Strategic Value Media Reviews | Glassdoor

Strategic Value Media Reviews

Updated May 23, 2018
54 reviews

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2.8
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Strategic Value Media Vice President Aron Sawyer
Aron Sawyer
2 Ratings

54 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Good base salary for a first job, but that's the only thing" (in 7 reviews)

  • "Easy to make a lot of money through commission" (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • "Making 150-200 calls a day to the same people over and over gets old" (in 4 reviews)

  • "Inside sales is not for everyone but everyone who is sales oriented will enjoy this" (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Inside Sales Representative"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Overland Park, KS
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Overland Park, KS
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Strategic Value Media full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Excellent opportunity for motivated, hard working, goal oriented sales people to become top earners. Great base pay- don't have to worry about making ends meet- can focus on selling. Genuinely rewards hard work. Great work atmosphere, no cubicles. Really enjoy my co-workers. Fun industry to work in. People with strong comm skills and work ethic sell and do well here.

    Cons

    Not for everyone. Can be stressful, good days and tough days. Comes with sales across companies/industries.

    Advice to Management

    Some follow up training for new reps would be helpful. Senior reps have little incentive to "show the ropes" to new reps.


  2. "Enjoy Working at SVM"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Overland Park, KS
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Overland Park, KS
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Strategic Value Media full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Relaxed Environment, great coworkers, make 75K at 23 years old. I have been working at SVM for 18 months....Is funny reading the responses of people....They couldn't hack it, so leave an anonymous review... Its a sales job, its not for everyone, personally, I love it. I work hard, I make good money. I don't take my work home....The more I put in to it, the more I get out of it. Coworkers are young, have made several great friendships

    Cons

    The job can be repetitive, but I guess that is to be expected.

    Advice to Management

    Perhaps some more fringe benefits, the nights out on the companies dime are great, perhaps some more nights out, things like that

  3. Helpful (1)

    "...Where to begin?"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Strategic Value Media full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good base salary for a first job, but that's the only thing.

    Cons

    There are so many, it's hard to list. Favoritism, a toxic company culture, dysfunctional executives and management, constant disrespect, demanding your employees lie, and harassing them if they have any sort of feedback to your processes. After being at the company for what's considered a "longer" tenure for their employees, I can honestly say it does not get better here. Get out while you can.

    Advice to Management

    Shut the company down. You are all failing your employees and your customers. This company runs on constant lies and has no respect for the fact that they're conning people out of their money. Not to mention, you treat your employees as if they don't matter. I'm sure someone will respond that this review isn't "representative of SVM's company culture," but that's a lot of BS, too. I am thankful that I had this job, ONLY because it taught me what a company shouldn't be and that is everything that SVM is.


  4. "It’s a job!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Overland Park, KS
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Overland Park, KS
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Strategic Value Media full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Biggest pro are the awesome people I work with. They are helpful, energetic and weird (in a good way). It’s an 8 to 5 telemarketing sales job with a more than fair salary. It’s not hard work but it requires determination and effort. I come in, I make phone calls until 12:30, I eat lunch and go on a walk and I come back and make phone calls until 5. The idea is to find the right person, pitch, handle objections and sell. If you can’t do the 200 to 250 phone calls a day and convince people to buy then this isn’t for you! But if you’re like me and have had some really crappy jobs, this is a Godsend. Don’t let these 1 star reviews fool you, likely kids out of school with their first job expecting an office and free lunch.

    Cons

    Rejection. You’re getting rejected all day every day. If you can’t handle that then grow a pair or find another job! Honestly, this isn’t for everyone and it requires work ethic and determination. If you are looking for easy street, please don’t waste your time and frankly stay away from this company because I wouldn’t want to meet you.

    Advice to Management

    Rope in the loose hanging fruit. There’s some low performers and I could name them on one hand. Get them out of the field and retrain them. I understand you can’t keep training someone but no one should go into month 2 or 3 without at least one sale. Put them back in training and focus on improvements, less sink or swim.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Senior Sales Rep"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I’ve worked with SVM for almost 6 years in the Overland Park, KC Office. I’ve had some amazing experiences with this company. I’ve had the opportunity to travel, earn a very good living, meet amazing co workers, and learn about different industries. This is a great place to start a career and figure out if sales is right for you. Some of my best memories is going on company incentive trips and having the time of my life- meeting other co workers from other offices- having EVERYTHING paid for!
    This is also a 8-5. Therefore, there is NO taking work with you after hours. You learn a lot working for a company like this- especially right out of college.

