Hi Guru, as a brand manager in a leading packaged goods company, am a bit let down that so many media decisions are based on thumbrules than on validated quanitiative data. Are there any quantitative tools as definitive as LINK is for ad quality testing, that can help answer critical media planning questions below to maximise media dollars?
1/ Effective Frequency: Ostrow tool is not validated, application is highly judgemental, doesnt account for fact that exposure
First off, let's consider your own creative-oriented bias here, no offense meant.
Within ad quality measurement there are some measures that are quantitative and within media planning there are some measures that are solidly quantitative. The problem is how the quantitative measures can "accurately" guide marketing action.
Just because you can use proven methods to reliably measure ad quality in terms of recall or intent to purchase and use that to select the better piece of copy, does not mean there is a better way to plan a copy pool, or forecast advertising results except with your own application of judgement to use of these tools.
Similiarly, media planners have identified solidly measurable, quantitative metrics like GRP, frequency and reach that, at least directionally, have known impact on plan success. Highly experienced media professionals like Joe Ostrow have built logical ( and, importantly, repeatable ) approaches to integrating these metrics with other marketing factors, such as competitve pressure, brand awareness, market share, category interest, etc.
Each Brands' unique combinations of market factors, ad quality, and goals, make it virtually impossible for a single organization to collect enough sets of media plans / marketing backgrounds / sales results to build a simple, proven model to guide all media decisions reliably. For a given set of results in the quantitative tools and a specific set of advertsing goals, the tools should reliably distinguish better choices. Advertinsg goals handed over to the media planners should guide many of these decisions. Budget vs reach goals versus marketing timing issues; branding vs retail promotion, etc. are key controlling factors in setting :30/:15 mix as well as timing of introduction of different copy. Experience, guided by logic and available quantitative tools are the best we are likely to do, in the Guru's opinion.