The Irish Times in Dublin, Ireland, for one, is looking to the future of advertising sales. They say their focus dictates that anything they do must reside within three dimensions: now, next, and later.
Eimear Moran, director of media solutions for The Irish Times, says that means keeping sales teams focused on what’s needed now and next, while their managers keep their eye on what’s needed later.
Whilst looking at immediate needs, such as making the budget, organisations need sales road maps and priorities. But they also need to look ahead to the following year’s budget and consider what verticals they might want to add.
Understanding all those needs is a team effort.
“The knowledge for the now and the next will tend to come from our sales people,” Eimear said. Addressing the later space “might mean what products do we have today that we want a better version of in the future… and how can I sell them in the future?”
Identifying the needs in the “later” space means listening to, and learning from, key advertisers and industry benchmarks.
The Irish Times has multiple platforms that allows it to offer advertising diversification. That means a traditional print advertiser could dabble in digital or try new things to see what works for them.
It’s critical for news media companies to meet the needs of current customers even as they plan for the future.
Today, media companies are given a broader diversification of product with more and more trends coming their way. But Eimear thinks that doesn’t change the fundamental structure of maintaining the foundation it creates today and then builds for the future for the next and the later.
Diversification of products and platforms means that sales departments can be the catalyst for change for the entire organisation. There’s a thought.
Sales teams should be asked what the organisation can do to bring value to the clients — and that should constantly be shared with the organisation as a whole, as well as externally as part of a consultative sell. For example, our insights from our own first-party data insights can be of tremendous value to an advertiser. They value insights they can’t get anywhere else and would even be prepared to pay a premium for it.
The cookie is crumbing
As we all know, the coming cookie apocalypse plays a role in the future of advertising. Today, about 40% of the market’s users are blocking ad cookies daily, and that number is growing. Eimear thinks soon that number will mushroom to 95%, leaving only 5% of users targetable by advertisers.
“That is the very reason we have to move and move quickly and why the advertising impact is a catalyst for the entire organisation. Ultimately, what we explain is that with first party, we are offering a client privacy, scale, and trust. Those are the three things that we repeat constantly.”
Companies can add value to advertisers by developing products, services, and campaigns that strengthen the relationship with readers and increase the amount of time they spend engaged.
And, interestingly, to add to my last newsletter where The Guardian here in the UK talked about sustainable advertising, The Irish Times has also started offering sustainable solutions such as streaming technology that reduces data transfer by up to 40%, meaning less impact on the environment.
The Irish Times is the only publisher in Ireland to offer it, and that has resonated with film distribution and car companies that want to emphasise their own role in sustainability.
“Ultimately for us, the framework is about now, next, and later,” Eimear re-emphasised, “with a huge emphasis on trust, privacy and the fact that first-party data for a news publisher is like gold to an advertiser.”
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