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Ad Libs by John Foust

John Foust has conducted training programs for thousands of newspaper advertising professionals. Many ad departments are using his training videos to save time and get quick results from in-house training. Email John at john@johnfoust.com.

Sunshine in the weather forecast

It was always sunny in Carolyn’s office. There’s an old saying that some people brighten the room by arriving and others brighten the room by leaving. In the years I went to that dentist, she ...

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Put a stop to workplace silos

Abby has a simple suggestion that might be of help: “Talk and listen. Every now and then, some managers like to organize team-building activities, but honestly, I think structured team exercises ...

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Every salesperson needs a parachute

Anthony’s technique makes a lot of sense. When you feel like your sales presentation is losing altitude ... 

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Recognize buying signals, verbal and non

Those indications are called “buying signals,” and they tell us to know when to S-T-O-P talking and bring the sale in for a landing.

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Learn from the ones that get away

We know what it’s like to “almost” catch the big one, only to lose out at the last minute. At times like that, it might help to remember what speaker, writer and consultant Denis Waitley ...

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Treasure hunt for ad ideas

Not all treasures consist of gold and silver. For those of us in the advertising business, some are hidden away in file cabinets and company archives.

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Advertising’s slippery slope

We’re all guilty of that same thing. ... 

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Get more mileage out of testimonials

This strategy gave us more mileage than a campaign with two or three testimonials because there were so many different combinations. If you’d like to try something similar, here are the steps to ...

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Ad lessons from a wall poster

David Droga, who founded the Droga5 global advertising agency, said, “I really believe in the power of advertising ... the power of advertising that’s in sync with what consumers want.” ...

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Don’t sell your clients short

Gene’s story applies to anyone in sales. Just about all of us have undersold our products and services at times. When you’re upselling, here are some points to keep in mind ... 

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What makes an ad campaign?

Does this sound familiar? Are there advertisers in your market who are stuck on the same ad, week after week after week? As you work with them, keep in mind that campaigns share some common traits. 

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Do you know where your fire extinguishers are?

We all want to take care of our advertisers and coworkers. Well, there’s no better way to do that than to help them stay safe in the workplace. There are some simple things we can do to accomplish ...

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If it’s 10:08, it must be a watch ad

Legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden once said, “It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”

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What are they selling?

Rick discovered an excellent way to teach the basics of advertising, and the students learned a lot about how businesses promote themselves.

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The power of enthusiasm

While some people are naturally animated in their enthusiasm, genuine enthusiasm is an inner sense of optimism, excitement and joyful anticipation. 

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We’ve got some explaining to do

People usually say “no” to things they don’t understand. It’s a salesperson’s job to help prospects understand what he or she is selling.

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Advertising’s Bill of Rights

In the advertising business, there are things which must be done in order to create an effective campaign. Think of it as Advertising’s Bill of Rights. 

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Oboes and leadership

This means that the oboe sets the pace for the entire orchestra. It’s easy to see a direct comparison to a leader’s role in the business world.

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Say it and do it, or renegotiate

“As a manager,” Joe explained, “this approach helps me stay up to speed with what is happening with our advertising department. Plus, it shows the team that this kind of situation does ...

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The power of being specific

Generalities have no sticking power.

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