Posts Tagged ‘save money’
The dignified gentleman with the snow-white hair stopped in his tracks and fixed me with bright blue eyes devoid of any trace of humour.
Then he said: “You’ve asked me that three times already.”
I had known this was coming. If you have a favourite spot for your prize draw, it is inevitable that you’re going to ask the same people again and again – after all shoppers are creatures of habit, just like network marketers… and if the two adopt the same habit, it is inevitable that their paths will cross again and again.
It was my turn to say something. I said what I say to everyone… and what, presumably, I had said to him three times already. I asked him if he wanted to enter my prize draw.
I said it in exactly the same way I say it to everyone. I couldn’t help it. I was on autopilot.
And what do you think he said? he said: “Oh, all right then. What’s it all about?”
And now I have an appointment for 10.00 O’clock on Monday morning…
|Date||Time||How||Minutes||Number of people asked||Appointment?||Callback agreed?|
|19.01.12||1503 – 1515||Prize Draw. Woodbridge Car Park||12||20||No|
|1504 – 1508||7||10||No|
|1508 -1515||7 (12)||8 (18)||Yes (signed 23.01.12)|
|1515 – 1525||10 (22)||16 (24)||Yes|
|1525 – 1533||8 (30)||10 (34)||No|
Buying dogfood was on the list. It’s just that I didn’t happen to look at the list and at 9.00 p.m. the dog had not been fed.
She’s a springer, not a labrador so you wouldn’t know she was hungry. My solution was to let her go a day without food – it wouldn’t do her any harm. Alternatively she could have cat food – she loves cat food.
But no, as Tamsin pointed out, it would take me no more than five minutes to walk her up to the Co-op and get some dogfood – and why should she go hungry just because I forgot?
I threw on a jacket, I called the dog and I went.
At the checkout, the girl said: “Where do I get a badge like that?”
The badge said: “I Love the Club” with a big red heart for “Love”.
“D’you like shopping?” I asked her.
“Well, you’ll love this!”
Then she said: “I’ve seen it before. What’s the company?”
Now this was not on the script. But if someone asks you a straight question…
I told her.
“We’re with them,” she said.
“Are you saving lots of money?”
“Well I think my Mum and Dad are – I live at home.”
“How would you like to make a lot of money?”
“What would I have to do?”
“You just listen. You listen for people who moan about the recession and the cost of living. Does anyone moan to you about those things?”
“All the time.”
I gave her a card. I didn’t take her number – it was late on a Saturday night and anyway, to my shame, I didn’t have a pen and notepad. But I did have a pocketful of cards.
Always have a pocketful of cards…
Isn’t it odd to think that there was once a time when we knew where we were? Now we follow the satnav with a blind faith bordering on the mystical. I may not have a clue where I am – but I know I’ll be home in 47 minutes…
Which is why I am always so pleased to speak to the nice people at TomTom.
I don’t know whether you have one of their devices but did you know that you can ring them up and within a couple of minutes you’re talking to someone who knows what they’re talking about.
It happened this week: They’d sent me an email inviting me to download the new maps – which promptly wiped out all my favourites.
This time it was a nice young man called Mark who helped me out. I thanked him profusely. I said how comforting it was to know that I could call them with any foolish question.
“Come to think of it,” I added on the spur of the moment. “I’m always looking for people who are good on the telephone. Tell me, are you in the market for more time, more money … or possibly both?”
… actually it was not on the spur of the moment at all. But the praise was genuine. Anyway Mark said he was always in the market for more money – and I asked him if he had three minutes and eight seconds to spare because that’s how long it takes me to show someone how the money works.
I did not, at this point, mention the the name of the company.In fact I told him: “What I suggest is that I show you the money first because, if the money’s good enough then, providing the work is legal and ethical, it doesn’t really matter what it is. After all, if you were paid Wayne Rooney’s salary, is there anything you wouldn’t be prepared to do – providing, of course that it was legal and ethical?”
Mark agreed to look at the money first – and three minutes and eight seconds later, I had shown him how he could earn £500 in 90 days, £2,000 in a year and also build up an ongoing income of £500 a month – and then in maybe five years time, an ongoing income of £5,000 a month. He got really excited.
“I could do this,” he said. “I know lots of people – does it work in Europe?”
And that was were we encountered the obstacle. TomTom is a Dutch company and he was on the phone in Holland – where he lives permanently with his Dutch wife.
We then established that the friends he had mentioned as possible business partners were also based in Holland.
