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SAPAToday

Advancing the free paper industry by providing resources for success and venues for sharing ideas. THE MONTHLY NEWSLETTER FOR THE FREE PAPER INDUSTRY Board of Directors The leadership of SAPA is in good hands. The board of directors, director, and assistant are listed with contact information. Page 3

5 Strategic Tips for Mom & Pops John Foust teaches 5 important suggestions for advertising the Mom & Pop type customer. Page 3

Conference Schedule It’s not too early to start planning for a fabulous conference in Washington, DC. 6 associations join together for the biggest and best of everything. Page 8

OCTOBER 2012

Graphics Series Ellen Hanrahan, our resident graphics genius, show us some cool, new Photoshop ideas and runs out of space to demo them. Page 5

A Hazard of Publishing: Losing Salespeople Bob Berting demonstrates that one of the big hazards of our industry is losing salespeople and what to do about it. Page 4

USPS Update We have heard a lot about the “sweetheart” deal between the USPS and Valassis. Read this to understand it better. Page 6

Southeastern Publishers

Advertising Association

Brian Gay receives Herb Campbell Award

by Douglas Fry

Brian Gay, retired executive director of MFCP, received the highest award SAPA presents: the Herb Campbell Award. He received the award at the recent conference in New Orleans on September 21, 2012 at the dinner and awards ceremony. Now, you might be asking why someone outside the South received this award. Well, let’s go back about 20 years. Brian Gay and Greg Birkett came to a SAPA board meeting in Atlanta, GA and showed the board how a

new thing called a “Classified Ad Network” could become a major source of revenue for our association. We followed his advice and have prospered ever since. It is because of Brain Gay’s forward thinking and positive attitude that SAPA enjoys its strength and prominent position as a leading association in the industry. The following remarks were made at the Awards Ceremony by our executive director, Douglas Fry, as he presented Brian with the Herb Campbell Award.

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continued from page 1 “SAPA was created in 1979. The man that played the key role in establishing, pushing and maintaining SAPA during those early critical years was Herb Campbell. Herb himself was not a publisher. He was the sales manager for The Busy Shopper in Fort Olgethorpe, GA. Herb worked long, hard hours to nurture SAPA. He did everything he could to see that we have what we enjoy today.

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at an early age in his father’s business. The skills he learned are now put to use in one of his many numerous hobbies as an accomplished woodworker. He also enjoys fishing, walking, playing with his cat “fanny”, is an accomplished author and like many from his state, enjoys riding his John Deere lawn tractor.

dividuals influenced by his life would certainly far exceed the 10,000 feet that he jumped from a perfectly good airplane a few years ago.

The accomplishments of this extraordinary person can be summed up through his favorite quote; “It’s always the right time to do what’s right.” September 21, 2012 is the right time to He received a BA from the University honor the recipient of the 2012 Herb of Iowa, but his college career was in- Campbell Award, Mr. Brian Gay.” terrupted by his three-year stint in the We present the Herb Campbell award army. He served in Vietnam as a 1st in memory of the man who passed Lieutenant. Like all tasks this person away October 6, 1982 and whose ef- takes on he served with honor and was forts are successfully evident this awarded the Bronze Star for heroic serevening. This award is the most dis- vice. tinguished and highest that can be Nearly 30 years ago he married the presented by SAPA. love of his life Sandy and together they It is presented annually to the individ- raised a “Brady Bunch” family of four ual who has contributed in a significant sons and one daughter. Today they way to SAPA and the free community enjoy being doting grandparents to paper industry in the Southeastern their three grandchildren. United States, who works to promote This individual’s spirit of volunteerism our industry and does so tirelessly and does not end with the free paper inwith the same high ethical standards dustry. He is a board member and Herb set. past president of Camp Courageous. GET YOUR CUSTOMER’S ATTENTION! It is also an honor tonight to present Camp Courageous is truly a special Bring your message to life by advertising in over 4 million homes each week. Call us today to speak to one of our advertising the award because of the individual place. The mission of Camp Couraprofessionals about making a splash! being honored this evening. Words geous is to provide year-round respite such as guru, mentor and respected care and recreational opportunities industry leader certainly apply to this for individuals with special needs and individual, but cherished friend is a their families. Each year the camp helps over 5,000 people with special much more accurate description. We should all be thankful that this needs. This person also serves as a Douglas Fry Executive Director person did not choose another ca- co-captain for the American Cancer info@sapatoday.com Skype: sapadirector reer path because the recipient of the Society’s Relay for Life. If his legacy of 104 Westland Drive Voice: 931.223.5708 2012 Herb Campbell is an individual volunteer service and helping others Columbia, TN 38401 Fax: 888.450.8329 could be quantified, the number of inof many talents. He began working Southeastern Publishers

