Make It Feel Like Christmas Now

While your salespeople are boating, golfing and enjoying the summer weather, it can be difficult to have thoughts of sugarplums dancing in their heads. But, your clients and prospects are planning their Christmas campaigns NOW.

You know, “the early bird gets the worm.”

Yet many media account executives will be panicked and running around like frantic last-minute Christmas shoppers, trying to pick up the crumbs left by other professional account executives who captured their prospects’ Christmas budgets while they were still in the planning stages.

I can still recall my rookie days when I called on my prospects with our newly released ‘Christmas package’ only to hear, “Sorry, but we gave our budget to the newspaper just last week.” While it might no longer be “the newspaper”, you can bet there are countless traditional and new media reps who will be pounding the pavement around mid-October in the hopes of capturing lucrative Christmas advertising dollars. If you want your competitors to hear that you have already captured their prospects’ Christmas budgets, you need to have your Christmas sales meeting NOW.

You can see our Radio Ink tips on facilitating better Christmas sales meetings by clicking here.
A properly planned Christmas Sales Meeting can put your sales team in the mood to be the early bird, to be the first in the door to talk to their prospects about the important Christmas selling season.

P.S. Don’t forget the two worst months of your year, January and February, when you present your holiday season proposals. You’ll find it easier to book the post-season sales and events as part of your package NOW. Once the harsh reality of winter sales slumps set in, it’s much more difficult to talk about optimistic sales projections.

If you want to increase your local-direct revenues in 2015, contact wayne@wensmedia.com 

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The Secret to More 52-Week Business

Many of the stations we consult are surprised when they discover the number one reason advertisers don’t often schedule 52-week campaigns.
The average radio rep would make her annual budget if she simply had 20-25 accounts advertising at rate card with 30 commercials a week for 52 weeks.
So, what would you guess is the number one reason advertisers do not schedule 52-week campaigns?
I’ll give you a hint. It’s not because they don’t have enough of a budget to advertise 52-weeks of the year…
Reason number 4 advertisers give for not booking 52-week campaigns is that they believe their business to be seasonal and want to invest their budget only during peak sales periods.
Reason number three is because they’re not sure what their inventory levels will be, or what they’ll have to sell, ten or eleven months from now.
The second most popular reason they don’t book 52 weeks is (and this is often disgustingly true) because they believe radio stations will offer much better “deals” on sold inventory if they wait until the last minute to schedule each month.
But, seldom do stations understand the number one reason advertisers do not schedule 52-week campaigns…
The number one reason is, “we don’t ask them to.”
Advertisers tell us that most radio account executives have never shown them a 52-week plan or validated a solid benefit to booking 52-week schedules.
So, there you have it, the number one reason you don’t have more 52-week business is because you don’t ask for more 52-week business. It truly is that simple.

Are you planning a company sales conference or association convention? If so, click here to inquire about scheduling our Selling Advertiser Annuities Workshop to help your salespeople capture more 52-week business.

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Selling to Believers

You know that marketing dwells in the world of perceptions, and perceptions become entrenched as beliefs, and it’s almost impossible to change one’s beliefs…

So, why do you keep trying to persuade someone who doesn’t believe in radio, your format, your numbers or your audience to advertise with you?

Why not pursue the believers? The believers are those business owners who know, like, and listen to your station. There are 62 registered businesses for every 1,000 population in your trading area, and we estimate that 50 of those 62 per thousand hold the potential to become clients for radio advertising.

So, do the math… If you have an audience of 100,000 listeners, the odds are good that 5,000 of them could buy advertising from you! If you don’t have a strategy to reach and influence those 5,000 listeners who own businesses and who already believe in your station, you are missing a huge opportunity.

Trying to persuade a prospect that your station is somehow superior to their favorite station will never be as productive as finding and selling to those business owners who already listen to and believe in your station.

Click here to inquire about the tools we have at ENS Media to help you find and sell your believers.

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How to Grow Your Local Sales

 You know that local retail revenues for radio are flat at best. So why do you keep pursuing the same business over and over expecting a different result?
 The stations we work with are capturing all of their increases from non-retail accounts, specifically the services and professions sectors.
The reality is, Main Street Retail is shrinking in every market. Markets that had eight or nine local retailers selling home electronics a few years ago, for example, now have two or three and their margins have been squeezed dramatically by the big box stores and online shopping.
Look around your market. The growth is not in local retail establishments. The largest and fastest growing sector of your economy is the service sector; services like law firms, plumbers, financial advisors, electricians, cosmetic surgeons, etc.
Not only is the number of locally-owned and operated retailers in your market shrinking, more importantly, online shopping, smart phones, a global economy and big box stores are dramatically squeezing retail profit margins; which in turn, puts the squeeze on local retail ad budgets.
Why should you be pursuing the service sector?

  • Margins are excellent! Once the dentist’s first few patients have covered the dentist’s fixed costs such as rent, equipment and reception, the profit on the additional two patients you attract for them is nearly 100%!  Service sector businesses do not have to buy what they sell. In comparison, if a retailer sells 200 units his cost is twice as high as selling 100 units because he has to buy everything he sells.
  • Services Don’t Need Volume.  One roofing job for a local roofer can pay for a sizable campaign on your station and a cosmetic surgeon doesn’t need to line patients up around the block to make a huge buck.
  • No Global Competition.  When you have a tooth ache or a leaky faucet you don’t go online to look for service from Hong Kong or Pakistan. The service must be performed locally and the decision-maker lives in your market.
  • Less Haggling. Retailers, by definition, buy low and sell high.  Most local professionals or service providers have never seen a radio account executive because our industry has been focused on retail in the past. Seldom do these industry professionals know radio rates and they are usually pleasantly surprised by how affordable radio can be.

We don’t have time in your short weekly ENS on Sales to explore all of the reasons the stations we consult are capturing huge increases from service sector clients but I think you get the point; your most lucrative growth opportunities in 2014, and beyond, are in the local services and professions.    So as you plan for a “Happy New Year”, think about converting your retail sales people to become a local marketing team.
P.S. You won’t capture the lucrative service and professional sectors if you are speaking retail and using the same strategies and tactics that worked so well for retail in the past.
            Click here to discuss how we can help you convert your retail sellers to a full service marketing team to increase your local-direct sales.

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Catch ‘em Doing Something Right

Bruce Barton, the founder of Betty Crocker, said, “Sometimes when I consider what tremendous consequences come from little things, I am tempted to think there are no little things.”
And there is no “little thing” with more impact and consequences than praise and recognition.
I happened to be taking a tour through a new client’s radio station last week, when they introduced me to one of their staff. As soon as he saw me, he beamed with approval and said to my client, “I know Wayne!”
He then reached into his desk and pulled out a memo I had sent him when he worked with me 30 years ago. The short note simply thanked him for a job well done, but he had carried that with him for 30 years!
Co-incidentally, I spoke to a regional sales manager that same day who I hadn’t talked to in years. He was quick to tell me that he still has an award I presented to him more than 10 years ago.
A little praise and recognition goes a long way…..and apparently, for a long time.
We know that behaviors which get rewarded, get repeated; yet all too often we focus on trying to change what people do wrong, rather than building upon what they do right.
So here is a challenge for you. Try to catch someone doing something right every day. Simply mark it in your calendar every day to “catch ‘em doing something right.”
Recognizing even the smallest improvement, will in turn, lead to bigger improvements.

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