Have you ever………..
Tried to be a pretend host? lol! It is so much harder than I realized. I was trying to talk about a product for 8-10 min non stop. Boy! Talk about a challenge!
I used to work PT as a Fragrance Model in the ’80s. Sounds glamorous, right? I was assigned by a 3rd party Agency to work at Dept. Stores. For 4 hours usually on Saturdays, I would walk around the Cosmetics counters offering customers a shpritz of perfume. They always gave me Giorgio to demo. That one was popular!! Women ran screaming! Don’t Spray me!!
One time the Agency had me wear Swatch watches with pop-off watch face and interchageable bands and walk around Juniors for 4 hours showing off the watch to teenagers. I had Swatches on my wrists, pinned to my long duster coat, headband and even my socks! That was fun but I made no sales that day 🙁
The last time I did this they had me drive to an out of state store to demonstrate Epilady’s. This was when these were first introduced: they were heavy and had vibrating circular coils like an electric stove burner but on a base sort of like the Voloom but only one half of it.
After an hour of walking around the store I was so humilated. Walking around holding this scary-looking thing – Customers totally avoided me and the male managers kept making sexist off-color comments. I hid out in the ladies room until I could get a woman manager to sign my time card. After that I quit !
Saturday, September 19-2015… Back in the day, (about a million-years-ago, *lol*), I was hired by Robinson’s Department store to put on cooking demonstrations in their Housewares department for the holiday season. I just did it for something to do. My kids were older, in school, running around with their friends, and I found myself bored.
I was applying for just a sales clerk’s job but, when the Personnel Officer saw that I had written ‘gourmet cook’ on my resume, she introduced me to the Assistant Store Manager. They said they had been tossing around a new idea– to put on cooking demonstrations featuring the products in their Houseware’s department and would I be interested. I said, ‘Sure’, and away I went.
The demonstrations were two-hours long twice-a-day– one in the early afternoon and one in the evening. I had to make up the menus for what I would cook each day based on the various appliances they wanted demonstrated. Then, I had to go shop for the food and then get to the store early to do all the prep work.
This had never been done anywhere before, (in Department stores, I mean). They sent out postcards to their customers and set-up 20 chairs for the first demonstration. Fifty people showed-up! What I did was such a success, they flew any number of Robinson’s Executive Officers in to see how our store was selling 5-times the amount of product as their other stores. It was decided to build kitchens in almost all of their stores, and then they flew-in Store and Houseware Managers to see how it was done.
Anyway, not only did I have to ‘present’ the products, but had to cook thru all these presentations to show the people how the products actually worked! Everybody got a taste of whatever I was making and sales went thru the roof. It was A LOT of work doing all this, but I loved it, and am very proud of what I accomplished there.
One has to be good in ‘sales’ in order to pull ‘presentations’ off. I would almost go so far as to say that ‘selling’ is practically an ‘inborn’ trait. Either one has the ‘knack’, ‘talent’, for it, or one doesn’t. It’s really not something one can ‘learn’. A natural-born salesman can learn to do it better, but if one doesn’t have that ‘innate’ talent, they just won’t be good at it.
The only complaint I have about the ‘presenters’ on HSN, (and, indeed, any shopping channel), is the lack of information. They want to ‘sell the sizzle, not the steak’. Which is a very good ‘selling’ tactic… get everyone excited about a product– pump them all up to buy, buy, buy!
Alas, when you’re showing something for an hour or two, you’ve got to get into details. Last night, on the Jessica Simpson show, Colleen was going on about a pair of shoes and said any number of times how comfortable they were, that the heels were not too high. However, she never said just how high they were. I had to go and look it up in the product description. And I don’t like having to do that.
It’s the same with the clothing lines. I want to know how long a blouse is, what the ‘rise’ of slacks are, etc etc.
Could I sell on HSN? Yep, I sure could. And if I did, I would include all these important details in my presentations. Alas, air-time is extremely expensive and they want to move from one item to another in a hurry. Perhaps that’s why they don’t offer these kinds of details… in HSN’s eyes, it just takes up too much time… more’s the pity.
No I have not? I can imagine it takes a lot of preperation!
I dont think Id Be good at it!
Posted in Talk Among Yourselves
09.19.15 4:33 PM