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President Tony Onellion Bargains Plus Slidell, LA 985-649-9515

Vice President Russell Quattlebaum Southeast Sun Enterprise, AL 334-393-2969

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Treasurer Caroline Quattlebaum Southeast Sun Enterprise, AL 334-393-2969

Secretary Will Thomas Exchange, Inc. Fayetteville, TN 931-433-9737

Board Member Amy Hollingshead Atlanta Thrifty Nickel Marrietta, GA 770-971-8333

Board Member Bill Derby Johnson City News & Neighbor Johnson City, TN 423-979-1300

Past President Greg Ledford Shelby Shopper & Info Shelby, NC 704-484-1047

Executive Director Douglas Fry SAPA Headquarters Columbia, TN 931-223-5708

Administrative Assistant Vickie Belden SAPA Headquarters Columbia, TN 931-223-5708

SAPA Leadership Southeastern Publishers

Advertising Association

5 Tips For Mom & Pops market are small businesses. When it comes to marketing, these advertisers don’t have access to ad Most of the businesses in your town agencies on Madison Avenue or are locally owned and operated “Mom number-crunching marketing officers and Pop” establishments. That means in the home office. They depend on that most of the advertisers – and local sources for help. And your paper prospective advertisers – in your plays an important role. By John Foust, Raleigh, NC

Southeastern Advertising Publishers Association (931) 223-5708

Here are five things that Mom and Pop advertisers should keep in mind as they develop their overall strategies: 1. Differentiate. Generally speaking, local businesses have three categories of competition: national chains (including online), other local businesses, and in some instances, do-it-yourselfers. For example, if you need an oil change, you can go to a nationally-run chain, visit your neighborhood mechanic, or change your oil in your driveway. (For do-it-yourselfers, the oil comes from – surprise! – a national chain or a continued on page 4

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locally-owned business.) In order to succeed, a business has to stand out in the crowd. While it’s nearly impossible for Mom and Pops to compete on pricing (think Walmart), the big boxes are vulnerable in the area of customer service. When you’re searching for points of differentiation, look at customer service, convenience, caring support staff, etc. Capitalize on local-ness.

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leaves, mowing the lawn, and helping with household chores. More than once, I heard, “Don’t spend it all in one place.”

pubs, inserts and online.

3. Schedule wisely. In today’s overcommunicated world, an ad-by-ad approach won’t create much brand Advertisers would be wise to follow recognition. (“Quick, what can we that advice and distribute advertising run to promote this week’s sale?”) A dollars throughout the year. Full strategic ad campaign is always better pages or quarter pages? Four color than a string of unrelated individual or black and white? Take a look at ads. the budget and analyze peak seasons Marketing is a marathon, not a sprint. for specific products and services. This week’s sale is more than an 2. Budget wisely. When I was a kid, Don’t limit the thinking to one area; event; it’s a piece of the brand identity I worked for my allowance – raking consider combinations of ROP, special picture. How will it fit the overall perception that the business wants to create in the consumer’s mind?

A Hazard of Publishing...

By Bob Berting, Berting Communications Many publishers who have large chains, massive coverage, or are the only dominant force in their market, sometimes have a false sense of security. Attending trade conventions, where a high profile image is projected, doesn’t change what’s going on back home. Down deep, there is still the knowledge that no significant progress is being made to get the big increases needed to fulfill goal-setting projections made, and to make matters worse, some of their salespeople are unhappy and are in a comfortable day-to-day rut with an order taker image.

