There’s More Than One Way to Schedule Ads


(By Rick Fink) The proverbial saying, “There is more than one way to skin a cat”, is a fair expression when describing different styles of scheduling ads. There are lots of options. So, what are the best times to schedule ads — BTA (Best Time Available), ROS (Run of Station/Schedule), AM Drive, Mid-Day, PM/AFT Drive, evenings, overnights, or a combination of some or all?

Like the number of options, there are an equal number of opinions. My opinion is, it depends! I am a firm believer that there isn’t just one “best” way to schedule. It depends on what you are trying to accomplish with that specific schedule and/or the overall schedule. Every situation and every client within every business category, and in every market, should be looked at individually to determine the best way to schedule ads.

Questions that need to be asked and answered are: Is this a direct response or event advertising? Are you airing a schedule for 3 or 6 months? Or, is it a long-term branding campaign? Other things that need to be considered are whether other businesses in the same category are advertising on this station and/or this market. If so, how much are they advertising (SOV – Share of Voice), how long have they been advertising, and how much (SOM – Share of Mind or TOMA – Top Of Mind Awareness) do they own?

There is one other major factor that will determine when to schedule the ads, and that is the budget. The question to answer is… how many people can I reach and influence effectively with the budget I am working with? The one thing I always shared with the media reps I managed was to create schedules that you believe will work for the client in their specific situation, and one that you can easily explain to them so that they understand and believe in it.

A book could be written on all the different ideas, approaches, styles, and concepts of scheduling ads. I will leave those thoughts for another day. However, this is a very good topic to discuss in your training meetings.

We rarely see schedules that are too aggressive; most are inefficient in one way or another. Being able to create and then explain effective scheduling to your prospects and clients will ultimately allow you to put together stronger, more aggressive schedules that will have a better chance of success.

Ineffective schedules are one of the main reasons advertising campaigns fail! If you would like to discuss this topic more and learn how we can help you and/or your sellers sell more advertising, click here to arrange a conversation.

Effective schedules will make both your clients and you more money… and remember, when it comes to scheduling, “There is more than one way to skin a cat!”

NEVER Stop Learning – Get Better Every Day!

Rick Fink from ENS Media ( can be reached by phone at 605-310-2062 or e-mail at [email protected]


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