    Cons

    Sales— Think about it. Most people get into sales in order to be rewarded (commission) off the sales that are made.
    This is not the case with SVM. You will receive a “draw” which is frustrating to hungry sales reps . People who come in and work their take off want to be rewarded off what they accomplish. Every sale you make is going into someone else’s pocket. How is that motivating??

    The “base” is tempting- but you will make $0 off anything you sell for years. I know that sounds strange- seeing how sales is predicated off the work you put in. I’ve seen hundreds of reps quit for this reason alone. Where is the motivation when people make sales only for upper management to collect? This is a frustrating concept for ANYONE looking to get into a sales career.

    The product is another viable component to any sales rep. You have to believe in what you’re selling- it’s imperative in any career. A large part of what we sell is online advertising. Here is the problem- we also provide 0 tracking capability to our advertisers. In today’s society- you must be able to provide quantitative data (online) for your clients. We live in a technological era where companies can LITERALLY provide ROI to their clients. How can you possibly push a product where you have no quantifiable data to show it works, ESPECIALLY with our aggressive approach that is instilled on each sales rep?

    On the “pro’s” side of my review- I took great pride in making those company trips. They were awesome. It meant a lot to the reps that qualified. Well- they were discontinued last year. Clearly, Management didn’t think it was important to reward those who earned it.

    Advice to Management

    Innovate. Adapt. Just because the PSP side of the business worked 10+ years ago, doesn’t mean this divisions needs to operate as such. Invest in your product! Invest in your employees! People are leaving (whether it’s giving up, or simply quitting) for a legitimate reason. It’s not all about how much managements will collect on a $500 sale- reward the sales rep who make those sales. Not with gift cards, but pay those who earn it- and do so accordingly.
    Create incentives. Get rid of the draw- lower the base pay- make it salary and pay commission monthly. You always preach about hiring “hungry” reps- give them something to be hungry about.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "COMPLETE AND HONEST REVIEW OF S.V.M."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Advertising Sales Director in Overland Park, KS
    Former Employee - Advertising Sales Director in Overland Park, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Strategic Value Media full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    $40K-$45k max first year to two years. Not terrible if you’re coming out of college and need experience/money. Or need something in between jobs
    - 8-5 Monday-Friday. No overtime or after hours work. Not having to take work stress home with you
    - Opportunity for cash bonuses and gift cards for performance
    - Possibility of raises and increased salary overtime
    - Possibility of $90K+ after 4-5 years and advancing into slightly better projects

    Cons

    No substance:

    - The product you sell is advertising slots into various magazines and online buyers guides that typically have only around 3-6K members/subscribers.
    - For the online buyers guides, there is no tracking as far as how much traffic it actually gets
    - Business owners seldom actually see any return of investment, so it takes a lot of manipulation and convincing to keep a consistent residual client base
    - No relationship building or filling any customer need, just pushing ads
    - The script they distribute in training is an entire page long. The script essentially consists of you running through a pitch and asking one yes or no question instead of engaging in a conversation or asking open ended questions. It is a very pushy and “telemarkety” approach.
    - There is no coaching or help after the initial training, which mainly entails reading verbatim from a piece of paper out loud. If someone is having a hard time (or start spending your time there job searching like I did), they will just tell them to do better or they will have to “part ways” with you.

    Micromanaging:

    - They have cameras and microphones in the office that monitor your every move (NO JOKE)
    - Mid/upper level Management will micromanage your leads and activity by reading the notes you take and at any given time will question you about each one and even the structure and content of your notes
    - Aside from the notes you put in the CRM software, they also have you write down on a piece of paper everyone you talked to each day, what their title is, whether or not they were interested, and rate them from 1-10 on how interested they seemed.

