Reach v Disruption: two new models for messaging and channel selection

Srihari Palangala, Country Marketing Manager, Adobe India (LinkedIn)

Marketing has become a lot more complex with new media channels and vehicles turning many established marketing conventions on their heads, particularly when you aim to target the right audience with the right message. I experienced this for the first time in a recent planning session with my team.

We decided to tackle this complexity with a whiteboard session and a round of coffees. However, unlike our usual planning sessions, as the meeting progressed we were consistently confronted by one specific challenge – how could we cover the length and breadth of our heavily segmented market (India) efficiently (with minimal lead times) and cost effectively while also ensuring we had the right mix of messaging and media channels to ensure ROI.

To help crystallise our thoughts around the audience segments, messaging, the marketing mix and the best strategic approach for our campaign, we started considering the various aspects of our potential physical and digital media options. We came up with two new models that we wanted to share with you below.

The first model captures key marketing messages, based on whether they are interruptive or non-interruptive, and the target audience we are trying to reach. Using this model, specific styles and types of top level product messages can be paired with specific audiences – for example, targeted core business segments need more granular, specific messaging that engage loyalists, activate community members and speak to product features.

Model 1: Key Messaging Model


The second model overlays into the framework the choice of the physical and digital marketing medium that might make most sense to use. For example, engagement with a broad outreach through physical media (eg. print, PR, radio, outdoor) would likely cover interruptive messaging to show the “bigger product picture”. On the other hand, the core business segment audience requires a higher level of direct engagement and one of the best non-interruptive ways to engage with them could be through owned social channels.

Model 2: Media Channel Selection Model


When we applied the thought processes behind Models 1 and 2 to our situation, we agreed that we were largely trying to reach our core segment audience with a minimal spill-over into a broad based reach. In our scenario, running live events across the country would be counter intuitive based on lower possible ROI, time consumption and significant lead times. So with these things in mind, we were able to decide on email outreach campaigns, a series of online seminars (to reach our core audience segments), and non-interruptive online advertising as the best strategic approach to reach a broader audience beyond end users.

I’d be keen to hear if you think these models could be overlaid on your campaigns? What other considerations do you make when selecting your Physical/Digital media mix?

Leave a comment below and tell me what you think.



4 Responses to Reach v Disruption: two new models for messaging and channel selection

  1. shiboo varghese says:

    Hi Srihari, this is a good approach and i’m sure works fine with the core end user audience. Just curious to know if you could succesfully implement a campaign with this approach and address the challenge of two distinct categories of Adobe’s target audience – the end user (creative professionals) and decision makers (IT/Purchase/business head)


  2. Praveen Rao says:

    Hi! Shrihari, As a marketing services partner, we take another parameter into consideration, which is the ‘degree of audience engagement’. This could typically serve as a III dimension to your model and can help choose the right channel and message mix. An organization like Adobe has 3 types of audience – 1) engaged (customers/developers/users), 2) influenced (students/secondary users such as that of acrobat) and 3) un-engaged or disengaged (developers on competitor platform, users with competition and under-licensed customers (or piracy driven customers).
    Once an organization keeps the III dimension in mind, the overlay of the above two models can help you arrive at a more effective go-to-market strategy. Usually, marketers keep audience # 1 and 2 in focus for all practical purpose. But #3 turns out to be blue ocean area for long term market dynamics.

  3. Srihari Palangala says:

    Hi Shiboo, Thank you for your note and comment. And you do raise a fantastic point!

    The way I would look at it, a campaign could fall into any quadrant – so you could potentially have a message of product features/functionality going out on a Email campaign (to end users or decision makers, based on campaign target).

    Specifically though, the ‘holy grail’ would be to get end users (and decision makers) engaged in an appropriate Non-Interruptive message and channel.



  4. Srihari Palangala says:

    Hi Praveen, good points, thank you for the comments.