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Fictional business advice you can use irl

In comes an excerpt—with several irl business applications—from the latest Robert Galbraith book that Peanut got me for Christmas:


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‘Well . . . I should probably start by saying I’m not sure you’re going to be able to help us. As I told you over the phone, we’ve already tried using private detectives, which didn’t go well. It might even have made things worse. However, you were highly recommended to me by the Chiswell family, who I know of old. Izzy assured me that if you didn’t think you’d be able to help, you’d tell me so at once — which I thought a high compliment.’


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That’s a doozy of a paragraph from a fictional character interested in hiring private detectives to investigate a cult, in which his youngest son has been involved in for the past four years. 


Did you catch just how many irl business lessons come from this fictional quote? 


Let’s take it line-by-line… 


‘I should probably start by saying I’m not sure you’re going to be able to help us. As I told you over the phone, we’ve already tried using private detectives, which didn’t go well. It might even have made things worse’


The lesson? 


I hear this same sentiment all the time when chatting with prospects who have hired a shytty freelancer who, instead of improving the state of their email strategy and impact on revenue, actually makes things worse. 


In an email context, this could be a variety of thangs: From “blasting” emails to every subscriber ever (even if they’ve previously unsubscribed) to putting segmentation on such a pedestal that any given email only goes out to a total of 3 people. From hyperfocusing on creating automations (that don’t go to anybody because many such freelancers and agencies only build automations and hope and pray that people somehow enter said automations without providing them with so much as a nudge to take the desired action required to enter the automation) to completely disregarding automations for the sake of broadcast emails. And everything else in between. 


Dealing with a skeptical customer or one who has been duped in the past puts your job as either a marketer or salesperson on difficult. But these skeptical customers also tend to make the best lifetime customers if (and this is a big, fat IF) you can back up your claims and skyrocket their revenue. 


Moving on… 


‘However, you were highly recommended to me by the Chiswell family, who I know of old.’


The power of referrals is often downplayed by marketing “gurus,” but referrals make for the easiest sales (and often the best clients). 


In fact, let me share a quick story:


About 18 months ago, I wrote an email for a client which attracted the attention of another business owner interested in partnering with me. He reached out to my client, and I told him that I have an opening on my client roster. I recommended that we set up a call to make sure we’re a good fit… annnnnnd I got ghosted. Which was partially my fault because I didn’t follow up for a good year. 


Yet, a year later, I was surfing through my inbox, realized we never met, and reached back out. Literally a full 12 months later. 


His response? 


He apologized for ghosting me immediately, we set up a quick call, and we just had the most successful Black Friday yet because he has a hired gun writing emails for his brand now. 


Or another quick story: 


My grandpa recently connected me with his cousin who publishes a weekly paid newsletter subscription for a county in Georgia. When I finally had a roster spot open and called my grandpa’s cousin (someone I’ve never met personally), we had a quick call and decided to give a different advertising strategy a shot. 


No objections. 


No “maybes.” 


No headaches. 


Just a single call to discuss how I could help, and immediate action to get up and rolling. 


Referrals make the best business. And they’re, in fact, so powerful that they can completely obliterate any objections your prospect might have (as demonstrated in the excerpt from the beginning on this email). 


And last but not least… 


“Izzy assured me that if you didn’t think you’d be able to help, you’d tell me so at once — which I thought a high compliment.”


This is perhaps the most potent lesson here. 


Why? 


Because it demonstrates ruthless anti-neediness. 


Nothing makes you more attractive to your audience than having the option to deny them at any time. It’s naturally persuasive. In fact, it’s so persuasive that you can make several anti-persuasive mistakes, but by being anti-needy, you’ll still win the customer or client. 


Of course, the reverse is also true: 


You can be so needy that knowing (and using) all the slick NLP tricks and other greasy persuasion tactics you learned from your favorite guru backfires. 


Anywho:


Bunch of lessons that you can take from this email, apply to your business, and increase your profit faster than it takes a fat kid to scarf down cake. 


But there's only one way to get the most value out of this email:


Hit reply, and let me apply my email strategy responsible for generating multiple millions of dollars for my clients in your business. 


John

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