As media moves from being intangible to measured the details become more important, and lunch–the core tool of intangible sales– less so. Along these lines, Ed Kelly executive vice president, digital media at KSL Media, offered sobering advice in a post last week on "Online Publishing Insider":
"We’re not in the lunch business. We’re in the advertising business. The publishers that heed this charge will outrun their competitors every time, even if their sites aren’t quite as robust."
Kelly offers these guidelines for reps wanting to make the most of the new sales environment:
Respond to the full RFP. This sounds a lot easier than many major publishers evidently find it. Publishers can’t pick and choose which questions to answer; it’s an all or nothing proposition. If you’re not going to address an issue, you have to tell the agency why.
Take it to the top. Senior management involvement is always appreciated. RGM chief Kamran Razavi managed JustLuxe’s response personally, and at one point he had us collaborating directly with the JustLuxe publisher.
Prove the numbers. RGM provided Media Metrix runs, site surveys and anecdotal information without being prompted. That might seem ordinary, but it’s not. Far too many publishers either don’t have audited audience breakouts or refuse to divulge them.
Weave a program, not a buy. RGM bested the competition in several areas: the number of travel packages, the robust content and functionality of the program micro site, the variety of high-impact ad units promoting the program, and pricing that was aggressive in light of the demonstrated value.
Make pricing simple. The more complex the program, the more important it is to have clear pricing guidelines for CPM-based, fixed-fee and value-add program elements. RGM actually provided rates and pricing for three scenarios, with clear rules on what was included in each. Just as important: All of the scenarios synched perfectly.