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If they don't want it, don't sell it to them

Take note hard-sellers

I get a lot of people coming up to my pop-up roof restoration table asking, "How much for a roof restoration?" I explain why I can't answer that question.
  • I don't have the skills.
  • Only the boss can do quotes.
  • We have to see the state of your roof first.
  • How big is the roof?
  • What kind of tiles do you have?
  • Is it Colorbond?
Do you want tucking and pointing or do you want the whole gamut of latest technology cleaning, painting and roof protection up there? "It's why I have to send the guys around to give you a quote." At this point, about 50% of the people leave. They don't want "guys coming around" is the only reason why. Many times more people ask me where the toilets are. That's easy. "Over there" I point. Some of this bugs me. I know a lot of sales people who take it personally when they don't get a sale. Boo hoo . . . Wha-? I spent a whole day in Bali (back in 2000) with a guy trying like blazes to sell me a timeshare. The person I was with wanted a free Bali T-shirt - the dubious prize for attending this 4 hour long meeting. What the guy should have asked me was "Do you want a timeshare?" My answer would have been "No." I'm pretty sure I don't want to - and have never wanted to - get into a partnership with other white people (whom I'll never meet) who are seriously considering buying 1/50th of a Hotel. I was safe. He could see I was a hard customer and said, "Tell you what. I'll get my boss." This hard-core hard-selling salesman came to the table. I could tell he was the bug gun sales guy. Hint: If you are ever going to meet a salesperson for any length of tie, do not take any ID or even a wallet. In Bali, I like to hide valuables in my hotel room and leave with as small a packet of notes I think I may need. Maybe $50. This hard-core guy wanted me to sign on the bottom line. I wasn't going to. One of the things he needed was ID. I laughed when I told him "I'm not interested. Also I've got no money and no ID." We were shuffled out with the free t-shirt and a flyer. I sit here amidst a slew of A4 stand-up placards, signs and posters. You'd think - wouldn't you - that anyone approaching my desk would have a passing interest in roof restoration. Well (and this is interesting, so bear with...) about 50% of the people who do come up to talk to me are in the market for a roof makeover. The other 50% are ex-roof tilers, roof painters or people in the building industry who are interested in roofs. What's interesting about these people is that about 50% of them (i.e. 25% of everyone with whom I converse at my fold-up camping table in the mall) leave their contact info and 0% lead to a sale. On the other hand, of the other 50% (the non-roof experts) about 50% of those do buy. About 17% of people who I talk to for more than one minute end up buying something. But I still get a bit peeved at those who are kinda wasting my time for no perceivable gain. Or are they? Or am I being like the disappointed timeshare guys?

Let it go

Y'know what? If you do sell, these days there's a cooling off period. A few people will change their mind an ask for their money back. I have a suspicion about these people. Sometimes I think these are the poor decision makers of this world. Most people are kind of wandering around this Earth not really making decisions, but going with the flow. "Yeah, sure we need our roof done. Who doesn't?" They sign up. Their partner re-negs on the deal. Or there's the person who felt strong-armed into a sale. "Yes I need it done, but these guys were all about sales." They then bail. What nobody wants is to make a sale and then have it recalled. What an Alexander (Downer) that would be!

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