50 Shades of BS: (Bad Salesmanship) And How To Avoid It

For me, there are only two types of marketers. There are good marketers, and greedy ones. You’ve probably crossed paths with them, even subscribed to them, and probably unsubscribed as well. It’s important to know the difference between the two, and know which type of Kool-Aid you want to pass up, or pass along.

First we have the Aggressive Amanda’s. Aggressive Amanda is very hype-y, sales-y, and in-your-face marketer who churns out emails, products, programs and sales pages. She probably emails you several times a week, and even more so when there is something she is selling, which is often.

Aggressive Amanda uses hard-core sales tactics that feed your fears, emotions, and pushes your pain buttons. She tends to over~promise and under~deliver. Like a bad friend, after awhile you feel like it’s all about her. When you sample her wares, the goods (and the refund policy) leave a not-so-sweet taste in your mouth.

The problem with Amanda is that after awhile, unflattering reviews start to circulate, and people unsubscribe in droves. Amanda has to consistently put a lot of effort into list building to replenish the high numbers of people
who hit the “unsubscribe” button on the bottom of her ever so plentiful emails.

Eventually Aggressive Amanda hits a plateau in her business that she can’t get past because people talk and she can’t build her list faster than than it gets depleted. She also can’t rely on repeat business when customers realize that her Kool-Aid is watered down and filled with artificial flavors.

Then there are the Authentic Amy’s. Amy is someone you’d love to take out to lunch and be friends with. She provides more value and content than pitches, provides more facts than fiction, and her marketing is more of a mix of fun and fair than fairytale. When you hear from her your first thought isn’t, “OMG, another email from her?!!”

Amy is someone you love to hear from, and you try to open most of her emails to see what she has to say because she is personable and approachable and may even may even go out of her way to show you she cares by remembering your name. She might even send you a personal note, write on your Facebook wall when it’s your birthday, and call you out of the blue just to see if there is anything with which she can help you out.

I’ve invested in marketing mentors who used sales tactics that didn’t feel good to me, so I couldn’t in good conscious implement what I was paying to learn. . The lesson I learned was more about what NOT to do, and who I didn’t want to be, which is the silver lining in a very expensive storm cloud. Since then I’ve invested in mentors who were more in alignment with my values and principles and haven’t looked back.

One of my favorite (and most honest and honorable) online marketers, Mike Hill, recommends not using any marketing methods that “your mom wouldn’t be proud of.” I love that mantra! I’d add also not to use any marketing strategies that would embarrass your kids either because they do Google each others parents in class sometimes, believe me it happens.

If you’d like to be more of an Authentic Amy than an Aggressive Amanda, strive for marketing that feels authentic, honest, and comes from a place of service. Truly effective marketing makes your customers feel like you care, and shows them that you’re sincere about wanting to help them succeed. Always be more than generous with your content because providing consistent value will always want people want to stick around.


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  1. Maureen says:

    Cheryl, you are definitely an authentic Amy! I am so rebellious against the Amanda’s that even if their products would solve every problem imaginable I would not give them one cent!

    Thank you for the clarification. I always want to be Amy!

  2. Coming from a place of service is key and allows us to help more people.

  3. Thanks for the comment Lynn ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Lynn DeBuhr Johnson says:

    Good points, Cheryl! I’m more of an Authentic Amy, but I should have some of Aggressive Amanda’s attributes, also. I tend to give away the cow, when I should give them a glass of milk. Like Noel, I, too, went into this business to help people. I need to remember that helping my family and myself is just as important as helping others.

  5. Thanks for posting this, Cheryl. I got it into this business because I want to help people. My sales tactics have to match that as well. I am an Authentic Andy. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I’m blogging at http://www.wellness-project.net. I’d love to have you check out my site.

    Noel Jensen

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