Allan Waters, the founder of what was once one of Canada’s most successful broadcast empires said, “Our problem is not that we aim too high and miss our targets. Our problem is that we aim too low and hit our targets.”
With all the ‘bad news’ facing broadcasters today, it’s easy to get sucked into a negative-thinking trap.
We hear about the enormous debt burdens resulting from broadcast consolidation, and radio that once was branded as ‘live and local’ is now often voice-tracked with little local content to appeal to consumers.
Advertising’s share of marketing budgets continues to shrink, as does traditional media’s share of that shrinking share. Online shopping is hurting many of our traditional retail advertisers, and broadcast radio is no longer the only audio media choice our advertisers have.
And misery appears to love company. When we see fellow broadcasters with flat or faltering sales, we tell ourselves it’s okay to aim low and hit our targets.
The list of problems we face goes on and on, but I’m still from the Allan Waters school of broadcasting…our problem is we aim too low!
It’s pretty easy to fall into a ‘woe is me’ way of thinking, but virtually every business and every media is experiencing disruption, fragmentation, low-price competition, and various other problems that could be described as a crisis.
I believe the Chinese understand how to manage and succeed during an alleged crisis. They spell crisis with these two symbols.
The symbol on the left stands for ‘danger’, and there is danger in every crisis. But what makes the difference when they spell crisis is the symbol on the right. It stands for ‘opportunity.’
You have probably heard the old cliché, “Problems were merely opportunities in disguise.” That attitude contributed to ENS Media having our most successful year ever during the 08-09 recession. Our Selling in Tough Times program helped many broadcasters experience revenue gains far above the ‘norm’.
As you plan for 2018, will your ‘tough times’ target become a self-fulfilling prophecy, or will you break from the fray and capture the opportunities brought about by disruption and change?
Do your sales people have the tools and training to open those new opportunities?
As you plan for 2018 and beyond, don’t let your stations make the same mistake as Luigi made in this tale of Luigi’s Hot Dog Stand.
Luigi worked hard at his road-side hot dog stand all his life so he could send his son to college. He used only the finest ingredients, stayed open long hours, advertised consistently, and sold the greatest hot dogs for miles around.
Business was booming. He had to buy a bigger oven, add to his parking lot, and increase his food orders to fill demand.
His hard work and investments paid off, and his son came home from college with a business degree.
“Father, haven’t you heard?” he said upon his return. “Times are getting tough. You are going to have to cut back on your expenses because there is a recession on the way” he said. “You’re going to have to buy cheaper ingredients, turn the power off on your sign earlier each evening, and cut your advertising to prepare for the weakening economy.”
Luigi thought, “Well, my son’s been to college. He ought to know. Maybe business is going to slow down”.
So, Luigi started buying the cheapest ingredients he could find, he cut the power to his signs and cancelled all his advertising. And alas, his son was right. Hot dog sales began to plummet almost overnight. “You were right son,” Luigi said to the boy. “We certainly are heading for a recession!”
Let’s aim higher, not lower, as we plan for 2018.
Click here to arrange an online meeting to discuss how we might be able to help you reach loftier goals.
George Johns, a programming consultant I worked with a number of years ago, told me he could always tell how a station’s ratings would fare in the next book by asking the local program director one simple two-word question.
George maintained that he could call any program director and ask, “What’s new?” If the answer was a ho-hum “We’re doing the same thing we did last year”, he could predict a ho-hum book…. or worse!
On the other hand, if the program director’s enthusiastic response talked about all of the new initiatives and promotions they were launching, George could accurately predict a great book.
You know that ‘new’ is one of the five most powerful words in marketing. But did you know your salespeople need something new to talk about on the street to keep their enthusiasm and passion at a fever pitch?
Ever since George passed that powerful bellwether on to me, I’ve used it successfully in sales. I make a point of having something ‘new’ to engage salespeople at every sales meeting, every week.
Our local TOMA (Top-of-Mind-Awareness) surveys and SoundADvice radio e-marketing system could be the something new necessary to revitalize your sales force in 2018 and beyond.
to arrange an online overview of these proven radio sales systems.
Believe it or not, Google Analytics can be one of your most powerful radio sales tools.
We have all encountered advertisers who ‘surveyed’ their customers to learn how the customers found them, and we have been told very few credited radio with that discovery. The credit, more often than not, goes to the internet.
But here’s the solution; When that happens to you simply invite the advertiser to use Google Analytics to find out the most common words or phrases customers use to find them online. In spite of any investments they might have made in keywords or other SEO tactics, invariably the most common search words customers use to find a business is the NAME of the business if their advertising has been effective.
How can prospects search for a business by name if they have never heard of that business? Creating a pre-search name awareness and preference for their business has to be every advertisers’ primary goal.
As internet guru, Seth Godin proclaims, “It is better to be SOUGHT online than to be found.” If an advertiser is found online by accident, you can also bet that same search revealed all of their competitors too.
The other most powerful radio sales tool is our TOMA (Top-of-Mind-Awareness) surveys and sales training.
These local surveys consistently prove that proactive broadcast advertising is the best way to create pre-search name awareness. These surveys also prove how important top-of-mind-awareness is, and they uncover hundreds of new prospects for you to call on in your market.
The TOMA training we provide also provides a simple six-step process to use TOMA as a powerful radio sales tool.
to arrange a free online demo of our TOMA research survey and training system.