How To Interview A Media Buyer - A Complete Guide

Hiring a media buyer? This comprehensive interview guide with technical, behavioural, and soft skills questions will help!

Reviewed by:
Javeria Khan
Update:
December 7, 2023
0 min read time
Nawal Malik
Copywriter

Are you looking to hire a media buyer to help you get the most out of your advertising budget? As with any role, the interview process is critical to finding the right candidate! So in this article, we'll provide you with a guide for conducting a successful interview with a media buyer. 

Additionally, an interview questions generator can further help you select the right questions to ask. 

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What Technical Questions should you ask a Media Buyer in an Interview?

When it comes to technical questions, your goal should be to evaluate the candidate's understanding of media buying principles, analytical skills, and familiarity with media buying tools and processes. Here are some questions to keep in mind:

  • How do you go about conducting keyword research?

This question will help you evaluate your candidates familiarity with keyword research. An ideal candidate would be able to illustrate how they use keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Moz Keyword Explorer to identify relevant keywords that can be targeted for ads. They should also be able to describe how they employ these keywords to develop tailored advertisements that target different audiences.

  • Can you explain the difference between on-page and off-page SEO?

This question helps you assess a candidate's understanding of SEO practices. An ideal candidate should be able to explain that on-page SEO entails optimizing a website's content and HTML source code to make it more search engine friendly. Off-page SEO, on the other hand, involves building external links to a website in order to increase its authority and relevance.

  • What is the importance of backlinks in SEO?

An ideal candidate would be able to explain that backlinks are important because they signal to search engines that other websites consider your content valuable and relevant. They should also be able to explain how they use backlinks to improve a website's search engine rankings.

Other technical questions to ask include:

  • How do you measure the success of a media buying campaign?
  • Can you explain the difference between CPM and CPC?
  • What are some common metrics used in media buying?
  • Can you explain the difference between a first-party cookie and a third-party cookie?
  • Can you explain the concept of ad targeting?
  • What are some common ad formats used in media buying?

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What Technical Skills should a Media Buyer have?‚Äć

The ideal candidate for a media buying position should possess a strong technical knowledge of media buying principles and their application across different platforms and campaigns. This includes a comprehensive understanding of targeting, bidding, and ad placement concepts. Additionally, candidates should demonstrate exceptional analytical skills and problem-solving abilities to effectively analyze data, identify trends, and make data-driven decisions to optimize campaigns for the best possible outcomes. Familiarity with various media buying tools and techniques, such as programmatic advertising, retargeting, and social media advertising, is also essential. The candidate should be able to explain how they leverage these tools to achieve their objectives successfully.

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What Behavioral Questions should you ask a Media Buyer in an Interview?

When it comes to behavioral questions, your goal is to assess the candidate's communication and collaboration skills, ability to work under pressure and solve problems, and adaptability to changes in the media buying landscape. Here are some important behavioral skills to ask:

  • Can you walk us through a successful media buying campaign you worked on?

An ideal applicant would be able to detail a campaign they worked on from beginning to end, including their strategy, target audience, and key performance indicators. They should also be able to show specific examples of how they improved the campaign's performance by optimizing it.

  • How do you stay updated with the latest media buying trends and algorithm updates?

An ideal candidate should be able to explain how they stay informed on industry trends and developments possibly by reading industry publications, attending conferences, and networking with other media buyers. They should also be able to describe how they use this knowledge in their advertising.

  • Can you describe a time when you had to navigate a challenging situation in a media buying campaign?

An ideal candidate would be able to provide a concrete example of a difficult circumstance they encountered, such as a rapid change in a platform's policies or a substantial shift in the behavior of their target audience. They should also be able to explain how they analyzed the circumstance, devised a solution, and finally resolved the problem.

Other questions to ask can include:

  • How do you handle disagreements with other team members or clients?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to make a difficult decision in a media buying campaign?
  • How do you handle unexpected changes in a campaign's performance?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to adapt to a new platform or tool?
  • How do you balance the need for creativity with the need for data-driven decision making in your campaigns?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to work with a limited budget or tight deadline?

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What Behavioral Skills should a Media Buyer have? 

