Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Cops and Marketers

I got pulled over by the cops on Friday night, near my home in suburban Minneapolis.

A few minutes later, I was let go with a warning and no ticket -- despite driving with a headlight out and no proof of insurance in the car.

This pushes my lifetime record in traffic stops to 3-0 (knock on wood).

Am I some sort of fast-thinking, smooth-talking expert at talking my way out of traffic tickets?


As told to me by several cops (and confirmed by my own experience), there are 3-5 things you must do when you're pulled over, if you hope to get out of a traffic ticket:

1) roll down your windows
2) open the glove box
3) put your hands on the steering wheel
4) any passengers put their hands on the dashboard or in plain view
5) if it's dark, turn on the dome light

Do these 3-5 things, then watch the cop's expression in your mirrors. S/he will visibly relax or even smile as they approach your car (I've seen them do both).

The reason?

More cops are killed during traffic stops than any other police function. In a police officer's mind, a traffic stop is more deadly than a bank robbery, a domestic dispute, or even a bar brawl. Cops are trained to approach every vehicle with extreme caution. And they stress like hell over this.

So, as soon as a cop looks into your car (through the open window) and sees there's no gun in the glove box or your hands, their fear is largely removed.

Remove fear and stress from the cop's mind and you stand a better chance of being let go with just a warning, all things being equal.

Heck, it's happened to me three times now.

Which leads to the marketing lesson: If you set the stage correctly -- to remove fear and stress from your prospect's mind -- it's easier to talk your way into a sale, like talking your way out of a ticket.

How to do it? Try the following:

1) Come recommended.
There's a reason referrals are the easiest sales to make -- your prospect trusts you. Also, you're more confident. That's a winning combination.

2) Make a friend before you make a sale.
This is great advice I got from copywriting legend, Gary Bencivenga. Do what it takes to build rapport with the prospect. As Dale Carnegie would advise: smile, be genuinely interested, and talk in terms of your prospect's desires. Still stumped? Just be useful.

3) Offer a guarantee.
By offering a money-back guarantee, you remove fear and look more professional. Another winning combination. Yes, you will give refunds. But if your sales double, will you really care?

Best part: Setting the stage properly -- whether it's for a conversation with a police officer or a prospect -- is 100% within your control.

You'll find more ideas like these in my Free Report, Guaranteed Marketing.

No comments:

Post a Comment