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Advertising Variables
There are some variables or factors that need to be considered when creating an advertising. These factors are waste, reach, frequency, message permanence, persuasive impact and clutter.

Waste is the portion of an audience that is not in a firm's target market. Because media appeal to mass audiences, waste is a significant factor in advertising. For example, a firm plans to place an advertising of a new digital camera in a special-interest magazine for amateur photographers. Through research, this firm knows that 450,000 readers will have an interest in a new camera; 50.000 will have no interest. The latter represents the wasted audience for an ad on that film.

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Reach refers to the number of viewers or readers in the audience. For television and radio, reach is the total number of people who are exposed to an advertisement. For print media, reach has two components, circulation and passalong rate. Circulation is the number of copies sold or distributed to consumers. Passalong rate is the number of each copy is placed with another reader. For example, each copy of Newsweek is read by about six people.

Frequency is how often a medium can be used. It is greatest for newspapers, radio, and television, where ads may appear daily and advertising strategy may be easily changed. Telephone directories, outdoor ads, and magazines have the poorest frequency. A Yellow Pages ad may be placed or changed only once per year.

Message permanence refers to the number of exposures one advertisement generates and how long it remains with the audience. Outdoor ads, transit ads, and telephone directories yield many exposures per message. In addition, many magazines are retained by consumers for long periods of time. On the other hand, radio and television commercials last only 5 to 60 seconds and are over.

Persuasive impact is the ability of a medium to stimulate consumers. Television often has the highest persuasive impact because it is able to combine audio, video, color, animation, and other appeals. Magazines also have high persuasive impact. Many newspapers are improving their technology in order to feature color ads and increase their persuasive impact.

Clutter involves the number of ads that are contained in a single program, issue, etc. of a medium. Clutter is low when a limited number of ads is presented, such as Hallmark placing a few scattered commercials on its television specials. Clutter is high when many ads are presented, such as the large number of supermarket ads in the Wednesday issue of a newspaper. Increasingly, television networks are being criticized for permitting too much clutter, particularly in allowing companies to sponsor very brief commercials (e. g., 15 seconds or shorter).


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