Secrets of Selling Social Media to Traditional Advertisers


This traditional advertiser prefers his messaging the old way. Here’s some tips on discussing social media opportunities with him.

Selling social media to traditional advertisers is hard sometimes, isn’t it? (Notice we said “traditional” and not “cranky” or “back in the dark ages….”)

So how do you overcome the closed minds of these advertisers? You don’t. But you can help them to connect better with their target audience, which happens to be YOUR niche audience.

Here are some ad sales secrets to keep in mind when “advising” traditionalists. (It can be done!)

1. First, on your end, create a perfect balance between promotional and editorial. Work with editorial to come up with a consistent, compatible social media schedule that works for both departments. Then determine with your advertiser where their promotions best fit within that calendar.

2. Advise them to always, always include images where ever possible—photos, infographics, video, etc. Makes the messaging memorable x 10!

3. Fully understand the pricing for the different platforms before you turn around and try to sell it to your advertisers.

4. ALWAYS integrate social media into a package with your other advertising opportunities. Why? Because the value of packages is that you are able to offer several different media to reach their goals and—this is very important– to reach their potential buyers wherever they might be consuming content. 

5. Help your client visualize and customize to the audience they are selling to, vs your client wanting to use social media merely to carry their already crafted message. It’s still an educational process with some advertisers.

Finally, if an advertiser is still adamant social media doesn’t work for them, consider offering a trial period so you can show them results. Demonstrate to your advertiser how your niche audience is just the right fit for them by providing solid data.

Bonus tips on messaging: Here’s some marketing insight from expert Carla Johnson on how to revitalize your magazine’s existing social media program.


Diana Landau, Niche Content Wrangler

About this blogger: Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Niche Media. A former sales director and 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 -also created a blog all about creating and marketing targeted events –  Check it out!

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