Cable Buying: A Game of Reach and Frequency

Welcome to the World of Cable Advertising!

Stream Companies will be your tour guide for the day. So, take a seat and start asking questions. Thank you.

With cable advertising, there are four options:

And no matter what venue you choose to buy in cable, it all comes down to two things: reach and frequency.

So, what the heck are reach and frequency?

Reach: Percent of target audience universe exposed to message at least once

Frequency: Average number of times a household or target viewed a commercial over a specific time period

And why are they important?

Each month of a campaign should reach a minimum of 75% reach and a 3 frequency.


Your ad will be seen by 75% of the targeted audience, 3 times.

So, what if my campaign isn’t achieving those reach and frequency goals?

There are a few options to consider. Here are a few:

  • Add budget.  The more money the more spots
  • If your reach is too high but your frequency is too low, narrow the flight dates or reduce the amount to networks the campaign is running on.
  • If your reach is too low but your frequency is too high, add a week to the schedule or add more networks to increate the target audience.

And here’s something else to consider. The reach and frequency numbers from the cable systems reflect how many subscribers they have.  For example, if half the market is Comcast and half is Verizon FIOS, and Comcast is delivering a 90% reach… that is 90% of half the market.

If your head is still spinning, consult with the experts. These professionals know what they’re doing. Talk with a Stream Companies media buyer to customize a cable schedule that attacks your targeted audience. Contact Cory Lorenz: