Lessons From a Catalog

Selling is hard enough. But when you’re selling “air,” as we professional service providers do, it’s even trickier.

Today’s two-minute, highly entertaining video segment explains how the tactics used by a popular mail order catalog can be applied to the selling of your services.

(Can’t spare two minutes? You, my friend, are working too hard. Go here to watch videos of Frisbee-catching dogs.)

Click below to watch… (Move slider at bottom of video to adjust volume!)



21 thoughts on “Lessons From a Catalog

  1. Robert Widdowson


    Thanks for another humorous and helpful video.

    Your tips to package and name your services is bang on. I haven’t been doing that so far, but I plan to from now on.

    Also (and changing the subject), I can hardly wait to see you provide an on-demand video version of your famous e-newsletter course. There’s something you can package and name. May I suggest ‘The Likable Expert’s on Demand Video Course on How to Create an E-newsletter in 6 weeks’.

    All the best


    1. Michael Katz Post author

      Thanks Robert, I’m glad you found it helpful today.
      And thanks for the suggestion as well. Definitely on “The” list of projects!

  2. Bruce Horwitz

    Interesting observation – I think their use of “the” is to emphasize the uniqueness of their offerings. Not “A” whatever” but “THE [one and only]” whatever. By using “The” to make their point they avoid any argument about falsehoods since surely someone else in the world makes and sells a lizard leather wallet.

    BTW, can you provide example “packages” for service providers. I notice on your web site that your services page doesn’t really talk about packages of your services.

  3. Keely Barton

    Great idea! However, since I’ve got a small brain you’ll need to me out.
    I produce short to medium length how-to solutions books directed to parents and grandparents. How do I package this inventory?

  4. Roger Wyer

    We thought we found something we needed in our H-S (I’m not going to try to spell it) catalog – an air mattress with a nifty collapsable frame. We had to buy it because my mother was coming and because we had a gift certificate. When it arrived, we parked it in our Phoenix-area garage until Mom arrived late summer. When we opened it, voila, a really cool Radio Flyer sled! Prooving, as you stated, there is nothing in the H-S catalog that we needed. The End.

  5. Steve Davis

    I received your email yesterday but got lost in YouTube for a couple of hours after following your link to Frisbee Catching Dogs. You always offer great tips. Thanks. Looking forward to the next edition of THE Likeable Expert Gazzette.

    1. Michael Katz Post author

      Thanks Steve, and yes, them dogs sure can jump! Sometimes some YouTube surfing is just what the brain needs to loosen up and get creative.

  6. Rev. Cat Cox

    This was so useful to me I’m adding it to my “to do” list of things I actually do. There is no higher compliment. Another thing H-S accomplishes with “THE” is creating a sense of specialness: THE only one or at least THE best one is certainly implied. The kicker is how often I thumb through through their catalogue and think,”Ooh! Ooh! I really want this!” I’m so awed by their ability to create (in me) a demand for something I had no idea existed! But this happens, I think, because they are presenting a new way to meet an underlying need (entertainment, comfort, filling a large, oddly-shaped Christmas stocking). They manage to create their version of a person passing a grocery store and suddenly thinking, “Ohh! Ooh! Food on shelves! Wow!”
    Plus I love the aside on the frisbee catching dog video. I’ve watched you change the name for your newsletter a couple of times over the years – another valuable learning. Now I’m waiting for you to add, “Stealth Zen Master.”
    Rev. Cat Cox, Interfaith Spiritual Director to (only) THE coolest people on earth!

  7. Craig Liddle

    I just discovered you. You are awesome, refreshing and inspirational.
    Kudos from Western Australia.

    1. Michael Katz Post author

      Hello Craig! I’m glad you discovered me as well. Greetings from the northern half of the world (Boston).


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