An advertising media plan is a strategy for marketing your business using certain media channels to achieve a specific business goal. It is important to have a clear objective in order to have a successful outcome. A typical marketing objective could be to gain new customers. But your business may have additional goals, such as opening a new location, a name change, promoting a new product or an event and even declaring a new philanthropic commitment.

Once the objective is clear, a media planner will use pre-buy research and strategy to target the right audience. If you don’t target the right audience it does not matter how well you execute the other elements of your plan. Timing of placed media is important as well as the proper media mix to keep your audience engaged on multiple levels. And equally important is the ability to understand how paid media works in order to negotiate the best rate and placement of your message.

Tactics help determine what the final execution will be. For example the wording, color and placement of a print ad depends on the size requirements of the print ad. Radio spots need voice-overs and background music and great writing. A television spot requires video components. Digital ads may need landing pages added to your website.

Unless you have extensive experience it is best to hire a marketing consultant or advertising agency to obtain expert insight.