An advertising sales representative is the person who secures ad sales for a publication. Also known as the account executive, they are the ones who sell advertising space in magazines, newspapers, and other print publications as well as broadcast media.
Advertising is the lifeblood of the press. Most of these companies’ revenues come from advertisements. The more ads there are on a newspaper or in a TV program, the more funds these companies will have. It literally dictates the “lifespan” of these publications and broadcast programs. Thus, it makes sense the advertising sales representatives are the highest paid professionals in the media industry.
Job Description and Tasks
Being an advertising sales representative is a demanding job. But the compensation is absolutely rewarding. Aside from the basic pay, the representative is entitled to bonuses and commissions once he is able to provide the company with profit.
Different types of businesses employ advertising sales people. Nevertheless, the most prevalent would be media companies whether it’s TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, or online. Most of these companies hire reps to solicit advertising on both national and local levels.
There are two types of advertising sales representatives: inside and outside sales. Inside sales representatives are the ones who handle those who visit the company and inquire about ad sales. Outside sales representative, on the other hand, goes to businesses or call them to sell ad spaces.
Advertising sales representatives should be experts in dealing with people. They should have the charm and convincing power to drive in potential clients. Representatives must be able to instill the importance of advertising and the value of the publisher’s audience.
Skills and Traits
Advertising sales representatives are no different from salesmen and marketers. They should know the demography of their audience and what businesses sell to that demographic. You cannot offer ad spaces to baby products if your publication caters to car-lovers.
This job may or may not require a college degree depending on the company it represents. However, some companies require a few years educational background or working experience in the marketing field.
Aspiring representatives should have strong verbal and written communication skills. He should be persevering enough to be able to work for extensive hours. But most importantly, he should be able to handle rejection.
A good advertising sales representative must know the client’s company in and out. He should be able to determine what the client needs. The representative must conduct extensive research about the company, their background, their industry, their niche, their target and others before setting up a face-to-face meeting with the client.
Working Conditions and Salary
Most representatives have flexible working schedules. They should be available for client calls 24/7. It is not your typical desk job. Representatives usually travel to meet-up with clients anywhere. Some representatives work in actual ad agencies while some work in home offices or even on the road.
This job is absolutely demanding and stressful. However, the compensation is definitely rewarding. Aside from the basic pay the representative receives from his company, the sales person is entitled to commissions and bonuses if he is able to seal a deal. And as long as the business cycle lives on, there are tons of opportunities and openings for advertising sales representatives.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/