Thursday, July 2, 2009

Four Traits to Look for in an Advertising Rep or Company

“Be real. Try to do what you say, say what you mean, and be what you seem.”

---Marian Wright Edelman (1939 – )
American activistfounder of the Children's Defense Fund

If there's a quote to live by in the advertising business of today, this is it. With advertising reps working hard to hit unrealistic goals and taking care of work piling up on their desks, they just don't have the time to always do what's right for the client.

Advertising clients need to realize this problem is universal across all mediums. Wake up and feel the sunshine. It's time to find a representative who looks at the big picture and gives you the right answers for your business, not his or her bottom line. A "Sales Rep" has that title for a reason. That is what the person does ... sells! Now, not knocking media salespeople, there are some very good ones out there who do care about clients, but they are few and far between in today's shipwreck of an economy.

Remember: If a salesperson from a media outlet is telling you how great his/her product is, he/she could be "Selling you the goods."

Seeking a third party who knows your local market is one of your best answers. Whether it's a lone marketing consultant or local advertising agency, find someone who is not caught up in the politics of the market, but has your best interest in mind. Here's a breakout of the quote and how it will help you find the right advertising partner. This person or company will...

1) "Be real" and tell you what's right and/or wrong with what you're doing with your advertising.
2) "Do what he/she says" by keeping one's word.
3) "Say what he/she means" by not mincing words, so get some tough skin.
4) Be "What he/she seems" with complete honesty and transparency.

If you are not experiencing these four things from an advertising representative of either a media outlet or advertising agency, it may be time to look for a person or company with these traits.