The Screwtape Emails XII: How NOT to Sell

    The Screwtape Emails XII: How NOT to Sell

    Welcome to SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales, the most strategically biased B2B Marketing Agency, telemarketing services, telemarketing companies (sales agency) and digital marketing companies, serving Orange County, Los Angeles, San Jose, Sacramento and the Pacific Northwest (Bend, Portland, Seattle). We gladly serve California and all 50 United States!

    There are right and wrong ways to go about marketing, and the pitfalls are many. A lot can be learned by seeing how not to manage your marketing. This original blog series weaves together an entertaining story that will help you navigate 21st-Century marketing with a view from “the dark side,” as “Screwtape” teaches his apprentice “Wormwood” via email how to sabotage your marketing. Enjoy…

    To: Wormwood

    From: Screwtape

    Subject: How NOT to Sell

    My Dear Wormwood,

    There is a way that seems right to a salesperson, but in the end it leads to the death of the sale. The art of selling is critical to the success of any and every business, which is why you must work hard to ensure your Patient’s selling is done wrong.

    So here, my apprentice, are some points on how NOT to sell!

    • Use the “power of persuasion.” Trying to persuade someone to buy your product or service usually means you are spending valuable time with someone who’s not very interested. It’s much better to spend one’s effort qualifying or disqualifying a prospect (something we don’t want the Patient to know), and then moving on quickly if it becomes apparent that a prospect isn’t a good fit.
    • Sound like a salesperson. This is the best way to get hung up on or walked away from. Yes, it’s deceptively comfortable to use that sales voice so many others are using, but only for the salesperson. The best way to engage a prospect is to be genuine, as if talking to a friend or colleague. These days, people respond to realness and shun smooth talk.
    • Pump up the enthusiasm! If you’re excited about your product or service, the prospect will be too…or not. Getting zealous can come across as disingenuous and frighten people away. I mean, really…how excited can you actually get about getting your teeth cleaned or buying software? In actuality, more people respond to a more measured and realistic approach.
    • Pitch, pitch, pitch! But only if you want to be ignored. The truth is, your prospects don’t care about your product or service, they care about what you can DO for them. What problems can you solve? How can you make their life more enjoyable or pleasant? They don’t care that you’re now using the latest X35 bug spray, they care that you’re giving them peace of mind by ensuring those carpenter ants aren’t eating the frame of their house!
    • Target everyone. You’re not going to sell to everyone, only to those who actually want or need what you’re offering. Maybe you’re a good enough salesperson to sell air conditioning to an Eskimo, but that doesn’t mean you should try. Truly good sales people target their sales to the most likely audiences and focus on those likely to buy without too much persuasion.

    By all means, push these outdated sales techniques, my ward, and you will succeed in sabotaging the Patient’s selling efforts. Fail, and you will have problems of your own to deal with that I would not envy.

    Your affectionate Uncle,

    Screwtape

    Call SalesFish today and our high-touch, dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals, and the marketing and sales tactics best suited to your specific needs. And, yes, we will also advise you on the best A.I. tools that actually work and complement the real people in your business!


    Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class digital marketing strategies and B2B telemarketing sales strategies. We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.

    Call today and our “high-touch” dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals to tailor our marketing and sales tactics to your specific needs.

    SalesFish B2B Telemarketing Services

    SalesFish Net of Sales Services:

    • B2B Direct Sales, Channel Sales and Marketing Strategies
    • On-Site B2B Presentation, Negotiation and Sales
    • B2B Telemarketing and B2B Telesales Services
    • Cold Calls and Appointment Setting
    • Online Presentations and Webinars
    • Product Awareness and Announcement Calls
    • Primary Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Surveys
    • Experiential Event Marketing
    • Pre and Post-Event Calls
    • Audience Acquisition, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales

    The Screwtape Emails, Part X

    Welcome to SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales, the most strategically biased B2B Marketing Agency, telemarketing services, telemarketing companies (sales agency) and digital marketing companies, serving Orange County, Los Angeles, San Jose, Sacramento and the Pacific Northwest (Bend, Portland, Seattle). We gladly serve California and all 50 United States!