    Negative and Dry Environment:

    - Overall the reps were decent people, but like any office there are a handful of people that love to constantly gossip and say judgmental and negative things behind coworkers backs.
    - No recognition for achievement, no team building activities, no encouragement, and really no commission (for the first 2 years)
    - Emulates something similar to a 1990s telemarketing call center with small monitors and handheld corded phones.
    - Within the 3 months I was there, over a dozen people quit, which is a lot considering there were roughly 20 people in the office when I started in January. They constantly hire new reps at about the same rate of people that quit. Revolving door company.

    Lack of empathy/Treating employees like garbage:

    - Nobody likes being sick. It messes up your schedule and has you feeling down for several days. However, if you do happen to get sick and miss more than a couple days within your first few months, they will threaten to terminate you or will even literally revoke your insurance benefits for a certain amount of time.
    - I sat next to one of the senior reps in the back of the room, and I couldn’t help but notice how poorly he and other senior reps were treated, some of which ended up leaving despite making decent money.
        - Since the only people who actually get paid commission are the ones that work here for 3+ years, guess who they don’t give any repeat clients to? The people that would make commission to save their bottom line.
        - As an aspiring rep who wants to do well and advance, I would imagine that would be a little discouraging.
    - No maternity leave. If you have a baby they’ll temporarily let you go and take you off insurance until you’re able to come back
    - They rarely fire people to avoid having to pay unemployment, only after harassing them to quit.

    Advice to Management

    - Adapt or die. Much like how you treat your reps, if you don’t adapt to a changing market and start bringing real VALUE to clients that actually fill a NEED, your business will no longer be able to stay solvent.
    - Due to the law of expectation, if you treat employees like children, prisoners, or zoo animals, then your overall results will reflect as such.
    - YOU are responsible for the environment that you create for people to work in. People want to work be in an environment that breeds trust, safety, collaboration, opportunity, appreciation, purpose and productivity. If the vast majority of your staff appears to constantly be sluggish, unhappy, unmotivated, and jaded, then I would encourage you to ask yourself WHY that may be. Could it be possibly that it is a result of the environment that has been established? Why does it look like the junior high summer break bell just rang the moment the clock hits 5?
    - Treat people with respect. For example, there is a difference between:
        - “Hey your numbers have been low. You need to get that up or we’ll have to discuss your future with this company.”
        - VERSUS “Hey, I noticed your numbers have been low lately. Is everything okay?”
        - You have no idea what is going on in someone’s life. Believe it or not, people that work there generally are there 40 hours of their week in order to sustain the other 128 hours they have each week. Take time to actually CARE about your people and not just look at humans as numbers on a paper.

    I promise these will go a long way for you if you have any desire to improve!


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Top Reps Quitting? Former VP is Gonzo? Writing on the wall."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Advertising Sales Director in Overland Park, KS
    Former Employee - Advertising Sales Director in Overland Park, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Strategic Value Media full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Excellent people to work with, meet some VERY interesting characters and personality types (since they hire anyone with a pulse). Great place to get your foot in the door at a sales job and get some experience under your belt before ultimately quitting. Because they never fire anyone unless they’re forced to.

    Cons

    The 4 star reviews are laughable.. I am not sure how you can call almost every single one of the top sales staff quitting not being able to “hack it”. Yes. It is a job. Whoever said they make $75K is blatantly lying. You will make close to 200 calls but it’s the pitches they care about. You’ll call the same 100 leads over and over and over and over again getting voicemail after voicemail after voicemail. Fun! If you make it to the 8 month milestone without quitting you’ll get to call back your customers who were stupid enough to buy from you and try to get them to do it again.

    Advice to Management

    Stop incentivizing your sales staff to write false reviews and wasting poor college kids time with a pointless interview. Maybe do more to retain your top reps instead of calling them after they quit and offering raises.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Strategic Value Media full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Even though I only gave SVM 2 stars, I do not regret my time working here at all. The salary is pretty good coming right out of school and the job security isn't terrible either (side note). You also do not take any work home, as soon as the clock hits 5 you are done and get to go home. The best part about working here is your coworkers. They are a great group of people and are pretty much the only reason I was able to get through the day. The company also hosts parties both in the office in forms of potlucks and NCAA basketball viewing parties as well as out of the office at bars/restaurants where they will take care of the tab for everyone. They are a lot of fun and can get pretty crazy, especially in the parking garage behind Tobbaco Road. My biggest reason for leaving besides it being time to move on was recent developments in the company which I will get into in the Cons section.

