Susan Bratton’s “DishyMix” podcast came up with up one of the funniest and succinct descriptions of how media gets bought during her interview with media metrics guru, Jim Sterne (photo at left). Sterne is the founder of the eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summits where online wizards gather to interpret data from online programs and ad campaigns.
In the world on online ad metrics you would think that the numbers would speak for themselves and there be little room for the human element. Wrong. When Sterne talks about how media decisions get made, metrics and all, the human element is still very much present.
According to Sterne media is bought on either "religion or politics." According to Sterne, “If it’s religion, your CMO 15 years ago was good at buying television. So television gets all the money ‘cause that’s what he knows. Or, she really was a brilliant “search” marketing person, so search gets the focus. She’s the hammer and everything looks like a nail.”
“Politics is where the corporate search guy is going to get more money because he has known the CMO longer or has more power.”
Sterne summarizes, "You know it’s religion if they say, 'You know I’ve always done it this way and it’s worked for me.' It's politics when they say, 'Gees, we don’t have enough resources and this seems like the best way to go."