Your Program Director can be a secret weapon to grow sales, especially from non-radio advertisers. Your programming wizard may not know how to prospect, conduct a CNA, price, or close … but they can be a valuable resource to making a deal happen with someone who is not presently a client. They can position your station, and its audience, in a light that a salesperson cannot. More importantly, they can be seen as a resource rather than just a salesperson.
Most (at least all the good) Program Directors have a passion for their product. If they can communicate this passion, they can make a believer out of a nonbeliever. They can go beyond ratings, rank, and cost-per-point and talk about the emotional relationship listeners have with the station and how that particular advertiser can take advantage of it. They can also talk about the nuances that make their station unique.
So what is the downside of having your Program Director represent your station to potential advertisers?
First, many PDs are overworked. They may be programming multiple stations and even pulling an airshift. Asking them for this extra time may be difficult. Therefore, be judicious. Make sure that the opportunity is real and the potential dollars warrant their time. Don’t take advantage of this opportunity if the payout isn’t worth it.
Secondly, make sure your PD is properly prepped on what is important to the deal. Spend some time letting them know about the client’s hot buttons and needs. Do this before the ride to the client.
Remember, most programmers don’t understand the nuances of sales. They may not be ready to think on their feet when unforeseen questions arise or to interpret the subtle body language. Be ready to help them out of a jam. Keep things in perspective – their lack of sales skills is the reason they can build credibility with this potential client.
Bringing a voice with a different perspective of the value of your radio station is a massive plus. Just make sure to execute it properly.
Research Director Inc.