4. Develop a web presence. The first step is a clean, easy-to-navigate web site. And the second step is a link on your paper’s web site. That allows advertisers to reach consumers on members? Let’s look at some guide- a 24/7 basis, even when ads don’t lines that will give an immediate attack appear in the current print edition. plan: Print vehicles must embrace the online 1- Free the sales manager to fo- world and its enormous opportunities cus on the salespeople to give for advertising revenue.

them training in all areas of the selling process. Most sales manag- 5. Take advantage of co-op ad dollars.

ers I have observed are so busy with their own account list and administrative detail that they find out about customer / salespeople problems too late. In a recent advertising salesperson survey, lack of communication between the sales manager and the salespeople turned out to be the greatest source of dissatisfaction. For example, it is absolutely critical that a weekly sales meeting be held, and in my opinion, What can d be done to develop the it should be Friday afternoon, where sales team and avoid losing sale team the following benefits can be achieved: continued on page 10 David C. Zeh Print Sales Consultant 402 Mayfield Drive • P.O. Box 966 Monroe, GA 30655 toll free: 800.354.0235 local: 770.267.2596 fax: 770.267.9463 Partners in Printing Since 1900

Mom and Pop may have a rich uncle. Many manufacturers have generous co-op programs to help promote their brands on a local level. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of featuring a corporate logo in the advertising. Co-op can make a small campaign bigger. And better. (c) Copyright 2012 by John Foust. All rights reserved. John Foust has conducted training programs for thousands of newspaper advertising professionals. Many ad departments are using his training videos to save time and get quick results from in-house training. E-mail for information: jfoust@mindspring. com

mobile: 770.722.0076 email: dzeh@waltonpress.com

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www.waltonpress.com

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I USUALLY WRITE ABOUT INDESIGN BECAUSE THAT IS THE PROGRAM THAT I WORK WITH. BUT I ALSO DEAL WITH PHOTOS (GOOD, BAD AND UGLY) AND FOR THAT I NEED TO USE…

Photoshop

Before I get too far into Photoshop, I want to say that I have a lot to learn. Today, I installed Adobe Creative Suite 6 Design and Web Premium. Not using this upgrade yet, because as I was writing my article for the The Independent Publisher, I became painfully aware of my lack of knowledge of the program I was working with. I was discussing some cool scripts that can make your workflow easier and more efficient and wanted to download one called “Make Grid,” only to find out that it was already a part of my software program! Now I have been working in CS 5.5 for more than a year and was not aware of this script. I think what happens is just part of our nature, or at least mine. I am a creature of habit and continue to work as I always have (after figuring out where they “hid” the functions and commands that I need the most!). Maybe I do need to read the “what’s new” portion when I install anything from now on! So my New Year’s resolution is coming early. I am going to find out more about the tools that I use, especially since our industry is changing and there are more ways that we can advertise and communicate than ever before. Fortunately, my design skills can leap devices from paper to clouds, and I’ll keep you informed as well as I can… so wish me luck!

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Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop has been around a very long time and is the go-to image editing program. The best website that I have found is still the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP) found at www.photoshopuser.com. Here you can find tutorials, how-tos, tips from the best in the business for all skill levels. The problem that I usually have if I want to show you some Photoshop techniques is space. Most often there is not enough room to demonstrate a particular function. So I usually just refer you to check out the website. This time, however, I can tell you about a feature by just demonstrating a few before and afters—anyway, I hope. Check this out…

Content-Aware Scaling

The Content-Aware Scaling feature has been around since Photoshop CS4 and is capable of scaling the area around a primary subject while simultaneously protecting the subject itself from scaling. Awesome… in the right setting. I always hated the three column-wide photo in the two-column wide ad size. We always had to crop judiciously while maintaining the largest possible images. And those ribbon-cutting photos where everyone was spread out? Now I can fit the column and keep the sizing!

In the above photo, I was only able to shave off a little because the central figure can start to look a little distorted. However, using a mask to preserve certain areas, I may be able to squeeze a bit more or move the figures closer together. Which brings me back to the reason that I do not include a lot of Photoshop demos—I run out of room!

