Wake Up Call: Reimagining Your ‘Best of’ for 2021

by Julie Foley Second Street

Key Takeaways

Things to Focus on in 2021

These campaigns have unlimited potential. But to do their best, you need to give your Best Of the love and respect it deserves. This starts with designating a champion for your Best Of – someone who will be the leader across departments from start to finish.

A lot has happened in our communities since the beginning of the pandemic. You need to audit the categories on your ballot. Which industries are struggling and should be removed? Which industries are booming and should be expanded?

On average, we see 30% revenue growth YOY. It’s time to set rethink your revenue goals from the top overall goal down to individual monthly sales goals for your sales reps. This means you also need to train (or re-train) your sales team on what this all means.

700% Increase after Adding Champion

Things to STOP Doing in 2021

Your Best Of has meaning. It is something your advertisers and audience look forward to and that has a lot of value. Stop treating this as something “you have to to do” and start treating it as something exciting.

Along the same lines, don’t just rinse & repeat your ballot format. Pandemic aside, you need to look at what’s working and what’s not on and make changes accordingly. This has never been more important than right now. Stop being afraid to mix things up. If you don’t make improvements to your Best Of, you’ll likely never see improvements to your results.

But above all else, stop trying to do the MOST. You don’t need to have 400 categories that try and cover everything. What you do need are 100-200 categories that perform really well. Not only is this easier for an audience member to vote in, but this also gives you the opportunity to expand into niche ballots like Weddings or Family Favorites.

566% YOY Increase in Ballot Revenue

Set Your Path Forward

Delivering success starts at the beginning with more efficient and effective prospecting. Yes, the pandemic has changed how many advertisers, specifically restaurants, are prioritizing their advertising spend. But your economic success when selling Best Of is not about restaurants – and it never has been. Target the top 20 business categories. These businesses show up in 3+ categories, are competitive, and historically buy packages.

Next, create sales packages that are valuable, but also simple to understand. You don’t need to have 20+ different pricing models. 3-4 different packages at different price points is much easier for your potential advertisers to see what’s included which makes it even easier for your sales reps to sell.

What are your sales reps saying when it comes to selling Best Of? When they have those conversations, they need to know how to show the value of your Best Of to a potential advertiser. While your potential advertisers may have objections, your own sales reps may as well. It’s important to rehearse these conversations, so you are prepared and confident in the answer to each one.

Rehearse Your Response to Ballot Objections