What's Your Street Cry?

West London pedlars of the early twentieth century look a bit like a forerunner to the hotdesk, pyjama laptoppers of today. They had no “office”. They simply strode the roads, shouting touting for business.

The classic English example is the rag & bone man. “Any old iron”. Even birthing one of the most enduring tv sitcoms in Steptoe & Son. I still see all manner of old furniture and white goods left alongside suburban fronts for such scrap merchants, perhaps reborn as upcyclers, to collect.

I recently learned of one such trader who was a master chair repairer. His key skill being chair weaving. He’d find a job, then sit right down on the pavement there and then and fix.

How did he get business?

He had what’s called in the trade, his “street cry”. What similar craftsmen would scream as they wandered around the neighbourhood looking for jobs. His in particular;


That strikes me as pretty clear.

It gets straight to the heart of not only what he does, but also the problem he can remedy for you.

Imagine you were in his shoes. Walking within earshot of all the CEOs (or whoever is your principle prospect role) who could buy from you. And you were just to chant your own Street Cry. What would it be…?

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