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On Startup Sales

John Federico

You just can't make this stuff up.

From a sales call this afternoon:

She: "I have a two day event with n exhibitors and I'm looking for a lead retrieval system without any cost to my exhibitors. We used [defunct VC-backed startup] last year but they're out of business."

Me: "Sure, you can cover the cost of lead retrieval along with your Organizer license."

She: "Great!"

[Product demo, ending with our pricing table, which is publicly available on our web site]

She: "Wait, I thought the license fee was $n. What's the $n per exhibitor. I thought there was no cost to exhibitors?"

Me: "Yes, YOU can pay for it or THEY can pay for it. Either way, someone's paying for it."

She: "Well, [defunct VC-backed startup] provided it last year for no charge."

Me: "And that's why [defunct VC-backed startup] is out of business."

She: "..."

Me: "Would you like me to follow-up in a month or so?"

She: "Call me in two weeks."