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Rosalind Evans 

Training investment failure holds back media accountability

Training investment failure holds back media accountability

Advertisers are still failing to invest enough into media training, a new survey of advertising professionals revealed this week.

As part of a biennial research project from consultancy ID Comms into successful training within the media industry, the survey found 71% of respondents rated levels of investment "unsatisfactory" or "entirely unsatisfactory".

The figure was particularly high with agency-side respondents, of whom 79% agreed, with 60% of advertiser-side marketing and media professionals concurring.

According to respondents, the failure to train teams and understand media correctly results in a lack of understanding that makes it difficult to hold media accountable.

Nearly half of advertisers agreed that this was in part due to current capabilities and skills being "unsatisfactory", with an even higher figure of 60% among advertiser media specialists.

The same concerns were echoed by agency respondents, with 43% agreeing that a lack of training results in advertisers not always having the ability to follow good media management behaviours.

Commenting on the report, Susy Pyzer-Knapp, consultant at ID Comms, said: "What's most worrying about these findings is that investment in media training has not been prioritised since we last conducted the same research back in 2016."

Despite concern in recent years about the increasing urgency to invest in skills that will help to achieve an increase in media accountability, many brands have "not seen fit" to do so themselves, she said.

"This behaviour contradicts the fact that 99% of respondents agree that brands can gain a competitive advantage in marketing by investing in training that raises their media capabilities."

Primary blame among respondents for the continued under-investment in media training was placed on a lack of adequate time and available budget, cited by 30% and 27%, respectively.

“It is clear from the consistency in data from 2016 to 2019, that there has been no real improvement in the quality or provision of media training," added Pyzer-Knapp.

"Unless media capabilities are raised it will remain difficult for media to be seen as a key lever for growth. This has hindered progress we would have expected to see since 2016.”

Findings were based on 150 responses from a range of marketing, media and procurement professionals, with advertiser-side respondents representing brands with a total global advertising spend of over $20bn.


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