Advantage has a team of US-based agency veterans who are there to support you every step of the way. All implementation and training is done by experienced Advantage staff, and all clients have unlimited access to our live customer support line from 8am-7:30pm Eastern every business day.


Find out how Advantage can help you by contacting us for a complimentary demo or discussion about your unique needs.

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