The importance of rural-specific media

The importance of rural-specific media

As one of the largest buyers of regional and rural media in Australia, at redhanded we’re both passionate and experienced at making meaningful connections between brands and people. When this happens, we make small brands feel big and big brands feel personal. This is our aim and what we call ‘Famously Local’.

Knowing the customer and their journey leads to timely, resonating communications that change behaviour. Insight and knowledge are where it all starts, driving effective campaigns that achieve nominated outcomes and ensures delivery against our set KPIs. With an unrivaled understanding of the many markets and their individual dynamics, we have the ability to deliver ‘Famously Local’ campaigns, time after time.

One of the first things we understood about delivering media in rural and regional areas is that in order to be authentic and successful, communications and media plans that work in Metro markets cannot be simply tacked onto the back of a campaign as an afterthought for regional and rural audiences. This is so often seen by agencies and clients that do not understand the importance of Regional and Rural audiences. With 35% of the Australian population living outside major capital cities, it’s a costly mistake to make.

Authentic brand relationships start with understanding the audience, and we achieve this by:

  1. Segmenting the market to define our audience
  2. Profiling that target audience
  3. Mapping the audience journey
  4. Developing creative
  5. Deploying integrated media solutions

By segmenting our audiences, we know that there are 117,000 broadacre farmers in Australia. With a household income of $122,000 they are a highly valuable audience for advertisers to be speaking to.

Looking further into the custom profiles we build from a mix of third party sources as well as redhanded primary segmentation data, we can see that in terms of media consumption, broadacre farmers are heavy consumers of print, reading 3-4 publications per week.

If we simply were to look at this audience through a metro lens, print would be dismissed as a declining channel (forecasted to be back -22% in metro markets by 2020).

However, for our audience print is the most trusted channel for communications. To quote Warren Buffet, who in the past 15 months has acquired 28 local newspapers in the US, “Wherever there is a pervasive sense of community, a paper that serves the special informational needs of that community will remain indispensable.”

Via our unique understanding of audiences and regional and rural markets, we can ensure that we are hyperlocal in all communications, providing minimal to no wastage of messaging and maximisation on ROI for our clients. When combining a wider media mix of radio (focused on mornings and news adjacency when engagement and listenership is at its peak) and addressable media like digital programmatic activity, we can begin to build a highly targeted and wide-reaching campaign.

The below case study is a culmination of segmentation, profiling, customer journey, creative and media ability for hyperlocality. We ran an awareness campaign for one of our clients, pushing a commercially used herbicide that worked on crops resistant to trifluralin.

By using a combination of third party and own proprietary data we have been able to visualize this data as a map, with postcode granularity against areas that yield >2 tonnes per hectare of wheat (green) over-layed with areas that have a resistance to trifluralin (Gold). We then targeted all media to the overlapped green and gold areas to broadacre farmers, ensuring a highly targeted and relevant campaign. The media included local print, geo proximity large format billboards, radio stations with signals in relevant markets and online geo-targeted activity.


This is an example of making a big brand feel personal with authentic, targeted communication resulting in ‘Famously Local’.

Another case study highlighting the importance of rural-specific media was the Australian Open sponsorship for one of our automotive clients.

They were wanting to find a way to get a jump on their competition early in the year specifically targeting their lifestyle segment across regional and rural Australia. We were able to use all available data, in combination with media knowledge and experience to identify the Australian Open as the perfect platform to launch our yearly campaign. We were on air in the last 2 weeks of Jan, a time period other advertisers would avoid due to TV ratings not kicking in until Feb, giving us clear uncluttered space. Not to mention, the integration and scale of reach on the Australian Open is incomparable. It’s always important when advertising for an automotive client that we also target dealers. The alignment with a blue chip, international premium sporting event elevated the brand and gave the dealers confidence in the marketing of head office. The below results speak for themselves.


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