Telling is Not Selling

Ogilvy one is having a contest to find the greatest sales person in the world. They want you to record yourself selling them a brick. This is the YouTube ad for the contest.

My friend David Brock did a great job of breaking down why this contest is terrible and has nothing to do with sales and I agree with him. You can read it here.

In the video Ogilvy breaks sales down into pitch, present and pry. Yet, in order to win the contest the only thing you do is pitch and present. There is no pry and in my opinion if there is no pry, you are not selling. Pitching and presenting are one way conversations. Pitchmen and presenters talk at us. They sling! Ogilvy is looking for the best “pitchperson” in the world, not the best “salesperson” in the world.

Selling requires we, as they suggest, pry. Selling requires we ask questions. It requires we dig for information and understanding. There is no understanding without the pry.

Prying gets to motive, need, reason, drivers and more. Prying delivers the road map. It directs the salesperson. It says go here, offer this, introduce that, don’t provide these things. Prying makes the connection between buyer and product.

Without the pry connections can’t be made. Without the connection it’s a lot of guess work and that is where pitchpersons come in. Pitchpersons don’t have the connection so they tell, they do a lot of telling. They tell and tell until they are asked to stop telling or until they get lucky and hit the right cord. Pitching and presenting is manipulation not selling.

Pitching and presenting are synonyms for yelling and telling.

Yelling and telling are not selling. Prying is selling.

Now go pry!

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