University groups are encouraged to consider advertising as a way to promote their programs. However, the university requires that the director of University Marketing or the director’s designee approve any space or time reservations for nonclassified, off-campus advertising. This includes newspaper and magazine display ads, billboards, and radio and television spots.
Research and Planning
Once you decide to advertise, you must set a budget, define the purpose of the advertising, identify the types of media and specific outlets to be used, determine specifications for the materials, and develop a production plan for the materials. All of these issues should be resolved before reserving space or airtime. Do not underestimate the amount of time this phase can require. University Marketing can help your department in this important phase.
Reservations: Space and Time
Reserving space in a printed publication or a broadcast time is an agreement to use and pay for the space or time. Typically once a placement is reserved, the advertiser cannot withdraw without paying some sort of penalty.
Advertising is usually most effective when it is repeated. Media outlets recognize this and often provide discounts to advertisers based on the volume of advertising they do. The university can save money by maintaining one overall account with an advertiser. Although a particular ad might be paid for by a particular department, the account should typically be listed under the name of East Carolina University.
Reserving space is fairly simple; creating materials to run in that space is not. An ad’s effect is determined not only by its placement but also by its quality. Consider carefully the time and resources required to develop the appropriate materials before space or time is reserved. Remember, once the space or time is reserved, the media outlet will expect payment whether or not the ad runs. Also, be sure to confirm all delivery specifications upon reserving space or time.
Advertising materials must also reflect the quality of the university. All nonclassified advertising materials require the approval of the director of University Marketing or his designee. The best way to assure that these approvals are received is to begin the process with University Marketing and use the resources that are available within that department.
Billing usually occurs at the time the media runs. Tear sheets are required for payment of print ads.