Six Types of Research that Make You an Ad Sales Ace



You need to become an expert researcher if you want to stand out from the crowd. Providing solid, usable data sets you apart from your competitors while providing a valuable service to your clients.

Here are some surefire ways from ad sales pro Nancy O’Brien to dive into the ocean of research out there and give your clients the research they need to make waves:ID-10046440

Circulation

It’s important to have written evidence of your readership, whether  it’s through circulation audits, Publisher’s sworn statements, actual postage receipts and print receipts. Ad Sales is about selling through data.

Readership Studies

Conduct periodic but consistent readership studies to define what sections readers like best and what determines how long they spend engaged with your publication.  The right questions will help you determine how much advertising recall the readers have, what other publications they read and gives you a good profile of readership habits.

BraID-10047253nd Perception Studies

In house studies can easily be done with an online survey tool like Survey Monkey.  (That’s not Survey Monkey’s monkey at left. I just couldn’t resist inserting a cute little monkey.)  You can do these for both the readers and the advertisers. Surveys or studies studies measure your readers’ and/or advertisers’ perceptions about a particular product/service. Brand perception studies can be third party or in-house–just don’t be afraid to look in that mirror.

Benchmarking Studies

Benchmarking studies are generally used at the beginning of a new campaign in your publication and should be done again at 12 and 18 months. It’s a useful measurement tool to learn about readers’ evolving knowledge about a product or service. Plus it helps your advertisers learn about their perceived strengths and weakness to better understand and then build a campaign around those perceptions.

Focus Groups

Ideally you want no more than 10 -1 5 participants to be moderated and video or audio taped. Focus groups give far more detail than a written survey and allows for clarifying questions by the moderator as well as other participants.

Hot tip: Conduct one in conjunction with next event where several readers are at the same place at the same time.

Market Research

You can do market research yourself on an ongoing basis to provide your customers with market trends. It doesn’t have to be about that specific widget they want to advertise–it can be a product line, service, industry trend or about marketing in general. As long as your client can use the information. Using search engines gives you data. Often the search feature on your own website is a goldmine of data.

Six ways to become an Research Expert in record time.  Are you ready?  Tell us the crafty ways you research for your clients on  Facebook or Twitter.

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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 – blog.NicheEventNation.com  Check it out!

– Twitter: @NicheMediaHQ
– Facebook: NicheMediaHQ
– LinkedIn: Niche Media Network
– YouTube: NicheMediaHQ

 

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Weird Database Fields for Better Ad Sales (Part 1)



A good customer relationship management (CRM) system is the life blood of an Ad Sales person. You have all the normal fields in place–Name, Company Name, Email Address, Websites, etc.

Here are some weird (aka unique) fields that I have added over the years of selling that have really helped us become more successful….    ID-10013485

  • Advertiser product/service category field:  The more personalization you can do by “category” the better chance prospects are going to be interested.  Most prospects fit under one of about 20 categories. When I ran a home brew beer magazine we had categories like: beer kits, hops, barley, glassware, educational classes, etc. When we would send out broadcast emails, it made it super easy to target emails to all the beer kit people or glassware vendors all at once.
  • A-B-C Accounts:  I have a field that defines prospects by the size of their budgets. “A” accounts have the big budgets and “C” are the small fry. Why in the world would you spend the same amount of time and effort talking to someone that potentially has $50,000 vs. someone that has just $400 to spend? But you would be amazed at how much time reps will spend on the C accounts. This is a great time management tool.
  • Mode of contacting prospects:  One of the questions a lot of prospects enjoy is when I ask them how they would like to be contacted–via phone, email, text, or in person. They appreciate and respond better. I am a little surprised how many people like to be contacted via text and respond well and quickly to it.
  • Best time to call someone:  People are creatures of habit. Clients often respond way better depending on when you contact them. I have some clients that like the early AM call,  some prefer late in the day after their work is just about over. The results can be dramatic when you contact them at the right time. I just note it in my database time field and get better results.

Keep ad sales databases weird!!! Stay tuned for the best weird database field of all time next week.

How weird or unique are YOUR categories and how do they help you? Let us know on  Facebook or Twitter.

 

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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 – blog.NicheEventNation.com  Check it out!

– Twitter: @NicheMediaHQ
– Facebook: NicheMediaHQ
– LinkedIn: Niche Media Network
– YouTube: NicheMediaHQ

 

Image from freedigitalphotos.net

Ad Sales People: Pick up the Damn Phone!



