The Marketing Speaker Didn’t Understand his Purpose

George TorokCommunication skills, Insights, Intended Message, Presentation Tips Leave a Comment


The Speaker told two lies in his first statement. He stated, “I’m from marketing. I’m not here to sell you anything.”

Let’s accept the first statement as true. He’s from marketing.

Examine that second statement and consider the incongruities. If he believed that statement, the first lie was to himself, because the role of marketing is to help sell. Marketing that doesn’t sell or make it easier to sell is wasted money

You know you have a bad marketing person when he believes his job is not to sell. If he’s not selling, that suggests he’s against selling. He should be fired.

The second lie was to the audience.

We knew that you were a company representative speaking at this conference. You weren’t paid a speaking fee. Most likely, your company paid for the opportunity to have you speak. There’s only one reason your company would spend their money. Your employer expects you to sell or at least to promote their message.

We knew that you are here to sell so your statement struck us as a lie.

Marketing and selling are on the same continuum. Marketing leads to selling which leads to the sale. And no business survives without the sale.

That statement was a lousy opening line that did not grab attention, establish rapport or gain trust.

A better opening, you might have started by offering what we would learn from your presentation. What might we gain that would help us recognize and avoid the problem you addressed? Why should we listen to you?

But please don’t start with an obvious lie like “I’m from marketing, I’m not here to sell you anything.”

Liar, liar pants on fire!

I wonder why some people who work in marketing believe that selling is impure. They want to distance themselves from selling.

Be clear on your role and message. Don’t lie to yourself or your audience. You are from marketing and you are here to sell.


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