At a time when everyone is saying that live and local is the only way to cut through the competition of satellite, MP3 players and any other entertainment delivery systems we can blame for our troubles, what are you doing to make them love you?
At my last two stops on the trail I made it a point to introduce myself to the mayor, police and fire chiefs of the major towns we were heard in, and let them know that we were there to serve by offering them an outlet to reach their constituents for everything from fundraisers to open houses.
Last Christmas I met with the mayor of our town after the bottom fell out of the economy nationally, and asked him to come on with us wearing his Mr. Rogers sweater and let them know that it’s not that bad out there. He did a great job talking about the businesses that were coming in to replace the ones that were leaving, employment figures, and we scored major hometown points.
Do you know who heads up your local Chamber of Commerce? I’ve devoted a stopset break to a community calendar for quite some time. Meet with your chambers, and encourage them to email updates to the show. This is a big pile of public file filler. We also participated in the business expo put on by the chamber. It shouts loud and clear to the business community that you’re retail-friendly. And, what better way to build new relationships with potential clients who see you participating at these events. Carry a boatload of business cards.
Where do you shop? We ask our clients to believe in us, but do we return the favor? I have found that over the long haul you can help your sales staff by shopping with your clients. I learned something a very long time ago while working for a couple of racetracks in the Buffalo, NY area. Loyalty. The family that managed these two tracks had a rule in the house that even if Cheer was on sale you still bought the jug of Tide. Why…because Tide sponsored the 13 car of Ricky Rudd. NASCAR fans are a loyal bunch, and we should be too.
I have driven 20 miles for a haircut that I could have gotten in my backyard, and only because that gal spent money with us. I chose to buy gear, maintenance items and bling from the Harley shop that chose to spend money with us. Many times I’ve spent a portion of my talent fee with the client after the remote has been packed up. Your investment in these people, as small as it may be, goes a long way towards them returning the favor.
Live and local to me means more than saying hey to Sal over at the downtown post office. It’s a small investment in your community…your clients…your listeners. They will love you for it…and we all know…it’s all about the love baby.