    There are right and wrong ways to go about marketing, and the pitfalls are many. A lot can be learned by seeing how not to manage your marketing. This original blog series weaves together an entertaining story that will help you navigate 21st-Century marketing with a view from “the dark side,” as “Screwtape” teaches his apprentice “Wormwood” via email how to sabotage your marketing. Enjoy…

    PART TEN:
    To: Wormwood
    From: Screwtape
    Subject: Heading Off Headlines

    “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.” David Ogilvy

    My dear Wormwood,

    Read and re-read this quote by the “Father of Advertising”; feel the cold shiver run down your spine. The power of the headline to stymie our mission of mayhem cannot be overstated. It is the content equivalent of Thor’s hammer, smashing through the cognitive filters by which people ignore most advertising. There are no words more critical in marketing content. With just a few words, an audience can be hooked—with the end result that articles, blogs and other content stand a good chance of being read, shared and talked about.

    So I thought it prudent to share some things the patient must not be allowed to do:

    • Devote significant time to crafting a creative headline…first.

    It’s usually a mistake to start writing advertising content before one establishes the flavor and theme of the piece with a good headline. That’s like mixing ingredients before you determine what you’re baking! The Enemy suggests that in many cases, he spends most of his time on the headlines when he is creating a content marketing campaign.

    • Focus your headline on values

    We just love headlines that tout features of products or services because they are sure to turn people off. People aren’t buying products or services; they’re buying the end result. They don’t want a laptop with an X38T core processor; they want a faster computer that’s lighter in their computer bag. So a headline like, “We Taught our Laptops to Fly” would get more attention than, “Introducing the New X38T Processor.”

    • Be Compelling


    Compelling headlines make readers curious. They lead readers to click or keep reading to find out more. Questions often make good headlines. For example:

    Can Your Laptop Fly?

    Compelling doesn’t always meet clever. Many a clever headline may get a chuckle (or an eye roll), but fail to stir the curiosity to find out more. The best headlines are both compelling and clever.

    • Expand on the Headline

    Expanding on the laptop headline, this might look like:

    We Taught Our Laptops to Fly

    20% Faster, 50% Lighter—The New MacBook is Going to Fly Off the Shelves.

    The headline should be short, attention grabbing and focus on value to the audience. The subhead can start introducing specific benefits and features. Do not talk about yourself till you have first highlighted the value of your offerings to the client. Starting out with features and talking about yourself is just asking to be ignored. Start your piece by answering the question, “what’s in it for me?” (“Me” being the reader.)

    Of course, Wormwood, there is much more to say on the topic of headlines, but focus on preventing these few actions, and you will successfully keep the Patient’s content campaigns from getting off the ground.

    Your affectionate uncle,

    Screwtape

    Call SalesFish today and our high-touch, dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals, and the marketing and sales tactics best suited to your specific needs. And, yes, we will also advise you on the best A.I. tools that actually work and complement the real people in your business!


    Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class digital marketing strategies and B2B telemarketing sales strategies. We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.

    Call today and our “high-touch” dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals to tailor our marketing and sales tactics to your specific needs.

    SalesFish B2B Telemarketing Services

    SalesFish Net of Sales Services:

    • B2B Direct Sales, Channel Sales and Marketing Strategies
    • On-Site B2B Presentation, Negotiation and Sales
    • B2B Telemarketing and B2B Telesales Services
    • Cold Calls and Appointment Setting
    • Online Presentations and Webinars
    • Product Awareness and Announcement Calls
    • Primary Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Surveys
    • Experiential Event Marketing
    • Pre and Post-Event Calls
    • Audience Acquisition, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales
    The Screwtape Emails VII

    The Screwtape Emails VII

    Welcome to SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales, the most strategically biased B2B Marketing Agency, telemarketing services, telemarketing companies (sales agency) and digital marketing companies, serving Orange County, Los Angeles, San Jose, Sacramento and the Pacific Northwest (Bend, Portland, Seattle). We gladly serve California and all 50 United States!