Scrabbling around for a way to rescue what had appeared to be a promising conversation, I asked: “Who do you know in the UK who might like to look at this.”
He thought for a moment: “Well, there’s Damian. He’s in the UK and he’s into lots of things – property… internet marketing… I’m sure he’d go for it.”
My next question was going to be about whether he would mind passing on my number to Damian. But why take the easy route?
“Would it be OK if I phoned Damian and just ran it past him like I did with you just now?”
And that’s how I come to have one more number to call tomorrow.
He knew my name. He knew my wife’s name. He knew everything about us – and all I knew about him was that I had never seen him before – but then maybe he hadn’t been wearing a yellow day-glo running jacket last time.
Being somewhat embarrassed by my chronic inability to show enough interest in other people to remember their names (my wife’s diagnosis) I went along with the pantomime, nodding and smiling as we walked side by side along the river path – all the while hoping for some sort of clue. But then he rescued me by saying: “What’s all this Make Money – Save Money”?
Thank heavens for the badge.
“Ah, well,” I began, warming at once to the theme. “That’s my little part time thingy. It’s my major source of income now.”
And then, of course he asked what it was and so I had to tell him… and ask him if he was more interested in saving money or making money… and of course he said “both” and then I had to give him a DVD. But you know what the awful thing was? Because I didn’t like to admit I didn’t know his name, I couldn’t really ask for it. So now I have no way of getting back to him to find out what he liked best!
Never mind I did better with the man in the Mini. The Mini has been making peculiar clonking noises for some months and it seemed like a good idea to get it checked out before a wheel fell off. So I took it round to the BMW garage so that their troubleshooter could drive me round the block with his ear cocked. Yes, there was definitely a clonk, he concluded.
Then on the way back, he pulled up at some traffic lights. I looked out of the window. The woman in the next car was reading the stickers on the side. I knew she was reading because her lips were moving. I wound down the window but at that moment the lights changed.
“Too late,” I said. ” I was going to give her a card. Actually I was thinking of getting the stickers changed. On the new Minis they say: “Save 30% or more on your household bills”.
“Really,” said the troubleshooter. “How do you do that?”
So I had to tell him. But he didn’t think it would work for him: “I expect you have to have your own home.”
Apparently he was renting.
Was that from choice or because of the mortgage famine?
“And the deposit,” he said.
I nodded sympathetically: “Yes, I know what you mean. It’s criminal what they ask now… Tell you what. Maybe I could help: Would you be open to looking at ways of making an additional income alongside what you do already.”
And so he’s got a DVD too – and this time, I’ve got his number.
This sign on the door said: “No reps without an appointment”.
But I had already rung the bell. It never occurred to me that I might be considered a “rep”. I don’t think of myself as selling anything. I just show people how they can save money on what they’ve already bought. Is that the same thing?
I was still wondering about it when the door opened onto a lobby decorated with finger paintings. This was the nursery school in the “light industrial” complex next to the Golf Club where we hold a training session once a month. Being a conscientious trainer, I always allow an extra hour for the journey and try and find something useful to do when I get there rather than using up the time at the other end. On this occasion I had set myself to go round to all the small businesses to see if they wanted to hear about increasing their profits.
Now all I could do was apologise and say: “I’m not sure if I’m a “rep”. What do you think?”
The young woman who answered the door had no idea. All she could do was call for the manager. This was probably for the best. She could go back to wiping little noses.
“Am I a rep?” I asked the manager.
“I don’t know,” she said. “What do you do?”
Ah well now, there’s a question which demands and answer: “Well I go round local businesses showing them how to increase their profits. It takes me one minute. D’you want to hear it?”
That’s the magic of one minute. Everyone says “yes” – and so did she.
And of course after one minute she wanted to know more and after three minutes, she was giving me the name of the owner and after five we had established that she was open to looking at ways of making money and I had her mobile phone number.
And I still didn’t know whether I was a “rep”. Never mind, there was someone else I could ask. I walked round the corner and into some sort of electronics company – so modern that they didn’t even have a receptionist; just a phone with a notice above it telling visitors which extension to ring. I rang.
“Hello,” I said brightly when a slightly distracted voice answered. “Are you the proprietor?” People love being asked this as if being mistaken for the proprietor somehow confers some sort of distinction on the lowliest of underlings. He bustled off to find the proprietor.
The proprietor arrived. He had left a customer on the shop floor, he said – and yet he had found the time to meet someone he’d never heard of who had come to show him how to increase his profits – interesting, that…
Well, since I said it would only take a minute, we sat down in the lobby and I told him what we had. Now we have an arrangement that next time I’m up there I’ll go in and collect copies of his bills.
