Publisher’s Guide to Digital Media Sales

If you’re a publisher, how strong are your digital media sales? To increase your digital media sales, you need to understand why digital media is important, what advantages you have over programmatic digital ad agencies, and how to create a successful digital media sales strategy. For savvy publishers, opportunities abound.

Why Digital Media Sales are Essential to Publishers Today

In the old days, publishers sold display ads or classified ads in their publications and life was good. Life is more complicated today, however, and the competition for advertising dollars has never been more intense. Advertisers today have a plethora of channels and media vying for their ad spend, and publishers must compete with websites, social media, blogs, digital search, podcasts, and a variety of other options that simply didn’t exist ten or twenty years ago.

Consumers Are Increasingly Online

Advertisers are marketing across a variety of digital media and channels because that’s where consumers are spending their time. According to the Pew Research Center, 93% of U.S. adults use the Internet. These Internet users spend 6 hours and 58 minutes every day online. Of that time, they spend:

  • 2 hours and 27 minutes using social media
  • 2 hours and 5 minutes reading online publications
  • 1 hour and 35 minutes listening to streaming music
  • 57 minutes listening to podcasts

Digital Media Sales Are Booming

According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), Internet advertising revenue grew 12.2% from 2019 to 2020. In stark contrast, advertising revenue for traditional media such as newspaper, TV, and terrestrial radio all shrank by double digits.

Digital advertising revenue by type, 2020.

It is clear that if all you offer is print advertising or banner ads on your website, it’s not enough. To compete with full-featured digital ad agencies – and to reach consumers where they spend the majority of their time – you need to develop an omnichannel digital media sales strategy that provides advertisers with every option they need to place their messages where their customers live online.

(The following video discusses current trends in the digital marketplace.)

Why Publishers Have an Advantage in Digital Media Sales

You might think that competing with the big digital ad agencies is an uphill battle. Let’s be honest – it is a challenge, but it’s a challenge in which you have some unique advantages if you know how to exploit them.

The Advantage of Your Brand – and Audience

The most important advantage you have over even the largest digital ad agencies is your brand. That is, your advantage is your brand and what it represents. You’re not some generic website where ads get placed algorithmically. You’re a respected thought leader in your space with a built-in audience.

Your loyal readers know and follow your publications and websites because of your unique content, your social media presence (and engagement with readers), and your events and sponsorships. Your publications -— in all their forms — have the kind of built-in audience that advertisers crave. It’s something you can deliver to advertisers that big programmatic digital ad agencies cannot.

The Advantage of Digital + Print

If you still produce print publications, you have another unique and significant advantage over all-digital ad agencies. You can offer advertisers a package that crosses all digital media and includes a print component, something the digital agencies can’t. You know the power of print advertising and how effective it can be. Add that print power to a robust digital media mix and you become a powerhouse player in digital media sales.

The Advantage of Your Existing Advertisers

There’s another advantage you have over the digital ad agencies. You already have an advertiser base through your print and online publications. If you can offer those advertisers digital media placements beyond your existing publications, they’re likely to take you up on that offer. Your advertisers know you and trust you and, if you offer the same digital media options, will stick with you over a less-known digital ad agency. It may be the biggest advantage you have.

How to Create a Successful Digital Media Sales Strategy

The key to fully exploiting these advantages is to create a full-featured, omnichannel digital media sales strategy. You need to move beyond simply offering ad space in your own publications to include the full range of media and options that your advertisers demand. Then you can convince advertisers that you have the best audience for their needs.

Elements of a successful digital media sales strategy for publishers.

Offer Opportunities in All Digital Media

Branch out beyond banner ads on your own website. Offer advertising opportunities in every media in which you operate – email newsletters, blogs, social media, and more. Stay on top of all digital marketing trends and offer true omnichannel advertising options to your advertisers.

Provide Cross-Media Advertising Packages

Take advantage of all the digital media in which you operate by offing cross-media packages to your advertisers. Bundle digital ads on your website with ads in your newsletters, blogs, podcasts, and more – and, if you have print publications, include print advertising in the mix. Use a CRM platform, such as Salesforce, to calculate and offer discounts on cross-media ad bundles. (You can also use a CRM platform to track the execution and delivery of ad content from your various creative teams – and to manage billing and accounting functions.)

Profile and Target Your Audience

The better you can manage your reader base, the more targeted opportunities you can offer to advertisers. Use customer data analytics and a CRM platform to profile and segment your readers— both demographically and via behavior and interest, and offer targeted lists to your advertisers.

Synchronize Digital Media with Sales

Finally, you need to get your sales team in sync with your digital media efforts. You can optimize Salesforce CRM for your media sales reps so you can:

  • Manage the performance of your media sales team
  • Keep your sales team informed of available ad opportunities and inventory
  • Identify new sales opportunities based on your activities and customer segmentation

Let Rainmaker Help You Boost Your Digital Media Sales

When you need to increase your digital media sales, turn to Salesforce CRM and the Salesforce experts at Rainmaker. We can help you deploy Salesforce in your organization and use it to help you manage both your customers and your digital media sales team. You’ll get the best results when your digital media and your sales team are in perfect synch – which Salesforce can make happen.

Contact Rainmaker today to learn more about using Salesforce in digital media sales!

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