Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Summer Tasks

Although most of us think of summer as the time to kick back, take things a little easier, and enjoy some much-needed time off, it is also the time of year to get ready for the important fall selling season. Following are some of the important things you should look at in the coming months as you prepare for 2010 sales:

Editorial Calendar—Working with your organization’s editor, begin planning what major topics will be covered as feature stories in 2010. You should also start to plan for special issues such as a buyer’s guide, annual report, or other special topic that will attract advertisers. The calendar should also include information about which issues will be distributed at your association’s meetings, conferences, and conventions as well as events produced by others. Your editorial calendar is one of the most important parts of your media kit and will be utilized by advertisers and their agencies as they make their media purchasing plans.

Advertising Rates—Will you be increasing your advertising rates for 2010? If so, by how much? Now is the perfect time to do the necessary research so that you can devise a rate structure for next year that will keep you competitive while assuring that your direct and indirect costs are covered. Talk to your printer to find out if they will be increasing their charges for their services or the paper they use to produce your magazine. Check to see if there will be any increases in postal rates for the class of postage you use.

2010 Media Kit—Over the next several months you should develop and produce your 2010 advertising media kit. This is the perfect time to assess your current kit’s content and determine what changes or additional information you want to add to it. It’s also time to start planning for the design and production of the kit and all of its contents, as well as the form your kit will take in its electronic version available on your organization’s website.

Strategic Planning—This is probably the most important task to begin now. What are the goals for your publication for the year ahead? The budget process will require that you set revenue goals, but there are others to be considered. Are there companies or entire categories of advertisers you want to see purchase space in your magazine or on your website? If so, how will you get that to happen? Is the sales structure that is currently in place as effective as it can be? Is your publication holding its market share? Are you regularly communicating with your customers and prospects and is this communication delivering the results you had expected? These are issues that should be assessed now so that improvements can be made as the fall selling season begins.

Cross-selling Opportunities—Now is also a great time to look at all of the products and services offered by your association to the supplier community and create programs and incentives that are designed to increase income while also enhancing the value your association’s clients receive through their relationships with you. In today’s market, advertisers spend their money with the media that delivers the most value and exposure. Through a program of cross-selling, your association can take advantage of its strengths by meeting and exceeding the expectations of your customers.

Enjoy the summer, but also plan ahead for the fall and all of next year. For more information visit our website at

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