You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Sales’ category.

Occasionally I get a sales letter that is so bad I can only scratch my head. Here are extracts from two that inspired me to write this post, in the hopes that none of you will similarly ever waste your resources.

The first was accompanied by a slick (expensive) brochure:

Dear David

In the vast world of information technology sourcing / outsourcing, it can be difficult and perhaps overwhelming when trying to find the right solution for your client’s business, needs and cost structures. Which so many choices, how can you be sure which solution is the right fit for your client’s business.

The XXXXX approach is simple: By consulting with you and your staff in a partnership manner, we can better understand your client’s goals, workflow, technology and business needs to create a meaningful solution which will meet those needs now and into the future at a price-pint and service level which is remarkable.

Our experience spans many industries, business sizes and technology systems. We work closely with you and your client to build and implement a solution that will exceed expectations… [It only gets worse, so I won’t test your patience with any more…]

Why was this sent me? I’m not the CIO. Worse, I couldn’t figure out exactly the offer was, other than to get us to give them a bunch of information…

Here’s the second, from my cable company:

Dear David Harkleroad,

With the YYYYY Price Guarantee you lock in low prices for two full years on TV, Internet, and Phone. So you can sit back and enjoy two full years of everyone’s favorite TV shows. Two years of surfing and streaming online. And two years of hellos and miss-yous with all your favorite people.

Let it all in and get everything you want at prices you can count on, for two full years. Sign up for the YYYYY Price Guarantee today.

Sincerely

Your friends at YYYYY

Put aside the assumption that I actually have friends at YYYYY, they didn’t check that I actually renewed the service two months ago!

Both companies wasted resources: costs, time and, worst of all, my good will.

That’s what my bank – Peoples United Bank – is telling me.

Yesterday (Feb. 16, 2011), when I went to the portal (the link above) to log in to my account, I noticed an offer for free Kindle (if you click on the link to see this, you may have to do so a couple of times since the offer rotates with other offers for low mortgage rates and low home equity lines of credit). Read the rest of this entry »

After Food, Inc (see my prior post, immediately below) opened my eyes to how food production has rather radically changed over the past couple of decades, I’m now conscious of how much attention we are starting to pay to nutrition as a society.

And when society pays attention, markets pay attention. And when markets pay attention (assuming there are no distortions), the incentives created by demand drives increased supply cause change to happen, very quickly. Not only are individuals and organizations motivated by potential profits rewarded, with the most responsive and efficient reaping the highest returns, but society as a whole is better off.

For example, in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal, Read the rest of this entry »

My parents, who both grew up in the depression, instilled two values in me: hard work, and thrift. While we never felt we wanted for much growing up, there was never a lot of money to spend either, something we were blissfully unaware of. One thing I remember is mom cooking healthy dinners every night, using fresh ingredients bought daily from the supermarket. She was a good bargain hunter, and knew how to stretch her food dollar. We’d splurge occasionally on a hamburger out at the local A&W (remember those?), washed down with a root beer float.

Thus, I was struck by a vignette early on in the film Food, Inc., where a working family of four stops by a fast food restaurant for a dollar meal. The mother explains that because they are so busy, she doesn’t really have time to cook, but she does want to make sure her children get a ‘good’ meal to start the day… She goes on to say that because they don’t have a lot of money, they have to look for bargain ways to feed their family. But then we find that the father is suffering from diabetes, for which he is spending $200 a month on prescription medicine… Read the rest of this entry »

Innovation = invention + commercialization.

A couple of years ago, when my friend and colleague Chris Gammill and I were working on creating and then driving IBM‘s brand strategy, we narrowed in on innovation as one of not only IBM’s critical attributes, but also one of the US’s as well, as participants in the National Innovation Initiative that Sam Palmisano sponsored for the Council on Competitiveness.

One of our struggles was why IBM, which perennially leads the world in number of patents, was not seen as an innovator in our brand research, of which we had very, very detailed data. We researched and attended conferences and interviewed experts and debated incessantly, until we finally arrived at this formula. When we realized what we had, I called up the EVP for technology, Nick Donofrio, and said I needed to see him – his frustration with brand data was legendary. Read the rest of this entry »

Once again, I find myself flabbergasted at service levels in the midst of the worst recession most of us have ever seen.  In my post How not to make a sale, I describe how a retailer drove us from a physical establishment after we had committed to buy. But it appears that direct retail operations are also not immune mistakes in organization, job design and incentives that result in lousy service.  Read the rest of this entry »

Have you ever been so put off by bad selling that you simply walked, even when you were really, really ready to buy?  

My wife and I did just that yesterday – stunned that the retail establishment drove us do this in the midst of the worst recession most of us have ever seen. But the really sad thing to me is that management wasted all its marketing, branding and PoS advertising investments by cutting investments in its people.  Read the rest of this entry »

The prior post (below or click here) generated some very perceptive comments from around the net – as a thanks to everyone who contributed, here are some excerpts regarding my colleague’s cover letter: Read the rest of this entry »

A recently laid-off colleague from a prior employer contacted me about leads for jobs. I willingly offered to help, and made some contacts – one looked like a perfect fit.  Here is the letter my colleague wrote, only slightly edited for public posting: Read the rest of this entry »

My friend Ford Harding just posted an interesting dilemma in his Rainmaking problem series and asked his readers for comments: Read the rest of this entry »

My friend Mimi Spangler offers this advice: Read the rest of this entry »

Subscribe to this blog.

Join 5 other followers

Social media

RSS Harness the power of data

  • The Future of Digital Transformation & The Growth of IoT
    Today, more than ever, CIOs are faced with developing the roadmap for their organization's journey to digital transformation. This often includes if/when they are moving to the cloud and how to drive business innovation through connection of people, data, devices and networks in real-time (IoT). Over the last few years, a greater priority has been place […]
  • Legacy Effect: The Biggest Risks of Unreliable Data
    When you get a group of a data-minded people together – we talk about, well… data. We can’t help but live and breathe it, because it’s everywhere. As consumers of data, we have all come to expect organizations to use it to enhance our experiences with them or to improve their own efficiency and processes. Unfortunately, due to our heightened sense of awarene […]
  • The Largest Tech Company in Every State
    In today’s digital age, almost every aspect of business and commerce is effected by technology. In the 21st century, most individual industrialists (e.g., Vanderbilt, Rockefeller, Carnegie) have been replaced by massive corporations and conglomerates, and nearly all are involved in the technology space. Check out the infographic below to see which tech compa […]

Top Clicks

  • None

Further Research

Categories

July 2017
M T W T F S S
« Jun    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31