Tire Kickers, Crickets, and Definitives

Ask any car salesperson and they will tell you: They don’t like professional tire kickers.

They don’t like professional tire kickers because they waste the salesperson’s and the dealership’s time. These tire kickers go so far as to drive a hard bargain. They make the salesperson and F&I people believe they would buy today…if only the numbers were right.

But professional tire kickers lie. They never had any intention of buying a car. It’s all in the game for them. The numbers will never be right.

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In the music business there are a lot of professional tire kickers.

I come from a long history of being in business for myself. I went out and knocked on doors to get my first customers. When they hired me to do something, I did it good and I did it in a timely manner.

My customers were not left hanging, wondering where and when Angela would show up next, and would she have their project completed. My word was my bond. I know a lot of people in business who are like that, and they are successful.

Part of attracting and keeping customers includes giving quotes, showing samples of my work, and so forth. My customers, or potential customers, all let me know whether or not I got the job. I was always happy to hear, “We love it! Move forward.” I didn’t like to hear, “We’ve gone with someone else.”

The truth of the matter, though, is that anyone who is in business will get more of the above second statement (No!) than the first (Yes!). If you can’t deal with rejection, then don’t go into business for yourself, that’s for sure.

All this is simply to say that I’m very much used to hearing no. If you’re not hearing no then you aren’t quoting, is the old saying in sales.

In the music business they don’t know that saying…but, they should learn it. A lot of hard feelings would be spared and reputations not nearly as tarnished if they did.

Here’s what I see happening a lot: Someone wants words to their music. They are asking more than just you to do so, but they don’t tell you that. Instead, to direct questions about the matter, they say they are partnering with you on the deal. So you do the work. You get them the words they need and they love it.

Then they can’t be found. Repeated requests for project status via phone, email, and text remain unanswered.

The hanging status forces the co-creator into a bad position. They must now officially tell the other party that their contribution to the project is hereby officially withdrawn. Why? I’ll tell you. It’s because it’s inventory that can be used somewhere else. Get it? In the music business, our inventory is that which we create. We must move that inventory out and monetize it.

How many tire kickers have you come across? Don’t you just want to throttle them? Wouldn’t you rather hear a quick and definitive no than the proverbial crickets and be left hanging and wondering where the project stood?

Hey, listen, this girl does not like to be left hanging.

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***Did you enjoy reading Angela's columns and/or find them helpful? Then buy Angela a cup of coffee when you reach the end of the article. She thanks you for your support.***