    There are right and wrong ways to go about marketing, and the pitfalls are many. A lot can be learned by seeing how not to manage your marketing. This original blog series weaves together an entertaining story that will help you navigate 21st-Century marketing with a view from “the dark side,” as “Screwtape” teaches his apprentice “Wormwood” via email how to sabotage your marketing. Enjoy…

    PART SEVEN:
    To: Wormwood
    From: Screwtape
    Subject: Ads that SUCK

    My dear Wormwood,

    Ah, yes—we’ve now come to one of my favorite missives: How to make ads that suck! In our ongoing battle to prevent the Patient from prospering, we can prevail upon him to produce the sort of advertising that will make him invisible. Most side-slappingly hilarious of all? We can make him think his atrocious ads are something special (and when they produce the expected meager results, we will convince him that advertising doesn’t work.)

    So, my minion of mayhem, here is a primer on how to make ads that suck:

    • Make sure you stay “safe.” The steadiest road to “suckitude” is to never pass the competition by deviating from the well-worn rut. It feels safe to have your ads look and feel like everyone else’s. I mean, shouldn’t a real estate ad look like a real estate ad? The truth we must never let the Patient discover is that safe ads are the most dangerous kind to his ROI. Safe ads are invisible and do not distinguish one from the competition. At some point, a car insurance company made the move into the fast lane with ads featuring humorous characters, and the result was that Geico became a household name. The other insurance companies are still trying to catch up, but will forever be followers now that Geico has blazed a new trail. Old Spice put the pedal to the metal with a series of ridiculously hyperbolic ads that effectively tripled their sales in short order, and moved them from a musty, old-guy’s product to the most happening name in their market.
    • You’re paying for the ad space, so pack in as much as possible. Print ads that look like a mini brochure, video and radio ads that present a yard sale of features. Have the Patient pack it in like a big city bus ride to Sucksville. Nothing makes people flip the page, scroll up the thumb, hit the mute more than information overload. In reality, the brilliance is most often in brevity, and the greatest impact comes from simplicity. One core message conveyed through humor, shocking fact, tear-jerking seriousness or other emotionally-impacting techniques will get attention—and the purpose of ads is to grab attention, not to inform!
    • Try it for a little while, then pull it if it’s not performing. Don’t allow the Patient to define what “performance” means. Convince him that if people aren’t lined up at the door after running an ad for a week, then it must not be working. Get him thinking that the only thing that matters is short-term revenue resulting directly from the ad. If he should have the confidence to be patient as a brilliant ad campaign unfolds, then we risk him getting long-term results most companies only dream of. Most radically successful ad campaigns must be run and repeated long enough to catch fire and capture the imagination. They must have time to break through filters (which often takes repetition) and then generate buzz by early adopters. People cannot help but become fans of great ads, and once they start talking about their favorites, the flood gates open.
    • Talk about yourself. Too many small businesses owners want to see themselves on the camera—a fact we love! Talking about yourself and/or all the wonderful services you offer is like, as Roy H. Williams puts it, like making people watch home movies of your most recent vacation. In today’s sophisticated digital-media environment, nobody cares about you; they want to see themselves in your ads. It’s a cold, hard truth we can portray to the Patient as selfish and narcissistic on the part of his audience, and blind him to the fact that, by putting himself first, he’s playing the self-centered card perfectly. We know it’s only after you put your audience first that they will turn their attention to you…but let’s not let that get out, shall we?

    There are many other ways to make ads that suck, but this is enough for now. You’re a mere apprentice and I know your capacity for such things is limited. Besides, I’m waiting to see how you handle convincing the Patient to walk into these four traps first.

