Opinions And Ramblings By Adam Kmiec On All Things Media

The Value Of Time

I love the iMedia Summit.  It brings together the best and the brightest in the interactive marketing field to discuss timely and relevant topics impacting the industry at large.  Part of the the obligation we have as attendees of the summits is to listen to a few sponsored presentations.  Sometimes these are great presentations.  Other times, not so much.  The goal from the sponsor’s perspective is to ultimately get a formal audience with the people in the room.

Over the years, from talking to the “sellers” it’s clear they have a challenging and frustrating situation on their hands.  How do they break through the clutter and actually intrigue a “buyer” to schedule a 60 minute conversation.  These sales guys and gals spend an inordinate amount of time just to get a conversation and rarely do they make that connection.  Time is money. Yes, it’s an overused statement, but it’s true.  If you boil things down to simple dollars and cents, it’s costs an awful lot of money in time to get a meeting scheduled.  I asked one seller last night what their average cost per meeting was.  He said it was an interesting question, something they don’t normally track, but estimated it to be about $3,000.  That number was based on the average salary of the sales staff, the number of hours they work, the number of companies they contact and they number of successful meetings they setup.

That’s just staggering.  $3,000?  That doesn’t even include the travel costs for an in person meeting.  Wow.  Well, the folks at joost decided to rethink the model for securing in-person meetings.  At the end of their sponsored presentation they held up a Joost branded iPad cover and dropped a bomb on the audience.  They let us know that they would HAND DELIVER a brand new iPad to every person in the room in exchange for a 30 minute presentation.  We all thought they were joking.  But, when we realized they were serious, you should have seen the people scrambling to be the first to hand over a business card.

This is brilliant for so many reasons.  For starters, Joost was the talk of the summit.  Buyers were applauding Joost, while the sellers were cursing them.  The buzz effect alone was probably worth the investment.  But, beyond the buzz, they probably reduced their cost per meeting/lead tremendously.  Instead of having to chase down the 150 or so buyers in the room over the next 6 months for a meeting, they had the 150 buyers tracking them down…and it only cost them $600.00 per lead/meeting.

All of a sudden the Joost team can spend their time on the right things.  They can focus on understanding my business, customizing a program, bringing in the added value…instead of focusing on setting up a meeting.

That’s the value of time and the folks at Joost are brilliant.  The only real question is of course, will they actually deliver on their promise of an iPad and will the deliver the goods in the meeting.  Time will tell.

  • scheyney

    Adam,

    I agree. This strategy could turn out to be brilliant. At first everyone in the audience was shocked, pretty much dumbfounded. That was followed by excitement, and then appreciation for the metrics involved as everyone started to do the math in their heads as they were leaving the room.

    Once measure that is going to be more difficult to accurately measure is, how many people would have set up a meeting anyway, regardless of the iPad? And how much business with happen as a result?

    Half way through their presentation, I had already written down a note to schedule a meeting with these guys. The iPad bombshell at the end of the presentation was total gravy, and definitely caused me to spread the word about Adconion and Joost a few more times than I would have done otherwise.

  • madmath3333

    Unqualified meetings are WORTHLESS – I imagine they bought a fair number of worthless meeting for $600. I don't see how this math makes sense.

  • http://www.thekmiecs.com Adam

    Unqualified only happens if what Joost is offering is lame. That’s why I said, “The only real question is of course, will they actually deliver on their promise of an iPad and will the deliver the goods in the meeting.  Time will tell.” If they don’t deliver the goods in the meeting it’s a waste.

  • Mark C

    The best and brightest in interactive marketing? Gee, do some of them even have 3-digit IQs?