Please take my advice and change your UpBoard Advertising Categories so that you replace [Repeat Customer] with [Previously Purchased]

The problem currently is that when a customer originally comes into a store because they are responding to some advertising that you invested in, if the customer does not purchase on that original day and comes back even the next day, (I love Be Backs) the typical salesperson marks that customer as a repeat customer and you lose the wonderful information about what originally brought them in.

I owe everyone an apology for this error. I created the UpBoard 20 years ago this Christmas and I only just now figured this out! (Better late than never I guess.)

Please send me an email at Dave@TraxSales.com and let me know how you feel about the new advertising modules and if there is anything else I can do to improve the TraxSales system for your company.

HOW CAN YOU HOLD YOUR ADVERTISERS ACCOUNTABLE FOR POOR PERFORMANCE and ‘receive make goods’ when your advertisers screw up? You have probably heard the quote from John Wanamaker (a famous retailer from the old days) who said, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted…The problem is, I don’t know which half!”

Wannamaker picYou hold in your possession an easy way to find out which half is being squandered so you can fix it. A simple process so powerful it literally holds your media reps accountable for poor performance and almost guarantees make-goods for those ads that fail. You hold in your fingertips genuine proof of success or failure for each ad campaign.

I owned an eight store home furnishings chain in Houston Texas, (4th largest metro market at that time). I created over 100 TV commercials, ran countless full page ads, placed billboards all over the city and ran radio like crazy when I was not doing TV. Millions of dollars were spent, and the truth is, I probably wasted more than half of it because I had not yet realized how to measure the effectiveness of what I was doing. Of course I would calculate cumes (1000 units of audience) and costs per point. I studied Arbitron and Nielsen ratings and spent countless hours measuring sales performance compared to ad dollars spent.

Finally, I am ashamed to admit; that many of the ads I ran were based on how well I liked the sales rep. I also remember running several ad campaigns based on earning enough points to win trips to places like Ireland. Most of those trips were attended by mostly ad agency employees that were taking advantage of companies like yours. I wish that I knew then what I know now. If you have an advertising agency, or in house employee making buys for you, you may be frittering away huge gobs of cash disguised as your ad budget.

If you or your company, or especially your ad agency are accepting freebies… you are getting hurt badly. Make darned sure your ad agency is not taking or receiving free stuff from your buys. You are stealing from yourself if you trade one red cent for premiums or concessions. You and I both know that your ROI on Freebies is absolutely terrible!

Advertising category picYour UpBoard is currently gathering all of the information you currently need to master the art of advertising. All we need to do is point your sales teams in the right direction with one simple question (provided below) to insure a high degree of accuracy and also assist in the schmoozing phase of the greeting and approach to the new customers visiting your stores. When you are on the sales floor or especially when you are experiencing overflows of customers you should use our free Customer Profile Form (provided below) that helps the sales associate or designer ask what specifically brought the customer in and much more! It will list your Advertising Choices, General Product Categories and how far they got in the buying process if the sale was not made. A clipboard with 20 blank Customer Profile Forms should be in each salespersons hand before they greet any new customer.

3. Room Design Profile Template – Customize and print, front and back – Doc 4

I know some of you are probably thinking… Most customers don’t even know what advertising made them come in. My response is BALONEY, and if you do believe that, you should immediately go on one of your sales floor and do a quick 10 customer survey and find out for yourself if you can learn valuable information or not.

When I opened my first store and had a Grand Opening long ago (1984 to be exact), I stood at my front door (As the great marketer John Lawhon suggested) and greeted every person who came in. The purpose was to genuinely thank them for coming in, make sure the selling process started properly and ask what advertising brought them in. My first grand opening was supported by huge radio and newspaper buys. One of the first customers to walk in was an older gentleman who said that he had been watching us on TV for years (at that point I had never been on TV in my life) and he said he loved the humorous spots and that’s why he came in. Obviously this fellow was mistaken, but he spent $5000 and bought two bedroom sets). This type of exception is the excuse many dealers use when I suggest measuring advertising on the sales floor. It’s a survey so take it with a grain of salt like a Gallop Pole but quality poles do work most of the time!

Believe me, most customers know exactly what brought them in. They have risked their lives on the freeway to get to you and will be delighted to tell you exactly what advertising was responsible if asked properly.

ADVERTISING COST PER OPPORTUNITY

Start by learning your advertising cost per sale and more importantly, your advertising cost per opportunity. The upboard very accurately tracks this information for you, and most good salespeople ask these questions during the course of their (qualifying or needs analysis step) without even trying. If your sales team develops the habit of asking this one simple question, this information gets very accurate very quickly. It’s easy to gather this information and I will help you insure that your sales teams understand how to get it. Really it’s just common sense, during the course of a normal conversation, the key is asking the customer “Do you mind telling me what specifically brought you into our store today.” Most customers have seen many of your ads over the years, but asked in this way will tell you what inspired them today. Keep it simple and fun and you will yield phenomenal rewards for your marketing department.

TraxSales then provides you with how many people came in from each type of advertising and after you have entered the monthly amount spent for each type of advertising. (Takes 5 minutes!) Trax gives you your cost per sale and cost per opportunity totals by advertiser plus comparisons. This is how the math works. (Don’t worry Trax does all the work for you.) We take your total dollars spent (for example on Newspaper) and divide this by your number of opportunities. Let’s say you spent 15K last month on Newspaper and had 300 customers who responded from Newspaper ad and made 45 sales. This means your cost per opportunity on this medium is $50 and your cost per sale is $334.

