Radio Sales Today

RAB Sales Tips

Please don’t use this new RAB resource until...

The only constant in life is change. Nowhere is the change in how we do things more apparent than the step in the 7-step sales process that we call the CNA (customer needs analysis). Some might refer to them as discovery or uncover meetings, but these meetings were designed to give us enough information about a client and learn about pain points and problems so that we can prepare a proposal to solve their challenges.

When I started in sales, that was a one-hour meeting. It was step four of the 7 steps of selling. You conducted your meeting, finished that part of the process and you were ready to move on. The other thing that has changed is client expectations. I remember calling clients and saying, "Hello Mr. Hausauer, it's Jeff Schmidt calling from WVBO. I'd like to spend 15-20 minutes with you learning about your businesses and your challenges. After that meeting, if I can come up with a plan for helping you, we'll have another meeting."

In today's economic environment, client's businesses are constantly experiencing change. That's why marketing professionals understand that working with current and prospective clients requires constant examination of a business's challenges and opportunities. Through RAB tools like our Pre-Contact Checklist, The Pitch, Consumer Behavior reports, Ad-to-Sales Ratios, Top Business Trends and many others — all found on, you should be able to "learn" 80% of what you need to know about a client without even meeting them. In previous times, the CNA was about gathering information. Today, it's about confirming information.

Reflective of this new sales process, we've developed a Customer Needs Analysis (CNA) system, not just a form. Available on RAB's Professional Development section of, we've converted six potential CNA conversations into PDF forms available here. Each page can stand on its own depending on the client's personality type and the amount of time you may have with them. This system provides six specific strategies to maximize the information you gather and confirm. It will also be time-saving and efficient — getting the information you need to help their business.

This tip's title has two purposes. Other than being attention-getting, we don't want you to use this tool unprepared and without explanation. We've created two videos, the WHY and the HOW. These videos explain why you should even be doing CNAs today, and how to use this new system. So please don't download the form until you've viewed the videos. We will be scheduling a webinar soon to give you a more comprehensive overview and run-through of the system so please be on the lookout for that announcement.

When used properly, this new CNA system can save you time and increase the value of the information you gather and confirm. If you have any questions, please contact Jeff Schmidt at Jeff.Schmidt@rab.come or call RAB Member Response at 800-232-3131.

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend!

Jeff Schmidt is the SVP of Professional Development. You can reach him at You can all so connect with him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Source: Jeff Schmidt, SVP of Professional Development, RAB