Most of us know what it takes to make the sale. However, many times we find ourselves flabbergasted when we lose the sale or don't get the reorder. There are thousands of reasons customers get upset with us. When you draw the line in the sand, the clients who get mad usually do so because you've committed one of the flowing eight sins of selling media.
1. You don't deliver the goods. When you promised, make sure you deliver the goods and whatever value added you might have included. When you are including promotions, make sure you know what the organizers (if not you) are committing to and whether they can deliver.
2. You don't deliver on time. This one makes everyone mad. In most cases, there are more people than just the customer counting on you. Missing a deadline has a trickle-down effect.
3. You don't deliver the quote. If you promised a program/campaign/schedule within certain parameters, then deliver it -- no ifs, ands, or buts. The No. 1 peeve of media buyers is running an advertising schedule/campaign out of the time parameters, which also means that the price of their schedule will be off.
4. Two out of three isn't bad. Thinking it's okay to deliver on two of the "big three" -- goods, keeping your quote, and doing it on time -- is wrong. Deliver on all.
5. Selling and running. Do you disappear after the sale? Harvard Business School came up with the gratitude curve, which in essence says that most salespeople call back on the customer when the schedule on goods is in the collection phase of the curve, or, in other words, on the downhill side of the bell-shaped curve. Remember, 80 percent of the buy is made because of you. Customers are buying into the relationship with you. However, it's not all about you. It's about you delivering!
6. "Spacing" on the details and follow-up. You might be able to sell ice to Eskimos, but if you ignore the details and follow-up, you'll soon be pulling the sled with the dogs. Salespeople who short change the details often end up with customers with short fuses.
7. Not recognizing that they are mad. This makes a customer even madder. Usually, this means that you are on the outside, not the inside, of the relationship. If that's the case, then you are probably already committing one of the first six sins.
8. Ninety-nine percent is good enough. Wrong! One hundred percent of your effort is the only thing that is acceptable. Just imagine: If 99.9 percent were good enough, 12 newborn babies in the United States would be given to the wrong parents daily. If you're going to make the effort, give it everything you have.
With rare exceptions, in the long run, it costs a lot less to maintain and keep existing clients than to find new ones. Your greatest growth in your account list/territory should come from the clients you already have and with whom you have a relationship.