To sell an inventory item as part of a deal, you need to know its price. That number may fluctuate, or you might charge different prices in different situations. Rate cards store the sale price and other relevant information for an inventory item.
An inventory item can have any number of rate cards, but must have at least one in order to be sold. This is because even though we often think in terms of adding inventory items to a deal, we actually add rate cards to it in the Deal Manager.
Rates and units
The rate itself is the default price you charge for a particular inventory item. This is the rate used in the Deal Manager. There are two ways to charge a different price: override the rate or use a different rate card for the same inventory item.
Normal users can only override a rate if you tick Rate Overwritable. (Admins can always override rates.) This gives your reps the flexibility to manually adjust the revenue assigned to the deal line. In addition, you can optionally set a Min Rate that the Deal Manager will respect when prorating. (Proration overrides the rate used in a deal.)
A rate card must also specify how many units are provided at the given price. This is typically one, but it can vary. For example, you might sell a fan VIP experience in pairs or sell TV promotional spots in 15 second blocks.
The unit description is optional text that describes how the quantity is measured. This could be tickets, posts, seconds, or anything else. It is especially useful if the item's name doesn't make this obvious.
Caution: The unit for time-based assets will always be seconds, regardless of what you enter here. Be sure to input the unit of sale in seconds to avoid miscalculations.
Rate card assignment determines how the rate is applied. This is related to but distinct from an inventory item's assignment (seasonal or individual). An inventory item assignment describes how the item is delivered while the rate card assignment describes how the item is sold.
Seasonal rate card: The rate applies to the entire season, regardless of the inventory item's assignment.
Individual rate card: The rate applies to a single item delivered at a single event. If the item is sold for multiple events, the same quantity must be sold for each event.
Bank rate card: The rate applies to a single item at a single event, but the quantity delivered at each event may vary.
This provides flexibility in both sale and delivery. For example, a concourse booth might be an individual inventory item since it must be set up ahead of each event, but it could have a seasonal rate card if the same sponsor wants a booth at every event. Similarly, a player appearance would be an individual inventory item, but it could have a bank rate card since the sponsor may want one player at one event, then three players at the next.
Warning: A seasonal inventory item may only be tied to seasonal rate cards—never individual or bank rate cards. Since the item is only delivered once per season, you can only sell it on a seasonal basis.
Create a new rate card
Note: If you're creating inventory items in bulk, you should enter the details of each item's first rate card in the same spreadsheet.
Begin by opening an inventory item (Configuration Records > Inventory Items) and scrolling down to the Rate Cards section, then click Create New Rate Card to open a form.
The required fields are:
- Inventory item: The item this rate card applies to. (Usually filled in automatically.)
- Season: A rate card applies to just one season. (You can copy it to other seasons later.)
- Assignment: Is this rate seasonal, individual, or bank?
- Round: Defaults to regular season, but you can change this to a playoff round.
- Rate: The standard charge for this asset.
- Unit of sale: The base quantity sold. Usually 1, but might be 15 for a TV promo measured in seconds for example.
Some of the optional fields include:
- Hard cost: The amount it costs your organization to provide the item, used for reporting.
- Unit of events: Defaults to 1. Use this to specify that an item lasts through multiple events but falls short of a full season. For example, you might sell "Homestand Sponsor" rights in blocks of 5 games.
- Lock title: Prevent users from entering a custom name for an item in the Deal Manager. Ordinarily, this can be done to customize the generated contract.
- Do not rollover: This rate card will be omitted if you roll over (copy) a season's rate cards into another season.
- Only package item: This rate card can only be used to add items to an inventory package.
- Allow multiple lines: If allowed, the rate card can be used more than once within a deal. For example, you might sell the first quantity of 10 items at full price, then discount the rate for the remaining quantity.
- Default: If ticked, this rate card will be used for calculating availability and reporting. For example, you might calculate how many radio ad slots are available based on the 15 second rate card instead of the 30 second rate card.
- Warning threshold: Deprecated.
When finished, click Save. The rate card will now be available in Deal Manager.
Multiple rate cards
Because an inventory item can have more than one rate card, you can create more than one default price to use in different situations.
The most common use case is to provide an individually assigned inventory item at every event in a season—you can create a second rate card with a seasonal assignment (see below) and a per-season rate. For example, you might sell a banner for $1000 per event. If the season has 10 events, you could create a seasonal rate of $8000 representing a 20% discount compared to the per-event pricing. Use each rate card's Unit of Sale Description field to help further distinguish them.
You might also price a time-based asset differently depending on how much time a sponsor wants. For example, you could sell LED signage in 2 minute blocks for $500 but also offer a 5 minute block for $1000.
You can also create an additional rate card intended for a particular business case. For example, you might want to offer a discounted rate on an asset to local partners without allowing sales reps to override the standard rate charged to national partners. (However, be aware that there is no software mechanism to restrict rate cards to certain sponsors.)
Because the rate cards are connected to the same inventory item, the Deal Manager will show the same quantity available for physical assets regardless of which rate card is selected. For time-based assets, the rate cards will show different quantities of remaining units but the total remaining time (units times seconds) will be equal.