What is National Revenue and Why Do You Need a Rep to Get It?

“National” has different meanings for different people, but generally can be defined as any agency or brand’s direct/in house media department whose preference is to use national sales reps. Sales scale, software integration, research and subscription availability and simplified billing options are some of the driving reasons agencies and brands use national reps.

It is no exaggeration to say that national buyers may have 100 markets to buy on their desk at a time. Where they may have had a regional specialization ten years ago, they are now asked to pull together huge multimarket buys in hours or days and most prefer to use national reps to get it all done. They simply don’t have the time to call and talk to each station directly. They expect the national reps to put together the cleanest and most viable options available, quickly.

Agencies typically blanket RFPs to the rep firms and assume their bases are covered.  If you are one of a handful of stations that must be placed directly, there is always the chance they forget to avail you or leave you off their RFP. There is safety in numbers and national sales firms can see the macro view of what spot radio business is being activated- in your trading area, in your state, and in your region.

You should choose a national rep that is large enough to have valuable scale and viability the agencies crave, but small enough to stay nimble and give you the dedicated strategy and thoughtfulness you deserve. National is just long distance local, so make sure that you are mission aligned and your team specializes in your market size and ownership type.

One part of our business focus at Gen Media Partners is non-metro sales. We work every day to drive new budgets and opportunities to the more rural and suburban parts of the country that many major advertisers miss. The agencies are data driven and it’s easier to prove delivery and coverage in population dense rated metros. Some brands totally get it and work hard to buy for specific local coverage so that all locations are supported, but others need a push. This is where a strong rep relationship comes into play. Typically, it takes a noisy local decision maker willing to play whistle blower at the agency AND a national rep firm committed to the cause. We win when we match efforts and drive together.

We have developed an arsenal of research about why small market radio should play center stage in national advertisers’ media plans. We plot accounts on the move, category trends, emerging markets and new products and services. We keep our ears open about what’s happening in the local markets we represent, including grand openings. We work every day to shine a light on the value of your small markets so more brands and advertisers will “turn on the radio”.

Today’s marketplace doesn’t allow for stagnation. The media field is crowded. The battle for ad dollars is fierce. All stations and broadcasters need a national partner who will effectively manage their agency relationships and maximize share and rate on availed opportunities all while being strategic, thoughtful, and developmental in their efforts to create new opportunity.

Pic designed by fentonroma for Envato Elements.

Devon Shuman is the SVP, Director of Non-Metro Sales at Gen Media Partners. She has 20 years of national sales experience working with radio groups, agencies and advertisers across the country.

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