AgVoice | 10 Tenets of Digital Media Planning for the BFSI Sector

Preamble: This white paper aims at listing down 10 tenets of digital media planning for the BFSI Sector. The same shall allow any BFSI company to strengthen their brand and get the best from their digital marketing activities

The BFSI sector is gung-ho on the digital medium and is going all out to make the best of what the medium has to offer. If we go by the numbers the BFSI Sector is the 4th largest spender on Display Advertising and 2nd largest on Search Engine Marketing

As someone who has seen the way BFSI Companies plan their Digital Marketing campaigns from close quarters and dwelled deep into the manner they buy their digital media it’s worrisome and thus I have put down what I define as the 10 Tenets of Digital Media Planning for the BFSI Sector

I am confident that if a BFSI company adheres to the 10 Tenets, they can be sure of a better digital media plan be it in terms of cost, media efficiencies or for that matter even performance

10 Tenets of Digital Media Planning for the BFSI Sector:

  1. Focus on impressions being bought and not numbers – Don’t waste a lot of time on how many impressions a website serves, you would be wasting your time. Focus on how many impressions you need to buy, as long as those get delivered you should be happy
  2. Lock in media for a year – Why not lock in deals with relevant digital partners for the entire year at a single time and get a better deal. Eg – All MF companies know that they would be advertising with Value Research Online then why go to them for each campaign, do a year long deal in the interest of both the parties. Same would hold true for other sites such as Money Control, Yahoo! Finance, MSN Money and others
  3. Media commissions are important but not the only measure – Focusing too much on how much would be the media commission of your digital agency is the wrong approach. You could get an agency to reduce their commission by 2% but what if their fixed rates with publishers are 5% higher than other agencies. Choose an agency that has existing clients from the BFSI space and does a fair bit of media buying, this would ensure good rates from publishers and a decent agency commission
  4. Profile your user correctly – Before you brief your media agency, create a pen profile of your user. Have a slide that allows the agency to understand who your user is, talk about who your target audience is beyond the usual suspects such as; Gender, Age, Income and location. Remember your user does not visit only financial sites, he too is human and visits a plethora of sites from varied genres
  5. Don’t hesitate on using the long-tail of sites – Ad networks are not just a cost-effective way but a great way to reach a relevant audience using niche sites. There are a huge number of ad-networks out there offering customized solutions for the BFSI Sector, pick up the phone and talk to them
  6. Don’t demean the medium by asking for a ROI driven plan – Please do not demean the power of the digital medium by asking for ROI Driven plans only. I do not say that ROI is not important but having ROI as the only bench-mark ties down the agency and restricts their ability to get you the best
  7. Build re-call by owning sections, think beyond just impressions – Instead of having a campaign to campaign approach why not tie-up with portals and own sections relevant to our business. Eg. A Car Insurance company can tie-up with Carwale and have a dedicated car insurance section on the site. Such media deals are not just cost-effective but offer a good story to exploit from a PR point of view and help build re-call. I wonder why there is no Travel Insurance section on the leading travel portals
  8. Remember lowest CPL is not the only measure you must judge your agency on when it comes to leads – While scouting for leads for a financial product, remember that the lowest CPL is not the best lead. Take into consideration the entire campaign; leads, how many appointments can be generated and finally how many sales are done. Better to pay a higher CPL as long as the final output is satisfactory. Do remember that digital agencies also work on Cost per appointment, cost per acquisition model
  9. Ignore the occasional knock on the door – You might have a lot of people who might knock on the door on your cabin and say hey I visit XYZ site and it’s a great site but I have never seen our ads there. Disregard such suggestions without thinking twice
  10. Look beyond the conventional measurement matrix – Digital medium is fast evolving and instead of still relying on measures such as lowest CPL, CPM, Clicks, etc focus on better matrix that determine success of a campaign such as Time spent on site, referral, sentiment tracking on the campaign site, etc

Last but not the least do not allow your offline media planner or your conventional brand planners to work on an online media plan as this is a specialized process and thus leave it to the expert. If you really need the best for your digital campaigns then get a DMO; Digital Marketing Officer. | By Paurush Sonkar, BFSI Digital Stallions Forum [sonkar(at)]

About the Author:

Paurush Sonkar is a Digital Evangelist for the BFSI space and is the founder of BFSI Digital Stallions Forum, India’s first digital association exclusively for the BFSI Sector. He has close to a decade of experience across all facets of Digital Marketing. His digital knowledge and domain understanding of the entire BFSI Sector (Life & General Insurance, Mutual Funds & Broking) is impeccable. He is empanelled with AFAQ’s Campus an initiative by AFAQ’s as a trainer on Digital Marketing and regularly teaches and preaches Digital Marketing at B-Schools. He regularly writes white papers on varied aspects of Digital Marketing keeping the BFSI Sector in mind. He is a strong believer in the fact that BFSI Sector can scale new heights if they embrace Digital Marketing. He can be reached at paurush. 




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