Photo Resolution

Print resolution for digitized images is calculated in pixels per inch or ppi. How much file resolution to use depends on 1) the size of the print you need to make; and 2) the resolution that your printer needs for the best results. For example, if you are going to create a photo for the web, the file resolution is simple… it’s always 72ppi. It’s been my experience that a number of the photos I had to work with (from outside our business) contained more information than needed. Greyscale input resolution of 1.5–2 times the output frequency is sufficient (a photo that will be 85-line can be input at a resolution of 170 at 100%). Final size of the halftone also needs to be taken into consideration. The secret is that the human eye can not see much more than 250-300 pixels per inch. So the ideal resolution for your files should be close to this. At The Booster, we used 170–200ppi for photos in the newspaper (uncoated stock). This worked best because newsprint is very porous and we had to contend with dot gain. For colored photos in our special publications printed on coated stock, we found that 300ppi worked just fine.

Granted, this feature will work better for some photos and not so much for others. But in the photo in the previous column, I was able to keep the size the same and only crop a little.

Oops… Easily Distracted

While I was “researching’ info for this article, I came across this neat typeface called “Tangle,” which is by English designer Claire Mitchell.

tangle

The only cropping I did was to bring in the right side slightly to crop to the gentleman’s elbow. Otherwise, I just used Content-Aware Scaling.

Southeastern Advertising Publishers Association (931) 223-5708

I welcome your input and suggestions. I was a high school art teacher, but entered the free paper publishing business in the 80s. I also write for The Independent Publisher, The Community Papers of Michigan… and I’m still learning. E-mail: hanrahan.ln@att.net Ellen Hanrahan ©2012

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USPS Update: Changes that Matter PRC APPROVES VALASSIS NSA On August 24, 2012, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) approved a 3-year Negotiated Service Agreement (NSA) between the Postal Service and Valassis Direct Mail, Inc., that would give Valassis discounts for new saturation mail programs, carrying circulars for big-box retailers, weighing more than 4 oz. After an extended period of comment and deliberation in response to opposition led by the Newspaper Association of America (NAA) the Commission approved the agreement by a 4-1 vote. On its terms, the agreement will run for three years. The discounts are only available on new mail volume, for new mail programs (a second in-home date) started by Valassis in existing markets. The discounts do not apply to any existing mailings done by Valassis, cannot be used to expand into new markets, and the agreement limits the type of advertising that can be carried in the discounted packages to advertisers of durable and semi-durable goods, by retailers with physical retail outlets in 30 or more states. Valassis is prohibited from moving advertising it has done for existing customers, whether in its current shared-mail programs or solo mailings, into the second weekly mail program. Immediately after the decision was issued, the NAA asked the PRC for reconsidera-

tion and filed an action to seek an injunction in federal court. In the PRC’s press release, and its order, the PRC discussed the newspapers’ argument that the NSA would cause economic harm to the newspaper industry. PRC Chairman, Ruth Y. Goldway, stated: “The Commission understands that both newspapers and the Postal Service are experiencing declining revenues as new technologies based upon the internet grow in popularity. Today’s decision affirms that fair competition between these two important institutions is consistent with the law.” Goldway noted: The Postal Service already provides significant benefits to periodical publications. It has a longstanding policy of providing reduced rates for the editorial portion of periodical publications, and Congress has mandated an additional preference for small, local (in-county) newspaper postage rates. While the Commission is sympathetic to the claims of market disruption, the policies of the [law] do not shield newspapers from the consequences of fair competition. In an interview with DM News, Steve Mitzel, Valassis SVP, discussed the deal and responded to competitors’ complaints. Mitzel explained that Valassis had been talking to the Postal Service for years about the needs of the advertising industry. The goal was to develop an affordable

program that would give big-box retailers an opportunity to participate in a package that would target late-week delivery. This would help Valassis and the Postal Service go after those clients that are not in the mail stream but are, for the most part, reaching consumers, that were no longer newspaper subscribers, by private carrier delivery. In the DM interview, Mitzel said: There was a sense that the big retailers were looking for alternative distribution because newspaper subscribers had declined. They were missing key households. We wanted to bring an alternative distribution to clients we felt the market was missing. The Postal Service was very interested. . . .Though it took two years, the USPS felt if they did not move, they would miss the boat completely on print and circulars. When asked to comment on the fight put up by the newspaper industry, and the PRC’s reviews of the newspaper arguments, Mitzel said the reaction was expected. The newspapers were protecting their turf. He pointed to the PRC decision which discussed the newspapers de facto monopoly on the distribution of circulars for big-box retailers. Their continued legal opposition to the PRC decision was “flexing their muscles . . . they now have to do their full diligence to protect that de facto monopoly.” The Commission’s decision found the NSA would positively contribute to the postal financial condition. The PRC was not persuaded by the newspapers’ claims that the service would lose money because papers would respond to the NSA by pulling out of the mail and eliminate TMC programs.