Double your advertising effectiveness with TraxSales (a study of Benefit #3) pic 5

Double your advertising effectiveness with TraxSales (a study of Benefit #3) pic 4

You should also check out your Top Zip Code Analysis. It makes buying ADVO or marketing by zip code a snap once you have some sales data! It’s located under UpBoard CRM reports under Advertising.

THE REAL POWER IS IN THE COMPARISONS

Now let’s say you spent 5K on Radio and brought in 200 customers. Your cost per opportunity for Radio is $25. Every Radio customer compared to Newspaper cost you half the money. In other words hypothetically, if you spent the same add budget on the Radio you would have brought in twice as many customers. This really is a gold mine folks!

When you show this comparison to the Newspaper rep, their jaw will hit the floor. They will instantly realize they must give you a better quality product or lose your business forever. No longer can they give you below average positions, You will find that your Newspaper ads are above the fold and not in the gutter. In a very short period of time you will learn what types of ads work better than others and your advertising partners will give you the best product for the best pricing because you hold all the cards! They will know if they do a good job, that of course you will give them more of your budget! It’s very fun when they start to call you after a sale event and want to know how they did and you should share the cost per sale and cost per opportunity with them! Also call me anytime and I will assist you in explaining this info to any rep you want me to meet with. I am here to help! My private cell is 713.854.7706.

This simple process holds your media reps accountable for poor performance and will earn you free ads and make goods when you deserve them. When an ad bombs your media reps want to keep a relationship with you, all you need is the proof Trax Provides and you will get free advertising in the form of ‘Make Goods’ when you deserve it! Trust me, they are on commission and want to insure that you keep advertising with them!

When you can back this analysis up with the Visual Proof Traffic Counters now your proof has teeth!

vp2 Pics for advertising artilce

Media companies must make a profit as well, and balance and fair play are involved. Keeping these metrics over time will help you to find out what kinds of ads and which types media work best for you.

Media companies must make a profit as well, and balance and fair play are involved. Keeping these metrics over time will help you to find out what kinds of ads and which types media work best for you.

The trick is asking each opportunity what advertising specifically brought them in TODAY. Most customers have been watching your advertising for years. Some drive by your store every week, most have seen or heard your ads on TV, Newspaper, Radio and Direct Mail for years. You want to know what specifically motivated them TODAY. Trust me, it’s easy for your salespeople to get this information and most good salespeople already do because it’s a great ice breaker when they first meet a new prospect. Keep in mind, this information is like a Gallop Poll and is accurate (+ or -) 5%, but it’s many times more accurate than Arbitron or Nielsen ratings or tracking cumes or costs per point. Your salespeople are hearing this powerful information every day, and until now have had no simple method to pass the information on to you.

You might be saying to yourself…I could NEVER get my salespeople to consistently do this. I am here to tell you that it’s not only possible but EASY. The real question is who benefits if you are able to reduce your advertising expense and simultaneously bring in more qualified customers for salespeople to sell. The answer is everyone in your organization, especially your sales associates.

This process must pass the WIIFM Test that every talented salesperson asks…What’s-In-It-For-Me?

Once your sales team realizes that advertising information is to be used so they can be involved in a process to get your advertising under better control and bring in more customers, they will be delighted to help. Just let them see the big picture and show them what you are going to do with the information.

My Father used to tell me…”The key to being a great executive is to get your people to want to do the things, that you want them to do.” I later learned that my Dad borrowed this quote from Dwight D. Eisenhower! Both Great Men!

Once the Customer Profile Form is in place, it will be easy for your salespeople to jot down important customer information on the fly and stay organized. Your customers will be impressed, because anyone taking notes is more likely to be a true professional who is making an effort to satisfy their true needs and desires and this by itself will close more sales!

The #1 goal is to make the sale. We know statistically that the average salesperson’s closing ratio is less than 18% and for below average salespeople the number is nearer to 10%. The tragedy is that a below average salesperson will make up for a lower closing ratio by putting in more hours and talking to more customers to keep up. IT’S JUST DUMB, especially because we know that using the Customer Profile Form, more than doubles the chances of turning a prospective customer into a satisfied customer. Please print and read this… 6. How to turn Trax into a money making machine with IGE and NIN

Statistically with Trax Analytics you will see which below average salespeople talk with more customers than top performers because they get blown off faster and get back on the UpBoard more often. By requesting that a Customer Profile Form be used every time and that the basic info be put into the Trax UpBoard (required to talk to the next customer and enforced by the other salespeople), you will automatically create harmony on your sales floors and dramatic improvement in your company.

Every day Trax provides you analytics that assist you. IE: If a salesperson talks with someone and doesn’t get to first base, that’s OK. You gained valuable, powerful information. If you don’t get a name and phone number, no problem, you can’t get them all (40-50% is very good). If a salesperson is unable to learn who they are, they should still jot down what they looked at and what advertising brought them in. The key is get a form every time and enter the basics before they move their name back to ‘On Deck’ on the UpBoard. With Trax every salesperson has their own personal web site and password protected database. So just answer the four required questions and put in the customers last name if you got it (15 seconds) then they can go to their private web site and write a book if they want and not create a bottleneck at the UpBoard.

Good luck, and go get those Customer Profile Forms and clip boards set up today for each salesperson. One last note on the forms is to use the drop down list of all advertising, product and steps of the sale categories (multiple choice). The less a salesperson needs to write, the more successful you will be at gathering quality information.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. Please email me directly at Dave@TraxSales.com your comments are needed and are greatly appreciated!

If you don’t have a complete understanding of the UpBoard Check this out. It takes just a few minutes to set up and train your sales teams!
UpBoard Sales Force Automation CRM Video UpBoard Video Link
“Back for more TraxSales UpBoard Basic Training”