Do You Pitch The Difference Between Fire & Help

“If you are ever attacked in the street do not shout ‘help!’, shout ‘Fire!’
People adore fires and always come rushing.
Nobody will come if you shout ‘help’.”

This is one of the many wonderful wisdoms of a 96-year old called Jean, who passed away this week.

Known latterly by her political title, steadfast, robust and independent Baroness Trumpington led a full and valued life.

Of her stream of distinctive quotes, the citation above also holds profound Sales resonance.

I’m reminded first of the brilliant prospect theory. (As I first blogged on way back in 2008, which also has its own wikipedia entry.) Showing why and how people act; more moved to stem losses than pursue gains. In this framework, are you talking to buyers about their desire to start winning or stop losing?

The Good Ladyship in this sense would doubtless recommend you focus prospects on how not to ‘Lose’ over suggesting where they may ‘Win’.

Another nuance heralds from how you may present your case. In time-honoured “Day One, Week One” way, everyone’s aware of SWOT analysis. Which pair do you major on? Strengths & Opportunities, or Weaknesses & Threats? If it is not titled towards the latter, you’ll need to switch.

Lastly, there’s the obvious selling trope of Urgency to consider. We all need ‘help’. But to which do you prioritise your attention? Why, the ‘help’ that’s on ‘fire’, naturally. To such, potential buyers will indeed likely “rush”.

Is the potential project one needing just a general leg-up? Or is it one where if the sparks are allowed to grow, then the raging flames threaten to engulf the whole enterprise…?

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