As marketing guru John Wanamaker said: “Half my advertising is wasted; I just don’t know which half.” A media audit can help you identify which advert is most effective, allowing you to target that area more effectively.

Media audits are used by businesses to keep track of their marketing strategies and the cost of each campaign. By analyzing how much an advert cost, a business can evaluate how effective it was and whether the investment was worth it. Media auditing also ensures that any media bought is shown in the right place at the right time, to effectively target the right audience at a competitive price.

Why is media auditing so important?

Companies are increasing their marketing budget year on year, so it’s important to know where your money has gone, and whether it was worth it. A media audit analyses each advertisement and the cost behind it, as well as how effectively it reached its target audience. It’s important to take note of the media value for money, so companies can keep an eye on finances and the marketing budget as a whole.

A media auditing company will check the financial processes and fees and can advise a business on selecting the right media agency for its audience and budget. Businesses will also have the chance to work closely with the media agency and incentivize them to build an efficient working process.

Media auditing companies work with the business and the media agency to analyze media performance and the value for money and take on the job of evaluating how effective a campaign has been. Most media auditing companies will even check the financial processes and fees, as well as help business select the right media agency for its audience and budget.

Some companies bring their client and media agency together to build an effective working relationship, such as AuditStar, who pride themselves on this factor. They state on the website: “Aligning the media agency and client objectives plays a key part in media auditing and involves two essential actions: incentivising the agency and building an efficient working process.”

This is important for a business as it keeps track of finances and highlights where the target audience is coming from. Over time, you will be able to notice how a business has grown and developed, and where its target audience is coming from. This is especially helpful for businesses looking to go global, as different audiences may react differently to certain campaigns and media platforms.

What can be analysed in a media audit?

All the marketing campaigns by a business can and should be audited. Choosing the right media agency for your business is important, as you should be working closely with them to ensure you get the most out of your advert as possible. Analysing where an advert appears, and at what time, can be used to track how effective it was at reaching your target audience and growing your business.

You should also keep note of how much each advert has cost, to work out the ROI, and see how well a particular advert and platform works for your business. This can help you target these areas more effectively in later campaigns, and also highlight any areas that may not work well for your audience. For example, you may find your target audience responds better to adverts on Instagram rather than a physical advert in a magazine.

What are the benefits of media auditing?

While media auditing can be compared to analysing social media campaigns and activity, it is much more in-depth, and focuses on every marketing campaign put out by a business — including TV, radio, and internet advertising. It evaluates performance against targets, tracking brand awareness, sales, and the response to campaigns. Businesses can then set achievable performance targets and create effective future campaigns based on what worked well for the target audience.

Media auditing can also help a business identify what type of marketing customers respond well to, and give business-owners an idea of how much they should be spending on a typical advert to get the highest return. An audit can also identify the best times an advert should be made live, as well as what platform it works best on.

Working with dedicated media auditing companies can be beneficial for businesses, as they work as a buffer between the business and media agency. These companies work closely with the business and media agency to ensure the most advertising has gone into each campaign to get the maximum return for the client.