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Bringing Media Buying In House Saved P&G 10% In Costs, says Marc Pritchard.


Procter & Gamble, radio’s largest parent company advertiser, has saved at least 10% in media costs by bringing its ad-buying in-house, Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard said at the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) Media Conference in Orlando on Tuesday.


Nearly all of the CPG giant’s media buying is being done in-house in the U.S. and China, Pritchard said in an interview, as reported by Ad Age. The company is expanding the practice to more countries in Europe. Media agencies still have a role for P&G in the areas of automation, measurement and media supply chain streamlining, Pritchard said.


Because it manufactures products that consumers use every day, like toothpaste, toilet paper, dish soap and other household staples, P&G aims to reach close to 100% of adults for its everyday use products. Radio has played an important role in that, as John Fix, its former analytics and data guru, has publicly stated several times. P&G placed 14 household products in the top 100 radio advertisers for the week of March 11-17, according to Media Monitors, led by Febreze at No. 12, Downy at No. 18, and Swiffer at No. 23.


Pritchard said the company is reaching about 75% of adults on average now, including 77% of Black, 66% of Hispanic and 59% of Asian-American consumers. One way it aims to reach more consumers more effectively is with further investments in diverse-owned, operated, and targeted media, Pritchard said.


Reducing excess frequency is another marketing challenge P&G faces, according to Ad Age. “We’re still flying with a sheet over the windshield among media providers, with no idea how many times a consumer sees the same ad on the same day across platforms, websites and TV,” Pritchard said.


He also decried what he sees as a “lack of measurement that matters,” which is one reason he said P&G “misses out on investing in effective media.” And while the company is besieged with an assortment of currencies, including impressions, ratings, clicks, likes, engagement, followers, and view-through rates, Pritchard sees them merely as diagnostics. “The currency that matters is sales dollars,” he said.


Under the existing methodologies, measuring sales outcomes is too expensive, complex and time consuming, Pritchard said. “It’s time to innovate on measurement that proves sales effectiveness in an easier, faster, more reliable way,” he said. That, he added, will increase media spending.


Pritchard said he would also like to see less waste in programmatic buys that end up on made for advertising sites. But his biggest gripe with programmatic is too many touches in the programmatic advertising supply chain, which diverts ad dollars.


He also expressed concern with ad platforms that offer “zero transparency” in their supply chain. “It’s time to change. And it’s in everyone’s best interest,” he said. While Pritchard didn’t identify which platforms he was talking about, Ad Age says “his remarks appeared to be a clear reference to Google, Meta, Amazon and other so-called digital ‘walled gardens.’”

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