The Pitch Episode 121: Playing Dumb Gets You In
How we went from “Katie” to contact at a national TV show. Learn how being a little helpless will help you get a foot in the door.
Playing Dumb Gets You In
We had a situation the other day with pitching a client for an interview on a national TV show. None of the producers were responding to us for weeks then suddenly we came across a producer’s name for that particular show that wasn’t in our media database. Problem was, all we had to go on was a first name, and it was a pretty basic first name. No email, no phone number, just “Katie” – We could have easily thrown our hands up in the air and moved on but instead we tried another tricky tactic that gave us access. Before you give up on getting in, play dumb. To find out Katie’s last name, we called the network’s main line and embarrassingly admitted to the receptionist that we could not pronounce Katie’s last name. To which she spelled it out for us! Clearly this could have backfired on us further if her name was something like, “Smith” or “Jones” but as luck would have it she actually had a very complicated long name! “The Pitch” challenge today: Are you trying to get a foot in the door but don’t have all the information you need? Try playing dumb. It’s funny how much people will help you out when you act a little helpless. I struggle with this strategy all the time because I want people to believe I’m on top of everything and that I know what I’m doing, but being a little vulnerable now and then allows others to fill in the blanks quicker than it would have taken you to get there on your own.
How can you “play dumb” to break through?
How does it feel when someone takes the time to help you out?