What is media buying?

Buying space on sites across the internet or on ad networks to place banner display ads to promote a product, service or business whether it be for direct response or branding purposes.

Standard banner ad sizes for online media buying

Below you will find samples of the most common banner sizes used in online media buying today; the examples are some of sterkly’s own branding ads.





The cost of media buys varies depending on the property, size of the campaign, targeting, frequency of the ad, and placements of the ad slots.

Most common ways to buy media:

  • CPM – cost per thousand impressions
  • CPC- cost per click
  • Flat Rate- fixed amount during an agreed specific time frame (not as common as CPM or CPC)

Best Practices

Know your audience
There are excellent free tools to help and guide you find sites to advertise on based on your target demographics.

Negotiate your buys- No one ever pays rate card price, ever!

Understand your goals

  • Direct Response – type of marketing that generates an immediate consumer response that can be measured and attributed to an advertiser. The advertisement can be delivered through a wide variety of media channels such as the internet, tv, radio, mail, print, etc.
  • Branding – CTR is essential for branding campaigns. If the goal of your campaign is to create awareness for your advertiser it is vital to optimize your campaign by the CTR. Based on DoubleClicks year in review benchmark report, the current norm is a .10 CTR.

Media Buying Optimization

The most important part of media buying is optimization by analyzing a campaign to help you maximize your campaign to its full potential to help increase its effectiveness and ROI. There are several levels you want to focus your optimization efforts:

  1. Optimize on campaign level
  2. Optimize on site level
  3. Optimize on creative level
  4. Optimize on targeting level (demographics and behavioral)