How To Lose A Sale In One Easy Step

1. Do not return calls or answer email requests for more information.


I have clients who need help. I’m here to do just that. They call me, I find out what they need and make it happen.

Despite the fact that the tools – the tools I recommend to manage their agency, like software solutions – aren’t readily available for my Q & A I push forward.

I always vet the potential solutions candidates via their websites first – which are usually vague sales pitches. I always need more, and that means a live demo where I can ask questions. So I call or send an email via their site, "Yes! I'd like to learn more!"

Then I get an immediate email response that usually says, “Thank you for your interest in our product! You will be contacted by our staff shortly”.

But no call. No followup email. 


The most important question I have for you: will your solution solve my client’s problem?

If you don’t call me back that means one of two things:

  1. You have so much business you can’t possibly take on another client
  2. You don’t care

Therefore, your product is non-existent. There is no “solution” if you don’t call me back. Your product won't work for my client.

However, because I’m far more diligent than you, if I think your solution has a sliver of potential, I will make an additional call or send an additional email.

I’m working for my client. And you should be too.

Barnes & Noble Sent Me To Amazon

I’ll get to the book part, but first . . .

Today’s a holiday – Memorial Day. My Dad was a vet, World War II, South Pacific. He was wonderful, very quiet, retired from the Phone Company when people went to work and retired from the same job after decades.

He retired early, at 62, because he was just tired of working. He had a pension, and in those days, one could actually retire at 62 and draw Social Security. Not a lot of money, but he could afford to buy books. Usually Tom Clancy and Ken Follett.

He loved to read. Did so every night after Mom went to bed. It was quiet, the cats kept him company and didn’t ask him to fix the leaky faucet.

Segue to reading.

I love to read. Unfortunately for my husband, I will forego doing anything if I have a good book. I read a lot of business books – which can be boring – but when you find one that supports your opinion – it can be a real page-turner.

Yes, I’m talking about my quest last week to buy Cubed from Barnes & Noble.


Well, it was partly my fault.

As I said last week:

So, I read the article, I went online and ordered the book to pick up at my local Barnes & Noble. I planned to read as much as possible last night and wow you with enhanced knowledge, but alas, my $17.38 purchase came through, confirmed via text, that the price in store is actually $26.95.

Oh, mon dieu. I went to B&N, asked for my book at the counter and said, “I have a question.” The clerk responded immediately with, “We charge the full price, not online price” . . . as she put the book back on the shelf. They have my name, email address and phone number. Good Job.*

So I came home and ordered Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace from Amazon, free shipping and it was $17.04. Ha!

Now to be completely fair to B&N, they do let you know the price of the book will be different if you go to the store to buy the book. Well into the ordering process, mind you.

Yes, Summerlin location, I'm calling you out, AND admitting that in my excitement to find this book I overlooked the New Revised Price. I still think it's rude. And stupid.

Yes, Summerlin location, I'm calling you out, AND admitting that in my excitement to find this book I overlooked the New Revised Price. I still think it's rude. And stupid.

There it is. Well, it says the book is $27. But it’s actually $26.95 – why can’t they just put the real price in there?

The bigger question is this: Why, when you have a customer standing in front of your clerk with cash in hand, do you choose to NOT complete a transaction?

This is the stupidest sales decision ever. This certainly wasn’t a case of showrooming because I looked online – then I went to the store.

In this piece from Business Insider, reverse-showrooming, which is what I was doing and didn't know it, is being adopted by retailers.

"What has changed is that retailers have begun to identify the reverse showrooming trend and the opportunity it offers to them, and they are now working to actively capture those sales."


I live in Las Vegas. We don’t have a lot of bookstores anymore. Perhaps B&N think they have a market to themselves. But looking at the stats on bricks and mortar booksellers in this town, I think not.

Especially when they turn down a sale. From me.

I buy a lot of books – I’m not a Kindle type of person. I like ink on paper. I put post-it notes to mark important pages – especially the ones that completely agree with me and validate what I know to be true. And I’ve even been known to underline the good stuff – and use a post-it.

So, I bought the book from Amazon and had to wait a couple days. Cheaper than the online price from B&N, and I got free shipping.

Oh, and I went ahead a bought a couple other books too.

Missed opportunity, Barnes & Noble.

By the way, have a wonderful, safe Memorial Day. Put out the flag, honor our wonderful vets, barbeque a few burgers and read a book.


*well, actually, so do you if you click on my contact page. 

Quit Your Damn Lying

I can’t even believe I’m saying this. Quit your damn lying. You know who you are – the driven, talented creatives and strategists who offer up to a client – “sure, we'll get that to you today” – and you haven’t checked to see if there is anyone available to get that revision done, and it’s just a quick fix anyway, and you’ll just go to the designer and sit over their shoulder while they ‘knock it out.’

For only $25.95 you can get this shirt from Zazzle to wear to client meetings. 

For only $25.95 you can get this shirt from Zazzle to wear to client meetings. 

Or perhaps you go into a client meeting with absolutely no idea how much that awesome creative will cost to produce and say, “sure, we can do that for ten-dollars apiece” – because you’re too arrogant to accept the fact that the client had a ten-dollars-apiece budget, but they should never do anything that cheap because it – in your opinion – doesn’t fit the “brand.” Then you get to do it all over again, and you wasted a big chunk of time chasing your dream to get in CA.

Give me a break. It makes everyone look like idiots. You are not a hero for giving your client something on a RUSH, especially when they didn’t even ask for it right away. You are certainly not a hero for presenting something to a client they cannot – or will not – pay for.

Get the client excited for amazing and fast, then give them mediocrity.

I have seen this happen repeatedly in agencies and marketing departments. There is no excuse for lying… except for the fact that the individuals who lie have no spine, no ability to be creative on a budget, no idea how to work with a client, do not care about the agency as a business, and actually think they know better than everyone else.

Those people are not talented, driven, creative or strategic.

Those people cost your agency tons – in time, money and reputation.

Those people have tiny. little. balls.