Everyone in media sales knows this– it’s incredibly tough to get meetings with potential advertisers today. Is there some magic formula to reel them in?
No. The key to generating new business is to perfect your prospecting process. (Say that fast 3x!)
Prospecting (and learning to do it well), is a critical component of ad sales training. Here are 3 tips on perfect prospecting that work for me:
In order to create a really hot Top 10 or Top 20 list, you’ll need to know how many prospects you need to get to goal. And it’s all about your call-to-close ratio.
To calculate your call-to-close ratio, consider this: if your goal is $10k, for instance, and your average deal is $1k, then you’ll need to close 10 deals to get to $10k. But unless you can close 100%, you’ll need to meet with more than 10 people to get your 10 deals. So basically, just double it. If your goal is $10k and your average is $1k per deal and your close ratio is about 50%, you’ll need to meet with about 20 people to close 10 deals.
And if your close ratio is 20% … you’ll need to meet with more people to get to your 10 deals. (Plus you could probably benefit from more ad sales training.)
Do you have certain criteria you use before you put someone on your prospecting list? Come up with a list of 3-4 qualities of the perfect advertiser before you just put somebody on your list. Do they advertise currently or have they spent in the past? If the answer is yes, they’re on the list. If it’s no, I wouldn’t necessarily NOT put them on my list, but they’re not going to be a top priority.
Keep this in mind–prospects that already believe in advertising are easier to sell. If they’re already running ads somewhere and they advertise digitally, they should be on the list.
The pattern of three works well here. If I reach out to someone with an email or voicemail on Monday, I’m not going to try to contact them again on Tuesday or Wednesday. I’m going to reach out again on Thursday—three days later. Using this pattern can increase your sales when you incorporate it into your ongoing ad sales training and development.
New business prospecting is critical to our success. Dedicate an hour every day to the media sales training process outlined here, and I think you’ll find your sales life going to places you never dreamed possible.
Editor’s note: This article has been edited and updated from the original.
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. He 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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