(By Wayne Ens) You’ve probably heard that your customers are more concerned about the value you deliver than they are about rates or ratings.
You’ve also no doubt heard about the power of first impressions. You’ve heard the old cliche “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression,” and you know about the importance of the first three seconds when you’re introducing yourself to a prospect.
But have you ever thought how important a last impression can be?
It’s the last impression you create that dictates whether you’ll get a renewal and whether you’ll get a referral.
If you want to succeed as a broadcast account executive, start putting as much, or more, effort into creating a lasting impression.
In marketing, perception becomes reality, and value is never actually “received,” it is perceived. It’s up to you to deliver the value perception after the sale is made.
The Value Perception Equation is quite simple:
Your customer’s expectation of you
Plus or minus
Your customer’s experience when they do business with you
Their value perception
Understanding this equation helps you take control of your customers’ perception of the value you deliver. The good news is, you are in total control of both parts of this equation.
You alone control the quality and customer focus of your presentation, and it’s that presentation that establishes your advertisers’ expectations. It’s up to you to never make exaggerated claims, and to always leave room to over-deliver on the promises in your presentation.
On the delivery end of the Value Perception Equation, the customer’s experience, you are also in complete control. If you take the order and run, without carefully managing the creative and scheduling after the sale, you won’t be creating value in the mind of your client.
One of the most valuable tools you can use to deliver after sales value is the post-campaign analysis.
When you make the appointment to conduct your post-campaign analysis, we suggest you open the meeting with something like, “My goal is to make every campaign more successful than the last. I know there is always room for improvement, and toward that end, we need your input.”
Your post-campaign analysis meeting will certainly demonstrate your sincerity and confidence in your product.
Many media salespeople are afraid to uncover any potential dissatisfaction their clients might have for fear of triggering a cancellation. But offering to conduct regular post-campaign analyses with your client offers a number of values to you and to your client.
For one, analyzing what worked, and what didn’t, really does help you make each campaign more successful than the last.
Conducting the analysis certainly proves you have confidence in your product and demonstrates your sincere desire to help your client increase their sales.
The post-campaign analysis actually becomes an ongoing SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats), giving you the opportunity to uncover further needs and opportunities for up-sells and additional campaigns.
You’re welcome to use the free Post Campaign Analysis Form on our website, www.wensmedia.com; find it under the “Free Stuff” tab.
Another way to prime that “last impression” is to make your performance tangible.
The dictionary defines tangible as “able to be perceived by a sense of touch.”
Radio and your service are only intangible i f you let them become so. If the only “tangible” thing your clients receive from your station is an invoice, you’re headed for trouble.
Does your client’s file have a presentation that clearly outlines what you proposed to do for them and how you would achieve their objectives?
Have you delivered trade articles about marketing your customers’ categories?
What about wrap-up reports with testimonials from their customers, a summary of what you delivered, and, of course, an outline of how you over-delivered?
Does your client’s file include all of the scripts you’ve delivered, audio copies of their commercials, and proofs of performance?
Do they see your station-logoed swag every day, or do you make your presentations against a backdrop of your competitor’s swag?
Do you conduct post-campaign analyses and deliver written summaries of those analyses?
What about regular marketing tips and information?
Have you used your cell phone to forward pictures of their customers lined up at a successful event or remote?
At cutback time, the media with the most tangibles in the clients’ files often wins and escapes the knife! What’s the last impression you created? Is your client’s file full of tangibles to create a lasting value perception?
Wayne Ens is the producer of the SoundADvice radio e-marketing system. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org