Friday, September 02, 2011

Mail | For $50,000 in annual pay, this ad sales rep says, 'I bust my ass every day to make my numbers'

Regarding recent comments criticizing advertising sales employees, Anonymous@7:03 p.m. yesterday writes:

The annual let's bash the hell out of the sales staff postings. Blame them for the layoffs, declining circulation and whatever else. Sure, there are deadbeat sales reps, just like there are deadbeat reporters, managers, and directors at almost every site.

All I know is, I bust my ass every day to make my numbers and keep my customers happy.

I would love to be out on the road more to give myself a pad. I also have to place orders, lay out my ads, babysit the Gannett Production Center, check ads coming back from GPC, keep my accounts up to date in the CRM system, play collections agent and correct billing errors due to someone's mistake. Why? Because there's no one else to do it! They're gone!

As for income, my base is around $28,000 after many years. Commission, if I hit my number, is $1,500 on roughly $80,000 sales per month. If I'm lucky and hit my numbers all three months in a quarter, I get another $1,000. Commissions are capped. That works out to about $50,000 per year, max or $28,000 if I miss every month. I'm hitting more than missing at the moment, but it's a tough sell.

I love what I do, just not the conditions we have to do them under.

Earlier: In the current quarter, newspaper publishers reset ad sales expectations.

As always, other views are encouraged. Please post your replies in the comments section, below. To e-mail confidentially, write jimhopkins[at]gmail[dot-com]; see Tipsters Anonymous Policy in the rail, upper right.


  1. This sales representative is not the problem, but is the exception. What about the reps who show up on time, disappear all day, come in at the end of the day, write up the usual few ads and then is out the door before 5pm. The same rep who never brings in new accounts that don't walk in the door, never asks for spec ads, seems to be on facebook at all times during the day, and is constantly artifically tanned. THESE ARE THE REPS WHO NEED TO BE CANNED. They have settled and are content with their salary and don't count on their commissions because THEY NEVER MAKE THEIR NUMBERS! And yet, they survive because (mis)management has settled and don't think they could find anyone who could do better!

  2. I think it's their managers who need to be canned. At my site, we had some really dedicated reps -- very admirable types, good salespeople intimately involved with their clients -- working under impossible conditions.

    And unfortunately we had the mouth-breather ilk as well, skating on Easy Street while their colleague carried their department's goal. And always the same folks, over and over.

    Thing was, with two outstanding exceptions the managers figured their job mostly entailed adjusting the nameplate on their desk once in a while.

    The artists (pre-Gannett Production Center) knew who the good reps were -- a joy to work with -- and conversely who were just disorganized black holes of nothingness. So one would think, gee, their own manager might also.

    Nope. This echelon were more inclined to scurry down the halls to this meeting and that, stoned on Xanax I imagine.

    When I was first hired, I was so proud to be working for and with a top-notch organization. I had read the paper front to back every day since childhood -- and when there were a morning and afternoon edition, both of those.

    On staff as an adult, it was rough to watch this colossal disaster unfold on nearly every level, lights on and no one home.

  3. These bastards are trying to drive us into the dust. Well, I say the hell with them. I'm not quitting. I get up every morning, shave, turn to this blog and frequently comment. I'm not going to stop it, damn it. People are still reading what I write no matter if the forum is a newspaper or elsewhere. You are reading this, aren't you?

  4. Anyone know what happened in Period 8?

  5. I don't think this sales rep is an exception. At my site, upper management is useless, front-line managers hands are tied and sales rep have no direction.


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