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About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.

Written by: Vickie Sullivan  |  August 05, 2010

What You Give, You Get

When I mention “let’s do a social experiment,” my friends and family head for the hills.  So this time I did one on myself.  After ranting about all the pitching at an industry conference, I decided to do something about it:  stop pitching myself.  I figured, “Hey, I can’t gripe when I talk about my services.”

Instead of boycotting the conference, I boycotted the selling.  Instead of charging for my time, I gave away five 30-minute sessions for free.  (With no pitching afterward.)  Two things happened:  first, the gratitude from participants warmed my heart.  Almost every one of them said, “This is brilliant.  What can I do for you?”  It never occurred to me that folks would want to return the favor so quickly.  There’s a different reaction to when you give fully and walk away, versus giving fully with a pitch.  My theory:  it’s hard to fully appreciate what you’ve been given when you dread the pitch that’s coming next.

Second, I learned that when you give fully, the word spreads.  Fast.  I was approached by more people interested in my work than the last four conferences combined.  Why?  Don’t know.  But I think it had something to do with what I gave on the first day.


About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.