Friday, August 1, 2008

Of Selling Stuff

I often find myself declaring that I could not sell a heater to an eskimo to save my life, not so much because I want to lull the eskimo into a false sense of security before I hit him with my sales pitch, but because it is simply true. I used to dread those times of charity when instead of generously allowing me to make a fool of myself in the attempt to raise money, they gave me tickets to sell. Ugh. Seriously. Ask me to sing. Ask me to dance (take me to France... ... never mind). Ask me to do both in a bear suit. But for fuck's sake don't ask me to sell something. Once when I could afford all the tickets, I bought it out and then give them away. It was easier that way, plus it was a good way to get in touch with people. I mean, the first rule of freebies is that people respond to freebies. The second rule of freebies is that people RESPOND to freebies.*

I have not quite understood this inability of mine because if you asked me for a recommendation for a particular gadget i.e. laptop, cameras, etc. I would in all probability give a better sales pitch then if you paid me wages and had me sell those things. So it's not that I cannot make a sales pitch - I am able to understand and grasp the features of an object and their particular advantage, framing an object and its price, how to create a sales opening, etc because I have read books on how to sell things - but I am incredibly inhibited if paid to sell things. Very strange. Perhaps when I am not paid to give my recommendations it helps me feel independent and not feel particularly beholden to a particular manufacturer, so I feel less inhibited and more enthusiastic in my recommendations to someone. I think it also has to do with me as well - I don't like the idea that I am persuading or encouraging someone to buy something that they may not actually want or need simply to make a sale simply because I dislike others doing that to me. And do unto others as you would have others do unto you kind of thing. 

Although, modesty aside, I am pretty sure I could advise him on a tortious claim should the heater end up melting his igloo and spoiling his fine selection of rare caviar. 

*(Palahniuk, Fight Club, in case you were wondering)

1 comment:

art harun said...

But I find you an excellent seller of ideas and intellectual discourses. After all, that's what your (and mine too) wrtings are all about no? Or am I reducing their value by saying so? If so, and only if - although I feel you should not be offended, because it is not intended to offend, you see, how could you be offended if I think I don't intend to offend, and ..... - anyway, IF la, just IF, you are offended, I apologise, okay.

Back to the sale thingy, yes, I am useless at it too.