Getting a “YES” to Renewals with an Upsell

Continuing from last week where we discussed “when” to start the renewal process, today we are discussing the process on “how” to prepare for an upsell at renewal time.

Let me first say that upselling should not only be limited to renewal time. At any point when you uncover a need or the client has given you buying signs, you should prepare and present your plan that includes the upsell.

As we suggested last week, the renewal process should begin two to three months before your current agreement ends.

First, ask your client to set up a time to discuss “their” coming year. When requesting this meeting, choose your words so that the meeting is about them and their business, not about you and your advertising proposal.  Say something like, “Mr./Mrs. Client, before we talk about your advertising plans for next year, I would like to set up a time to visit with you about what you think your business will look like in the next 12 months, what your plans are, what your goals are, and look more closely than ever on how to achieve those goals.”

After you have conducted this meeting, and any subsequent planning meetings, you then need to come up with a plan, including the “ideas” that will make your client consider investing more dollars with you and your station(s). Simply asking for an additional investment with no reasoning other than that you’re a rock-star media rep, and radio is a great medium, will generally fall on deaf ears and get you a NO to your proposed upsell.

I said generally. This doesn’t mean that if your client is receiving tremendous success from their current plan that they might not consider adding to their current program. They might!  We’re only suggesting that if you have “ideas” it will make it far more enticing to say YES!

Here’s the icing on the cake that will impress nearly every business owner. Create an “Annual Re-cap” of their advertising agreement with you and your stations. This should be done just as you would with a formal multi-page proposal to include a cover page, their prior-year agreement/contract, the total number of ads they received, any promotional support and the value, copies of any photos or media coverage from events or promotions they held, and every script they ran throughout the year.

When you finally get to sit down with your client and make the renewal presentation, start with the annual re-cap. Then, under a separate proposal, move on to your recommendations with the upsell for the new year.

Showing your clients that you are interested in their success by preparing and presenting in a professional manner, and going the distance that most other media reps are not willing to go, will greatly increase your chances of getting your client to say YES to your upsell!