As part of our series spotlighting our 2019 Radio Wayne finalists, we turn to the D.O.S. category today. Carter Broadcast Group’s Vic Dyson is a 28-year radio veteran. He grew up in the radio industry, his dad is the legendary Marv Dyson.
Vic ran the Royals Radio Network for several years before joining Carter Broadcast Group in 2002. One of Vic’s co-workers tells Radio Ink Vic’s “impact on our company has been tremendous. He’s a true leader and mentor.” He’s also a 2019 Radio Wayne finalist. Here’s our extended interview with Vic Dyson.
Radio Ink: How long have you worked in radio and why did you choose radio as a career?
Victor Dyson: I have worked in radio for 28 years and couldn’t imagine myself doing anything else. My father, Marv Dyson, is a radio legend. Naturally, as my role model his success and influence had a lot to do with me choosing this business. I learned at an early age to appreciate the importance of radio marketing, especially for small businesses in our local communities.
I loved the challenges of radio advertising sales because I am naturally very competitive. In my second year as an Account Executive I landed an account that everyone in my office said I would never get on the air. I worked closely with the client and not only did I land the account but that client became the station’s largest account. There are no words to explain the personal reward I felt when my client experienced the benefit of my work. I knew radio was where I wanted to be.
Radio Ink: What attracted you to radio sales?
Victor Dyson: I saw the sales team as the bloodline of the radio broadcast business. I learned that I would be paid based on my results. Advertising sales played right into my competitive nature. Competition was (and still is) fierce, and to be honest, I liked to win! When I won I rewarded myself. That definitely hit all of my hot buttons. Once I developed my skills I found that I truly enjoyed the challenge of getting an advertiser to try new and exciting marketing ideas that I created specifically for his or her business. I have grown a large, diverse network during my radio sales career. I am grateful that my career allows me to help people of all walks of life with their marketing decisions.
Radio Ink: What is the key to being a successful manager of salespeople and multiple stations/clusters?
Victor Dyson: The number one key to being a successful manager is listening to and having empathy for your team members. It’s important to understand what each person on the team is going through in their personal lives. In my opinion, success in sales depends greatly on personality and the ability to connect with the client on a personal level so as to be more empathetic to their needs and desires. I manage my salespeople from that same basic premise. I have learned over the years that listening to my team’s personal and work-related challenges and frustrations helps me to meet them where they are at the time. No salesperson wants to get beat up for not attaining budget. Knowing my team on a personal level allows me to manage each of them as the individuals they are. Empathy goes a long way when determining how to positively motivate a person as they simultaneously navigate through their non-work related difficulties. Listening is very important in motivating your team for success.
Radio Ink: What makes a D.O.S successful?
Victor Dyson: I have found my annual planning and budget process to be extremely important in determining how to monetize annual community events, station events, and entertainment events. While I understand that we can only sell so much spot business, digital business, station promotions, and block programs to get us to budget, there are times that these categories don’t get me to the finish line. It is for that reason that I make sure I am working 3 to 6 months ahead of my sales team. It is important that I find creative ways to generate income and exposure in the community by going off the traditional business map to find opportunities. This could include hosting third-party sponsors at community events. Finding promoters that will pay the station for radio campaigns with overrides on tickets sold etc. I also think it is important for a D.O.S to be realistic about what success looks like for his or her team. Success doesn’t always mean you are the top biller in the market. Make the plan and then work it.
Radio Ink: What is your number one challenge?
Victor Dyson: My number one challenge is motivating my veteran sales staff. They are the best in the Kansas City market, however our specific challenge is growing revenue in a shrinking market. The Carter Broadcast Group will be 70 years old in 2020 and our biggest challenge is competing with radio groups that lower spot rates to gain market share. Frustrating is putting it mildly, but I realize it’s business. We battle this by building incredible business relationships and selling our heritage properties.
Radio Ink: How do you know when you have a great sales manager in the wings?
Victor Dyson: When I see the same passion and love for radio that I had in my youth I know I have the right person for the job of sales manager. That person always sees the glass half full. They are also willing to go the extra mile to help up-and-coming account executives. They want to win and are willing to work long hours to execute the plan. They have great listening skills and they are willing to explore new and better ways of completing the task. A good sales manager will complement their D.O.S’s management style to create a winning environment.
Radio Ink: Tell us what’s made you the proudest about the people you’ve lead over the last year.
Victor Dyson: Having my tenured staff adapt and succeed in this fast-changing industry. I have enjoyed watching my top salespeople win sales awards at media industry award dinners this year. This year I think I was most proud when one of my salespeople landed that big account that didn’t believe in radio.
Congratulate Vic on being an outstanding leader and a 2019 Radio Ink Radio Wayne finalist at [email protected]
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