Can Your Media Company Learn Something from… the IRS?


Master deadlines instead of chasing them. Here’s some tips on how to do that.

Ok so it’s post-April 15th and you’ve probably spent your refund check by now. Hopefully you were able to buy something fun. Did you notice that the IRS does one really smart thing that most other organizations don’t?

The IRS pretty much sticks to their deadline. If you don’t meet their deadline, there is hell to pay and everyone knows it.

Niche magazines need to have deadlines too: for subscription promotions, editorial and advertising, as well as for distribution. And as more niche media companies include events in their revenue-generating strategy, there are important event registration deadlines, too.

But sometimes, in the real world (which doesn’t include the Feds), deadlines are missed. Then what happens? Is there an unintended ripple effect within your organization?

First, your customers count on consistency. So do your advertisers. (If you start moving the deadlines for advertisers all the time you will have chaos and unhappy customers.) Even your employees’ morale is dependent on your organization’s ability to respect deadlines.

Here’s some dead-on deadline advice:

  • Don’t pad.
  • Don’t over-promise.
  • Don’t be late just because you are afraid of making a mistake.

Your audience, your customers and even your employees will respect your integrity. Let’s face it, we all need looming deadlines or we wouldn’t accomplish everything we set out to do!


Diana Landau, Niche Content Wrangler

About this blogger: Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Niche Media. A former corporate marketing hack, she has now found nirvana in writing and wrangling quality content. Diana is a food, wine, art and SF Giants enthusiast……who sometimes gets carried away.


Niche Media has created super niched-out events specifically for magazine publishers for over 12 years. We’ve helped pave the way for the era of boutique events that connect specific audiences and provide great educational, friendly and super-fun environments! Plus, Carl Landau – Niche Media’s Grand Poobah – just launched a blog all about creating and marketing targeted events –  Check it out!

– Twitter: @NicheMediaHQ
– Facebook: NicheMediaHQ
– LinkedIn: Niche Media Inc & Niche Media Network
– YouTube: NicheMediaHQ
– Google+: +NicheMediaHQ


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5 Tips for Handling Ad Sales Rejection

No thank you. Nope. Not now. Not today. No way. Does any salesperson ever enjoy hearing those words?


Here are Carl’s 5 tips to overcoming ad sales rejection.

The 3 things you can’t avoid in life are taxes, death and rejection…… if you’re in ad sales, that is. It’s part of the ad sales game, and if you don’t develop a strategy on how to deal with all the rejections, you’re not going to win the game.

Let’s face it—the odds are stacked against you. In baseball, the very best hitters get a hit once in 3 home plate appearances. That player would go to the Baseball Hall of Fame with a .333 batting average! If an ad sales person makes one sale in 10 attempts to a new prospect, they would certainly be inducted into the Ad Sales Hall of Fame as well. (Not sure where that Hall of Fame is–but I’d love to visit.)

So how do you deal with all that rejection?

Here are 5 helpful tips that work for me:

1. Acknowledge the odds are stacked against you. Be realistic that not all new prospects are going to do business with you. Basically, give yourself a break and celebrate your victories.

2. Which leads to…remind yourself of your victories. I used to decorate my whole office with all my big contracts. It was fun to do and the visual was a constant reminder how successful I was. Ad sales people often hang onto the defeats. Don’t do that! Keep it positive always.

3. You’re got to have a tough ego. When new prospects are turning you down, that does NOT mean you’re a bad person or a bad sales person. I look at it this way: The prospect just made a very poor business decision. And here I was going to find a way to help them figure out the right business decision!

4. Don’t take it too seriously. Thank god we’re not brain surgeons. We’re selling advertising, after all. This perspective gives me confidence to be assertive in going after sales. The worse thing that can happen is… the ad sales prospect says “No.” Definitely not life and death. So, go for it!!

5. Group therapy works! Every day at about 4 PM, I used to meet with my ad sales team and we’d go over the calls for the day. We’d pretty much talk about all the idiots that turned us down, what we could do better and generally start laughing. We also did a lot of one-upmanship with our stories—who had the worst prospect call of the day, etc. Sharing your trials and tribulations with your ad sales team can really boost your spirits and your confidence.

We’d also help each other with creative ideas that could work and often the next day I’d call back the prospect with a new idea and turn the account around. Try  group therapy with your ad sales team, it really works!

Media sales is one of the highest forms of salesmanship. You’re basically selling the idea that your magazine audience is worth investing money in. It’s not easy. But you’re the key person at your organization. You’re the one bringing in the money. Be proud of what you do as a media ad sales person. We are very lucky to have these jobs!

Have fun with it. Yes, rejection is part of the job. But don’t let it take over what you do. Deal with rejection in a positive way. You can do it!

Happy selling out there to all my ad sales peeps!


Carl Landau




About the blogger: Carl Landau is Grand Poobah of Niche Media. He is a media/event guru, SF Giants fan and part-time blogger. His 15 minutes of fame took place in the mid-eighties when he launched his famous, “Buy an Ad, Get a Cat” ad campaign. He has long since patched things up with the SPCA.



Niche Media has created super niched-out events specifically for magazine publishers for over 12 years. We’ve helped pave the way for the era of boutique events that connect specific audiences and provide great educational, friendly and super-fun environments! Plus, Carl Landau – Niche Media’s Grand Poobah – just launched a blog all about creating and marketing targeted events –  Check it out!

– Twitter: @NicheMediaHQ
– Facebook: NicheMediaHQ
– LinkedIn: Niche Media Inc & Niche Media Network
– YouTube: NicheMediaHQ
– Google+: +NicheMediaHQ

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For Great Events, Help Your Speakers Succeed!

