Slashing print media advertising costs using these 3 simple words

At all times try to get a discount on your advertising. If you get these costs down you can advertise more for the same money, get more clients and grow faster. Paying full rate makes this more difficult.

When you phone enquiring about advertising in their publication, make out that you know what you are doing. They will sense your lack of experience if you give them the first opportunity. Then you are unlikely to get a discount.

Say something like this:

You: “Good morning, I’m making an initial enquiry about advertising in The Local Rag. Tell me, what discounts can you offer for distress space ads?”

Them: “Uh? What do you mean by distress space.”

You: “Distress space is where you have unfilled advertising space which goes to waste. Many publications offer these at a discount just before the advert placement deadline. We only normally buy distress space “

Them: “Er, OK. Let me see what I can do… <long pause> … we don’t offer that but we could give you a 20% discount if you place the advert for 4 weeks.”

You: “Can I get back to you on that one? We normally only ever deal with a company on a distress space basis.”

Them: “Let me have a word with my boss and see if we can do something on that basis.”

Let’s analyse our conversation for a minute.

You: “Good morning, I’m making an initial enquiry about advertising in The Local Rag. Tell me, what discounts can you offer for distress space ads?”

You state your enquiry is only “initial” and therefore tentative. They want to make a sale but you are not sounding exactly desperate to advertise with them.

You are obviously looking for (and expecting) a discounted rate so their expectation that you will pay their full rate has been changed.

You mention “distress space” which half the advertising sales staff have never heard of. This makes them feel less like an expert and gives them the impression that you know more than they do.

Them: “Uh? What do you mean by distress space.”

They’re feeling less certain of themselves at the moment.

You: “Distress space is where you have unfilled advertising space which goes to waste. Many publications offer these at a discount just before the advert placement deadline. We only normally buy distress space“

There you go – you know what you are talking about. And you are making it clear that you want distress space at distress space rates.

Them: “Er, OK. Let me see what I can do… <long pause> … we don’t offer that but we could give you a 20% discount if you place the advert for 4 weeks.”

They are trying to improve the deal for themselves by getting you to commit to a larger order. Even so, you’re starting to get a discount anyway so it’s a good fallback position.

You: “Can I get back to you on that one? We normally only ever deal with a company on a distress space basis.”

You are threatening to end the call and a potential sale unless you get a discount.

Them: “Let me have a word with my boss and see if we can do something on that basis.”

They don’t want to lose a sale if they can help it. It depends on how motivated the staff member is. If they are on commission then expect them to keep you on the phone. If not, then they probably don’t give a damn and you won’t get a discount from them. Whatever happens, always be business like and courteous. Make enemies here and you will never get a discount.

Just in case you are wondering, distress space does exist but not every paper or magazine offers it. Also, it is used for display advertising and not classified ads.

What I’m trying to emphasis is you must do your best to get discounted advertising.