Local Link

This page is for sharing the great ideas, campaigns, proposals, audio, commercials, sales tips and experiences of Connect member stations.

We know that out of our hundreds of member stations, thousands of proposals and campaigns, sales tips, ideas, commercials are being successfully run each week: here's where we'd like to hear about and share these stories and ideas with other stations, to work together to make the industry as strong as possible.

If you've run a campaign - for any kind of advertiser - that has worked, let us know.

If you've created a commercial that got a great response, let us know.

If you came up with a programing idea that sold locally and got results, let us know.

If you have a tip on managing sales teams, getting the best out of sellers or handling your sales manager - let us know.

The more we can share our ideas and resources, the better of we'll all be and the better prepared we'll be to survive and prosper through the next few quarters.

Submissions we receive will be posted up to this page. Users will also get a chance to leave comments as well. (For a full set of legal stuff about submitting your ideas / content, click here)

To submit any kind of content or idea, just click this link. Don't forget to:

a) include your name, your title and your station call-sign
b) include the script for any commercials you send us as a Word or text document if you have it.
c) include any information you think is relevant about your submission - who the client was, how you came by the idea, who was involved, what the results were; the more useful info the better.

The ARIA Team.

Lessons From Prime Rib

You have heard all the reports, you see your sales as well as your bottom line and understand that things are down. You get it! Now the tough part, what do you do? Do you hold expenses, sit tight and wait it out? Or do you come up with some dollars to use advertising to drive customers into your business and increase sales?

As you sit contemplating this, an advertising sales representative from a local media outlet knocks on your door asking to talk. Since you are thinking about whether or not to advertise you agree to talk to them. But they don’t really talk, what they do is pull out a sheet of paper that shows super low rates as an incentive to get you to advertise. Since you feel like this is a ‘good deal’ you decide to move forward.

It is at this point that most advertising fails! Why? Because the purchaser of the advertising believes just telling people to come in their door, that they have fair prices and good service will make the cash register ring. The fact is that strategy will fail 99 out of 100 times.

So, what do you do? If the goal is to increase sales right now there is only one choice to make. Build a promotion that works! I understand that is easier said than done, but it can be done.

I will start with an example. Recently a local restaurant was struggling and wanted to boost sales. We asked them what their most popular item on the menu was and they answered ‘our prime rib.’ So, we kept it simple and asked what their cost was on a prime rib dinner. The goal wasn’t to sell it at cost, but to sell it for an amount above their cost that would make customers go WOW and still allow them to make money by increased volume. We came up on the price, asked about half a dozen people what they thought, they all said WOW (which was the minimal litmus test) and then built the commercial to share this offer! Once all this was done, then they purchased their advertising.

They ran a heavy dose of radio commercials over 3 days promoting this one day dinner special. The results? They sold 893 prime rib dinners in less than 3 hours! This is not a type-o. They did it as a carry out special only and that is what occurred!

So how do you build your own promotion that works?

Start by determining what popular item you can promote. Too often businesses promote the product or service that no one wants because they are willing to get rid of it. There is a reason no one has purchased it, they don’t want it. And they still won’t want it if it’s cheap. So be sure to focus on something people will want to buy.

Next, create your price point. Again, allow it to make you a profit, but be sure people see the offer as a WOW. All too often businesses offer 10% off or 15% off. That doesn’t work. People assume you’ve increased the price and then reduced it. Plus 10% off of $15 is only a $1.50 and no one says WOW to a savings of $1.50. They must say WOW!!! Price points work best. If I know something normally costs $15 but now I can buy it for $8 I get that, it’s simple and I know exactly what I am getting.

Name your promotion. Make it fun. Let it catch their attention. Tell them something special is happening. It’s ok to call it the ‘The Super Duper Can’t Believe It Sale’ because that will catch their attention. But try to avoid generic names we have heard a million times (such as ‘Blowout Sale’) if you can.

Only do it for a limited time, such as one day, one weekend. All too often these go on way to long and have no deadline which creates no urgency for the customer to come in now. Tell them ‘The Super Duper Can’t Believe It Sale’ is one day only, so act fast and make plans to come in that day!

Lastly let’s discuss the advertising. The restaurant’s Prime Rib special was for one dinner period only. So we ran a lot of commercials the Tuesday and Wednesday leading up to the event, and all day Thursday the actual day of the promotion, stopping commercials after the first hour of the promotion. What is a lot in a day? They ran 20 30-second commercials each day. A total of 50 commercials and it got the job done.

There were a few other points of impact from the promotion at the restaurant:

* It created all kinds of buzz on the street before and after the event, which was tremendous. Especially the day of the event when their were dozens of people in line waiting to get in and a ton of cars in their parking lot and waiting to get into their parking lot.
* For that one day, their restaurant is the most recognized restaurant in town.
* The restaurant was very busy the entire weekend after (they did the event on a Thursday) with no offer.

As you can see there is much more that goes into a promotion, but when done correctly it is far better the choice than doing nothing and trying to wait out tough times.

It’s your choice. What will you choose to do?

By Dave Doetsch, Springfield, IL