7 Questions Media Sales Reps Should Ask Their Prospects
Each company has unique needs it must address for growth to occur. For instance, some organizations need to create more exposure around their products or services; other businesses need to focus on lead generation; and still, others need to refine their closing tactics to win more customers.
Whatever the case may be, the assistance of an experienced advertising partner can make a massive difference in the company’s ultimate success. One of the first and most essential steps in such a partnership is asking the right questions. For example, the media sales experts at Hubbard Chicago have a series of questions they ask each client to understand their specific needs and provide optimal advertising solutions.
Asking Questions Relies on Active Listening
Asking the right questions and then benefiting from the answers is a skill one must develop over time. Active listening is critical in this regard.
To illustrate, imagine going to a doctor for a health issue. Before you can even explain your symptoms, the doctor provides you with a diagnosis and prescribes a treatment. Helpful? Not in the least! Yet, many agencies and advertising partners do something similar with their clients: they propose solutions first and then ask questions later.
In contrast, a good doctor will ask each patient several probing questions to provide a correct diagnosis. The doctor may repeat what the patient says in their own words to ensure proper understanding. Naturally, such an approach would work much better than the first example.
In the same way, experienced advertising partners like Hubbard Chicago employ active listening to find appropriate and sustainable growth solutions for each client. The objective is to find the optimal balance between audio and digital ads to scale the business. Of course, a combined strategy usually results in the highest ROI.
Questions to Ask During the Sales Process
Each business’s specific scope, nature, and circumstances will vary, which means the particular questions they need to ask will also differ somewhat. However, here are seven great questions that they may ask during the client intake process:
- What features of your business do you pay the most attention to, and why?
- What parts of your business make up the bulk of your sales, and which parts would you most like to grow?
- What does the day-to-day of your company look like?
- What key business results do you want to achieve this year, and what plans do you currently have in place to achieve these results?
- What is the current path to purchase for your consumers?
- Currently, what metrics are you evaluating, and how does that impact what success looks like?
- What would you consider the average sale to be, and what’s the lifetime value of a customer for your company?
Asking these and similar questions is a powerful way to uncover a client’s true needs and then gain a starting point for developing solutions. As one example, one business’s typical “path to purchase” may be very short. However, another organization’s path may involve a great deal of research on the prospect’s part, meaning you must emphasize “evaluation”-stage content that shores up the brand’s credibility and trustworthiness. Then again, a company with a relatively low CLV (customer lifetime value) may need to invest heavily in customer acquisition strategies. In contrast, a brand with a high CLV may need to focus more on customer retention.
Uncover Needs to Find Solutions
Think back to the illustration of the doctor mentioned above. The doctor’s objective is to uncover the patient’s actual needs to provide an accurate diagnosis and treat the underlying health issue. Similarly, asking questions at Hubbard Chicago is not to sell specific services but to understand where Hubbard’s services are needed and how they can address client needs.
Of course, asking the right questions is only half the battle. Once there’s a clear understanding of client needs, the next step is to develop a workable strategy to address those needs and a suite of tactics to propel the overarching strategy. When you deploy such strategies and tactics, there should never be any surprise on the client’s part. That’s why Hubbard’s team discusses any proposed solutions with the client well in advance. Simply put, identifying pressing needs and developing practical solutions is a collaborative process that you cannot rush.
Active Listening + Proven Expertise = Sustainable Growth
In summary, advertising partners must first “diagnose” the growth issues that clients face before they can effectively render assistance. This evaluation involves using several relevant, penetrating questions and active listening to discern and internalize what the client is saying.
As a company leader, you undoubtedly want to work with an experienced advertising partner with a proven track record of success. You also want to work with an agency willing to invest time to understand your current needs and goals clearly. When a media sales rep asks thoughtful questions and demonstrates a willingness to listen to your answers, that’s a critical indicator that you should consider partnering with their company.
In the final analysis, an advertising partner who knows your needs and has the expertise to develop winning solutions can be a powerful driver for sustainable growth. If you choose to work with such a partner, you will have no regrets.
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