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You Need to Look In Their Eyes


One thing that has changed very little in selling radio is that virtually all sellers try to make their first impression on the telephone. Its a game of numbers weve been hearing all of our lives. Make 50 calls today and hopefully youll get a few appointments. Some of radios greatest sellers today dont practice their craft this way and havent for some time.

Theyve come to understand a telephone call to a business in the heart of the work day is categorically an interruption; an unwanted call. Its like getting that annoying call at home in the evening when youre in the middle of dinner from someone wanting to clean your carpets because theyre going to be in the area anyway (which they arent).

The following reality will make sales managers everywhere cringe I wouldnt give you 25 cents for a call report. I dont want to read about 100 phone calls, most of which didnt really happen anyway. I can buy fiction at Barnes & Noble. I want to know how many cast-in-stone appointments you have booked for next week with someone who either owns or controls the advertising of a business. I want to see the real plan!

If you can prove to me at 5 p.m. on Friday, that you have just eight to 10 of these cast-in-stone appointments booked and on the calendar for next week,  neither one of us will ever miss budget! So, what do I do instead of calling 50 businesses on the telephone, you ask? Just walk in the door of three or four businesses each day, offer a business card, get a business card and start asking questions.

There are a few key messages you must communicate: (1) Neither I, nor my radio station hit a home run every time we step up to the plate, but we help many businesses every day and theyll tell you we do. (2) I dont make promises I cant keep. I may be able to help you. I may not. (3) Im willing to learn about your current challenges, invest time in your business and see if I can help if youre willing to answer my questions and spend some time with me. (4) No obligation, no promises, except one I work harder for my clients than any other media sales representative youve ever met. If we determine I can help, Ill do the same for you.

Looking in the eyes of an advertising decision-maker and conducting your first call this way will make you unplug your telephone and put it in the drawer. Saying, Im not interested and hanging up the phone is easy for a business-owner. Hearing your sincere desire to help while looking in your eyes and shaking your hand is much harder to reject.

Dont call 50 businesses today. Go shake the hand of a few of a few of these folks and LOOK IN THEIR EYES!

Rob Adair is the President of Pinnacle Solving. His company provides revenue growth solutions, branding and differentiation strategies to radio and other industries. Adair is a former radio industry COO and Sr. VP overseeing 25+ stations and multiple major markets. He can be reached at 405-641-0458 or by e-mail

(12/27/2012 10:21:50 AM)
"Brazil: Tests Tech Before Implementation"

"After extensive testing of both HD Radio and DRM, the Secretary of the Ministry of Communications Electronic Communications, Genildo Lins, said the tests of the two technologies have had poor results,"

(12/5/2012 7:58:23 PM)
I could not agree more! I am a frontline marketing guy...previously worked at radio stations. Belly to belly is what it is all about, as my friend and TERRIFIC radio leader Bob
Ridzak has always said! ...Today, radio is poisoned by corporate dweebs, who put in more meetings, more reports, more procedures...all SALES KILLERS!

- Bob MacKay

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