The big idea: Doing a seminar for your customers

Apr 12, 2017

By Bob Berting
Sales Advice

First invite your inactives, regulars, and prospects to a morning marketing seminar that is sure to please them. The theme could be: “Creative strategy to give more impact for your advertising budget.” Even though the seminar is an educational seminar about understanding a good media mix with top of mind awareness, there will be plenty of information about your publication to make them far more receptive to your sales approach.


The promotion for the event has to be enthusiastic
and well planned

Pick out a great place to meet, get a dynamic seminar leader, and you will have a special event that your customers will not forget. You can run a front-page article, a head shot and bio of the seminar leader at least six weeks in advance of the event, which is followed one week later with a large display ad. The ad can then be converted into a flier, which can be e-mailed or hand-carried to customers one week later.

 The customers can be charged a fee, which could be $49, and they will gladly pay it, because it’s a bargain they can’t pass up. You can provide lunch, where your salespeople can eat with them and discuss the seminar content. It’s a perfect time for the salespeople and their customers to interact.


Handling the logistics—Handouts

Imprint file folders with the name of your publication. Enclose all handouts with specific information about your publication, along with the seminar materials. Hand these out before the seminar begins so attendees can scan and get a better picture of what the seminar will entail.

Welcome and ground rules: Welcome the attendees and tell them the agenda for the day, how long each segment will be, when to expect a break, etc. Invite questions at any time. Encourage them to fill out and return the evaluation form.

Tell attendees how to get the most from the seminar: Get them to think about the goals they want to accomplish from the seminar. They will see themselves focusing on those areas.

Networking: There are many businesses that attend this type of seminar. Urge the customers to meet a new face, learn about a new industry, share ideas about business and exchange business cards. Networking is a practical way to build their business.

Ask questions: There is no such thing as a bad question. The seminar leader will stand by during the break and at the conclusion of the seminar to answer questions. The seminar is designed to give the customers an opportunity to ask questions.

Share and Appreciate: In many cases, the employer of the attendees paid their fee and gave them time to attend. Attendees are urged to go back to their office, share the knowledge gained, and say thanks to their employer.

Now you have the guidelines …

If you have questions about a customer seminar, please feel free to contact me at © Bob Berting 2017


Bob Berting is a professional speaker, advertising sales trainer and publisher marketing consultant, who has conducted more than 1,500 live seminars, tele-seminars and webinars for newspaper sales staffs, their customers, and print media associations in the U.S. and Canada. His newest offer for the newspaper industry is a package of his two e-books, “Dynamic Advertising Sales and Image Power” and “Advanced Selling Skills For The Advertising Sales Pro.” Both books can be ordered on his website individually for $19.95 or both for $35. Contact Bob at or at 800-536-5408. He is located at 6330 Woburn Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46250.