Merit v. Relationship

The great minds in advertising have long championed the emotional sell. As in, a Mercedes SL is sold on its sex appeal, and not, say, the work of the metallurgists on the new alloy used in its body. As I’ve said myself elsewhere, 90%+ of consumers don’t give a damn about your flux capacitor.

I’ve noticed an interesting parallel in sales in general. It seems that with exceptions, even if your product or service is mediocre, as long as you have developed a compelling relationship with your client or prospect, you make the sale. In fact, the relationship clearly does far more than any attempt to extol the virtues of your offering. This isn’t really a revelation. Salespeople everywhere know it.

Perhaps this is why advertising has gotten away with shamelessly lying all these years. Perhaps this is why customer service almost universally sucks (I think, in part, because it is viewed as product support and not part of the relationship.) Perhaps this is why the U.S. Congress is more predisposed to pork than sound policy.