For National Television buys, order letters should always be carefully prepared and executed. These are the contracts between buyers and media vendors, so it is critical that they include a thorough explanation of all deal points.
Top 10 Checklist:
- On agency or network letterhead with date, buyer and seller identified
- Guaranteed demographic (Adults 18-49, Women 25-54, etc.)
- Ratings currency for evaluation (Live, Commercial +3, etc.)
- Thorough explanation of guarantee period and guarantee structure (single quarter, across quarters, etc.
- Gross media cost and any other costs associated with the package
- Guaranteed audience delivery and CPM
- Process by which restitution will be provided for any delivery shortfalls (on purchased network, on “sister” networks, commercial inventory vs. cash, etc.)
- Quarterly detail including spending, audience delivery guidelines, cancellation options and option notification dates
- Terms if buys are changed
- Executed (signed and dated) by both parties
Ideally, it also contains all other actionable deal points (commercial separation, pod exclusivity, late night cut off, added value, content guidelines, etc.).