Thursday, November 06, 2014
Media Spike #5 - The Power of Advance Notice
Welcome back.

Thanks for taking my call. We just heard that you landed this account and think our magazine would be a great place for you to advertise, and I can come by in twenty minutes to pick up your order, can you have a $7,500 deposit cheque ready? And we’ll need new creative by the end of the week.

The frightening part is, this scenario, with minor industry variations, is re-enacted by thousands of sales professionals everyday. Anxious to make that one-time kill now that they’ve found your phone number, it somehow gives them license to believe they can bully and harangue you until you place the order. Perhaps they are driven to achieve a specific sales quota by the end of the week/month/quarter and it has to be done NOW, NOW, NOW!

I have worked with too many hardworking, talented sales professionals who are genuinely in it for the long term, to float anything disparaging out there. I enjoy business relationships of a couple of decades with many of them, despite the changes in employers for each of us. It is this commitment to the long-term which has made them prized allies for me.  But I fear they are in the minority as the immediate sale always seems to be the name of the game.

Perhaps if the initial paragraph is too representative of your sales approach, you might consider a longer view of the process - it is a process after all. One of my favourite ads, maybe one of yours too, depicts the power of advance education about your product or service. 

Witness this Timeless Classic ad by McGraw Hill Magazines™*
A rather dour businessman is seated in his office chair, staring back at you.

The copy bullets beside him read:

I don’t know who you are
I don’t know your company.
I don’t know what your company stands for.
I don’t know your company’s customers.
I don’t know your company’s record.
I don’t know your company’s reputation.
Now – what was it you wanted to sell me?

* You can find a copy of this ad in our Magazines article here:

Who wants to buy from you if they’ve never heard of you? Regardless of your product or service, you can never overeducate a client or customer. Don’t hesitate to give them information that helps them by providing a solution which also positions you as an expert resource. The relationship you build with your ads is equally vital. Regardless of which media combinations you choose (yes you should always use more than one form- but that’s another topic-) the conversation in your ads should be the solution they need to the challenge already going on in their own heads.

When this education is in place, the initial paragraph scenario should sound more like:

Thanks for taking my call. Congratulations on winning that new account. How Can I Help?

Stay tuned.

P.S. There is always more synergy, impact, reach and memorability when you use a secondary media instead of just buying more of the first.

- Dennis Kelly
About Me
Dennis Kelly
A professional to his fingertips, Dennis Kelly of First Impressions Media brings a deft touch as your media magician. Extracting incremental media value for you from suppliers is second nature for Dennis. His versatility in all media is bred of 3 decades of hands-on media planning & buying experience in the media trenches. As a steward of your media budget, Dennis excels in delivering smart, efficient, creative and targeted campaigns to showcase your creative to the right audience.

Dennis is the author of “ 9 Secrets of How To Improve Your Advertising” and is available to Masthead Reader for $197 through a special offer at this link
Most Recent Blog Comment
Dennis Kelly says:
Thank you Gloria. What a perfectly apropos link. Thank you for sharing that. You are quite correct. ...
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