The official definition of Media (according to Wikipedia) is “the collective communication outlets or tools used to store and deliver information or data”.
It’s a broad term – and it can be viewed and defined in so many different ways, depending on where you stand. Personally, I prefer to take a holistic top-view of the whole, and see where every piece of the puzzle fits in to make that big beautiful picture.
My forte and speciality lies in ‘Paid Media’ with a digital focus. This alone can be broken down much further and categorised by each marketing channel, platform, tool, qualification and/or skill you might specialise in.
Even though I have many years of experience in the industry, my holistic top-view is a fairly recent development that has appeared in the last year or two, mainly due to the overwhelming nature of this industry and what our job specs require on a daily basis. We not only need to be up-to-date on all digital industry benchmarks, trends, policies, channel by channel updates, methods, and strategies, but also maintain and develop individual client, brand and product insights to inform our competitive tactics. This is the reason we find that even in the digital space, a media role can encompass many job titles and specialisations.
Media Buyers, Strategists, Planners, Analysts, and many others are brought into play in a successful media execution. Therefore many companies also break down job roles and titles by channel specialist – for example, Paid Search Specialist or Paid Social Media Specialist – to focus on different elements for specific clients or objectives. My role here at Flume is “Media Buyer”, and includes all of the above job titles rolled into one.
This is why it took me so many years to gain this holistic view of Media and how every element and aspect plays a part in achieving whatever the media goal might be. Having a view and understanding of every piece of the puzzle allows me to keep a long-term, results-based frame of mind, adding valuable insight to our planning and strategy and taking appropriate, real-time steps to achieving great results. The diversity of my role has been one of my favourite aspects of my career so far, giving me a better understanding of the industry and where it’s heading, how to improve my prospects and what skills I need to gain, year by year.
Today, I can confidently promote myself and my skills in my CV and portfolio, with full trust in my own recommendations and skills. And if I can offer any advice to those just starting their media careers it is this: Don’t limit yourself. It’s good to be a specialist, but the way the industry is going, you’ll need to become a talented generalist as well. With an open mind, a challenging, fulfilling and fast-moving career awaits.