Monday, December 03, 2007

Learn from Everyone

I was in Paris, France for an extended weekend this weekend.

I was walking through a park and an older woman stooped in front of me and picked up a mans ring and and said "look what I found". "This is a lucky day". She then handed it to me ostensibly to look at. The conversation continued - somewhat hampered by language barriers. She claimed to be from Yugoslavia with her son. Her son could not find work. She was hungry and asked for money for food. I responded by giving her an orange (I had a bag of them just for the purpose of giving to street people since I generally do not give money). Then she would not take the ring back saying she does not wear jewelry and it is a man's ring and I should keep it etc. Then she again asked for money and I gave her some change. She asked for more - then I knew I had been had. I gave her the ring back and this time she took it.

She was using classic marketing/sales. First the surprise - getting attention step by finding the ring. Then use the few minutes to develop rapport and make me comfortable. She also was using psychological reciprocity - make me feel indebted by giving me a gift (a ring I did not want). Then the sales pitch which was slightly successful for her - she got an orange and a bit of change.

I like psychology and sales psychology. She was a master at it.

One thing I try to do is to be able to learn some things from all people - even if much of what they have to offer I reject. Part of me says this is true wisdom.


At 3:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim, I find that example of sales/marketing incredible. The fact the lady was able to make a sales to the master salesperson, shows that she knew what she was doing. That story should be in a master sales course.

Great story.

At 1:34 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Dear Mr Estill
I had a similar experience back home in Mumbai, India. One evening while i was riding home from work on my scooter, a lottery ticket seller at the signal, came round selling tickets, as he passed by, with a slight of his hand dropped a ticket, i called out to him and told him he had dropped a ticket, to which he replied by saying that this ticket was godsent to you, see it fell down near you, that means it was meant for you, you are sure to win a prize, you must buy this ticket, you can even take it for free, when you win the prize, come back and give me my money.
So i guess the ones who have not, actually have a lot in terms of inovation and ways to make that extra or quick buck. Its probably bcoz they push themselves harder.
And those who have, dont really push that hard coz, they assume they can get by with what they have.
Clifford Rodricks
Employee at Synnex Canada, Guelph.

At 8:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're a tourist, she's a gypsy. Do you still have your wallet?

At 10:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

haha interesting...sales psychology the lady displayed very well. learning...


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