“Sorry, sir, could you help me out with 22p?”

The shopping streets of urban Britain can resemble an obstacle course in avoiding groups of intimidating beggars.

The police instruct citizens not to give them anything.

Apparently seeking to quell the current frightening trend for such monies to get spent on the chemical cannabinoid ‘spice’. Which renders takers zombified where they sat.

The scourge is not restricted to English shores. I’m on quite good terms with one such local street-dweller elsewhere. Llewellyn seems to spend his entire ‘earnings’ on single cigarettes and liquid refreshment that smells like paint stripper. His main tactic is to ask for any food.

The line at the top is different. What I got asked on a Summer’s workday lunchtime by someone wandering around business district greenery.

I contemplated asking why twenty-two pence? Such a precise sum. What was it for?

The equivalent of just under thirty American cents. So not an amount with which you could do much on its own.

But instantly I wondered whether this person had either been sensibly schooled, or had worked out some telling pricetag psychology for themselves.

The typical request is simply for “any spare change?”

Sometimes a single value coin is asked for, “just ten pence?”

Yet I recalled various merchandiser-type teachings that you’re more likely to elicit a positive response when the figure set is atypical.

22 certainly fits this bill.

It makes those asked stop and think a bit.

Being out-of-the-ordinary it distracts.

So makes them more likely to act.

Ever since my early cubrep days, I’ve noted a succession of sales sages suggest you ought never quote a round number.

Unless offering vague sample initial ranges upon first request, afterwards when needing to get specific, your numbers should be oddly devoid of neatness.

Later that afternoon, I was discussing online monthly subs with someone for a business product. None of the pricing was for just ten, or fifty, or a hundred. (Nor derivatives of the dreaded 9.99).

There’s a good reason for that. As much as we’d like to think the world was full of easy to follow numbers, the buying world is not.

I hope you’ve got your proven 22p request ready and working.

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