BE WILLING TO GET YOUR HANDS DIRTY – Best Sales and Marketing Ideas #13

101 Best Sales and Marketing Ideas

IDEA 13:


Not all sales meeting take place in a cozy office, or indeed in any sort of comfortable environment. Some take place on the move, some are conducted outdoors, I’ve know them to happen at the bottom of mineshaft. The environment and the circumstance provide opportunities for sales people, but sometimes it takes a moment to organize yourself to fit them.

When I started out in country in consultancy and training, the company I worked with did a great deal of work for agricultural machinery producers Massey Ferguson. It became a regular trick that when a new consultant started work on the account, no one told them to put a pair of Wellington boots in their car. More than one person found themselves out and about on various farms floundering in inches of mud (or worse) in their best shoes as a result. Of course, people with experience of that industry knew a pair of boots was a standard part of the kit.


From a company manufacturing roads sweepers….

The reason for putting boots in the car was not just to clean, but also to be able to suggest and respond opportunities to see things at first hand. I once watched salesman supervising the demonstration of a motorized street cleaner, a little vehicle with twin brushes at front, to a town council committee. A driver was operating the machine, and the salesman was giving the assembled group a running commentary about what was happening.

At one point the machine hit some stubborn weeds growing in the crack between the sidewalk and a building. The salesman pulled an overall out of his briefcase, donned it over his business suit and walked over to the machine. He took a spade off a rack at the back of the vehicle and loosened the weeds, which the brushes then picked up with no problem. He returned to the group and seamlessly linked what he had done to the operation of the machine with a two- man teams in certain areas.

I remember this because after this demonstration, and a demonstration of another competing machine, the chairman of the committee asked its members which they favoured. No one spoke, so he gave us his own opinion. “I’ll tell you what I think, I bet the service from X is best. I like a man who’s prepared to get his hands dirty”.

The principle here is certainly an idea that can impress and enhance the strength of a sales pitch.

In practice

  • Analyze your typical sales encounter to see how you can include an element of “getting your hands dirty” within it, either physically or metaphorically.

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