I read your Leader on Boots with interest (MW August 26). Having just reviewed the company’s editorial coverage on TV as an in-house training exercise, I feel able to contribute to this debate.
While television coverage represents just one aspect of Boots’ promotional activities, the medium is a powerful way of influencing its target customers and investors.
Television editorial exposure is the most effective method of reinforcing other marketing activity. It can provide valuable visual imagery to communicate specific messages to important audiences.
We reviewed Boots’ TV exposure over two weeks in July, and found, in keeping with many other organisations, that Boots needs to take a more serious, planned approach to managing TV exposure.
First, it should identify programmes that will reach its target audiences by using demographic information. Second, it should define its key messages and ensure these are packaged appropriately for the medium – what works in a 2,000-word print interview will not work in a 30-second TV interview. Then, by liaising regularly with these target broadcasters, supplying stories, spokespeople for comment and footage, Boots will generate better exposure of its “good news” and help bring a balance to less positive stories. By doing this consistently Boots should benefit from regular exposure which genuinely reflects the way it wishes to be perceived.
From your Leader, you say that there are many positives to Boots’ strategy – firm leadership, new initiatives, learning from experience. These all represent positive messages that would be useful if communicated, particularly to its investors and opinion formers. The influence of regular, targeted television exposure provides an ideal medium by which to do so.