I lost a sale this week, based solely on a competitors low ball offer vs. my offer to do it correctly. The conversation was with an out of town buyer, with no knowledge of the Lafayette marketplace. I stepped this person through how to use our medium, successfully, and how to see solid results based on the parameters he had laid out. In the end – he based his decision solely on the price of the advertising rather than what it could do for his business. I left him my phone number and suggested when it did not produce the desired results he should not blame the medium for the failure. And when he decides he wants to market his Lafayette business, correctly, to produce a calculated and predicable result, he should call me back.
Now I had two choices in this conversation – I could try to match the competitor – devalue my product – to gain the sale or I could let it walk. I chose to let it walk. Reason – our Lafayette radio stations deliver results for our customers and we do not want to risk taking a bad piece of business just to make the sale, and it is my reputation as a media advisor that is also on the line. What good would I be if I caved to the lowest offer on the table and tried to get the same results for my customer with a less than ideal broadcast schedule? Cutting the frequency by 60% in order to achieve an unrealistic budget objective not based on anything is not the business that we are trying to run. We are trying to get results for our customers. Those results are based on having a solid messaging strategy, matching it against the ideal customer profile audience and then running it enough to be important. This is the recipe for success.
What my potential customer told me is the result of the Lafayette advertising is not important. The price of the advertising was. I suggested that with the very small investment he wanted to make in the solution, he should actually schedule a dinner at a very nice restaurant, use that money to take his staff out to a meal, as he would get more out of it. Maybe that sounds flippant to you – and perhaps it is – but I would rather not take bad business and that is bad business. It is an order that has zero chance of succeeding, high expectations from the customer and an impossible success trajectory based on the anemic monetary amount assigned to solving the problem. Our customer has a sales problem at one of their offices, but instead of working toward solving the problem and putting their best foot forward, they look to invest the least amount possible in solving the problem. This problem will still exist after the expenditure. Lafayette radio in general will get the blame, when the company needs to look at its strategic thought process in solving this problem as main cause of failure.
I am not suggesting just spending money without a plan, I am suggesting investing money in a plan. Looking at the total problem, crafting a messaging solution that is designed to get results and running it enough to be important. Don’t be like this company – you need a real plan for success. Call me at 765-637-2143 – we can schedule a time to come and meet with you, talk through the problems that exist and work on a program that can deliver a calculated and predictable result for your Lafayette business. Then the next dinner you take your staff to will be one of celebration.
Neuhoff Media Lafayette
Certified Radio Marketing Expert