These reps DID LISTEN!

Matt Plapp Family Picture
Matt Plapp - Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Marketing & Social Media Consultant

Below are 3 marketing sales reps that went above and beyond this year to help me and my clients.  Read their stories and let me know the great reps you’ve dealt with.

1.  Doug Smith – and Rewind 94.9

I spoke with many reps for Hofbräuhaus for 2012’s media plans and had some pretty specific requests.  Most came back with the same thing, a schedule that was not near the budget and “added value” promotions that included ZERO thought and would not drive traffic.  Doug was one of the reps that did what he was supposed to do, in fact he went beyond.  His investment was not only on budget, but his 2 promotions were more than I expected.  Not only were they traffic driving, but they were actually worth more than the value he put on them.  In fact, the 1st promotion which was carried out in April turned out to be one of our best promotions of the year.  A $300 product investment on our part drove over $5,000 in sales at the restaurant with their “Administrators Day” promotion.  The best part is every month Doug’s invoices come in at the exact dollar amount he presented 6 months prior!

2.  Brent Weiner –  CBS Radio Pittsburgh

Brent was 1 of 3 radio reps I met with for Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh.  The first rep never called back after they EMAILED their presentation.  The second came in WAY over the budget.  Brent came in with a media package that was AMAZING.  I told Brent I was looking for an advertising schedule and a few live events at the restaurant.  We not only received the advertising we needed on the station, but he delivered 8 live events to us that included a live NFL Draft Show with current and former Steelers Players.  The value of his promotions were worth way more than I expected and a gesture that will build a long term relationship.

3.  Jeff Fosco –  WXIX Channel 19 Cincinnati

Jeff called me about a presentation their station was having for clients by a “marketing expert”.   I had to try hard not to blow him off, but I go to every sales pitch I can knowing that a great one is right around the corner.  I’ve been to the “jingle” pitches, the “expert” pitches, etc.  They all talk about the same stuff, they analyze your business and at the end of the presentation they ask for your entire budget for their stations because they are a PERFECT FIT:) This was different.  I met with Jeff, his manager and their marketing consultant.  Their presentation was great, it was right on with what my client needed and guess what…THEY DIDN’T ASK FOR MY ENTIRE BUDGET!  They showed me something that was really affordable and allowed us to do other stations and mediums to promote the clients business.  This was much appreciated and when Jeff calls now I pick up faster:)

Again, I have many great reps at TV & Radio Stations, Magazines, Newspapers, etc.  These 3 examples are just a few that have stood out this year.  After I blasted a few reps (not named ) in prior email and blog post (CLICK HERE TO READ IT), I thought it was important to highlight the reps that went over and above what was expected.  After all, it’s not that hard.  Just listen to the client, research the client and create a promotion with their ROI in mind and not your commission check.

Retailers save $7 Billion! R U getting your share?

Brad Arnott - Credit and Debit Card Processing

New Federal Debit Law will save Retailers $7 Billion!  How to get your share…

By Brad Arnott

Omega Processing Solutions

Did you see the Cincinnati Enquirer article on Sunday, November 6th “Banks Look for New Fees”? There has been much discussion over the last month about new fees the large banks may be charging.  Bank of America received a lot of negative press lately because they intended to charge their debit card customers $5 per month!  Well, there is a reason the large banks are looking to make some money…… is to offset losses from the Durbin Amendment passed as part of the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform package.  This new law caps the fees the large banks can make on debit card purchases, basically a $7 Billion per year loss.  The $7 Billion is being transferred to the retailers and other businesses that accept and process debit cards.

Good news if you own a retail business! My business gets to help pass out some of the $7 Billion in savings!  Since we process credit and debit cards, our costs as a processor has gone down on debit cards from this new law and so we can pass along these savings to our clients.  As you may know, businesses that accept credit/debit cards must pay processing fees.  If you own a business that caters to consumers then you are

debit card

probably receiving a lot of debit cards (swiped or key entered) and qualify for some lower costs.

How do you make sure you are getting your share? Many processors’ (bank and nonbank) margins have been squeezed the last several years and they may not be passing on the savings to the business owner.  Some of Omega’s customers are seeing a significant reduction in fees of hundreds and even thousands of dollars per month.  However, since Visa & MasterCard utilizes a complicated pricing structure you should work with an established local processor and experienced representative that can educate you on the best pricing system to implement.  Don’t fall for the out-of-town telemarketer’s promises though or you may get locked into a contract that is not good for  your business.

Brad Arnott is a partner at Omega Processing Solutions, an award winning local credit/debit card processing company that performs no obligation analysis of merchant’s current processing fees.  Brad can be contacted at 513-755-6501 or $50 gift card if you mention Matt Plapp when switching over your processing services to Omega!

Matt In The News!