    Your affectionate uncle,

    Screwtape


    Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class digital marketing strategies and B2B telemarketing sales strategies. We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.

    Call today and our “high-touch” dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals to tailor our marketing and sales tactics to your specific needs.

    SalesFish B2B Telemarketing Services

    SalesFish Net of Sales Services:

    • B2B Direct Sales, Channel Sales and Marketing Strategies
    • On-Site B2B Presentation, Negotiation and Sales
    • B2B Telemarketing and B2B Telesales Services
    • Cold Calls and Appointment Setting
    • Online Presentations and Webinars
    • Product Awareness and Announcement Calls
    • Primary Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Surveys
    • Experiential Event Marketing
    • Pre and Post-Event Calls
    • Audience Acquisition, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales
    The Screwtape Emails – Old School Pitching

    The Screwtape Emails – Old School Pitching

    Welcome to SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales, the most strategically biased B2B Marketing Agency, telemarketing services, telemarketing companies (sales agency) and digital marketing companies, serving Orange County, Los Angeles, San Jose, Sacramento and the Pacific Northwest (Bend, Portland, Seattle). We gladly serve California and all 50 United States!

    There are right and wrong ways to go about marketing, and the pitfalls are many. A lot can be learned by seeing how not to manage your marketing. This original blog series weaves together an entertaining story that will help you navigate 21st-Century marketing with a view from “the dark side,” as “Screwtape” teaches his apprentice “Wormwood” via email how to sabotage your marketing. Enjoy…

    PART ONE:
    To: Wormwood
    From: Screwtape
    Subject: Old School Pitching

    My dear Wormwood,

    In your glorious mission to sabotage the plans of the business owner, whom we are calling the “Patient,” let us focus on sales. Sales and marketing are the lifeblood of any company, and the greatest threats to your success (I need not remind you that you are being watched, and failure on your part has consequences). Let us discuss, then, the art of “closing the deal.”

    By all means, fill your Patient’s head with all sorts of outdated sales principles. You might be surprised to know that many sales trainers are still teaching old-school sales techniques, dating back to the late 1800s and early 1900s. Tired, regurgitated and woefully out of date, these can be powerful tools in our hands! Convince the Patient that what worked yesterday will work today.

    I must emphasize that you must not allow the Patient to awaken to the fact that today’s consumer is much too sophisticated to fall for “push” sales techniques. Back in the day, companies spoon-fed their brand to the masses, shaping their thinking and perceptions. With online reviews, social media discussions and other information available today, consumers largely define brands. As author and marketing consultant Faris Yakob writes, mass media has given way to “the media of the masses.” Today’s sales prospect comes into the pipeline armed with a knowledge of what they want and don’t want, and they don’t want to be sold.

    We can use this reality to our advantage. Have the Patient focus on “pitching” their product. Convince him that prospects actually care about his product or service, rather than the problems he can help them solve. If the Patient peddles the wonderful features of his offerings, we’ve got him right where we want him—but be sure he gets just enough lukewarm response from this to feed the delusion that this approach will pay off in time. (In this case, we can use the “Power of Positive Thinking” to our advantage.)

    Under no circumstances can you allow the patient to begin with a customer-focused approach! If the Patient asks effective questions about the needs and frustrations of the prospect, our Cause may be lost (and you will be held responsible, my dear Wormwood, so let’s just not go there).

    Yet, there may be a way to salvage even this disaster by transitioning the Patient from customer focus to persuasion—and this is what I will cover in my next training email. The so-called “power of persuasion” can kill a sale faster than a moth flying into a flame (an apropos metaphor for you, if you should fail us.)

    Your affectionate uncle,

    Screwtape


    Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class digital marketing strategies and B2B telemarketing sales strategies. We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.

    Call today and our “high-touch” dedicated team will assist you in assessing your strategic sales goals to tailor our marketing and sales tactics to your specific needs.

