Does radio work? That’s a silly question, right? Sure radio works, but do your media reps believe it works?
If we’re being honest with ourselves, you know that your reps sometimes question its strength. After all, many people, like their clients, have told them repeatedly that radio doesn’t work. They’ve heard the infamous words, “I tried radio once and it didn’t work”.
Because you’re a subscriber to ENS on Sales and are reading this, I’m confident you are a believer and you know that radio does work, because we have seen it work hundreds, even thousands, of times.
It’s paramount that we continually teach and preach to our sales team about the strengths of radio and how to present it to their clients. Never take for granted that they 100% believe in the power of radio. Continue to sing its praises and give them ammunition to prove the point. Arm them with articles, statistics, and testimonials. Encourage them to read the radio trades, like Radio Sales Today, Inside Radio, Monday Morning Memo, and others.
Never stop teaching and never stop preaching the power of radio. It does work, and it works exceedingly well when executed correctly from beginning to end.
As managers, it’s our job to coach, teach, train, and motivate so that our reps do not only understand how to make it work but so that they believe that radio works. It’s a never-ending task.
When done correctly, radio creates MAGIC, it moves mountains, makes cash registers ring, makes business owners rich and gives radio media reps CONFIDENCE and BELIEF in our product and medium!
The majority of business owners, managers, and media buyers that deal with media reps have heard nearly every song and dance there is about why they should buy from you and your stations.
What a lot of them haven’t heard is… the TRUTH!
If you are not doing so now, here are some of the TRUTHS about radio that we should be sharing and using in our presentations with the decision-makers:
“Good advertising won’t make a bad business a good business.”
“We suggest fixing the inside of your business before you consider advertising.”
“No one listens to our radio stations for the ads.”
“When the jock stops talking or the song ends, and the ads come on, people actually lean back and subconsciously turn their ears off.”
“The radio station is not the most important element in determining whether your campaign will be successful or not.”
“When we air sports on a music station, our audience goes down, not up.”
“Nobody cares that you’ve been the ‘servicing dealer since 1969’.”
“No, we are not the most listened to station in town.”
“Yes, we play more ads than the stations across town, but there is a reason.”
“It’s true, radio is not listened to as often as it once was.”
…and the list can go on and on.
Most business owners are savvy people, and they can sniff out the “bull” pretty easily.
Answering objections abruptly and making exaggerated statements will deteriorate trust. Telling the truth and having a logical explanation for your “TRUE” statement will dramatically lead to a greater level of TRUST in you.
I am not suggesting that anyone is intentionally lying about radio or their stations. However, in an effort to defend our industry, sometimes the reality or truth gets stretched and important details get left out in order to make the sale.
In sales, TRUST and KNOWLEDGE are two extremely powerful traits.
The list of “honest” statements above, in nearly all situations, is true. Understanding how and when to use these statements and how to follow-up with them can be extremely powerful. We suggest in your next training session that you go over these statements and rehearse when and how to use them.
If you have questions as to when and how to use or follow-up on any of these statements or others, simply give me a call.
Show me a good prospector and I’ll show you a good media rep.
When working with and training media sales reps, we always suggest that there are two styles of prospecting… prospecting “hard” and prospecting “smart”.
The question is, which one is better and which type do you want on your team?
I suggest the answer is… both!
Prospect “hard” when you are new and trying to build a base or when billing is struggling and you need to rebuild fast. Prospect “smart” once you’re established and you can focus on finding clients with bigger and better potential. There are positives and negatives to each.
If I were to go into any radio station and ask this one question, “Which rep(s) prospects the hardest on your sales team?”, I would then be able to tell you several other things about them. First and foremost, I want them on my team! I like reps that work hard and aren’t afraid of rejection. It would also tell me who has the most “new clients” on the air at nearly any given time… but, at the same time, it would tell me who has the most cancellations. This is not always true, but most of the time it is.
On the other side of the prospecting coin, the sales rep that prospects the “smartest” usually has a much better closing ratio, larger contracts, more annuals, better relationships with their clients, and therefore fewer cancellations, and, they don’t have to work nearly as hard. But… more often than not, they have fewer prospects in the sales funnel and when they do get that dreaded cancellation, it can hurt.
Prospecting is a little bit like the story of The Tortoise and the Hare. They are both worthy of being in the race, but the one that is always moving and consciously makes prospecting a part of their weekly plan, and never lets up will usually win the race.
Understanding where the sales rep is in their career and their current level of business can most often determine what approach or tactic they should be using.
The moral of the story… ALWAYS be consciously Prospecting!