Carl Landau By Carl Landau, Niche Media’s Grand Poobah

 My biggest pet peeve with today’s new ad sales people is that they rely too much on emails! Hey, I love email. It’s a great way to communicate with many people in a fast and efficient way. Media buyers prefer emails as well. they love it because they can turn you down very quickly and efficiently in an email reply.

I know that it’s totally old school, but here’s an idea: Pick up the damn phone. The phone call is so outdated and underused that it’s become the new latest thing. Just think about how few phone calls we get now compared to 10 years ago. It is almost quaint these days to get a personal phone call. It’s much more effective in overcoming objections. You can endear yourself to new prospects and also to get a feel for the “tone” of prospects. You often can’t get that in an email. People misread the tone of emails all the time. When you actually call someone, breathing and laughing are really good vital signs.  ID-10063996

Use an opening email to set up a time to call prospects. They appreciate you asking them when is a good time to chat. I always tell them that I literally will only talk to them for 5 minutes and want to find out more about their product, company, plan, etc., and I have a few ideas that I think will work for them. Here’s the secret: I stick to the time limit and talk all about them on the first call.

I actually have one or two ideas for them other than advertising in our magazine or website. Advertisers appreciate my approach and are usually open to me talking to them for a longer time—provided that I’m sincerely interested in THEM and have some unique idea. Then I always follow up with an email. Every call.

See…”the phone call” is the new 40 and the new black rolled into one!!!

Have great ideas for using sales phone calls effectively? Tell us here or on Facebook or Twitter.

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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!

– Twitter: @NicheMediaHQ
– Facebook: NicheMediaHQ
– LinkedIn: Niche Media Network
– YouTube: NicheMediaHQ

 

Image from freedigitalphotos.net

Master Media Buyers’ Personalities to Make the Sale!



Many media buyers cleverly have developed “quirky” personalities as a smoke screen to get you out of their office or off the phone as fast as possible. Some of them, of course, are genuinely just weird. In any event you need to form a strategy to deal with them, build a rapport, and eventually sell them an advertising program. (To make a media buyer your best friend once you get your foot in the door, check out this article by sales guru Nancy O’Brien.)

Your first step in selling to media buyers is understanding their “buyer” personality type. Only then can you create a strategy to get your foot in the door. Here is a field guide to the most common types and strategies for getting through their defenses:

Too Busy Bob: This prospect always seems to be in the middle of something when you call or visit. He’s always in a huge hurry, just has a minute, and always wants to talk tomorrow.
Strategy: Tell them you are busy too. Give them a publication benefit immediately. Don’t be intimidated by their frantic pace and actually slow your conversation down. This will calm them down and give you control of the conversation.

Savvy Susan: This crotchety prospect is a know-it-all. She’s tried it all before and knows it won’t work.
Strategy: Stroke her ego. Ask her why she thinks it didn’t work. What does work for them? Offer information on what has changed in the market or with your magazine/website.

Mr. No: He’s talking to you with arms folded and has already decided they don’t want to advertise with you.
Strategy: Let him know that you acknowledge the negative feeling. Ask if he can put his feelings aside for just a minute. Then give him some new information about the market or your publication. Ask what is most important to them regarding where they advertise and who they want to target.

Numbers Nancy: Nancy wants figures, figures, figures. She keeps asking you to break it down. What’s the size of your market? Do you know what your readers are spending on paperclips, etc?
Strategy: Ask, why you do need the numbers? So, you can give them the right info. If it’s legitimate, then emphasize demographics and circulation numbers. Some people just are right brain thinkers.  With them, your whole pitch is numbers.

Mr. Yes: He loves your magazine and says he’s going to do a ton of business with you.  Then, nothing happens for six months.
Strategy: Push this person hard. When you try to close the sale – voila! – out will pop the real objections. Then you can deal with them.  Don’t let these types smother you to death with love and just lead you on.

The bottom line is that in order to successfully sell advertising you need to “read” people quickly and create a dialogue that is going to work with specific individual prospects.

 

This article is part of the May issue of Niched Out News. To read the rest of the issue, click below:

Master Media Buyers’ Personalities to Make the Sales

Be Mobile-Friendly to Reach More Customers – Mobi-fy Your Site!

E-Newsletter Layout: Three Things that Should Appear in the Preview Pane View

Success Story of the Month: Lessiter Publications Takes Business on the Road with The Magazine Manager

Niche Notes from the Grand Poobah

Magazine of the Month: Scaffold & Access