    SalesFish B2B Telemarketing Services

    SalesFish Net of Sales Services:

    • B2B Direct Sales, Channel Sales and Marketing Strategies
    • On-Site B2B Presentation, Negotiation and Sales
    • B2B Telemarketing and B2B Telesales Services
    • Cold Calls and Appointment Setting
    • Online Presentations and Webinars
    • Product Awareness and Announcement Calls
    • Primary Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Surveys
    • Experiential Event Marketing
    • Pre and Post-Event Calls
    • Audience Acquisition, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales

    Outsourcing Exhibit Sales & Sponsorship Sales

    Welcome to the blog for California’s most strategically-biased event planning, event management, event marketing, sponsorship sales, exhibit sales, and B2B event marketing.

    We serve Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Portland, and Seattle.  We are very much at home in all 50 United States. Partner with a client centric B2B Market Agency that puts skin in the game… from strategic Telemarketing Services to Experiential Event Marketing.

    If you’re planning an experiential marketing event whether it’s a trade show, user conference, workshop, road show or sales event, you, without a doubt, must decide how to SELL your event.

    If you’re a first time or fairly new event, how you sell is even more critical.  The old adage “build it and they will come” does not apply to any event.  You must gain the trust of your target audience over time by continuing to give them a world-class experiential event marketing experience.

    If you’re a new or mature event, it’s always a great idea to tie your event to a worthy cause and give a portion of proceeds to that cause (cause marketing).  It’s also a good idea to be prepared to give away landscape as well as opportunities to marquee brands and/or companies.

    In regards to audience acquisition, exhibit sales, or sponsorship sales are you trusting in your marketing alone? Learn first hand what an elite Telemarketing Services team can bring to your B2B Lead Generation goals.

    When selling an event it’s never a good idea to represent yourself.  There’s a reason Hollywood stars or professional athletes have agents: it isn’t just for negotiation purposes, but to further reflect how special they really are.

    There’s something about having an intermediary to “brand” target’s minds that your event is special.

    Our strong and strategically-biased encouragement is to not go it alone when selling your event, whether it’s for audience acquisition, sponsorship sales or exhibit sales.

    Stay tuned for future relevant Event Planning, Event Management, Event Marketing, Exhibit Sales and Sponsorship Sales content.

    We at SalesFish Event Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering Strategic Event planning, Event Management, B2B Telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales, B2B Inside Sales, Sponsorship Sales, Exhibit Sales, Audience Acquisition, Brand Marketing and Execution.

    Outsourcing B2B Telemarketing & B2B Tele-Sales

     

    Welcome to the blog for California’s most strategically-biased B2B Tele-Sales, B2B Telemarketing, B2B Inside Sales Agency and B2B Marketing Agency serving Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Portland, Oregon, Seattle, Washington and all 50 United States. Partner with a client centric B2B Market Agency that puts skin in the game… from strategic Telemarketing Services to Experiential Event Marketing.

    In today’s virtual Sales 2.O world does it make sense to outsource your B2B Telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales or B2B Inside Sales activities?  The answer is YES though you still commit to the process of integrated marketing combined with your B2B Telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales and B2B Inside Sales activities.

    Outsourcing your B2B Telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales and Inside Sales requires an organization with strong internal marketing leadership to include strong sales acumen.

    Given that your organization has such strong leadership, it’s prudent to outsource your B2B Telemarketing, B2B Tele-Sales and B2B Inside Sales activities to a proven B2B marketing agency partner.

    Carefully consider the decision to outsource.  The vetting of a qualified partner includes a partner strategic in their sales approach with a fundamental understanding of integrated marketing. Learn first hand what an elite Telemarketing Services team can bring to your B2B Lead Generation goals.

    Stay tuned for more relevant content on creating world-class B2B Telesales, B2B Telemarketing and B2B Inside Sales strategies.  We at SalesFish Brand Marketing & Sales thank you for joining us in our commitment to unwavering strategic planning, B2B brand marketing and B2B sales execution.