And all I did was ask!
Did you ever hear of the drug dealer who advertised his wares on Friends Reunited? He didn’t know that one of his old classmates grew up to be a policeman…
So I’m trusting you not to shop me to the council when I tell you that the man in the next car offered me his car park ticket with two hours unexpired. The least I could do was offer him a Piggy card in return.
“What’s this,” he asked – and so I started to tell him. But I hadn’t got too far when he said: “Oh I used to be with you. I had one of your pigs…”
And for all those years he never realised he could make money at it. So now he’s looking at the website and it was only later that I started kicking myself for not signing him up there and then.
But I did need to get to school to pick up my youngest. There was a woman in the playground wearing a T-shirt with a mobile phone number on the back. So while I was waiting I wrote it down and later on sent this text: “Please excuse the informal approach. I’ve just seen you details on a T-shirt in the primary school playground. Are you open-minded enough to look at additional ways of making a profit. If “yes” when would be a good time to call for a chat?
John Passmore, local business owner.”
Half an hour later I received this back: “Hi, sounds good to me. What sort of thing do you do? Will be about to talk after 7. Lee”
Well I couldn’t ring him at 7.00 because at the time I had parked outside the church hall where my eldest son does his drama class and while we waited for the doors to open, a man walked up, looked at the writing on the car and said: “What’s this?”
So I had to get out and tell him. This turned out to be hard work because he hardly spoke any English. He was from Romania and worked as a decorator. He was also very keen on saving money.
“Are you serious about saving money?” I asked him.
“Very serious, yes.” he said gravely.
So I signed him up on the back of the car – which, I suppose, made up for the one I missed earlier.
Then it was after seven O’clock and I rang Lee. His wife is having a baby and so he wants to wait a while before becoming a distributor but I do have an appointment to go and sign him up for the services tomorrow night.
That’s if I’m not in jail over the non-transferrable parking ticket.
I seem to collect old ladies. They tend to fret a lot – particularly Mrs K: Her husband used to deal with all the paperwork and it flummoxes her.
But the funny thing is that every time I go round there, grumbling to myself but feeling altogether terribly noble, something good happens.
Look at today: There was an electrician’s van in the drive opposite – with an electrician in the driving seat. He seemed to have called at an empty house and had nothing to do but wait – and listen to what I had to tell him, of course.
And then, as I started down Mrs K’s garden path, her neighbour came home. So I had to say: “Ah, you must be Mrs K’s neighbour. I need to come and talk to you. She’d a member of our discount club. You could save a lot of money too, you know.”
So we arranged that I would pop in and see him after I’d seen her. The only trouble was that I was in there for a full half an hour drinking tea and getting her payments reduced and then of course I had to show her how she could shrink her bills even more with our Cashback card … and then I had to give her a stack of cards to give to her friends and explain how she would get an extra discount when they joined. She became quite excited about it all.
And then, when I left I made to cross over to the neighbour’s front door. She pointed firmly down the path. “Oh no,” I explained. I was calling on the neighbour because he wanted to shrink his bills as well.
“You can’t do that!” she said. “He’s mine.”
And then – I can’t really believe this but I retorted: “I saw him first!”
Oh dear, oh dear. This could get very ugly.
But the neighbour is a builder and a property developer so I think he’ll become a distributor anyway – at least I hope so. I have a nasty feeling that Mrs K would be vicious in hand-to-hand combat.
She walked into the hotel bar as if someone else owned the place.
In fact it appeared that nobody owned it – I had been waiting for ten minutes to order a drink but the place was deserted.
Part of this had something to do with the hotel chain having gone bust – which explained why they’d changed the name … which in turn explained why my prospect was still driving round and round looking for it.
So I tried to be hospitable: “I don’t think there’s anyone around…”
She jumped slightly, as if being spoken to by a stranger in a hotel bar was embarrassingly un-British. Then she thawed: “I was looking for my friend.”
“I haven’t seen anyone,” I said. “In fact it’s a bit like the Marie Celeste.”
And then she caught sight of my badge: “Save Money, Make Money,” she read aloud. “What’s all that about.”
“Well that’s what I do – save people money or help people make money. Which would you prefer.”
“Well I certainly need some money. I’ve just been made redundant.”
And, as invariablly happens, that was the beginning of the conversation. It turned out that she worked in a school and I just kept telling her about what I had for as long as she was prepared to listen – and she kept listening for a good ten minutes during which time I gave her a DVD and she gave me her phone number.
