The process of execution determines how the message will look, read, or sound in its final form. Does it convey the right tone and attitude? Is it suited to its medium, be it print, TV, radio, outdoor, online, or alternative media? Each media vehicle offers advantages over the other vehicles on specific dimensions and requires the campaign team to create a message that takes advantage of that media vehicle’s strengths. For example, television is a cool medium (despite the “hot” images you might watch on it) because it requires a passive viewer who exerts relatively little control (remote-control “zipping” notwithstanding) over content. In contrast, print is a hot medium. The reader is actively involved in processing the information and is able to pause and reflect on what she has read before moving on.
In this chapter, we’ll revisit the media platforms that advertisers like msnbc.com can use in their campaigns; this time we’ll dive a little deeper into some of the factors that make each platform work or not. Then, we’ll have a look at some of the metrics (measures of effectiveness) advertisers use to figure out if what they did actually worked—or if they just looked pretty.