Survey: Net Ad Sales Reps Inexperienced, Disillusioned

Sixty-seven percent of Internet ad sales reps have less than two years of Internet experience, according to a survey by Leslie Laredo, president of the Laredo Group, an ad sales training, research and online revenue generation consulting company.

Laredo’s report, which appears on ClickZNet’s Who’s Marketing Online site, also found that 22% have under two years of ANY sales experience at all, and 29% have under one year of Internet sales experience.

Over the last two weeks, The Laredo Group said it began surveying hundreds of ad sales reps to attempt to get a handle on how and how much they’re being paid, and how they feel about their compensation plans. The preliminary results are from 160 respondents .

Laredo wrote that the experience results are not surprising “given the short history of our industry,” but they highlight the need for training of this new sales force, both in basic sales skills and the unique aspects of the Internet.

About 55% receive salary plus commission, the survey found, and a surprisingly high 25% are on straight salary while 12% are on straight commission.

About 26% earned over $75,000 in 1997 and 45% expect to earn over $75,000 in 1998. Fifteen percent earned over $100,000 in 1997 but 22% expect to earn over $100,000 in 1998. But 74% said they would switch to traditional ad sales for a better compensation package.

Interestingly, 49% don’t believe in the industry. When asked if “interactive ad sales is a growing industry with plenty of opportunity for the future,” half of the survey respondents disagreed. Another 29% were neutral and only 22% agreed. Hmm, maybe your boss ought to read this. The complete article can be found here.

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