She might have signed up there and then had it not been for her friend and my prospect both arriving at the same time – which suddenly made the Marie Celeste seem like Piccadilly Circus.
The prospect joined of course. But I wonder whether the nameless hotel will yield two new distributors instead of one.
Very convivial, the noodle bar – you share a table with whoever happens to be sitting there already. And the two ladies at my table were in a chatty mood.
First of all we had to establish that we all had enough room and what the seafood and crispy noodles might be like…
For them it was a break in the middle of the January sales. For me it was also a chance to catch up on my piggy cards … and thinking of that: “Here, I always give one of these to people I meet. There’s one for each of you…”
“Oo, what’s this? Save Money, Make Money. I could do with some money.”
“Really, well take a look when you get home.” (the waiter was hovering).
But afterwards when I had tweaked up the last noodle with my chopsticks, she went on: “Go on then, tell us about all this money.”
So I did – and now we have an appointment for next Tuesday. It just shows what can happen if you tell everyone.
So I went on telling everyone: When I paid for my new clothes in Debenhams, I said to the salesman: “Do you take the exclusive cashback card? I’m sure you do, it gets me an extra discount … come to think of it, you probably buy things in Debenhams too – I expect you get a staff discount. Would you like an extra discount?”
And he would. So he’s got a piggy.
But because he didn’t have trousers in my size, I ended up a few doors down the road in M&S.
“Is it a good day for you?” I asked the woman at the cashdesk.
“Good and bad. It’s my last. My temporary contract finishes today.”
“Really! What are you going to do next?”
Her face clouded over: “I don’t know. Go back to my caring I suppose.” She didn’t sound enthusiastic about it.
So what else could I say? “That’s the problem with jobs. Somebody else decides when you can work, they decide what you can do and how much you get paid. But if you work for yourself, you make those decisions – and if you want to get paid more, you just work harder. That’s what I do. Do you think that might interest you?”
She said it would and she has a DVD.
And it didn’t take any more than a couple of minutes out of my shopping time.
“Ah yes, I’ve heard of this,” said the man sitting on my right.
We were at one of those business breakfasts that work so well for network marketers – lots of small business people all wanting to raise their profile and increase their profits. Unfortunately this was one of those where they give you place cards. This meant I had the misfortune to be sitting between somebody on my left who I had already met over coffee – and, on my right, a solicitor. Which is usually bad news.
Sorry about this, solicitors – but in the main, the one who gets delegated to the networking breakfast is likely to be the junior associate who doesn’t even know which partner is the firm’s decision maker. They might even be still living at home where Mum makes the decisions. But then I looked again and realised that this one had grey hair. Indeed, he went on: “Yes, I went to a networking breakfast at the Rose and Crown and there was a chap there who did a ten-minute slot about this. It sounded brilliant.”
Good news. Clearly he was already half way to signing up. Bad news for the distributor at the Rose and Crown. Why didn’t he sign him up? Apparently my new prospect had even looked at the website and meant to sign himself up. How much encouragement would he have needed to accept an appointment. But did he even get a call…
Well now he’s got a appointment – this afternoon with me.
In fact my early morning trip was worthwhile for another reason. On the way back the phone rang: A redundant advertising salesman had passed me on the way and seen the business opportunity plastered all over the back window of the Mini. “What’s that all about?” he wanted to know.
So I told him.
Then into Ipswich for a couple of errands. Normally this is an opportunity to give out double my quota of cards but for some reason, I didn’t have a spare stack in the car. Never mind, I could afford to be choosy about who I gave them to – picking out those people who looked as though they had “a bit about them”. It was startling to see how few people did look as though they had “a bit about them”.
But the salesman in the menswear department of Marks and Spencers looked at my badge: “How do I make Save Money and Make Money, then?”
“Well, which do you want to do, save money or make money?”
“You serious about that?”
“Yeah, of course.”
“Right then ,” I told him. “Because you’re serious, I’ll give you one of these. Take that home and watch it tonight. If you like what you see give me a ring.”
Then we walked round and established that, like Debenhams, M&S won’t have any blazers until the summer stock comes in. And as we parted, he waved the
DVD from across the rails of suits: “I’ll watch this tonight. Thanks.”
Maybe he really will. People do. On the way home my newest distributor had been doing the same and called to ask me how to fill in the form for his first distributor.
It’s wonderful to see the business growing – and all from talking to people. How easy is that?
Or else I could