Media Buyer Personalities: Dealing with “Too Busy Bob”


Know this guy? Here are some savvy
ad sales tips to deal
with Too Busy Bob.

What fun! You never know who you are going to get on the other end of the phone in the magazine ad sales game.

I’ve found that a lot of media buyers tend to use a “quirky” personality type to get you off the phone pronto. In a previous post,  I wrote about dealing with Mr. Love.

Today let’s meet Too Busy Bob: You talk to Bob and he’s VERY busy. This prospect always seems to be right in the middle of something when you call or visit. He’s always in a HUGE hurry. Just has one minute for you and always wants to talk tomorrow.

Strategy for Too Busy Bob: [Read more…]

3 Things Your Magazine is Not Doing with Social Media (That You Actually Already Do!)


3 easy ways to share with your readers
–that you actually are already doing!

You are the editor of a small-to-medium-sized publication with a limited staff.

You are already stretched thin filling the magazine.

Then came your website.

Then came Facebook. Twitter. Pinterest. And more. Using these social media outlets takes time, attention, and content.

“Where am I going to find the content?” you ask. “Where am I going to find the time to post it?”

Surprise! You’re already doing it! Here’s three easy ways to integrate what you already do with your magazine’s social media: [Read more…]

Ad Sales Cold Calling for Fun and Profit

NO ONE likes cold calling.  Not true! I love it! OK, so maybe you don’t like cold calling, but if you handle it right it can be a terrific opportunity instead of a dreaded chore.


It’s true! Cold calling CAN be fun!

Cold calling is the favorite part of my selling job. I use the opportunity as a reward for a hard day’s work of what I term regular calling—those everyday calls to touch base with current advertisers, track down ad copy, confirm space reservations, sell new offerings to old customers and follow up with previous contacts.  Where’s the fun in that?

Cold calling is more like detective work.  I search out new prospects from:

  • Web searches
  • Conference exhibitor lists
  • Advertising in other publications
  • Social networks

The Internet makes this pretty easy, and I can ALWAYS find a phone number.  Once I get to the receptionist, I identify myself (important to establish rapport) and ask if he or she can help me locate the person who handles advertising and marketing.  Most of the time, they are accommodating.  [Read more…]

How Niche Magazine Publishers can Evaluate and Manage Organizational Costs

The thing about niche magazine publishers is that they usually don’t know many other niche magazine publishers. That makes managinID-10093044g organizational expenses and setting budget goals challenging – there isn’t someone else to compare yourself with. How much should you be spending on editorial or overhead? Are there easy ways to bring down other major expenses? Does it all make your head throb?

Never fear! Here’s 5 ideas from Jim Zielinski to get your started measuring and managing organizational expenses:

1.  Editorial: It’s about more than ad/editorial ratios! You also have to look at your editorial costs on their own. A good guideline is at least 100 editorial pages per editor per year with a cost of about $1000 per page.  That is the cost for a real life B2B magazine and also has editors committing about 20% of their time to on-line activities. If you are below this benchmark, take a hard look at your editorial process. [Read more…]

How to Get Ad Sales Prospects to Respond to Your Emails – Free Burritos!


Get creative in your email subject lines to your ad sales prospects and they will be hungry to respond to you!

So how can you get your prospects to respond to YOUR email when they are scanning through hundreds in their inbox every day? Sometimes the most basic themes resonate most with busy customers. Plus, you have to be creative and original in your approach to catch eyes.

By now almost everyone, (well at least those who have attended ad sales training at Camp Niche), knows the story of how Carl Landau of Niche Media offered free cats in the mail as a (very) successful ad sales approach. PETA probably wouldn’t appreciate that so much these days. 

Here’s an example of how you can use creativity and touch on basic needs to get prospects to respond to your ad sales emails:

I tried putting “Free Burritos” in the subject line of my email to prospects. Here’s how a typical exchange went: [Read more…]

Top New Marketing Channels Niche Publishers Need to Try


Niche media companies need to be on the lookout for new channels!

