Business information written specifically for newspaper advertising departments

Burt is a real estate agent who told me about a call he received from a telemarketer. "It was a company that was selling advertising in some kind of print and online directory," he said. "A minute or so into her spiel, she asked if I wanted to hear the ad copy they had prepared for my listing. That really took me by surprise, because I had never talked to anyone at that company before. To be honest, I had never heard of them.”

I was talking to Gloria, an advertiser who is always looking for ways to get the most from her promotional budget. "There are more marketing choices now than ever before," she said. "And one of the most important factors is that things can be connected. Some people call it integrated marketing. I can place an ad in my local paper which drives people to my website, which in turn provides more details about the product in the print ad."                                        

One means of advertising can come from hotels. It may seem hard to attract hotels to advertising in newspapers but it can benefit them a lot more than they know. One way for newspapers, to attract advertising from hotels is by showing them how many people they can reach and who their target audience is. Both the hotel and newspaper advertising department could work together. For example, the newspaper could give advertising space to the hotels at a discounted price in exchange for them subscribing to the newspaper and/or placing a stack of them in their lobby. A lot of things can be done to help promote local hotels, and increase the readership and revenue of the newspaper.

On day two of the Blinder Group/SNA Revenue Leadership Summit, Mike Blinder, President of The Blinder Group, accompanied by Howard Finberg, the Interactive Learning Director at The News University Poynter Institute, hosted a live broadcast webinar. The webinar was the third part of a series on “Bridging the Gap between Content and Commerce,” a subject every newspaper in America is struggling to tackle. The topic presented featured a comprehensive review of a successful and effective sales process based on Mike Blinder’s “humble opinion.”

I was asked to speak at the Blinder/SNA revenue summit in Chicago two weeks ago. The summit was two and a half days of revenue initiatives and participants went home with a plethora of ideas they could implement as quickly as they wanted. If you ever have a chance to go to this summit, do so. You will not be disappointed.

Yes, the art of sales does require the building relationships with our clients; but not one of love.  We need to make sure that we are building a foundation OF RESPECT! (Or as I like to say to the many reps I have trained: “You are not there to be loved, you are there to do business!”)

After the snowpocalypse of 2011 ripped through the Midwest and East Coast in February and the violent tornado-thon made for a wet and wild spring, a much-anticipated summer is finally here! And that means while you’re still hard at work, the kiddies are out of the classroom and back home for three months. Parents fear not, the local newspaper is the source for community activities this season.

Networking events provide you with golden opportunities to connect with new advertising prospects – and strengthen existing business relationships. Here are some tips to make the best use of those opportunities:

Dealing with rejection is never a fun task, but it’s one of the most important skills for a sales representative to master. At the Mega Conference in St. Petersburg, Fla., Mel Taylor went over the common objections to web advertising and gave detailed advice on what to do when they come up.

I actually got into this industry because I could type more than 45 words a minute and I could spell. At the time the Gazette hired me, sales experience (although I did have this) was not a huge issue. They wanted someone who could type and spell which apparently is a rare thing to find. I fell in love with media and advertising though and that is what has kept me here.

Ah, it’s that time of year again, the birds are chirping and the snow is melting; spring has arrived! What better way to celebrate the better weather than improving the scenery inside, as well! It’s easy to overlook as you begin to thaw out, but spring-cleaning your office can remove the crud and grime and improve your productivity.

I remember as a radio sales manager, I read research from a Radio Ad Bureau advertiser study that stated “clients hate the language ad reps use.” This was “eye opening” to me at the time, since I always enjoyed using “media speak” within the confines of the radio station, so why not show it off in front of clients as well? I was always using terms like: flight, spots, remote, copy, tag, donut, etc.

Did you know your managers, directors and executives are being advised to shake up the sales department this year? In 2010, both WCAA and SNA gave examples of veteran sales reps that had gotten a little too smitten with their clients, having a relationship where an advertiser could repeatedly deny upgrading and the rep was left with the same clients, same advertisements and the same revenue. These reps weren’t generating new clients, nor were they gaining any new revenue, two essentials for survival in today’s classified industry. Because week-after-week, month-after-month, they’re performance was continual, but in no way emergent, their territory took a shift.

“Tomorrow I’ll” holds an important lesson of optimism. Especially in these challenging economic times, sales people need to forget yesterday’s disappointments and move on to something with more promise.

With a background in outside sales, Advertising Sales Team Leader Rachel Hulse spends her days training and guiding her six sales representatives at the Tulsa World. Her team is comprised of two outside territory reps; one rep that works in both inside and outside sales, with a small geographical territory; two inside sales reps that sell Classified ads and Retail Display ads; and, rounding out the team, a recruitment specialist who focuses on relationship-building with local human resources departments and inbound and outbound calls.

I started working for the newspaper in 1988 as an Automotive Sales Rep; I left the paper 10 years later to give my selling skills a shot at selling BMW’s. I did well but missed the Monday-Friday “normal” work days and returned to the paper six years ago as an Automotive Sales Rep again. The years working at the dealership helped me tremendously to be able to understand the automotive business and their needs

This year’s November congressional election was one for the books. As the party seats change to the Republicans, so do the faces behind the suits. This year, four men, all of them republican, ran for congressional seats. Nothing new about that, but the unique story about these men, they’re all car dealers.

“This year I’m going to lose 30 pounds and I’m going to make 50 sales calls a day at work.” New Year’s resolutions: year-in optimism turned year-end disheartening. Every year on December 31, as the clock draws near midnight, people around the world scramble to create their resolutions to make “this the year I should… (Fill in the blank).” This year, instead of waiting until the last minute (hey, didn’t you have a resolution to stop procrastinating last year?), make your list, and make it last.

My official job title is advertising consultant. I’m a territorial sales rep responsible for managing, growing, and providing solutions for a client base in northeastern Saskatchewan, as well as half of Saskatoon in Western Canada (a geographical area about the size of North Dakota). In addition to selling advertising solutions (classified display and ROP) in the weekly paper, we have a full online and mobile offering. We also provide custom print solutions...I work out of head office in Saskatoon, SK, but, obviously, don’t spend a lot of time there due to the size of the area I’m responsible for.

One of the most challenging aspects of being a sales representative is learning to master the follow-up calls and callbacks. It takes talent to accomplish these facets, and things can make or break your success in sales. Follow-ups and callbacks need to be treated with delicacy and care.

Charlie Anderson is a sales consultant, trainer, motivational speaker and author. He started his career in the newspaper business; his family owned a group of newspapers in the Boston area. He now has close to 23 years of sales and entrepreneurship experience and spends much of his time consulting and training outside sales at newspapers across the country.

As a leader, you are responsible for  the well-being of your representatives.
If you have a struggling rep, its not uncommon that a director or manager decides to just forgo the struggle and let the rep go without “wasting everyone’s time” to train them in a method that would work uniquely. 

If you have a sales rep come to you saying they’re in jeopardy of missing quota, again, take the opportunity to lend a helping hand. Don’t turn your back on your rep, try these tips to help them gain confidence, achieve success and generate revenue.   

Most sales representatives, at some point or another in their career, have had to overcome a struggle of effective and comfortable prospecting. Here are a few tips and techniques to help ease the process of prospecting.

The first step to learning the secrets of success in sales is to accept the basic principles, as they are now, not how they were 10 years ago. The easiest way to embrace the changing market is to take the basics and grow.  Take a leadership approach to your s ales. Take accountability, forget the excuses and bring in the revenue! Here’s how.