By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp
I first came across the research when I was educating my teams on how competitive media sells. Back then the research was clear that 52% of local business owners considered advertising high risk. Imagine how the local business owner feels today.
The perception is, either get the results or the money goes down the drain. Keep this equation in mind during every call on a local business owner: advertising=risk.
Why is such a basic thought process overlooked when you sell? Maybe you are so focused on what you’re selling, you just blew past the buyer’s basic thought process.
Think about how many successful businesses around you have tackled the concept of lowering the risk of making a purchase. Amazon, Target, COSTCO, Nordstrom, and others make it easy to just return your purchase and get your refund. Successful businesses have built a low-risk environment around “money-back guarantees” and “no hassle returns.”
Not fair, you say. We do not sell a pre-packaged product. We sell an intangible product or service that cannot be returned to be put back on the shelf or discarded. But selling is a set of learned skills practiced in a competitive consumer-first landscape. So let’s get busy.
How do you try to overcome the perceived “risk” of investing in advertising?
Make sure your media deck is COVID contemporary, with updated programming and audience info — especially updated success stories.
Here are some in-the-field start points:
- Establish performance goals – So critical in building rapport, developing your plan, and especially in agreeing on spend level.
- Manage expectations – Results, timelines, tracking feedback.
- Radio is a frequency medium – Match the expectations with the proper daily and weekly frequency.
- Creative – Be in absolute agreement on messaging. Is this a price item, service, or unique sell? Get your creative team involved.
- All-In – I just experienced a disappointing scenario where an on-air talent agreed to do live spots one way, and it never happened. Monitor, monitor, and monitor.
- ADJUST IF YOU MUST! – Talk to your advertiser regularity. If the plan is not working to expectations, don’t be afraid to discuss revising the plan.
- 360 Communication – Nothing is worse than no communication. Better to be proactive than be ambushed by disappointment.
Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy. Contact Steve Lapa via email at: Steve@Lapcomventures.com