Great Idea: Marketing Is the Message

When it comes to selling advertising -- or any other product or service -- marketing is trumping old-fashioned sales calls, according to Bob Van Rossum, president of MarketPro.

A strong marketing message and campaign is necessary before a salesperson begins knocking on prospective clients' doors. Clients and prospective clients should already have a strong understanding of who and what that salesperson is representing, Van Rossum said.

"Gone are the days when throngs of salesmen in penny loafers knocked on businesses' doors one by one in hopes of introducing, educating, and converting those ‘blind' prospects into long-term customers," he wrote in a recent article posted on

Effective marketing means prospects will remember your name and know where to find you. They will not wait around for a salesperson to knock on their door. They'll go to your Web site, research what other people are saying about you, and maybe even subscribe to your social networking feed. Only then, if they like what they see, will they decide to contact your sales department, Van Rossum said. In today's world by the time your sales team begins interacting with your prospects, they should already have a strong understanding of who you are and what you do based on the work of marketing. You need to be generating more revenue with fewer salespeople than before.