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Panpa Bulletin : March 2012
SECrEtS of SEllinG DIgITal Clare Morton, Group account manager, fairfax Media “i had been in print for a couple of years, working in the MyCareer area of the business and went on to the agency sales division within digital. i was promoted and came back to agency sales within the print side of the business” Key differences between selling print and digital? The cultures that come out of the media within which you’re operating. In a print environment, things have been fairly steady, traditional . . . a lit- tle bit slower-paced as far as change is concerned. Digital is constantly evolving. It’s quite fast-paced and dynamic. It’s been interesting to see the change in the two cultures as they integrate. What was the transition from print to digital like? I enjoyed it. I’m quite a sales-fo- cused person and I love meeting the targets and being very KPI-focused and having those targets to reach each week and really being held ac- countable. So it was a great transition to have a more dynamic culture. Also there’s a lot more scope to do a lot more in digital, while in print, there’s only so many things you can do. What did you bring from print to digital? The key thing I brought was a high level of relationship building. Print – specifically magazines – have strong relationships. Digital can be transactional. They’re probably a little more time-poor than the print side. Print has a little bit more time to foster and build and develop rela- tionships. What’s your advice for someone starting to sell digital? Prepare for being thrown in the deep end. You find yourself treading water and trying to learn everything at once. So my advice would be to relax about that. It’s just going to take time to get your head around everything. I’ve been lucky that there’s a great support network, so you always have people who have the answers to your questions. luke fitzpatrick, Media sales consultant, northern Star “i’ve been selling print for five years and moved in the last two years to digital . . . mostly regional newspapers” your tips for selling digital media? Selling rich media was probably my biggest change after print . . . be- ing able to storyboard and get more complex ideas. A major challenge was relat- ing digital back to print terms for smaller regional clients. So terms such as page impressions, viewers, click-throughs needed to relate back to the people who actually go to their stores. What are the challenges for selling in regional areas? Few clients are up-to-date on how to use online media effectively; be it social networks, website advertising or Google Adwords. They don’t re- ally understand it. You’ve really got to sit down and run mini online classes with them. If they don’t have websites, Facebook, or Twitter, it’s an education thing. So the best practice we’ve picked up is to focus on teaching, not sell- ing. Once you’ve taught them about it, they’re more willing to buy. I’ve found it’s a good idea to use print terms and then offer digital equivalents. In the selling aspect . . . honestly, it’s not that different to selling print when you break it down. Explain your successful Ballina airport rich media campaign on the northern Star website? We approached them about doing a print campaign. It took a fair amount of time to get them on board. We discovered they were developing a website similar to those of the major airports, featuring arrival times, bookings and so on. So we asked how we could help direct traffic to their website. We developed a leaderboard and an M REC across the Northern Star’s website, which delivered fantastic results. yarna Halton, Account manager, fairfax Media “i started in the print side of things at fairfax for MyCareer and drive. i was there for about 18 months and then i applied for a role in digital, so i did that transition 14 months ago” What was that transition like? It was very hard for the first four months. I had no digital experience. Essentially, they’re still advertising but I found they’re two different worlds and products. Digital is so fast-paced and fast- moving that even working in it you find it hard to keep up. I felt I needed to learn a new language. There were terms I hadn’t heard before but everyone used freely . . . lingo like CPM, unique browsers, CPC, to ad unit names such as MREC, leaderboard, banner and also Fairfax’s custom ad units like Montage, The Big Unit, Chame- leon – the names are endless. It was just getting your head around all the different products, ad sizes and how they work. I had no idea. But the skill I appreciate the most is learning to adapt quickly. What did you bring from print to digital? The fundamentals are always there, you’re still selling a product and advertising, so you still want your brand awareness and tactical methods. At first I was thinking, ‘what have I done? What have I got myself into?’ It was sink or swim for a little while. Just because you’re so used to print, you forget there’s a whole jargon you have to learn. So you have to ask all the stupid questions. What are the key things to remember? Nut it out. You’re not as bad as you think you are. Just keep asking the stupid questions, it’s the only way you learn. Start with the basics, don’t get too far ahead, because you’ll just have to go back and learn the lessons. There are no shortcuts. Eventually, everything falls into place. trent Gilbert, Media sales consultant, richmond river Express Examiner “i’m still in print but i now incorporate digital into my sales focus. All my clients are local and regional-sized businesses. digital was new to clients when i first started this but it’s increasingly common for our clients to seek digital solutions now” What challenges do you face selling digital in regional areas? There’s three types of clients – those not online, others who are very web-oriented and those who are dipping in their toe. A big part of my conversation is determining what stage they’re at. Our digital offering is changing all the time. You have to make sure that whatever you’re offering is some- thing they feel comfortable with. It’s important they understand what it will do for their business. is selling digital very different to selling print? Yes. With print, you rely on estab- lished relationships and a familiar product. With digital, it’s completely new. In some situations, I am the first person to talk to them about digital marketing and why it’s important. What initial challenges did you face in selling digital? I had to learn about the product in the best way I could. Digital was an entirely new sell then, and I had to learn it inside out. The next challenge was to initiate conversations with people who have never considered digital advertising. You have to do that without scaring them off, or allowing them to believe you’re offering something they don’t need. discuss the success you have had with a local pharmacy? The business had an established clientele as most pharmacies do. The owners had just begun online selling. So I approached them and suggested a couple of ideas to drive traffic and they’ve run with it. They set some goals – mostly mar- ket awareness – and we developed a campaign. The things you measure from a campaign in press are very different to online. You can define precisely what success means for a digital campaign. It’s usually successful pro- vided it’s done properly. SWitCHEd-on to diGitAl Digital sales are becoming vital to the bottom line. trEVor AllEn talks to those who have made the transition and are thriving 14 | MARCH 2012 | The PANPA Bulletin