A Goal Without A Plan Is Just A Wish

What’s your plan to achieve your goal?

Not sure

Let’s admit it, many goals ask us to work a little. In order to achieve goals, we need to do something, right? But if the plan to achieve the goal is simply a hope, or even a promise, to simply “sell more stuff” it’s just as likely that we won’t. And if we actually do, we do not have a mechanism for knowing if we have hit the goal or whether or not what we are doing is helping us to achieve it.

If your sales plan is simply to “try harder”, here are some questions that still need to be answered.

  • HOW MUCH HARDER are you going to have to work?
  • HOW MUCH MORE STUFF do you have to sell?
  • WHAT STUFF exactly are you going to sell?
  • TO WHOM are you going to sell it?

So what does a PLAN look like?

All plans take four specific components into consideration. You’ve heard the words before, but let’s look at them in the context of a “plan” to achieve a “goal”.

  • GOAL — A primary outcome.
  • STRATEGY — The approach you take to achieve a goal.
  • OBJECTIVE — A measurable step you take to achieve a strategy.
  • TACTIC — A tool you use in pursuing an objective aligned with your strategy.

So, you have a sales goal. That sales goal is specific, measurable, and trackable.  The sales plan you put into play to achieve that goal might look like this.

  • Goal: You know what you have in the books already, so your goal this month might be the “gap” between what you’ve already booked and the actual sales goal for your territory.
  • Strategy: Depending on your gap, identify and concentrate on the products, or customers, or business category that will provide the most traction.
  • Objective: Based on your goal/gap, identify how many of these products or customers you will need to achieve the goal, or close the gap. And don’t forget to break that down to # per week, or even # per day.
  • Tactic: Closing customer(s) X, Y, and Z from your pipeline, or using one of the packages we have already created, or focusing on the soon-to-close special section that will successfully fill your gap.

Ok, I got it. But why is this important now?

Effective with period 9 we are taking on a new “goal”, one that you’ve heard a little about last month in order to get familiar, but it’s really going into action this month. The new goal is to reach and maintain a minimum 70% sell thru on O&O websites. And that is not going to be achieved if we just, “work harder and sell more stuff”, it’s not that easy. Here’s the PLAN.

The 70% Solution

A 70% sell thru means that for every 1,000 available ad impressions on our sites, we will sell 700 of them. (Check out the AdOps section of today’s MOM for our most recent sell thru report.) We are not at that metric at this moment. We are close on a couple of sites, but our performance is what we are looking at. Our latest sell thru report is available in the AdOps section of today’s MOM. So as a group, ENC will want to establish a firm 70% floor overall. Our new plan will roll out this week, and all of us will be seeing details on it very quickly.

  • Goal: Achieve a minimum 70% sell thru across consolidated ENC websites
  • Strategy: Develop and deliver sales packages rich in impressions, that will provide great value and benefit for customers
  • Objective: Based on inventory forecasts, determine how many impressions each sales rep will be responsible for in order to achieve the 70% sell thru goal. Put a measurement of this metric in place.
  • Tactic: Using the impression rich packages, determine how many need to be closed in order to achieve the individual goal, and establish a target list of customers for which presentations will be created to close and achieve the goal. Monitor our progress against delivering these sales to these customers.

The 70% sell thru floor is now a GateHouse-wide benchmark. Achieving this places us in a very strong position for our future, but also for the future of our local businesses. It’s a good goal, and our plans to achieve, including Strategies, Objectives, and Tactics will be just as good as we proceed through the end of the year and into 2018.

Quote(s) of the week

“Hope is not a strategy.”

-Vince Lombardi

“If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up some place else.”

-Yogi Berra

“A goal without a strategy is just a wish.”

-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Getting To Know Your MOM

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This is your MOM, at least at work that is.


Test your knowledge with MOM’s 5 Minute Quiz. This week’s quiz is a repeat of last week’s quiz, covering the Total Website Plus. Please spend 5 minutes with this quiz.

Reminder: the 5MQ is mandatory for all ENC MMSE’s.

Deadline for completing this week’s 5MQ is Tuesday @ 3:00 PM

Here’s this week’s 5MQ

 Q3 Revenue Race

All digital revenue counts towards our overall performance, but we’ve added a few packages to help open up even more conversations. We have intermediate and short term campaign specials that fit many budgets and offer digital campaigns with print support. And in addition, those that participate are able to add additional ENC Media Group components value priced for easy adoption.

For details on the Revenue Race packages check them out here on the Drive.

IMPORTANT-Brief Pause on ThriveHive Order Entry 

ThriveHive is installing a new order entry, workflow management and finance system.  As a result no new orders can be accepted until 9am eastern on Wednesday August 30th at ThriveHive. You can submit orders via the usual processes starting at that time.

Updated ThriveHive Deadlines for Labor Day

Please check the ThriveHive training website for special Labor Day deadlines, sorry there will be no exceptions.

Fall 2017 Online Solutions Academy

Join the Training Team for a series of live webinars to learn individual solutions and ask questions in a virtual classroom. You can attend a single session or all. Webinars will be held Tuesdays at Noon Eastern / 9 am Pacific starting October 10th and last for about an hour. You can register on the ThriveHive training site, through the Gatehouse LMS.


