Has this ever happened to you? You just took over someone's active on-air account at the Radio station and have just been handed the "Clients" folder. You open it to examine the contents and find only old orders dating back five years, as well as some outdated copy that ran three years ago. If that's happened to you lately, then,unfortunately, things are still normal at the Radio cluster ranch. Can you imagine a Hewlett-Packard sales rep operating this way? So why do we? Are we that different? No ? we're just lazy, and we
have allowed this all-too-common scenario to take place daily at our Radio stations. Your biggest increase of business this year should come from active clients whom you up-sell. But how can you up-sell without sufficient client data? Here are five things you should have in each folder for each of your active clients.
1 Customer and Buyer Profile: Do you have in-depth background knowledge of the general manager, buyer or marketing director? Do you know where they went to college? Names of their children? Favorite hobbies and so forth? Eighty percent of the reason clients buy a station is because they like and trust its rep. Start now to develop deeper relationships with your clients ? beyond just taking them to lunch.
2 Call History: What has taken place over the past 26 weeks in tracking the call history on the account? A good call history will tell you whether you are upselling the client or being outsold by your competitors. What's been your payoff on ROTI (return on time invested)?
3 Copy or Tape of Commercials Aired Over The Last 12 Months: Are you really a marketing consultant or is that just a fancy title? What's your client's USP (Unique Selling Proposition)? Do you listen to your client's message even though it might come through an agency? You should have, either on tape or transcribed, the past 12 months of commercials that your client has run, so you can understand their marketing strategy and how they position their products.
4 Client's Billing Over The Past Two Years: This will give you a billing history, with an index of any peaks and valleys, so you can position and bundle your station(s) and any ancillary products you offer. With this knowledge, you can begin to develop marketing campaigns that might offset normal slow periods.
5 Strategic Planning Calendar: Are you selling month-to-month or long-term? You should know what your client's marketing strategy and budget is for the entire year. When do they run special events, sales and closeouts? What are their top three months in percentage of sales for the past two years? If you had to hand over your active client files to another rep with all of the above filled in, what would be your chances of an easy account transition? Almost seamless! However, what would happen if your competitor has the above filled in for every active client folder, and you don't? Remember, knowledge is not power until it's used.