December 10, 2021
5 min read

The Importance of Strategic Planning in Paid Media & 3 Tools You Should Use for It!

Watch R17 Ventures CEO, Raphael Rohner and Senior Performance Marketer, Kyra Engelbrecht, talk about the importance of strategic planning for special annual events in your paid media marketing strategy.

The Top-down planning of campaigns up to the ad level can be quite daunting for brands and advertisers to imagine a full year ahead, so it makes sense to concentrate on the most important events of the year. This can be Easter, Christmas or other holidays. So we look at these important events and ask ourselves: what are we going to push and what is our goal for this particular event?

Plan your month ahead by:

  • developing your advertising material
  • choose your goals for the period
  • developing creative ideas

Score points with creativity and innovation

It can get a bit boring for consumers when there is a flat rate of 20% discounts everywhere. To stand out from the crowd, you should come up with something fun and creative.

This is exactly what our venture partner,, has done with its advent calendar:

In preparation for the Christmas season, the innovative e-commerce startup from Zürich created an advent calendar featuring NFTs (non-fungible tokens) as the daily reward between 1 and 24 December. The NFTs behind each gate  offered consumers a digital voucher of up to CHF 10,000 if they were the first to purchase the bag of the designer bag of the day.

With these 4 questions you will reach your goal

Ask yourself four basic questions to help support your goals:

  • Who?
  • What?
  • Where?
  • When?

Use the holidays or annual events to really get through to every target group. Who do you want to address? Where do you want to advertise to them, when and for how long is your campaign going? Is a short, seven-day micro-campaign worthwhile? Or maybe even a campaign that runs for a whole month? It all depends on what you want to achieve.

Longer campaigns are good for long-term memories of your customers, but shorter campaigns can be Increase urgency and drive sales. You can do this combine general marketing strategies with paid media or performance marketing and use annual events broadly for your advertising strategy

Performance marketing across the different funnel levels

At, we generated leads for the advent calendar in advance. This enabled us to increase the Top of Funnel acquisition audience for use throughout the month of December, providing an additional kick in the performance.

These conversion-promoting target groups can also be accessed afterwards as part of the Middle-of-Funnel. It is important that you promote brand awareness and, at the same time, acquire customers, to fill the funnel and thus create conversions. Because consumers can be a bit skeptical when they first find out about a brand - these events allow them to be part of your brand family.

The 3 best tools to plan your advertising strategy

There are many tools out there to help you plan your advertising strategy. But in our opinion these are the three best platforms

  • Pinterest
  • Facebook Ad Library
  • Trello

So when it comes to a very practical approach to top-down planning, we recommend planning your ads down to the visual level of the ads, i.e. down to the image and video material.

1. Pinterest

Pinterest is one of our favorite platforms because it is where you can see what other companies are doing with their ads. These can be brands that are very similar to your brand, but you can also get inspiration from the complete opposite of your brand. Take a look at their top advertising materials and draw valuable insights from them, which you can implement for yourself and incorporate into your own advertising materials.

2. Facebook Ad Library

The Facebook advertising libraries are also a nifty tool because they help research your competitors and see what they're posting. Think about how you can improve the creative ideas of your competitors and use this approach for your own ads.  

Find their weak points and then proceed specifically to create your promotional material and test it against each another. Ahead of the event or public holiday, for example two weeks prior, you should conduct creative tests. Then take a week to see what worked and what didn't, and optimize the ads accordingly to ensure that your advertising planning is based on data-driven facts.

3. Trello

When it comes to planning the actual campaign, we ask ourselves the four questions again: what, where, when and who? Trello is a great tool for structuring a large advertising event such as the advent calendar through to the image material. There you can find different Create «cards» based on these four questions. You then have four different cards and can insert all your ideas there.

Do you think ...? Find at least three different target groups, that you would like to address as "best practice" and break your ads down from this level. Ask yourself the question: where do we want to address these different people? Of course, it must also be noted that younger target groups use different platforms than older ones.

What were our key learnings from the annual campaign planning?

When it comes to creating an annual campaign, planning is the be-all and end-all. But the best planning is of no use if you don't have a committed team. When assembling your campaign team, it is important to ensure that each member understands their role and that the tasks are evenly divided.

If you as a project manager take on all the responsibility, it can quickly happen that you drop the ball in various areas despite multitasking skills. So when you have a great, dedicated team that knows exactly what everyone is doing at a given point in time, it's easier to work through individual aspects of ad creation. And that's what makes a successful campaign.

It is also important that every team member has the same vision. For example, if you have a team that consists of online shop developers, graphic designers and performance marketers, everyone has to pull together in order to achieve the overall goal - so everyone has to think about who the target audience for the ad is.