“We saw a tremendous increase in new, direct clients and annual contracts that could help us achieve our budget and sustain our direct sales team through the difficult times.” – Nikolai Ianchovichin, Managing Director
In 2009, the Bulgarian advertising market was experiencing a difficult year. The recession across Europe was having a big impact on how advertisers were choosing to spend their reduced budgets – with many opting to focus on TV advertising and cut all other channels, including radio.
Previously, the majority of Net FM’s revenue had come through advertising agencies, with a smaller percentage coming from direct clients. However, the changes in the industry meant that Net FM could no longer rely on that agency income.
The station’s management team realised that to meet their targets, they would need a new approach. They therefore decided to focus their work on attracting more direct advertisers and nurturing these new customers.
Enter NRS Media
In order to achieve their ambitious goals, they turned to NRS Media for support; Net FM were aware of NRS Media’s track record and reputation for success so were confident that their involvement could offer the solution they needed. Net FM’s aim was to be ‘fast and furious’ in reaching the maximum number of new clients in a very short space of time. They also wanted to get to them with great opportunities before their competitors did. To achieve this, they opted to run the Image Plus Programme – and delivered the first presentation week in April 2010. The NRS Media approach offered a new methodology of selling radio advertising, and the concept of inviting potential clients to sign annual contracts on the spot was totally new to Net FM’s sales team and clients. Although this felt like a challenge at first, the results were worth it. Nikolai Ianchovichin, Managing Director said: “At the end of the program, Net FM saw a tremendous increase in new, direct clients from Sofia, particularly with annual contracts that could help us to achieve our targets and sustain our sales teams through the difficult times that the whole advertising market was facing.”
For the last three years, Radio Net FM has increased its direct revenue by 25%. It has also re-balanced its revenue split, to become 60% direct clients and 40% advertising agencies – a move which has really helped its sales teams to survive during the heavy recession years.
And the future?
As a result of this success, Radio Net FM has not only continued with the Image Plus solution but has also increased its scope and is now running the programme at all three of their stations, covering the three major cities of Bulgaria.