Beware The Presence Of A Topliner

The music industry. The talent and public forever ripped off by the forefathers of banksters.

Nasty restrictive record companies constantly pickpocketing the creatives, denying them their true worth, whilst simultaneously overcharging the customer and dictating what they can and cannot hear.

And they act surprised when technology enables the empowered listener to bypass buying music and their once enslaved production line to seek representation elsewhere.

Then I discovered the rise of the “Topliner”; the person paid to insert the melody.

Aspiring songwriters must now replace their crafted sounds with a corporate-imposed ‘sure-fire commercial’ hookline. To quote a multi-platinum Britpopper on topliners;

“To apply for the job you just need to be a former pop star and to have put on a bit of weight. Losing your hair helps too. That’s why everything sounds so bland these days. A bunch of failed rock stars making it all.”

Where once the topliner was a fairly noble collaborator, they’re now seen as increasingly oppressive.

This disease pervades through Sales too.

There is almost nothing worse than when a divisional head, chief bean counter or Marketing manager with newly assumed sales leadership responsibility joins you on a call only to smother the prospect in needless, useless chat. Then they have the gall to tell you as you leave how good the meeting was. These people really do love the sound of their own voice far too much.

You’ve painstakingly put together the bones of the deal. Plenty of meat is also emerging. Yet the senior colleague thinks they can ride into town and take all the glory. When in reality they mess all your hard work up.

I’m talking about one specific scenario here. Where you’re supposed superior insists on going along to a meet with prospects all pretty much at the same level as you.

There’s an old joke in Buyer circles

The bigger the title, the bigger the discount

Seasoned hands know this. And play on it without mercy.

Take too many a boss into your deals and kiss much commission goodbye.

The only time you should allow such accompaniment is when you sculpt a cheeky rank-selling situation.

That is, you and your prospect, their boss and your boss type-thing.

Your ceo and their ceo, bonding over the loneliness of a long-distance revenue driver.

Someone with oversight that’s proven to have solved the self-same issues before elsewhere sharing experience with whom the buck stops where said issue has surfaced.

Don’t be afraid to coach your freshly-minted sales partner beforehand. The less they say, the better it usually will be for all concerned. Let their composed silence elevate you.

Any other topliner intrusion and you’re asking for trouble.

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