 Readers Choice-Extension Packages

3 & 6 month specials in presentation format, using the preferred GateHouse presentation

  • Special pricing on Readers Choice packages now available for ALL BUSINESSES THAT RECEIVED A VOTE.
  • Please review the presentations available. They will require your customization based on good customer understanding and some needs evaluation.

Q3 Revenue Race Multimedia Packages

Here’s the deck describing the packages already created. If you want to modify them, just make the proposal internally, we can make these work for local businesses.


  1. Plan and prep: do your research
  2. Call opening: make the right intro based on your research and questions to get the right to perform your needs analysis (remember, you can use the Readers Choice voting as a basis for questions.)
  3. Needs Analysis: start your needs assessment
  4. Develop Solutions:choose the package that fits the needs, just modify the presentation provided
  5. Gain Agreement in Principal: make the convincing presentation, gain agreement in principal to help the business build their brand for a chance at winning next year.
  6. Gain Agreement in Price: close the sale

Note: proposals are on the drive. DO NOT MODIFY THE PROPOSALS ON THE DRIVE. Download and modify on your hard drive.




  • All Ad’s for My Onslow/ Reader’s Choice must be approved by Noon, Thursday 8/31 (*any issues contact Tina)
  • All ad’s for the Labor Day Holiday weekend must be approved through Tuesday, Sept 5th.
    • Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday papers will all be done on Friday, Sept 1st.

Front Page Note Alert

  • Starting September 1st we are coming into the busy season with the Sticky note company…please be mindful of the creative deadline date that is on the calendar. There will be no room for negotiation for scheduling and fulfillment.
    • Creative is due by 5pm on the creative deadline day…to ensure that we are able to have the sticky note delivered on time.

Request For Email Communication

In the monthly AD Op’s Meeting on Aug 22nd, the team was asked to start moving more towards using email for communication on all tasks that are requested of them. This assures that we have a documented trail to follow if we need to go back and check something.


AdOps Personnel

  • Stacey will be out on Monday 8/28
  • Mariela will be out on Thursday & Friday 8/31 & 9/1




Advertisers get the chance to pick the winners each week for the entire season.

Great exposure for any participating business.

Value pricing to fit most budgets

Reader Prizes

  • Trip to Hawaii
  • NFL Fatheads
  • 2-3 Day Getaway Vacations

Advertiser Prizes

  • 2 Tickets to the Superbowl
  • A chance to win a $5,000 marketing campaign

Check out the sales deck, here.


Pie Chart(s) of the Week

In a couple of weeks the 2017 version of Borrell’s SMB advertising survey will be available. This new survey will offer the most up-to-date insight into what local businesses are doing to market their business today, as well as their plans for the coming years. Also included will be their view of how WE are doing. And don’t forget, this survey includes input from businesses in our own markets. We are going to see exactly what OUR local customers are doing and what they want to do.

Another group of data sets from the survey will be exactly HOW local businesss are utilizing media today. The two charts below are sneak peaks into the Borrell survey resulsts from 2017, take a look.

This may not be “news” to many, but an overwhelming majority of local businesses, nearly 75% in fact, use traditional and emerging media platforms in combination with each other. A small minority, 22% depend on traditional media only, while an even smaller group, just 3%, rely on digital only.

Again, this is not a surprise to many, but it leads to the next question for us to ask…

Of all the businesses we work with, are 3/4’s of them utilizing our print AND digital services? is our ratio closer to 50%, 40%, or maybe even 30%? This data clearly tells us that 3 out of every 4 customers should be taking advantage of multiple channels with in using our solutions.


This year’s suvey is also telling us that an overwhelming majority of local businesses consider themselves to be significantly inexperienced when it comes to making advertising decisions. And a nearly idetnical number are making there decisions without input from other sources. This is relatively startlying, but also shows us the opportunity we have. ThriveHive is a Premier SMB Partner with Google, and has also been named Agendy of the Year by the Local Media Association. Each one of us has passed the Google Digital Sales certification, as we are wll on the way to all being certified in Google Analytics for Beginners. It’s a shame that local businesses in our markets would ever want to go it alone with the level of expertise we can share with them. But it’s out job to tell them that we actually have this level of expertise. Are we doing that daily?



…the new norm

I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours

Have you completed the GOOGLE ANALYTICS FOR BEGINNERS training yet? If so, please send me a copy of your certificate.

All MMSE’s are to complete this training by September 1. 

Hint: While working/studying in a group is sometimes helpful, every MMSE will need to complete their own view of the testing. If you have any questions or concerns please drop me a note for assistance. Completing the course and tests will take more than just a couple of hours. You should easily be able to carve out 3-4 90 minute periods in order to complete the training and take the test.

Prospecting w/Tom Ellis

Tom Ellis will be in ENC land on September 25-28 to visit with each one of us with a very specific agenda…prospecting.

Tom will focus on the following

  • Research and planning leading to a phone call or in-person cold call
  • Cold opening and transition to customer needs analysis
  • Field calls, either via appointment or walk in

His request is for a 3-4 session with every member of the sales team. We have time to set our schedules accordingly, so please grab your available time on the sign up sheet here. Please do this as soon as possible so you may arrange your schedules. Thanks.

Author: David Prizer

Digital media executive and thought leader, emphasizing local and small business strategies. 20 years of experience in metro and community markets. Still watching Seinfeld reruns and holding out for a Cubs-White Sox subway series in my lifetime.

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