Thursday, February 19, 2009

How I got "Sold"

Hi, everyone!  Hope you are all having a good and prosperous new year!

First off, on a personal note.  A little history about myself.  As well as being a car salesperson, I am also a programmer on PC-based computers.  I program in Visual Basic 2008 in Windows and swore that I would never own a Mac. Well, what would get anyone to chunk out $1400 for a laptop when you can get a good one for half that price?  The I-Phone for one.  I have one (and love it) and want to begin to write software for it (such as an I-Phone version of Car Sales Assistant for example) and even to write a few games (I learned how to program writing games by the way.)  In order to program the I-Phone, you must own a Mac.

Last Saturday, I went to Best Buy to look at games for my XBox 360 and walked past the Macs.  I tapped on the keyboard and really liked the feel of the keys.  A young sales dude came up to me and said, "Isn't that nice?"

"Yeah," I answered trying not to look interested.  "I have an I-Phone and have been wanting to check one of these out."

"That's what got me to get a Mac," he said with great enthusiasm.  "I have this one over here. Look how it is made of aluminum and how nice the screen looks. Look at this power cord."  He pointed to a power cord that is actually magnetically attached to the computer so if someone trips over it, it doesn't fling the whole laptop crashing on the floor (what killed my last laptop by the way!)  "The screen gets brighter and fades automatically depending on your lighting conditions and some of the keyboards light up."

"Wow!  That's pretty cool," I said.  "I'm a programmer," I told him, " and would like to program the I-Phone."

"I'm not a programmer," he said, "but it is really cool how the I-Phone and the Mac work together.  You can develop your software on the Mac and run it on a simulator and then when it is ready, you can copy it to your I-Phone and put it on the App Store."

You mean I can simulate an I-Phone on a Mac?  Hook, line and sinker.

"I think I have one of these left," he said, using a sales technique unknowingly--you know which one--creating scarcity in the product to make me want it more. 

God, I hope he has one left!

He typed a few things into the computer and I saw the words, "10+ in stock."
"I have at least 10 left.  Would you like me to go get you one?"

"Uh--I'm married and would have to talk to my wife," I said using the excuse we all hear selling cars on a day-to-day basis.

He looked at me and said, "I'm here until 7:00."  Wow--he fell for my excuse!

Thank God he didn't go for the close!  I said to myself.  I would have bought the computer!  He had me--he was friendly, very enthusiastic about his product and very knowledgeable about something he didn't actively do--program an I-Phone. I got the hell out of there knowing how close I came to spending $1299 + $99 for a warranty + 6% sales tax!!!

While driving home, I had nothing but that MacBook on my mind as I lovingly held my I-Phone in my hand.  Once again, Thank God the guy didn't go for the close!  I already own about 5 computers and do not need a Mac!

OK--what is the moral of this story?  The moral of this story is to not give up after one "No."  I could have been closed by that salesperson.  I was so close to buying it that if I had a Best Buy card with 0% financing and if he would have asked overcome my "want to talk to my wife" excuse, I would have bought one.

By the way--my wife has a Best Buy card and guess what--when I got home, I convinced her to go out and buy me the MacBook--the awesome laptop that I am using to compose this blog as we speak!  I have been using computers for over 25 years and this, by far, is the best one yet.  I love the feel of the aluminum--it is a very solid computer.  I love the keys--I can fly on this keyboard.  I love the mouse touch pad on it--I can actually use 2 fingers to scroll up and down and use pinch modes to zoom in and out--just like on an I-Phone. The soul of Steve Jobs (the CEO of Apple and Pixar) is all over this computer. The asthetics of it, the fact that you don't hear a fan whirling all the time (or ever actually!), how cool it feels and runs, how awesome the operating system is, etc. God--if only he ran GM!

You know what else? There is a program called I-Photo--I imported about 500 pictures into it and my boss (who has the same MacBook) told me about a facial recognition system built into it. You pick a picture and it draws a box around the faces and asks for names. I did my son Alex. You repeat the process with another picture and click a search button and within a fraction of a second, the program shows a bunch of pictures that your son is in and guess what, it is about 95% accurate! I repeated the process with my daughter, wife, mom and myself and it is actually learning. Now when I import pictures, it knows who is in them! I could go on for hours and hours about the cool calendar that I created in I-Photo (click BUY when done and Apple creates it for you and ships it to you the next day--pretty freaking cool!) I could talk about the awesome I-Movie program (go to and check out the tutorial on it.)

Programming on it is going slow--I am learning a new language and programming style from scratch but I promise--there will be cool programs for car salespeople soon.  There won't be the full blown Car Sales Assistant (that is a lot of info for a cell phone screen) but there might be one where you keep track of prospects and appointments on the I-Phone.  I also plan on converting a few games that I have written over the years.

The moral of this story? I walked into Best Buy and on a whim spent $1400 of my wife's credit because a salesperson (even though he didn't close me on the spot) did a fantastic job with me.  You can do the same selling cars. I love this computer and I love what I can do with it. I hope to make a million dollars writing games for the I-Phone but if I don't, I will not regret the purchase.