The ideal candidate for a media buying position should possess strong communication and collaboration skills to effectively work with clients, stakeholders, and team members. This includes active listening, clear presentation of ideas, and the ability to build productive relationships. Additionally, candidates should demonstrate their capability to work under pressure and solve problems efficiently, as media buying can be a high-pressure environment with tight deadlines and unforeseen challenges. Adaptability to the dynamic media buying landscape is crucial, as the field constantly evolves with changing technology, trends, and consumer behavior. Candidates should be able to showcase their ability to learn and experiment with new strategies, embracing change and adapting swiftly to evolving circumstances.

Suggested: Learn about the growing importance of emotional intelligence(EQ) in today's workplace!

What Soft-skill Questions should you ask a Media Buyer in an Interview?

When it comes to soft skills, your goal is to assess the candidate's time management and organizational skills, ability to balance competing priorities, and customer service and relationship-building skills. Here are some relevant questions that will help you gauge soft skills:

  • How do you prioritize your tasks when working on multiple media buying campaigns?

An ideal candidate will be able to outline their method of organizing their workload, including the use of project management tools and the establishment of clear priorities. They should also be able to describe how they communicate with clients and stakeholders to ensure that their demands are met.

  • Can you describe a time when you had to manage competing priorities in a media buying project?

An ideal candidate would be able to describe a specific example of managing multiple priorities, such as managing a campaign with multiple target audiences or a campaign with multiple goals. They should also be able to explain how they balanced these priorities to achieve the best possible outcome.

  • How do you ensure that you are meeting the needs of your clients while staying within budget and time constraints?

An ideal candidate would be able to describe their process for managing budgets and timelines, including using forecasting and tracking tools to ensure they are staying on track. They should also be able to explain how they communicate with clients to manage expectations and resolve any issues that arise.

Other questions that you can ask include:

  • How do you ensure the quality of your work when working on multiple campaigns?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to manage a complex project with multiple stakeholders?
  • How do you ensure that you are keeping up with your clients' expectations and needs?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to negotiate with a client or stakeholder?
  • How do you measure the success of a media buying campaign?
  • Can you describe a time when you had to handle a dissatisfied client?

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What Soft skills should a Media Buyer have?

The ideal candidate for a media buying position should possess excellent communication and collaboration skills, as the role involves working closely with clients, team members, and management. Additionally, they should demonstrate strong time management and organizational skills, as media buying often requires handling multiple campaigns with distinct timelines and deliverables. The ability to balance competing priorities is crucial, as candidates need to make effective decisions that satisfy the needs of all stakeholders. 

Furthermore, customer service and relationship-building skills are essential in this service-oriented role, where candidates should exhibit their capability to provide exceptional customer service, foster strong client relationships, and collaborate effectively to achieve marketing goals.

Red Flags to look out for when Interviewing a Media Buyer

Media buying requires specific skills and qualities for success. Red flags to watch out for include; 

  • Unfamiliarity with media buying concepts and terminology, and those unable to explain technical details simply, potentially hindering effective communication with stakeholders.¬†
  • Relying solely on outdated strategies can limit results, so look for candidates who embrace new trends and experimentation.¬†
  • Lack of experience in successful media buying campaigns may impact understanding and achieving desired outcomes.
  • Resistance to change and innovation could hinder keeping up with the dynamic media buying landscape.¬†
  • Additionally, time management, communication, attention to detail, and quality assurance are vital skills to ensure success. By assessing these attributes, you can identify candidates who possess the necessary technical knowledge, analytical skills, adaptability, and communication and collaboration abilities required for this role.

Read more: Learn the right practices of a structured offboarding process!

In conclusion, the interview process is critical to finding the right media buyer for your business. By asking the right technical, behavioral, and soft skills questions, you can assess a candidate's knowledge and experience, as well as their ability to work well with others, solve problems, and manage their workload. 

It's also important to watch out for red flags such as a lack of familiarity with industry terminology, resistance to change and innovation, and an inability to manage competing priorities. By keeping these factors in mind and tailoring your questions to your specific needs, you can find the perfect media buyer for your business.

We hope this guide helps you make informed hiring decisions! 

Read more: Learn how to screen a candidate the right way!

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