You’re driving down the road still hours from your destination and famished. Being that you’re in a small, rural area, you decide to pull off and ask someone what food they might recommend for a road-weary traveler. The person appears to be local and, from what you can gather, trustworthy. You exchange pleasantries then express to the local that you would like to find a quick, healthy meal to sustain you on your journey. After a brief pause, the local excitedly suggests that the Exxon station across the two-lane highway just started carrying sushi and that, “it’s fantastic – I promise!”
The moment of truth arrives – do you trust the local who is extolling the greatness of gas station sushi, or do you snag a small bag of Cool Ranch Dorito’s and a bottle of water? The fact is most wouldn’t trust sushi bought from a gas station – it just doesn’t sound appetizing no matter who tells you how wonderful it tastes.
Many promotional products professionals have prospects that continually ask for – or, even worse, demand – new ideas but never seem to buy. When probed, the prospect will generally explain that the “timing isn’t right” or that they “went in a different direction.” Often they will dangle the carrot of “next time,” and, all too often, salespeople cling to that promise only to have the situation repeat itself again and again.
You wouldn’t trust sushi from a gas station, so why would you trust a prospect that has a history of squeezing you for ideas but never makes a purchase?
When the promise is always better than reality, it’s time to find a different prospect.
Bill Petrie has over 22 years working in executive leadership positions at leading promotional products companies, always working collaboratively to achieve the “wow” desired by the target audience.
A Managing Partner at brandivate, a full-service marketing services and advertising agency, Bill is featured speaker at numerous national and international events, a serial creator of content marketing, and co-host of the industry-leading podcast, Promo UPFront. Bill has extensive experience defining brand strategy, creating successful marketing campaigns, creating and developing winning RFP responses, and presenting winning promotional products solutions to Fortune 500 clients.