By Kevin Moeller, Executive Director, Research & Analytics, Media Behavior Institute
For many businesses, there is no more important, and elusive, target audience than the c-suite. Given the high CPMs usually involved in reaching these executives, advertisers can’t afford to waste a penny. So it's important to know when CEOs or CFOs are in “c-mode” and when are they in a different mind-set — one where B2B messages are irrelevant and fall on deaf ears. Reaching the right target audience is critical, but also essential is understanding when they are most receptive to your messages.
USA TouchPoints provides a landscape of consumers’ lives. We can tell you where they are, who they're with, what they are doing and their moods and emotions. We can also tell you about all the media to which they are exposed — half-hour by half-hour through the waking day, over the course of a week. Marketers turn to USA TouchPoints to help understand the c-suite audience without having to conduct costly and time-consuming proprietary research.
USA TouchPoints uses the GfK MRI sample and includes access to the Survey of the American Consumer®. We frequently rely on GfK MRI variables to isolate target audiences of interest, and we can pull out respondents in any target defined by product usage, attitudes or demographics. In this case we looked at job title to isolate members of this exclusive group.
On judgment, an advertiser might find c-suite executives receptive to a B2B message when they are in hopeful, confident moods. USA TouchPoints identifies when those moments of receptivity — those “emotional hot spots” — occur.
Some of our findings are not surprising, but others could not have been anticipated. In the following "emotional heat map," the strongest moments of receptivity are shown in red, next most receptive in orange, then yellow. The horizontal axis shows every half-hour of the weekday.
It's not surprising that these super-achievers feel most hopeful and confident during normal work hours. However, the extreme to which they don’t feel that way outside of work is remarkable. This dispells the strategy of reaching a CEO when they are home, relaxing. They are just not CEO at those times.
When the CEO is at home on the weekends, there are few moments of receptivity. It’s impossible to know if the “hot spot” at 7:00pm corresponds to cocktails before dinner, but that would be my guess. Targeting media at that time would be difficult, but one can imagine creative strategies to accomplish that.
So back to the issue of media and reaching this audience. An online strategy would be the first place to look as a B2B channel to the c-suite during the week. They’re in full c-suite mode and could be fully receptive to the right message. Finding them in a similar mindset during the weekend is a little more challenging, but TouchPoints can point the way to the right media mix, which could lead to enhanced advertising performance and improved ROI.