The media planner must make media mix decisions and timing directions, both of which are restricted by the available budget. The media mix decision involves putting media together in the most effective manner. This is a difficult task, and necessitates quantitatively and qualitatively evaluating each medium and combination thereof.
Unfortunately, there are very few valid rules of thumb to guide this process, and the supporting research is spotty at best. For example, in attempting to compare audiences of various media, we find that A C Nielsen measures audiences based on TV viewer reports of the programs watched, while outdoor audience exposure estimates are based on counts of the number of automobile vehicles that pass particular outdoor poster locations. The timing of media refers to the actual placement of advertisements during the time periods that are most appropriate, given the selected media objectives. It includes not only the scheduling of advertisements, but also the size and position of the advertisement.4