Sell people problems

See that guy over there, the one running the bike shop ((push bikes or bicycles not motorbikes, that’s the shop round the corner, don’t mess with him, he’s got some very tough friends)). He’s working hard, trying to keep his customers happy, keep his staff motivated, keep his cash flowing. He’s a busy guy, too busy for the likes of you.

And yet, you need him to pay attention. You have needs yourself, an accountant to feed, kids to send to the cinema, food to buy, a car to tax. You need him to stop for a moment and take seriously what you’re trying to sell him.

You know what you should do?

You should scare him ((I seriously dare you to dress up in a Halloween costume and jump out at him)).

Because scaring people ALWAYS makes them more likely to buy your product ((if you agree with this you are TOTALLY missing the point of this blog)).

So sit down and draft a marketing email ((or maybe a cold calling script: see “Cold calling is a waste of time and people will be mean to you”))

Dear customer, did you know that 25% of bike shops go bust because they don’t have

insurance / certification / training / amazing widgets (delete as appropriate ((obv)).

Your shop will be next unless you buy my

really great insurance / accreditation scheme / training programme / really truly awesome widgets

Call me now ((this is a call to action. Don’t use these if you want to fail at freelancing)) to save your business

But he doesn’t call.

Reason? He’s not scared enough.

Off to Mailchimp again ((other email packages are available but they lack the cutesy messages about bananas))

Dear customer

I was recently volunteering at a prison where I ran into Dave. Dave used to run a bike shop like you but he didn’t take my advice with regards to

insurance / certification / training / amazing widgets / city zoning ((I know nothing about this but it comes up a lot in American drama series and I’m trying to broaden my appeal. Howdy American freelancers))

And it cost him his business, his marriage, his family and eventually his freedom.

This is REALLY IMPORTANT you should be quaking in fear right now.

Call me now and I might consider selling you

insurance / certification / training / amazing widgets / advice on city zoning stuff

But he still doesn’t call

Now across the street you see one of your competitors (you know, the idiots ((see “Your competitors are idiots))) nipping in to the bakery.


they say ((once again after the American audience, next week this blog will be in French, then German))

I was just wondering how business is going”.


says the baker

but I am a bit worried about

insurance / certification / training / amazing widgets / city zoning / the new boulangerie tax” ((let’s reach out to France shall we?))


says your idiot competitor

I can help you with that