• McCord Cargile

A Marketing Fairy Tale - Part 9: Grasp



The following day, the woodman found himself feeling a bit melancholy.  He realized that he was coming to the end of the series of visits by the magical marketing beings and was somewhat saddened by that thought.  He was, however, still very excited about the prospect of putting into practice all that he had learned.  


He arrived at the customary, magical spot in time to see a cloud of smoke that no longer surprised him.  This day, the smoke was goldenrod in color. He was greeted by a voice that somehow made him feel comfortable, and even ‘at home.’  The magical being who belonged to that voice introduced herself as Grace.  


The first thing that Grace said to the woodman, after introducing herself, struck him as rather strange.  She said, “Fancy meeting you here!” He did not know how to respond. Grace seemed almost surprised to see him.  She asked him, “Why did you show up here today? Why do you keep coming back?”  


The woodman replied, “Well, I was curious what Nancy meant when she said something about me wanting to hang on to you folks, or at least your ideas.  Also, every time I talk with one of you, I get something of value.”   


“We are glad to hear that!” said Grace.  “What, then, does our continued contact, and providing of value accomplish?  


“Well,” the woodman said, “it certainly keeps the relationship going!”  


“Very good!” said Grace.  “Anything else?”  


“It keeps me wondering what comes next!” the woodman quipped.  


“Exactly!” Grace replied.  “It will keep you in our grasp!  If you do all the things my sisters and I have talked with you about, do you want to then lose all the customers and prospects you have worked so hard to get?”  


“No!” the woodman replied emphatically.    


“Will all your prospects become customers immediately, or might it take some time for them to become customers?” was Grace’s next question.    


The woodman agreed, “It could, indeed, take some time.”  


Grace continued, “And in the meantime?”  


The woodman said “I had better keep a ‘grasp’ on them.”  


“How will you keep a grasp on your customers and prospects?” asked Grace.  


“By providing them value!” the woodman replied.  


“But how will you continue to provide value, if they don’t actually buy your furniture,” was Grace’s next question.  


The woodman replied, “By continuing to provide them information and ideas about their interests, such as woodworking, ranching, hunting, archery, and checkers.” 


“You got it!” exclaimed Grace.  “The key is to not take for granted that those whose interest you have captured will stay with you, if you do not continue to provide them value.  Here is the ‘Adhesive Rule of Marketing’: ‘A prospect worth having is worth hanging onto.’”


The woodman remarked, “You folks have certainly been satisfying my need for knowledge and insight about how to do good marketing.”  


Grace then said, “Well, I guess we have a customer for life!  By the way, I hope you are ready for your final exam!” Before the woodman had a chance to object, or even respond, Grace disappeared in another cloud of goldenrod-colored smoke.  


The woodman’s head was swimming, and he felt himself filled with a whirlwind of mixed emotions.  He knew that his sessions with these magical beings were almost at an end. He was also wondering what Grace meant about a “final exam.”  He was certain he would find out soon.