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Back to Basics: What Makes Data Meaningful?

August 4, 2022

Do you ever find yourself staring at a bunch of numbers trying to decide what is best to use? Many of us find it difficult to select the right data to use in a sales pitch to a prospective advertiser. Are you looking/needing a quick way to pick the right information to use to tell the best story for your station?

We have some guidelines.

When preparing your station story, you want to ensure your data is meaningful. Throwing a bunch of stats into a PowerPoint deck won’t convince the advertiser that you are the best fit for their advertising.

Use the following list for selecting meaningful data to tell your story:

  • Relevant
    • Does it pertain to the target consumer?
    • Can you tie all data points together for a fluid story?
  • Current
    • Is the data less than 2 years old?
    • Always use the most recent data available.
  • Shows value
    • Does it relate to the advertiser’s concerns or goals?
    • Don’t pre-judge what might be significant data. Do you need to dispel a myth or show that you exceed expectations?
  • Use the right estimate
    • Persons – shows actual number of people
    • Percentages/Composition – focus on bulk of target
    • Index – compares to the market (likelihood)
  • Select an appropriate chart type

    • Pie/Donut – best to use with percentages when all numbers will add to 100. Example: age, gender, etc.
    • Bar/Column (horizontal/vertical) – good to use when comparing several stations.
    • Line – great to show data over time and to compare multiple aspects of stations.
    • Try different chart types to see which is best to convey your story.

Once you have gathered all the data that will best tell your story, and have created slides in your presentation, be sure to source your data. Sourcing can be a note at the bottom of your slide which shows the details of the data including company, dates surveyed, demos, time period, geography, etc.

Tell a great story by making your data meaningful!!

Be sure to come back next month for more tips in our Back to Basics series. In the meantime … reach out to us here for additional help,

-Karen Morriss, Director of Client Services