The Parable of the Clown and the Lamb — What Moves You?

Jan 23

Written by: Scott Johnson
1/23/2014 3:20 PM  RssIcon

What moves you?
For me, that's easy... music! It really is the universal language. The older I get, the more I appreciate every nuance of it. It seems, every day I discover more artists that have something to say to me via their lyrics, music, rhythms or tones. I believe everybody has a desire for music in their soul just as they have a need for food.

Just as people consume food every day, they also consume music. Food and music can be commodities or passions for humans. People's "experience" with them dictates their importance in their lives. If you have grown up eating McDonald's all your life and have never tasted the "Colorado Rack of Lamb" at John Elway's Steakhouse in Denver, then food for you is a commodity and it does not bring joy to your life. But, once you have bitten into that pink, succulent, perfectly seasoned, bit of lamb flesh at Elway's, then you are ruined for life and NEVER want McDonald's again! Food, for you, has become an obsession all because of the "experience" of that glorious morsel that made you want to slap Ronald McDonald across his pasty, white face! You may not be financially able to eat at Elway's all the time, but you are going to sacrifice and pinch your pennies to be able to have that experience again. Your taste buds have been awakened and now, demand a better product.
The story illustrated above holds true for music also. But sadly, there are not that many places left that you can go to get that musical "experience". This musical experience may be different for each individual, but for me, it is when my hair (the little that I have left) stands up on the back of my neck and I get goose bumps. But I don't give up those goose bumps easily. There has to be just the right circumstances in play that stirs my emotions and makes that special feeling wash over me. First, it has to be music that I relate to, and second, the quality of the recording (or live venue) has to be very good and presented at a certain volume level. Once a person experiences this feeling, most will want to spit on iPods and generic ear buds just like the person that ate the lamb wants to slap Ronald McDonald.

My industry (Custom Integration Channel) and the dealers associated with it used to be the Kings of getting goose bumps from their clients. Sadly, a lot of them have lost the art or never possessed the talent in the first place. Some however, are masters at their trade and are making music disciples (and plenty of cash) every day.

I have three questions for my CI Industry friends-

1. Are you feeding McDonald's or beautiful, tender lamb chops from Elway's to your clients? Some of you are introducing them to products that will move them and set them on a quest to feed the lust for better music / audio in their life whereas, some of you, are taking the easy sale and letting them eat McDonald's because it’s "good enough" for your taste and faster to cook. Do you want to be the one telling them how good Big Macs are when your competitor is letting them taste Elway's lamb chops?

Is your showroom (if you have one) a McDonald's or an Elway's? Very few of my dealers have a showroom anymore but, they may have a place (client's home / their home) that they can take a client and show them their wares. If you do have a space, what are you "serving"? Are you showing them the same thing that Best Buy or other mainstream vendors are showing them? If you are, you are feeding them McDonald's and they will never be hungry for anything else. If you do not have a space, I would highly encourage you to find one and start cooking! The only reason I ordered the main course of lamb, was because I was able to taste it as an appetizer first!

3. Do you want to be a fry cook at McDonald's or Head Chef at Elway's? The fry cook at McDonald's works hard all day long and gets paid very little but, worst of all; he is not remembered by his patrons. The Head Chef that made the "Colorado Rack of Lamb" that I ate at Elway's, is well paid, still works hard, but is definitely remembered by his patrons and is considered by them, an Artist!

Our channel has the talent and ability to be Artists. Let someone else cook the fries... we need to be roasting the lamb!
Scott Johnson

Regional Sales Manager
Aim High Audio Sales

Location: Blogs Parent Separator RES Blogs

3 comment(s) so far...


Awesome Analogy!

Hey Scott,

This was a killer analogy. Too many "sell" based on their pocket, not their clients.

They are afraid to offer the "Lamb Chops" for fear the the customer won't think it offers any value to them and indeed they themselves have never tasted the lamb so they cannot extol its virtues (well)!!

Fire up those grills and lets cook up some awesome meals indeed!

By Tim on   1/24/2014 11:11 AM

Re: The Parable of the Clown and the Lamb — What Moves You?

Great article Scott. It seems a great deal of the industry has forgotten to up-sell and are racing to the bottom. Low to no profit, means low to no chance of staying in business. Rise to the top and sell your value in the long run. Remind the client the last time they had to sit on hold with the support banks all over the world for 30-60 minutes, only to not get the issue resolved. This channel provides value that most clients forget unless we remind them. Would you rather represent and sell a Rolex or a Timex. Nothing against the Timex but that isn't our market.

By Dan Kippycash on   1/24/2014 2:44 PM

Re: The Parable of the Clown and the Lamb — What Moves You?

Let's remember - if we draw an x-y coordinate of the CI channel we would start at the lower left with low tech on the y axis and low value on the x axis. Moving up both you end up with hi tech and hi value on the upper right portion, which is where you are aiming. There is a large market so some may in-fact choose to do business somewhere other than the top right.

But your point is well taken. The ability to continue to create the experience for clients in this portion of the market has all but vanished due to economics and the proliferation of a cheapened expectation by the consumer. I applaud the artists who continue to succeed in bringing it all together along with managing to stay in business in the process!

Continue to create and blow away your audience - the goosebumps are worth it.

By Morgan Harman on   1/31/2014 9:46 AM

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