    Cons

    The product you are tasked with selling is awful and therefore incredibly hard to sell. There is no evidence provided to the employees that the ads we sell are actually beneficial to the clients but are instead taught to sway prospects away from any analytics when they ask, which always made me very skeptical. I showed some of my new coworkers one of the websites they put together and told them the price points and they literally laughed in my face. Even though the product is hard to sell, the sales goals are very high and you have to get very lucky to be able to even get close, which a very few are able to do. The leads are also not handed out evenly at all. There are different categories of leads that greatly range in how likely they are able to buy and the best sales reps are given the better leads (fair but on to my next point). My main reason for leaving is that as of January 2018, the COO of the company started to directly oversee the Raleigh branch. He came down to visit a couple weeks into the year and it quickly became clear he did not view us as employees but simply a number on a board. He then had 1 on 1 meetings with everyone and basically told 90% of the office they sucked without giving any helpful criticism of how to improve. When the fact was brought up that not everyone is given the same leads he quickly wrote that off as a lame excuse and said something along the lines of always giving Michael Jordan the last shot. This is fair but then you can't expect the bench players to average the same amount of points when only being given 1/10th of the minutes. You then also don't just tell your players to just "play better" without any further instructions. After his visit he started making changes in order to be able to micromanage the office from afar, including making everyone fill out sheets about who they spoke to that day (even though the sales program records all of it already). He then proceeded to call anyone on their phones when he deemed they weren't doing enough (creates a pretty stressful work environment). The reason I put a side note next to job security is because they don't fire a lot of people, instead you will have meetings where you are told that you suck and should start looking for other jobs. They will do this until you quit or finally do get fired. I have also heard that if you take a leave of absence longer than 5 days you will get dropped from the company health insurance (this did not happen to me personally so I cannot speak to the validity of it but it is definitely something worth looking into before accepting a job here). Lastly, the commission structure is pretty terrible but you know that going into the job so it shouldn't come as a surprise. I knew starting out I would never reach that level so that it never bothered me all that much.

    Advice to Management

    Treat your employees better. They would be a lot more motivated if you didn't treat them like children or in some cases, garbage. A little respect can go a long way. Just fire people you don't working for you instead of harassing them until they quit, its despicable.


  9. "Another One Bites the Dust"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Raleigh, NC
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Strategic Value Media full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    -The current staff, they were amazing. The closeness and friendships established.
    -Nerf guns :)
    -Occasional company outings (with Kissy-kissy :) )
    -The work life- (8am-5pm) no weekends, no taking work home.
    - Coffee
    -The building management company that owns the building does more for us than the company.
    -Great for someone right outta college ( great base pay 40k)

    Cons

    -New CEO, no disrespect...but dude is a CLOWN. Came in right around the beginning of the year, stating he wanted to get to know us, be on "our team" and wanted to hear our thoughts on how we can make our job, company bigger and better. Sweet right? Wrong, dude is a wolf in sheep clothing, basically told some of the more tenured reps that if they did not get there numbers up, they would be fired. From a business stand point, I get..but shouldn't there be guidance, training, etc. No, there was here are the leads, sell, sell, sell..if you don't hit the number..YOU'RE FIRED ( In my Trump voice)
    -The benefits are a joke, I mean..they offer them..thats great..but a JOKE!
    -No upward mobility..no growth

    Advice to Management

    -Equality, in the sense of treating everyone the same. Continue training, fine tuning the craft that is required on a day-to-day base.


  10. "Worst company in North Carolina (maybe in general i dont know)"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    makes you appreciate your next job
    makes your form good friendships

    Cons

    literally just go look at every con on every review and there you have it.... they are CON artists..... i have no respect for them and they treat their employees like trash

    Advice to Management

    treat people like people
    don't be sketchy


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