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Editorial Advisory Board

Brokering the Best Time

1 Jun, 2008 By: Thomas Haire Response

Response's Editorial Advisory Board and other media experts clash over the role and influence of media brokers in today's DRTV marketplace.

Medico: Agency of record requirements are a positive thing for the networks, as they limit the number of people calling for the same advertiser, for the same promotion, for the same time slot. With regard to the loss of money or measurability, it is not as meaningful as the networks having budgets and generally knowing the value of their time.

Medved: About 60 percent of the cable networks require an AOR letter. However, many of those are not strict about enforcing the AOR. As an agency, you don't want brokers bidding on packages of time — you want the agencies with the shows. When brokers get in on the front end, pricing gets elevated and only the station wins. It's simple supply-and-demand — the more people trying to buy a time period, the higher the price will go.

Yallen: Networks that require AORs seem to have more of a partnership in mind with the agency they represent. They are more interested in the longevity of campaign, and they are in control of the value of the media.

Other networks are heavily brokered. What are the advantages here for buyers, brokers and the networks?

Hawthorne: Networks that are heavily brokered often have a lot of available inventory that needs to be shown to many agencies. Demand is not as high with these nets as with AOR networks.

Koeppel: Oxygen, Speed and GSN are heavily brokered networks. An advantage is that rates are more negotiable on these networks.

Medico: It's sometimes easier to get the time, and agencies have more options in terms of negotiating last minute avails through brokered networks. There is also the "loyalty" factor in terms of relationships that are built between the agency and brokers over the years. They will work with you to deliver what you need and can be more aggressive with rates especially under short timelines.

Savage: The advantage for buyers is the broker has to sell the time. It can lead to good firesale opportunities. The advantage for the brokers is that, without brokering time, many of these companies may not have a business.

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