An Ounce Of Prevention

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(By Rick Fink) Let me start with this thought, and I’ll ask yourself if you think it is true or not. When it comes to nearly every advertising client, there is one question they ask themselves on a regular basis, which is, “Is there something I could be doing differently or some other way that I can spend my advertising dollars that will work better than what I am currently doing?”

With very few exceptions, regardless of how well their current advertising is working or how strong you think your relationship is with the client, I can assure you they do!

With this in mind, you would think, once we finally make the sale and have a client on the air, that we would do everything in our power to keep them as a client? After all, isn’t getting a prospect to say yes the hardest part of the process?

The answer to that is yes, but once they are a client the next hardest part is keeping them as your client.

The sad fact is, far too often, once the sale is made, some media reps (more than we would like to admit) tend to ignore their new client for any of a number of reasons, only to reconnect once the schedule or contract is over. That’s too late, way too late!

The number one reason reps don’t call after the schedule has started is that they are afraid that the client might say, “it’s not working”, or “nobody is commenting on my ads.” While this certainly isn’t what we want to hear, it’s far better to hear this a week or two into the campaign than it is at the end of the campaign. At least then, if needed, you have time to make adjustments, ask questions, and at least hopefully put the client at ease.

It’s imperative that you connect with your client a week or so into every campaign and ask them how it’s going, find out what people are saying, or if there is anything we can or should be doing differently. Ultimately, it’s your opportunity to show that you care about their success, and you will stand out from the other media reps that shy away.

I am sure you have heard the expression “People won’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” In sales, it’s the absolute truth.

It’s hard for a business owner to truly know how much you care prior to becoming your client. After all, in the early stages of your relationship you tried your very best, you probably wore your nicest clothing to impress them, courted them in every way possible to prove your good intent. You may have even brought them cookies or taken them out for lunch. But, just like a first interview or a first date, they never really know how much you care until you get deeper into the relationship. Again, in sales this is where you prove your worthiness and ultimately prove how much you care.

Rick Fink is President of ENS Media USA and business partner with Wayne Ens of Ens Media Inc. Rick can be reached by e-mail at [email protected].

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