Monday, September 8, 2008

Do Media People Get a Bum Rap?

Is it possible that media people get a bum rap?

I speak to lots of sales people and I hear the horror stories they tell regarding the media planners they deal with. I hear stories about them, such as the following:

  • 5 media planners get taken for drinks and 3 of them do the "Irish goodbye". They go to the bathroom and then keep walking out the door without a thank you.
  • On average, when you do cold calls via email or phone you are lucky to get 5% to return your call or respond to your email.
  • A media planner goes to the spa with a rep, and then refuses to get a massage, but asks if they can take a gift certificate so they can give one to to their girlfriend for her birthday.

These are the types of stories that make my skin crawl. Anyone who has ever worked for me knows that ain't how you do business. You return calls. You always say thank you. When I was a media planner, the rules were as follows:

  • You came into the office before your boss and you left after they left.
  • At lunch you did not order an appetizer unless your client did first.
  • You never walked right into an office and interrupted the boss. You waited patiently until there was a moment which was appropriate.

I hear of media planners that break these kinds of rules all the time, but is it their fault? I'm starting to think it's not. It is very possible that the lack of training includes the lack of training against etiquette. If you don't know something is wrong can you be at fault for not following the rules? If you don't know you're doing something poorly, how can you be expected to fix it?

I always talk about the needs for training and I hope someone reads this and realizes that etiquette training is necessary. If so and you think you can help, ping me. I can line up a BUNCH of clients for you!

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