Top 10 Skills For A Media Planner And Steps To Improve Them

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 5 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A media planner works in the advertising and marketing industry to recommend appropriate media channels for campaign promotion. They conduct extensive research, analyse reports and devise campaign strategies that help their clients maximise returns on advertising spending. Learning about the various skills required in this field may help you build a successful career in this profession. In this article we would explore the skills for a media planner job and find out methods to improve them. This article also helps in understanding their role and duties in general.

10 skills for a media planner

Before exploring the 10 skills beneficial for a media planner to have, it is essential to know what they do. A media planner works in advertising agencies to create campaigns for clients. They focus on designing and placing an advertising campaign across several media channels, including television, radio, newspapers, billboards, emails, internet and print media. These professionals track the campaign performance and generate reports. They are analytical professionals who oversee, conduct market research and negotiate with media houses for advertisement placements.

They also work in demanding work environments and require several skills to perform their daily duties. Here are some of their essential skills:

1. Networking skills

These professionals work for online and offline advertising. It is crucial to build a network in the media industry to help get advertising placements within the budget. It helps gain several perspectives about any industry and make informed decisions about advertising campaigns.

2. Negotiation skills

When brand campaigns demand placements in media like newspapers, television or radio, these professionals speak with each channel for their prices. A media planner represents the client to get an appropriate advertising placement within the budget. Strong negotiation skills help them maximise the returns on the allotted budgets to improve campaign performance.

3. Budgeting

Professionals in this field understand the brand, campaign and target audience before finalising the channels for advertising. Understanding budgeting helps them distribute the campaign funds to maximise the returns. It also helps them optimise the funds, even after launching the campaign.

4. Understanding media

Media planners may understand the target audience that each medium attracts more effectively. It helps them plan and structure their campaigns. Extensive knowledge about the various media channels, including social media, television, radio, newspaper and billboards, enables them to identify the advertising slots for the brands.

Related: What Is A Brand Manager? Requirements And Job Description

5. Communication skills

Being a professional in this field they work with many people within and outside their organisation. Strong written and oral communication skills are essential skills that they require to ensure the effective execution of advertising campaigns. They network and negotiate effectively with strong communication skills.

6. Listening skills

These professionals interact with clients, vendors and their team members. It is vital to understand the campaign objectives before creating a media plan. It helps them raise relevant questions that may benefit campaign planning. Strong listening skills help them design effective media plans and aid negotiations with media vendors.

7. Statistics and analytical skills

These professionals monitor the campaign performance and optimise it. Strong analytical skills help understand past campaign performance, media channel effectiveness and set realistic goals for future campaigns. It allows them to create advertising campaigns and make informed decisions during campaign budgeting.

8. Computer and software skills

They use analytical software to monitor campaign performance. They may use spreadsheets to create budgets or design a campaign. Thorough knowledge of computer tools helps them organise work, generate reports and conduct market research.

Related: What does A Social Media Manager do? Skills And Qualifications

9. Creativity

These professionals understand the campaign objectives and design its execution through various media channels. To improve campaign performance, they devise innovative methods. Being in the advertising and marketing industry requires them to think creatively.

10. Organisational skills

Being a professional in this field they work with several clients from varying industries. They learn to organise their tasks and daily responsibilities to avoid any mishaps in campaign execution. Efficient organisational skills enable them to access campaign reports, identify media channels and campaign documents.

Duties and responsibilities of a media planner

These professionals work in an office environment and spend most of their time calling media vendors or in front of their computers. They usually work for fixed hours during the day but may work overtime if the campaign demands. Their work environment is highly demanding and requires them to be agile in their work process. They perform several duties daily, including:

  • analysing and evaluating market data to design innovative campaign strategies

  • assessing the impact of different media channels on the target audience defined by the client

  • understanding the campaign objectives from the client

  • brainstorming with creative teams to develop campaign ideas and design presentations to showcase them to the client

  • creating multiple media plans depending on the client's objectives

  • analysing campaign performance and devising methods to optimise performance

  • generating campaign reports for analysis and presenting them to the client

  • interacting with internal and external stakeholders to implement and maintain the media plan

  • negotiating with media houses to finalise campaign budgets and placements

  • analysing several media channels to make campaign decisions

  • recommending strategies to attract and retain customers, increase brand loyalty, increase customer satisfaction and improve brand recall

  • working with clients to define campaign objectives, key performance indicators (KPIs) and understanding their objective

Related: Top 10 Marketing Positions (With Salaries And Job Duties)

How to improve your skills?

The advertising industry is dynamic and fast-paced. It is vital to work on your skills to help advance your career as a media planner. Here are a few steps you may adopt to improve your skills:

1. Pursue an internship

To build a career in this field, take up internships in advertising or marketing firms while you complete your undergraduate degree. Early exposure to the industry helps you understand its demands. It provides you with practical experience and helps improve your skills.

2. Find a mentor

You may find a mentor through your internship to guide you through your career. A mentor can help you improve your knowledge of how media planning works. They may provide you with the necessary resources to enhance your skills.

3. Follow the latest trends

Track the developments in the industry by subscribing to relevant magazines, blogs, industry personalities or podcasts. Updating yourself with the industry trends enables you to make informed decisions while planning campaigns. Leveraging the latest trends may improve campaign performance.

For example, adopting a new digital advertising feature may help increase the reach that your campaign receives.

4. Build a network

A network of industry persons helps you stay relevant in the industry. It helps expand your knowledge about the industry, learn new trends or improve from past mistakes. Your network of industry persons may also widen your perspective on a topic and challenge you to think creatively about your campaign.

Tips to highlight your skills on a resume

A hiring manager often looks for keywords in a candidate's resume. Emphasising your skills in the resume may improve your chances of receiving an interview call. Here are some tips you may follow to highlight your media planning skills:

Write a brief professional statement

A professional statement appears at the top of your resume and may be the first thing a hiring manager notices. Focus on sharing your experience as a media planner and why you wish to build a career in this profession. Highlight the industries and number of brands you worked with in the past.

Mention your technical and interpersonal skills

Create separate sections in your resume to highlight your technical and interpersonal skills. Use industry keywords and names of relevant software to improve your credibility as a media planner. Highlight them as bullet points for easy understanding and increased effectiveness.

Share your work experience

In brief bullet points, highlight the work you did with your previous employers. You may accentuate any past substantial campaigns with statistics. Mention your tenure with each employer to establish the expanse of your experience in various industries. In case of a vacancy emerging in a firm, it is the skills for a media planner which is looked into with greater importance.

Related: Top 20 Marketing Skills To Include On Your Resume

The average salary of a media planner

The average base salary of a media planner is ₹34,670 per month. It may vary depending on your experience, expertise and geographical location of the job. Bengaluru offers an average base salary of ₹45,416 per month, while the average base salary of a media planner in Cuttack is ₹25,000 per month. The company size may also influence their average salary.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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