Marketing for me has always been about never putting your eggs in one marketing basket, the mix is what it’s all about and finding multiple channels to drive engagement have always proved successful. A strategy where you can monitor results is safer and can justify a marketing spend but is that the only way? I am going to explore Above The Line and Below The Line advertising, the history, meaning, advantages and disadvantages.
The History of The Line
So what about this ‘Line’. Where did it come from? The terms ‘Above The Line’ and ‘Below The Line’ came into existence way back in 1954 with the company Proctor and Gamble paid their advertising agencies a different rate according to the activities the agencies undertook.
ATL & BTL Agencies refer to two different styles of marketing agencies, especially in promotion marketing and communication. ATL stands for Above The Line, meaning that the advertising is going to be deployed around a wider target audience, e.g. television, radio, or billboards.
Below-the-line advertising seeks to reach a consumer, instead of a mass audience, directly rather than through an intermediary, such as with a commercial during a television show. This type of advertising is often centred on specific localities and is used to promote products that a consumer wants to see in person. It can be coupled with in-store sales to help explain the features of the product.
Due to being much more focused, BTL channels drive conversions, get a direct response and can build customer loyalty. It is possible to tailor messages for particular segments of the market with relevant offers and information.
Unlike ATL, BTL is also highly measurable. This gives marketers an insight into the return on investment which can then be used to generate an even more focused and targeted BTL communication. With email campaigns, you can track the open rates and click-through rates, as well as identifying what users do once they click through.
In markets where competition is high, customer loyalty is essential. So, being able to directly modify campaigns for existing or potential customers is key.
Above-the-line advertising is designed to reach a mass audience, typically through mediums that reach large numbers of people at various levels of engagement. Perhaps the epitome of above-the-line marketing is a Super Bowl television ad, which costs millions of dollars for mere seconds of airtime. While this type of advertising reaches a lot of people, it is not focused, and many of the ad’s recipients are likely not target customers.
Implementing BTL activities:
1) Reach – Implementing a strong ATL advertising plan can help the brand reach far and wide. Most of the banks as well as retail showrooms regularly advertise their reach via ATL media to entice customers to visit their showrooms.
2) Attention – With a combination of Audio and visual, the penetration levels of ATL media is higher than any other type of advertising. Television and radio literally demand attention through their creatives. Whereas newspapers have high involvement so that the customer does read through the ads also. Finally, out of home too, when placed properly has a huge impact on decision making and creating excitement.
3) Brand building – Any brand which wants a name for itself has to invest in brand building via ATL channels. Most of these brands start with Out of home advertising, then progress to Radio and print. And finally some of them might progress to TVC or will continue with the other media. Nonetheless, a brand cannot be built just by below the line marketing.
Implementing ATL activities:
Through the Line advertising (often referred as Through the Line promotion/ Through the Line marketing / TTL marketing / TTL advertising) involves the use of both ATL & BTL marketing strategies. The recent consumer trend in the market requires the integration of both ATL & BTL strategies for better results.
Marketing strategies can be planned and carried out with an integrated approach of using both ATL & BTL advertising mediums to get the maximum advantage. Most of the marketing campaigns today are TTL campaigns.
BTL can be defined as a marketing strategy used by advertisers to reach a highly targeted audience. ATL is used for brand awareness and BTL is used for direct response
I am really excited by a new app called Anchor which is a free iPhone app that makes it easy to broadcast short audio clips to a global audience in seconds. Your listeners can talk back, sparking instant group conversations that were never before possible. When not recording, listen to authentic humour, knowledge, inspiration, and debate from Anchor’s global collective of personality.
The joining up process is the slickest I have ever experienced , it feels like you are getting a one to one personal tuition that takes you through the sort steps of setting up.
The first broadcast you make to a global audience is called a #FIRSTWAVE here you simply make a short recording by talking into your phone just how you would normally do. You get a chance to review and accept the recordings. Once I created my first wave I received some welcome messages from other users. I am based in London and I had “welcome Nick” messages from Australia and several people from the USA.
I put the app to work by asking a question regarding #socialmedia I then followed others who has made waves or broadcasts about the same subject. People gave advice and i was surprised by the replies.
It seems to me that brands will use the wave feature to undergo research and to gauge opinion. It will also serve as a great tool to help a message go viral. Each message can be shared on Twitter and you can also ask your entire address book to follow you. This powerful combination along with the fact its new and fun will see messages spread globally.
My Bald Anchor Test
I just recently created a term called #BALDSCAPE this is where a image or video features a scene that will also feature typically the top of a bald head. A bit of fun that will keep me amused and hopefully others when travelling or taking photos with my phone. I asked a question you can see this here
Recording voice in Anchor is incredibly easy; you simply hold your phone up to your ear, just like talking on the telephone. Best of all, anyone can interact and respond, creating instant discussions that were never before possible on the internet. Once published, conversations can be shared as podcasts, and heard all over the web. More at Anchor
and more about #baldscapping