There are hundreds of books and ad sales training seminars to attend on improving your media ad sales career.
But in this article, I want to share with you more about call volume or proposal writing strategies. I want to dig deeper. If you truly understand what makes people tick, you can work with them to overcome their fears and close more advertising deals. (After all, advertisers are people too!)
It’s all about understanding human behavior.
I have heard nearly every excuse when it comes to ad sales goal failure. From the poor economy to working for a real jerk. You are only as good as your ability to adapt and overcome the situations before you. It’s not about having the number one media product in the market. It’s not about making eighty-five outbound calls per day. It’s more about understanding basic negative responses.
Let’s ask some hard questions to dig deep on this topic:
- Why is their first answer always “No”?
- Why do advertisers sometimes seem afraid and so reluctant to try new things?
- Are they looking for an immediate response?
- They don’t seem to believe in the power of branding–do we know why?
I thought about these questions and the answers to them. Then I changed my thought process and began to look at four basic things that drive buying behavior.
I call these four ideas “My 4-Way Stop Block”:
I find that these behaviors stop me and block me from closing a deal. Here’s how I tackle the issues, head-on:
- People don’t do business with strangers. Before I make even my first prospecting ad sales call, I research LinkedIn®, Facebook® and the Internet for “non-creepy” information about my prospect that will help me beat the “stranger danger” mindset.
- People don’t like change. For me, the answer was found in sharing success stories with my prospect. I have at least ten good, relevant success stories to share.
- People don’t buy what they don’t understand. I have ten critical ad sales questions I ask. Then, I match the client’s answers to a vibrant and visual presentation to make it “fit like a glove”.
- People don’t like to make hard decisions. You have to be very clear how your advertising solutions will solve their problems, save them time or make them money.
In these ways, I adjusted my sales process to account for these above behaviors. Then I saw an immediate lift in my closed deals and total sales.
But wait, there’s more!
Recently, I noticed that people were taking as many as fourteen days to return my agreements. In some cases, the client would phone me to say they would sign and fax my agreement back within sixty minutes; four days would pass before I would hear back from them. To solve this problem, I signed up with DocuSign® and began to present my contracts for an online electronic signature. My record for getting a signature is thirty-nine seconds after it was sent! This small tweak changed my story of success.
In another example, a coaching client of mine discovered that their contract contained a paragraph that caused issues for nearly every person whose signature was required. We presented this issue to an attorney, and we all worked to re-write the paragraph. Since that small tweak, he has had no issues at all and his contracts come back in three days or less.
There is no end to the ideas that can help in this part of the process.
Perhaps you can offer a signing bonus to clients of a gas card, or you offer a discount if they pay up front. But you must first determine what you can do to help your clients make a decision to do business with you. Make it easy for people to buy from you.
In my ad sales training seminars I always preach that you need an ad sales process to be a huge success in this business. Look to these four steps to create a repeatable process that you can grow and learn to replicate with each client. These four behaviors are VERY common. So, work to them to win more business. Your ability to succeed is only blocked when you allow your process to be compromised. Find your process, tweak it and you will find your ad sales success.
Remember, if ad sales was easy, everyone would be doing it.
P.S. Keep up to date with Ryan’s ad sales training advice on Facebook
About Ryan: Ryan Dohrn is an award-winning ad sales training coach, a nationally recognized internet sales consultant and in international motivational speaker. He is the author of the best-selling ad sales book, Selling Backwards. Ryan is the President and founder of Brain Swell Media and 360 Ad Sales Training, a boutique ad sales training and sales coaching firm with a detailed focus on ad sales training, internet consulting and media revenue generation. Ryan is also the Publisher of Sales Training World.
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