Sales Training: The Four Benefits of Waiting

Sales Training: The Four Benefits of Waiting

Ketchup

by Tom Parsons – January 2015

Heinz had a commercial with a slogan when I was young, “The best things come to those that wait.” The guy whose friends ditched him because he was waiting on the ketchup to come out of the bottle ended up on a date while the others twiddled their thumbs.

In many years in the the advertising sales business, I have learned the truth of this saying. No doubt, many of us with the benefit of hindsight have found value in waiting. Besides asking us not to wear some of the things we wore, here are 4 truths about waiting we would say if we could go back to give a talk to our former selves.

Waiting builds STRENGTH

The good news for most of us is that life isn’t hard at all times. While we wait for a break, the level of strength goes up during difficult times as we work through struggles. When you have a bad sales month, if you are ambitious, the acumen rises as you increase self-discipline. When you have a baby and are tired, your mind will try to convince you that you have been up all night changing diapers and feeding for 18 years. Your strength will build if you can fight off these kind of lies. Waiting for good things makes you strong in the process.

Waiting offers PERSPECTIVE

[dropshadowbox align=”right” effect=”lifted-both” width=”250px” height=”” background_color=”#ffffff” border_width=”1″ border_color=”#dddddd” ]It’s only through the exercise of patience that we truly understand and appreciate the full value of the payoff at the end.

~ Bill Guertin, 800PoundGorilla  [/dropshadowbox]How many times in your life did you want something badly only to move on to a different passion or interest while you waited for it? There are going to be more times like this. While you wait you can determine whether your commitment is deep. Your managers will do this with you from time to time. They’ll want both of you to come to a realization that something mattered to you. Allow the wait to offer perspective both inwardly and outwardly.

Waiting deepens DETERMINATION

Once you gain the perspective that the thing you are waiting for actually matters very deeply to you, the drive and determination to get it becomes a juggernaut. When it’s you against the world and achievement is your only option, you’ll likely perform above your usual potential. Coaches tell me that talent doesn’t separate top athletes from the rest–it’s the depth of determination.

Waiting stores ENERGY

Before Jesus ascended into heaven, he made several promises and indications to his disciples about His future plans. While waiting for the go-ahead, Peter decided to go back to the family business of fishing. Many of you are just itching to get out there and sell something or improve the value of a sales team. You may even know exactly where you are going and just can’t wait to get there. Let this time be one of refreshing yourself for the tasks to come. Enjoy the last of this season before taking on the world.

A final word…

Weaved into each point is attitude. Waiting will only frustrate you if you allow your attitude to be influenced by petty problems. Your attitude must be at a high level if you are going to use waiting to your advantage.


 

Cover photo courtesy of Philip at HalifaxLight.

Sponsorship Success is Defined by the Numbers You Measure

Sponsorship Success is Defined by the Numbers You Measure
by Tom Hughes – September 2013

“If I had a dollar to spend on marketing why would I spend it on sponsorship?”

                                                                                                                                        –Typical CMO

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been asked a variation of that question over the years, I could probably afford a nice presenting sponsorship somewhere.

One of the many challenges facing CMO’s these days is how to best deliver a return on investment on their marketing spend.  Unfortunately, sponsorship marketing is one of the least understood marketing channels and it is often one of the first channels to be asked to take a cut when those are necessary.

We marketers could potentially avoid that cut if we’re able to effectively capture (and communicate) our sponsorship return.  In order to do so, we have to collect and measure numerous direct and indirect variables.  We’ll need to measure the various elements included in exchange for our spend and the broader impact of your activation programs while also having a solid understanding of your market share, target customer, annual & lifetime value and a variety of other internal metrics.

Ultimately, since every sponsorship has different entitlements and each business has different metrics, there’s not one easy way to measure a return.  It’s not like some other channels where $1 spent will get me xxx impressions or xx click-throughs.

No Soup For You!  Next…

The result of this complicated sponsorship measurement process is that many companies have shied away from trying to truly measure their sponsorship return.  In this era of short attention spans and “just bottom-line it for me” management it’s often easier for a Marketing Exec to justify to a CEO that we’re going to spend $XX get this many impressions/clicks or this TV rating or hit these listeners than to try explain the many different variables that should go into capturing sponsorship return.

But I Was Told There Would Be No Math…

If you’re looking for a short, easy response to the question of why sponsorships are valuable, then choose any one (or all) of these:   Sponsorships…

  • Provide our brand with a way to break through the clutter in ways that traditional media can’t do.
  • Result in getting our customers to buy more product at a higher prices and stay with us longer.
  • Offers our business a completive advantage and force our competitors to spend more to keep up.
  • Amplify the results of all our other marketing channels leading to better results overall.

It’s Not Just Tickets and Signs?

No.  Over the years, I’ve been fortunate to work with some really smart people and together we’ve defined, redefined and refined the various elements that go into measuring sponsorship return for the brands we’ve worked with.

While every business is different there are some “typical” elements that you should be capturing when measuring a return on your sponsorship spend.   Here are just a few:

  • Brand Metrics (Awareness, Preference, Selection) – Numerous studies over the years have shown than sponsorships can move the needle for brand metrics when consumers are aware of the sponsorship.  You need to figure out how an increase in any or all of these metrics impacts your revenue?
  • Traditional Media (TV, Radio, Print, etc.) – What’s the traditional media value of the assets and how did they perform against expectations?  This may be the most straight-forward of all of them…
  • Digital Media (Online, Social, Mobile) – Brands have increasingly stressed the need to engage consumer beyond the stadium.  Online, Social and Mobile elements should be part of any activation plan but you should also have a plan for not just tracking but also placing a value on the engagement you get from those elements.
  • Sales Metrics (Both New & Retained) – How many direct sales did your sponsorship deliver, how many customers did it help to retain?  How much money are you saving by keeping the old customers?  How did your sponsorship impact the broader market – the people who knew you were a sponsor but didn’t buy directly or right away.
  • Hospitality – We often measure this in how much did a ticket or the access cost, but you should also consider how valuable the people you’re inviting are and how much additional business you are able to generate from them.
  • Customer Engagement – None of the other metrics matter much if people don’t know that you’re a sponsor of the property.  You should be working to develop activation programs that try to engage the largest possible, relevant audience.
  • Employee Engagement – Do you use you sponsorship to motivate employees?  How much more productivity to you get from employees with higher morale?  Does it have an impact on employee retention?
  • Property Alignment – The property itself can make a difference.  You don’t have to be aligned with the biggest and most popular property in your target market but you should be aligned with the right property.  You need to understand how the property lines up with your target customer, how you’ll fit in with the property’s other sponsors and how good (or difficult) they are to work with.  Any or all of these can impact overall performance.

Again, this list isn’t meant to be an all-inclusive list or the right list for every business.  Hopefully, it’s gotten you thinking about how you’re currently measuring your sponsorship ROI and given you some additional ammunition to answer the “$1 to spend” question the next time you’re asked.

This Is Great But How Does This Apply to the Property Side? 

Having worked with hundreds of properties and reviewed thousands of proposals, I can probably count on two hands the number of times a property asked me about how we’re going to measure the results.  By asking the question and gaining an understanding of exactly what the sponsor is going to measure, properties can help themselves by delivering the assets that are going to drive the best results for the sponsor.  A sponsor that can point to a positive ROI on sponsorship spend is more likely to renew or increase their spend than a sponsor that doesn’t have any results to speak of.  Just saying…

Thanks for reading.  Now it’s your turn.  What elements are you measuring to capture sponsorship return?

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