CRN Founder Berman Shares Keys to Selling in a Changing Environment

It’s a head-scratching time for legacy media and those of us who have to take it to the marketplace.

For media marketers, this is both the most exciting and uncertain time to be in the business, according to marketing expert Barry Berman, President of CRN International.

“It’s a head-scratching time for legacy media and those of us who have to take it to the marketplace,” said Berman, whose 40-year-old company uses radio and other forms of sound to solve major brands’ marketing challenges.

In a speech to the sales force of Hearst Magazines’ Women’s Lifestyle Group, he said, “Not a week goes by that I don’t hear ‘no one listens to radio.’ I bet you get a lot of: ‘no one’s reading magazines anymore.’”

Berman warned against using any media phenomenon just because it’s new. It must be effective in selling a client’s product, he said. “Whether it’s sound, ink on a page or digital ones and zeros, media is just a conveyance for content that must engage an audience and deliver for the advertiser,” he said.

Berman said his company has evolved to respond to new technology and changes in consumer behaviors. The most recent development is establishment of a podcast division, called Collisions. Its podcasts have attracted such sponsors as Pepsi and Toyota, and drawn prominent rankings and positioning in Apple iTunes.

“What drove us into podcasting was not the defensive rush to all things digital, but the intrinsic belief that audiences want a good story and advertisers will follow,” he explained. “Creative in the ear space was moving to podcasting, and we wanted to stake a claim.”

Some of the podcasts produced by Collisions in its inaugural year include: “Distraction,” on coping in this crazy-busy…

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