Our audience tells us that about 80% of niche magazine publishers are including events now as part of their revenue stream. If you do it right, it looks easy. But it takes a tremendous amount of skill and teamwork to pull of a successful event.

The Grand Poobah & Bryan Welch getting warmed up before the lunch keynote.

The Grand Poobah & Bryan Welch getting warmed up before the lunch keynote.

Finding and coaching the right speakers for your events is key. Think about developing a solid speaker “process” for your events. Nailing this one piece of the puzzle can make your whole event run more smoothly. Your speakers will thank you, and your attendees will really thank you.

Much of it is making sure that you spend some time preparing your speakers beforehand.

Here are Carl’s common mistakes to avoid with event speakers plus some tips to help them out: [Read more…]

Sell More Ads with Surveys, Service and NOT Selling!

Nancy O’Brien is the ultimate ad sales pro. In addition to her Associate Publisher responsibilities and traveling the globe for her magazine and industry, Nancy is always at the leading edge in niche magazine ad sales. (Somehow we are able to snag Nancy every year from her busy schedule to help lead our conference sales training workshops, too.)


Kick off your ad sales week with great advice from Nancy O’Brien.

Nancy knows niche magazine ad sales in her bones and she always does her homework. Here’s a quick pick-me-up to jolt your Monday morning routine:

First, don’t we all talk about doing surveys all the time? Check this out and make it happen this week:  Just the Facts Ma’am – Better Magazine Ad Sales Research with Surveys [Read more…]

Master the “Experience” of the Print Magazine to Reap Reader Rewards


Is she randomly flipping pages or enjoying her reading experience? You be the judge.

Warning: This is not a post about augmented reality. It is about the power of paper and the print reader experience.

As the digital realm spreads into every facet of our lives, the world of print magazines evolves. We’re here to say that reading a print magazine is a very good, even niche-y thing. Why?

Because although more and more readers are viewing magazines on multi-screens, the print reading experience is decidedly, uniquely, wonderfully different. 

Reading print is definitely not the rapid-fire, scroll down, ping-pong viewing of digital. Plus, most print readers absorb more and will happily spend time viewing an ad when there is quality content right next to it.

So how do your readers “experience” your print magazine? [Read more…]

Artisanal Publishing: High Quality + Great Editorial = Revenue!

In the last decade, magazine publishing has transformed dramatically and most niche magazines have had to re-invent themselves. Many have emerged stronger by adopting new revenue strategies and leveraging the depth of their passionate, niche audience.


Daniel Brogan, President of 5280 Magazine, shares his insights for success with us.

Here’s a success story for you: Daniel Brogan, Founder and President of Denver’s highly successful 5280 Magazine bucked the status quo and then saw the magazine’s paid circulation triple and ad revenue reach all-time highs. We asked him to share some of his publishing insights and lessons learned with us.

Niche Media HQ: What’s “artisanal publishing” and how can it affect a publisher’s bottom line? [Read more…]

Ad Sales Pros — Should You Make the Call?

All ad sales people do this at some point: They stare at their phone, blinking and thinking, “Do I really want to call that prospect again?” And then they go back to just thinking about it, cleaning out desk drawers and straightening up files and generally just procrastinating.


Stop thinking about calling that prospect. Just make the call!

You can’t help it, I understand. Typically it’s a good prospect that you have called many times and they just haven’t bought anything from you. Or maybe they have been sort of rude or in a hurry or whatever prospects do to push you away. In reality, you end up spending a lot more time thinking about calling than actually calling.

When I’m observing this “non-calling” activity I always advise…just make the call. You never know.

One strategy I use and teach is to shake things up. [Read more…]

8 Hot Trends to Watch in Digital Advertising!


Digital advertising is exploding. Hold on to your hat!

Are you on top of what is up and coming in the digital advertising world? As a media pro, you should be.

This recent post by Business Insider about digital advertising trends is definitely worth a read.  It includes some great sourcing and more in-depth stats and reports for your handy reference, too. Plus it’s quick and to the point and…….get ready!

Here’s a quick snapshot: [Read more…]

Say What? Improve Your Listening Skills for Better Ad Sales Results!


Sales reps: Here’s tips to improve your listening skills.

We all know that successful salespeople possess great communication skills. But one area where most anyone can do a better job is…. active listening. In today’s multi-media, multi-device, high-sensory world, active listening has become a challenge for many.

Developing and honing your listening skills will help you understand your clients better, lessen the chances of any miscommunication and will go a long way toward creating long-term, successful business relationships. How do you hone your listening skills when you are in sales mode?

The basics: You need to focus without distraction on a sales call. If you are in a face-to-face meeting, eye contact is very important. So is paying attention to the non-verbal messages in a conversation.

Here are some quick ways to improve your listening skills: [Read more…]

Successful Online Revenue Strategy from a Pro: Tips from Prime Publishing’s Stuart Hochwert


Prime Publishing CEO Stuart Hochwert shares some revenue-generating online strategies.

Generating more online revenue is always a very hot topic among niche publishers these days, so check this out: Stuart Hochwert and his media company generate 100% of their revenue online. Check out these impressive stats: In just 5 years, his start-up has built 5.3 million subscribers and generates over 15 million page views of content per week.

We recently caught up with Stuart and asked him to share with us some of his successful revenue-generating strategies and more.

Niche Media HQ: What are a couple of new revenue-generating opportunities and strategies in digital publishing which publishers could adopt right now? [Read more…]