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USPS Update: Changes that Matter

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The PRC was somewhat dismissive of the argument that the industry might take its ball and go home. Although the newspaper industry could have approached the Postal Service to ask for a market test, or an NSA, to reach non-subscribers to deliver advertising, the PRC commented that the trends shown by TMC mailing volumes suggested that the newspaper industry was already reducing its use of the mail to pursue digital or private carrier alternatives. The PRC stated: “Most of such advertising circulars are distributed in newspaper Sunday editions by private carriers. Since there is little, if any, of this advertising in the mail, diversion should not be appreciable.” Although legal proceedings still continue as of the writing of this column, Valassis has stated it will move forward with the agreement and its plans. In public statements, and in the PRC proceedings, Valassis described its intentions as to proceed with select market tests and to proceed at a very targeted level. The NSA requires Valassis to start a second mail program in existing markets, where it has had a mail program for at least two years. Valassis must pay the standard mail rate for the first four ounces. The discount does not kick in until the 4-oz. level is reached. Above 4 oz., discounts range from 2045% at different weights. There are ex-

tensive provisions in the agreement to make sure that Valassis does not migrate existing advertisers from its shared or solo mail stream into the new program. Eligible mail pieces must also be of a certain size, the package must contain 3-10 advertising inserts during 9 of 12 months of each contract year, and the volume shipped to DDUs must exceed 85% of the total volume. If Valassis does not mail at least one million pieces during the first 12 months of its program, it must pay the Postal Service a one-time fee of $100,000. The discounts are not earned at the time of mailing but are paid as rebates at the end of each contract year. The rates are adjusted to reflect any percentage price increase in standard mail saturation flats.

NSA OPEN TO OTHER MAILERS The PRC Q&A does not define “similarly situated mailers.” However, the August 23, 2012 decision contains significant discussion and guidance on how it would view the eligibility of the Valassis NSA terms as available to other mailers. The Commission explains that the law and policy favoring NSAs requires that NSAs be made “available on public and reasonable terms to similarly situated mailers.” Many commentators attacked the NSA agreement as setting such restrictive terms on any future agreement that

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only Valassis would qualify. During the case, and in the PRC decision, the Postal Service explained that it had found the desirability of doing an NSA with Valassis based upon the company’s size, national distribution network, and the significant volume of saturation mail. In response to information requests and criticism, the Postal Service stated it would significantly expand its definition of “similarly situated mailers” by enumerating more appropriate elements of functional equivalency. The Postal Service stated, and the PRC approved, that the Postal Service could consider regional distributors – such as newspapers – as eligible for marketspecific versions of this NSA. Lack of a national distribution network would not preclude a mailer from qualifying as long as the following three essential requirements were met: The rate incentive is designed to induce new volume in the delivery of a segment of Standard Mail Saturation flats; Produces new volume and not merely diversion from existing mail programs; and Leads to financial gain for the Postal Service. A mailer could fairly negotiate a functionally equivalent NSA if it could meet these three conditions, and include limitations on source and content of advertising that prohibits diversion. The PRC order, and the Postal Service’s response to discovery, made it very clear that persons who were complaining that the Valassis agreement was unfair or favored a big mailer, were free to approach the Postal Service and pursue their case to negotiate a functionally equivalent NSA based upon the Valassis model.

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Conference Schedules S A PA A n n u a l C o n f e r e n c e : Washington D.C.: SAPA, IFPA, CPF, CPNE, MACPA, CPOWV, and a whole bunch of other letters will be joining together at the Ritz-Carlton in Pentagon City on September 19 - 21, 2013. This will be one of the largest assemblies of free community papers to ever come together. Plan now on

joining your friends from across the Eastern United States in what will be an unforgettable conference. Topnotch speakers, exciting activities, friendships, and time to network will be some of the things you will remember most about the conference. Call Douglas Fry at 931.223.5708 for more information.

