So, you have done your due diligence: You have asked a bunch of questions, checked references, watched sample programs, spoken to current advertisers in other locations, and you have whittled it down to just 2 or 3 possible candidates to provide you with a new pre-show program. What else can you do to give your theatre and the new vendor to have the best chances of success? How will you know the new provider will give you their best?
Well, there is really no way to know for sure, but you can get close! Below are seven (7) questions you can ask either yourself or your prospective provider. You may have already asked these questions or have discovered the answers while chatting with the representative. I’m going to assume that you have already asked the typical questions about how long they have been in business, have gotten some references and looked at a sample of their program. I’ll list a few more specific areas you might want to look into . . .
a. What type of sales reps do they hire and why? How are they trained? Selling is a true profession. While not regulated, a true sales professional has spent many, many hours over many years studying, going to seminars, training events, reading and researching. A true sales professional never stops learning and improving. Sales is always a moving target. A true professional sales organization has a system that has been put in place specifically to accomplish the particular sales at hand. Just asking this question will give you a lot of insight into the company philosophy. In sales, there are many different levels of competence, skill levels and personality. If the proposed new provider cannot easily explain what they look for in a sales rep, then they have no real plan for this. Be wary. If they can explain, does what they describe sound like the type of person you want out on the streets and on the phone representing your theatre? Here at POG, we have a very specific type of professional sales representative that we look for and hire. Please contact Luke McCann here at the POG home office for more information on this subject.
This list is not exhaustive, and will be updated from time to time. If you ever have a question about anything having to do with Pre-Show Programs in general, regardless if you are a POG client or not, please feel free to call or e-mail me! I love this business and want to help it thrive!
Click the PDF icon to download this PDF
You have heard the term “Professional Salesperson” on many occasions. But . . . Just what is a Professional Salesperson? Since this profession is not regulated by any governmental or recognized organizational agency, this term can be used by anyone who chooses to do so. So, how does one spot a real “Professional” Salesperson (PS)?
I have thought a lot about this and done some additional research to see if I can define such an animal concisely. Since there are no “Official” qualifications for a PS, the definition falls to the social arena to define/describe. How do others, particularly those who are in sales, business owners, sales managers and other people who come in contact with sales people, define/describe a PS?
Below are some common thoughts that have been expressed by this “group” of judges of what exactly defines a PS . . .
First, it appears that the definition comes in two flavors: (A) What is a PS as applied to the “internal”. Or in other words, how does a business owner, sales manager . . .even the salesperson themselves, define a PS, and; (B) The external: How do the people who are on the receiving end of a PS define a PS? By the way, almost each of these attributes are worthy of their own “White Paper”. I’m working on getting each of these done for you to read later . . .
In the beginning of my personal sales career, I had a little saying pounded into my head: “Nothing happens in the world until someone sells something.” Now granted, this is a little broad and dogmatic, but it has a great amount of truth. It assumes that “Nothing” is describing those things that man initiates; not nature. So with that framework, think about this for a moment. . .
You buy a new car. Were you sold on this car? Sure, that’s an easy one. You buy a cup of coffee on your way to work. Were you “sold” by someone? YES! Sometime in the past either someone (or yourself) sold you on the idea that having a cup of coffee would wake you up and help you perform better. OK, let’s make it less concrete: You get out of bed in the morning. Why? Because someone (or yourself) has sold you on the idea that doing so has certain benefits. Are you married? This is one of the greatest sales jobs ever!!! BOTH of you sold the other on why you should get married. Sale Made!
So, I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture. Sales is a way of motivating someone to take some sort of action (or inaction). This motivation can be internal or external. Internal motivations are usually they kind that “stick” better, but not always. Let’s get more concrete. Here are some internal characteristics of what most people would call a PS, in no particular order. A PS subscribes to the following thoughts, ideas and actions:
“External” in this context refers to “How does the customer or prospect experience the PS and the sales process?” You may notice some overlap here from the Internal. This is because if a PS subscribes to a certain “standard”, it will be readily observable by the customer or prospect. The Sales Professional, “1,2,3 . . ” during the engagement . . .