Ad sales management, 10 tips for success


ryan dohrnThere are hundreds of factors that contribute to being a great ad sales manager.  There are ten common “traits” I have observed in highly effective ad sales managers.  When I am hosting ad sales management training we spend considerable time looking into each of these “traits” to refine them or find them in each ad sales manager present. I invite you to explore these “traits” with me and see where you might grow from here:

1.  Clear expectations rule the world.  Great managers are crystal clear with their expectations.  Are you?  Once you set expectations then also set an accountability calendar in place to monitor progress.

2.  Understanding of the 80/20 rule.  80% of your sales volume will come from 20% of your advertisers.  Focus your leadership energy and mentoring accordingly.

3.  “Type A” personalities are a mess.  Most top sales reps have the type of personality that sells hard and all the rest of you be damned.  Coaching them through interpersonal relationships is critical to total team success.

4.  Don’t mess with comp plans.  Effective ad sales managers set comp plans once and only change comp plans where dramatic change is required.

5.  Money is NOT always the best motivator.  Veteran managers understand that often time off, parking spots or working one day per week from home can often motivate sales people better than a cash bonus.

6.  Get to know your team personally without getting personal.  There is a line that gets crossed when you go beyond office appropriate interaction with your sales team.  Once you cross that line it is hard to come back.  With that said, get to know each member of your team.  Take them to lunch every other month.  Ask them to coffee and get to know their hobbies or passions.

7.  Having a servant’s attitude.  When you are looking for ways to serve the needs your team you have a distinct advantage over other managers that are “self” focused.  Ask your team, what can I do today to help you sell more?

8.  Role playing creates winners.  Every sales person hates to role play.  Find me one that loves it and I will show you a sales super star.   Don’t practice on your advertisers.  Practice as a group to be perfect.  Most role playing stinks because reps are joking around and throwing out crazy client statements to be funny.  Serious practice equals serious results.

9.  Active account list.  Most top ad sales managers handle several accounts to keep their sales skills fresh.  Also, this helps them better understand what their team is facing.  Don’t just take the posh clients.  Challenges create personal growth.

10.  Always be training.  Top ad sales managers are always putting fresh ad sales training in front of their teams.  Find a sales system that you like and then create a training program to revisit key topics monthly.

Ads sales management training is all about exploration and refinement.  The question to ask yourself is, “What will I do as an ad sales manager to be the best I can be for my team today, this week, this month and this year?”

Never forget, if ad sales were easy, everyone would be doing it!  To that same end, if ad sales management were easy, everyone would be raising their hand to do it too.

— Ryan Dohrn is an international ad sales training coach with media clients in seven times zones.  His passion for radio and television began at WPXR FM and led him to his last post at WLS-TV in Chicago.  Now, he is an internationally recognized digital media sales expert and is the founder of 360 Ad Sales Training and Strategy, a boutique revenue consulting firm with a detailed focus on ad sales training, internet consulting and media revenue generation.

Boost your ad sales 25% in the next 30 days!  Join ad sales expert Ryan Dohrn for an exclusive video conference with a focus on ad sales management or ad sales training.  Limited slots open for April and May dates.

Ryan R. Dohrn


360 Ad Sales Training and Strategy


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