From the Peak Your Profits!® newspaper column by:
Jeff Blackman, J.D., CSP, CPAE
Business-Growth Specialist
© Blackman & Associates, LLC

Friday, November 7, 2003 • New York City:

As I turned left onto Madison Avenue, I glanced into a store window. And stopped suddenly. A gorgeous tie on display at Dino Baldini’s grabbed my eyeballs.

I’ll confess, I’m a sucker for beautiful ties. Especially a Pancaldi. Now, I ain’t a real big “brand name” buyer, yet I have a weakness for Pancaldis. They’re bold. With unique designs. And bright splashes of color.

While Pancaldis retail for $100 or more, I’ve found and bought them for only $45. Yet this one was different. Special. It was a masterpiece.

A salesman, who was taking a break outside the store, noticed me eyeing this beauty and exclaimed, “It’s a work-of-art, isn’t it?” I said, “I’ve never seen one like it before.” He said, “Let me show you why,” and he invited me into the store.

From a special drawer, he carefully removed a decorative black gift box. Adorning the outside of the box, was a long narrow swatch of the tie’s actual material. This was more than a box, it was a secure, showcase home. A safe haven. It was “Fort Knox” to the “gold” it protected. The tie was gently nestled inside. Carefully wrapped in fine tissue paper and sealed with a black silk ribbon.

As the salesman “passionately presented” the tie, he said, “Look at the rich colors. Feel the distinctive crinkly or wavy effect of this one-of-a-kind silk pattern.” This was sales sensory stimulation!

He then said, “It’s part of a limited edition. One of only 50 in the world.” He then delicately turned the tie over, to show me the limited edition insignia “8/50” hand-stitched on the tie’s back. He said number nine was the one I was admiring in the window. It was one of only two in New York.

Okay, so how much?


Yikes! (I remember when I used to pay $100 for a suit!)

Steve Jobs, Apple co-founder and studio CEO of Pixar, was considered to be an obsessive design fanatic. Yet his obsession delivered results.

Job’s iPOD creation has obviously been a colossal hit. A sensation. It evolved from a funky, tiny music-player into a cultural phenomenon. And that ain’t hype, it’s fact. Waxing rhapsodic, obsessively and affectionately about this mini-jukebox’s companionship, is a source of pride for iPOD owners. And there are over 100 million of them. Following its launch in 2007, actor Will Smith called iPOD, “the gadget of the century.”

When Apple began to hatch the idea for iPOD, its requirements were simple. It had to be fast, easy to use and gorgeous.

Jobs believed every aspect of a customer’s experience, even the opening of a carton, should be an esthetic adventure.

What adventure will you take your decision-makers on?


  • So how do you convey value?
  • Are you passionate when you present your product or service, so it generates excitement, enthusiasm and action in your buyer? And that action, leads to a sale.
  • Are you selling a commodity, only distinguished by price? Or a unique solution or opportunity, that commands and deserves a premium?
  • Are you creating satisfied customers or loyal zealots?
  • Does your “packaging” create oohs and aahs? Or boos and blahs?
  • Where and how…can you upgrade your “image”, i.e., letterhead, card, brochure, support materials, web site, attire, delivery vehicles, client correspondence, packaging, signage, logo, brand, etc.

And most important, when?

Lifetime Value!

Byline: Jeff Blackman

Jeff is a Hall of Fame speaker, best selling author, success coach, broadcaster and lawyer. His clients call him a “business-growth specialist.” If you hire speakers, please contact Sheryl Kantor at: 847.998.0688 or [email protected]. And visit jeffblackman.com to learn more about his other business-growth tools and to subscribe to Jeff’s FREE e-letter, The Results Report . Jeff’s books include; Stop Whining! Start Selling!, (an Amazon Bestseller), and the revised 5th edition of the bestselling Peak Your Profits. You can also stay connected with Jeff via Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: @BlackmanResults


P Provocative or Playful
I Inspirational or Informational
T Thoughts or Theories

Some will make you pause and ponder. Some will make you smile. Some will make you laugh. All will make you think. Each P.I.T. Stop will help you refuel, reenergize and refresh yourself.


Over the years, I’ve spent lots of nights in hotels. And often at check-in or once in my room, I’m the lucky recipient of lots of goodies; cookies, fruit baskets, wine, water bottles, complimentary meals and free movies.

All cool stuff! And greatly appreciated. However, while at a hotel in Mesa, Arizona, my Welcome Bag had a unique combination of goodies.

So help me, this bag actually contained; a granola bar, an anti-inflammatory pill, an allergy relief cotton swab and a tube of advance whitening toothpaste.

Although we just “met”…were these folks trying to tell me…

I was a hungry, swollen, sneezing mess with yellow teeth?!


“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.”

Mother Teresa, missionary, Nobel Peace Prize winner


As you might know, the International Date Line is an imaginary line on the surface of the Earth opposite the Prime Meridian, where the date changes as one travels east or west across it. While working with a client, one of their folks said something hysterical, “I discovered no one owns the International Date Line. So I plan to move it…to Mississippi!”