Major/National Account Sales Executive Award winning Group of 15 Weekly Community Newspapers (270,000 circ.) is expanding its Major Account Sales team. Outstanding Opportunity for a highly motivated, experienced and exceptionally talented Print Sales Executive. Florida is a great market. We recently expanded, adding 2 new papers. Minimum of 5 years experience required. Excellent income opportunity! Good benefits. E.O.E.  Send resume with cover letter to: majors@hometownnewsol.com

Your free press strengthens our community. Not by being separate from it, but by being part of it.

This free community paper is a vital force in our community. We live here, we work here, our kids attend school here, we shop here, and we love it here. Because we feel so connected, we want everyone to feel the same way. That’s why we offer the best our community has to offer each issue. We invite you to strengthen our community by shopping locally, being involved, and supporting each other. We do. Insert Your Logo Here

Free Papers

YOUR CLASSIFIED AD CAN REACH OVER 4 MILLION HOMES

Communicate your message in a big way by calling us today.

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SAPA/IFPA New Orleans Conference

JB Multimedia, Inc. P.O. Box 704 N. Bellmore, NY 11710 888.592.3212 phone/fax www.jbmultimedia.net

M a k i n g p u b l i c a t i o n s i n t e r a c t i v e.

Justin Gerena, President, Director of Sales p: 888.592.3212 x710 e: justin@jbmultimedia.net

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SAPA/IFPA New Orleans Conference

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Losing Employees

continued from page 4 A- You can review the immediate past consequently customers may lose reweek while it is fresh in everyone’s spect and confidence in their overly mind. This is the time to have sales- talkative salespeople. people discuss problems they are hav- 5- Finally, are the salespeople ing with hard to please customers. really enjoying their workMany salespeople leave because the place? An NBA coach once said “ if problems they are having with cus- you can’t have fun and really enjoy tomers are never resolved. your work, then it’s time to sit down B- You can plan the next week and let everyone think about it over the week end and start their own creative planning process.

with the coach and find out why.” The coach is the publisher or the sales manager, and many times having a sense of humor can help the training process. 2- Intra-Department Harmony. Leadership can also be defined in the Company friction can be a problem following phrase, “You can’t push a .When making sales calls with sales- string, you have to pull it.” people, I am surprised at their lack You can contact Bob at 800-536-5408 of communication with other depart- or bob@bobberting.com to see when his ments at the publication. To help cor- on-line and in-person courses will be conrect this situation, invite other depart- ducted. Berting Communications is locatments to sales meetings from time ed at 6330 Woburn Drive, Indianapolis to time and discuss communication In 46250. problems openly.

3- Competition with other competitive media salespeople. It’s one thing to lose an account to a competitor when your salespeople see themselves as professionals—but down deep know they lack training to compete and eventually lose interest and enthusiasm for their job. Every publication salesperson should know the detailed advantages and disadvantages of all competitive media and be able to tactfully discuss these points with their customers in the context of a media mix analysis.

4- Salespeople have to be good managers of time. Many salespeople are frustrated by the lack of time to accomplish their sales goals. They often spend too much time exchanging social pleasantries with their customers and talking excessively about non-business matters. It’s good to build rapport and establish common ground, but it can be overdone and Southeastern Advertising Publishers Association (931) 223-5708

Will the Internet kill your free community paper? Did instant coffee kill coffee? New technologies change many things. But not everything. You may tweet, blog, surf, shop, or search online but you continue to read your free community paper. You just proved it. Readership of free community papers is now higher than paid daily papers, and continues to grow. Rather than being replaced by “instant” media, your local free community paper has become an important part of our neighborhood. The reason, which sometimes is not heard because of all the noise about the Internet, is pretty obvious: your free community paper does what the Internet doesn’t. We promote connections at a local level. Free papers join readers and advertisers in ways digital media don’t. In fact, the local content and power of your free paper makes advertising even more effective. We are the number one medium for driving purchases. That’s important in every product category. Including coffee.

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THE

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2012 October