Average Frequency

As an advertiser, understanding average frequency is crucial in determining how often your target audience sees your ads. It helps you to ensure that your ads are not underexposed, overexposed or underutilized. Average frequency refers to the number of times an ad is shown to a unique viewer within a certain period. This article provides a comprehensive guide to average frequency and how it impacts your advertising campaigns.

What is Average Frequency?

Average frequency is the average number of times an ad is shown to a unique viewer within a specific period, typically a week or a month. It is calculated by dividing the total number of impressions by the number of unique viewers. It shows how often an ad is displayed and how many people see it.

How Does Average Frequency Affect My Ad Campaigns?

Average frequency plays a significant role in creating successful advertising campaigns. Here are some key ways it affects your advertising efforts:

1. CPM

CPM or cost per thousand impressions reflects the amount you pay for every one thousand impressions. Knowing your average frequency allows you to determine if you are getting value for your money.

2. Impressions

Your ad impressions are how often your ads are displayed. If you have a high average frequency, you may be wasting your ads on people who have already seen them.

3. Reach

Reach refers to the number of unique viewers who see your ads within a specific period. Average frequency determines how much reach you can achieve within that period.

4. Frequency Capping

Frequency capping limits the number of times an ad is shown to a viewer within a specified period. With this feature, you can limit over-exposure and ensure that your audience sees fresh content.

5. OTT Advertising

Over-the-top (OTT) advertising refers to video content delivered via the internet rather than traditional broadcasting methods like radio and television. Understanding your average frequency can help you optimize your OTT advertising.

How Should I Set My Average Frequency?

Different campaigns require different average frequencies. Factors such as the type of campaign, target audience, and budget will influence the ideal average frequency. It would be best to test multiple frequencies to determine which one works best for your campaign before settling on a specific frequency.

How Can I Increase My Average Frequency?

If you find that your average frequency is low, here are some tips to increase it:

  • Increase your ad budget
  • Target a more specific audience
  • Improve your ad's relevance score
  • Use frequency capping to limit under exposure

What is the Optimal Average Frequency?

The optimal average frequency depends on your campaign's goals, budget, and audience. However, most experts suggest that four ads per week is a reasonable frequency for most campaigns.


Average frequency plays a crucial role in advertising campaigns. It helps you optimize your ad campaigns and ensures that you are getting value for your money. To succeed in advertising, you must understand how to use average frequency to get the most out of your ad campaigns.


  1. Advertising 101: A Guide to How Social Media Advertising Works (Vital, 2019)
  2. The Psychology of Advertising (O'Shaughnessy & O'Shaughnessy, 2004)
  3. Digital Marketing Analytics: Making Sense of Consumer Data in a Digital World (Everett & Pallister, 2018)
  4. The Art of SEO (Enge et al., 2015)
  5. The Advertising Concept Book: Think Now, Design Later (Barry & Chantler, 2016)
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