Facebook is a growing part of many companies’ marketing efforts. Many Procter & Gamble Co. brands, for example, have hundreds of thousands of fans. Pringles, with nearly 11 million “likes” on its Facebook page, is the 71st most-liked page on the social networking site.

Matt Plapp, president of Driven Media Solutions, said even companies with big numbers need to talk to those fans. [click above to read more]

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Franchise growth sizzling nationwide

 Tom Demeropolis Cincinnati Business Courier

Premium content from Business Courier – by Tom Demeropolis, Courier Staff Reporter

Date: Friday, March 11, 2011, 6:00am EST

Read more: Franchise growth sizzling nationwide in recession’s wake | Business Courier

Ray Wiley knows the challenges of being both a franchisee and a franchisor. The longtime Subway franchisee launched his own Mexican fast-casual restaurant concept in Dayton back in 2007. Now, Hot Head Burritos is one of the fastest-growing franchise concepts in the region.

And in the wake of the Great Recession, Hot Head Burritos could have as many as 100 locations in some stage of development before the end of the year.

Wiley is far from alone, as franchise businesses across the country are gearing up for growth.

Coming out of recessions, franchises historically have grown at a faster clip. Matt Haller, director of communications for the International Franchise Association, said franchises perform better in down economies because of the nature of franchising. Franchises are easier to operate and easier to expand because franchisees can draw from experience in the franchise system and support from the franchisor.

Many who lost their jobs during the recession don’t want to be dependent on someone else for their income. Franchising offers a way to be independent without starting from the ground up.

Don Boroian, founder and chairman of Chicago-based Francorp International, said franchising offers entrepreneurs an easier way to own a business.

“Ninety-five percent of people who try to start a business from scratch fail,” Boroian said.

Franchising is the fastest and strongest way to scale a business to create new jobs and expand a business, Haller said.

Darian Richardson - Owner, RMC Franchise Connect - Cincinnati Franchise ConsultantDarian Richardson, president of Cincinnati-based RMC Franchise Consulting, works with clients interested in buying a franchise.

For the first quarter of the year, activity is up 10 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2010, Richardson said. He’s seeing increased interest from two different segments: those who have lost their jobs during the recession and those who are looking to franchises to supplement their existing income.

For those making a career change, Richardson helps them investigate the type of franchise business that fits them best.

“If you’re considering starting a business, perform a self-assessment first. Figure out what’s important to you,” Richardson said.

And franchising goes far beyond restaurants. That way, you don’t have to come home smelling like hamburgers if you don’t want to, he said.

Franchise segments that are seeing continued expansion are senior care, personal care, such as hair salons, and business related to pets, Richardson said. There are more than 300 business format lines that operate as franchises, Haller said.

The biggest obstacle facing both franchisees and franchisors is access to credit. Banks have tightened restrictions on lending, in turn making it more difficult for franchisees to get money to start up their own business.

“We’re making the argument now that we can turn this economic recovery into a jobs recovery if we can get the banks lending again,” Haller said.

For every $1 million loaned to franchises, 34 jobs are generated, Haller said.

Credit has been a hindrance for potential franchisees in the past, but a growing number of franchisors are acting as banks for their franchisees. Haller said this is a trend across the board for franchises.

“Franchises are looking for creative solutions to grow their systems,” Haller said.

Toledo-based Marco’s Pizza, for example, has several programs aimed at helping franchisees open stores, including providing them financing or guaranteeing their loans with banks. The 225-unit company has roughly 60 stores in development.

ServiceMaster Clean is offering qualified prospects up to 80 percent financing to start their cleaning business.

Another franchise offering lease finance options is Hoodz Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning, Richardson said.

Franchises of all shapes and sizes have targeted 2011 as a growth year.

Locally, LaRosa’s is looking to expand through multi-unit franchise operators in cities such as Nashville, Louisville and Columbus.

Dunkin’ Donuts experienced a 50 percent increase in development deals last year, crediting existing franchisees and incentives. The chain opened 206 new locations in the U.S.

In some markets, the Canton, Mass.-based franchise offered reduced royalty fees for three years and an extra $10,000 in local store marketing.

After more than 35 years in the franchise business, Boroian said there is always room for another franchise, as long as it’s well-run.

“The naysayers in 1970 said there was no room for another burger operation. We’ve seen burger operation after burger operation go on to flourish,” he said. “There’s always room for one more.”
Read more: Franchise growth sizzling nationwide in recession’s wake | Business Courier

Dorron Hunter Featured On Channel 9

A close friend of mine, Dorron Hunter, is featured in this video on his work in Over The Rhine and with the youth.  Dorron is an inspiration to me and the work he does is making a major change.  I’ve not only worked with Dorron and his kids the past 2 1/2 years, but a few of these young men work for me part time on marketing projects.  Dorron is helping change lives.

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