What’s coming up next in the niche magazine world? Of course, we all want to know what to look for in the ever-changing brandscape of magazine marketing. The more we can anticipate change the better prepared we’ll be to meet the challenges and also capitalize on opportunities. In this third part of our interview with Jeff Rohrs, Marketing and Social Media guru and popular Niche Magazine Conference speaker, Jeff lays out the new marketing channels that niche magazine publishers need to check out.

Niche Media:  What channels should niche magazine publishers be investigating?

JR:   If you have the budget to explore some new emerging channels, you should experiment with them and measure the results. It will give you the ability to niche your niche even further. Here are some new channels to try: [Read more…]

Let Your Audience Tell Your Media Company What to Do


Know the right new media for your magazine by asking your audience.

How do you determine which new media your magazine should jump into? Very often media companies venture into the vast unknown of the media frontier because they feel they have to or they will be seen as an Old Dog. (Shudder.) Or as a company that is not keeping up with the times.  (Wince.)

I often think that my clients launch out into new projects based on how they “feel” about it and NOT based on what the reader, viewer or listener is demanding.  For example, one of my B2B publishing clients  in the oil and gas sector launched out into Pinterest.  They were so proud.  They spent a ton of time (which means money) on the project.

They were in love with what they did.  So in love that when readers did not immediately begin pinning and purchasing, they were very hurt.  “What’s wrong with my readers?” the publisher said… “Pinterest is so cool!”  Yes, Pinterest is cool. And it works very well for some B2C, B2B and Association magazines.

But when I asked about the feedback from his most recent reader survey, he responded… “Those are too expensive.”  [Read more…]

Media Company Financials: Managing Employee Benefit Costs


Employee benefits is a key area of your magazine’s financials.

Let’s face it–sometimes the financials of a publishing organization can get kinda tricky.  You have to look at ways to reduce costs where you can and always try to become more efficient. We’ve been sharing Jim Zielinski’s 6-part Financial Series with you over the last several weeks to help you know where to start, where to look, how to save on costs.

You can also reduce costs through carefully evaluating employee benefits. No one wants to reduce employee benefits. This is more about finding ways to reduce the costs so your magazine’s operation becomes more profitable and stable for the long term. These cost-saving measures are not necessarily Jim’s recommendation for your niche magazine. These are just some of the options publishers have.

A successful magazine is what everyone wants! [Read more…]

Ad Sales: The Science of Persuasion


What persuades us? Find out about the science behind it with these 6 shortcuts.

We just saw this Youtube video about the science behind persuasion and HAD to share with you.

It’s totally worth your time. You can apply these ideas to selling advertising in your magazine, increasing renewal and conversion rates, getting more sponsorships for events, and just about any other revenue area of your media company.

This excellent short video by Robert Cialdini and Steve Martin gives you the 6 universal principles of persuasion based on actual scientific research — with real world examples. [Read more…]

Why Engagement Rocks and Impression-Driven Marketing Sucks

Media and technology advances change the sales landscape faster than most of us can fathom.  Salespeople may use the aforementioned as an excuse, but savvy sales pros leverage this phenomenon to their advantage, solidifying themselves as the “expert media guru” (Niche Media 101).

Real World Example: Seven weeks ago, a prospect asked us to help promote a football training camp that would be held during Spring Break, just five weeks away. Of course, they only had $500 in the budget. Yes, I thought what you’re thinking right now – Good luck.

After a quick review of the prospect’s social media profile, we developed a five-month engagement-based campaign using the upcoming camp as a launch event. Although the camp had few new sign-ups, the facility grew their weekly training from 40 to 110 in the weeks leading up to spring break. At the client’s request, we’re now preparing an annual comprehensive engagement-based marketing campaign. We sold services to the prospect and turned $500 into a nice 5-figure monthly agreement. [Read more…]