You might think that a super-star like Heismen Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers would just go to a meeting and clients would through money at him. But as the group discussed how to break new accounts and build the relationships and trust that leads to business, Johnny pointed out that in his experience it takes 7 “touches” to build a relationship to be ready to do business.
Your opening lines, whether your prospect answers the phone or you leave a phone message, must be smartly specific to that prospect and that business. When you can cite a specific data point about that business, the prospects ears immediately perk up. It’s a data-driven version of a warm call.
In our world of ad-sales, the important stuff is how well you understand your customers and how you can help them compete better by delivering perspective and solutions that will drive their sales.
There used to be “a thing” called “over-exposure” that was thought to apply to some celebrities, particularly in relation to product endorsements. It made sense that if a particular person was seen to be endorsing too many products it would tend to put pressure on their perceived veracity, implying that their opinion could be bought, and perhaps bought cheaply.
Lately — okay for decades — digital advertising’s spread from supporting content to supporting every sort of amusement, game, software application and yes, keeping us in touch with friends, and their friends, and their friends, has so multiplied digital advertising that it, too, is over-exposed.
Dr. Arvey uncovered research attesting to the benefits of face-to-face meetings while preparing a report: “Why Face-to-Face Business Meetings Matter.” Studies indicate 85 percent believe face-to-face meetings are more likely to result in breakthrough thinking; and 82 percent believe that meetings bring out the best in people.
Getting ad-sales appointments for in-person or virtual meetings on the phone and/or online is the key first step. Without voice mail we’ll need new tactics.
Woody Allen said 80% of success is showing up. When it comes to successful media selling that is a good place to start. And it’s harder than ever to “show up.” Prospects don’t call back, or say they don’t need to see you. Client-side contacts say to see the agency who you already know hasn’t called back for weeks. How can you “show up” in our fiercely competitive world of media sales?
All this is a preamble to this simple point: You better have a really good message when you ask for an appointment. If it works, you’ll win more appointments and ultimately win more business. If your message is so-so, you and your property will stay in the mental “circular file.”
Attending and utilizing tradeshows for sales is a key skill for almost every kind of advertising sales person. If you sell national trade advertising, the trade shows in your industry are a key source of content and of leads, as well as a place to meet your prospects. If you sell local TV or radio or newspaper advertising attending the local “home-show” will be a source of leads and a great place to chat up potential customers.
Preparing and proposing an agenda at the beginning of the ad-sales conversation has many positive uses. Proposing an agenda for your meeting or conversation can be done on the phone or in person, and works in informal situations as well as in formal presentations.