By BOB ROSNER
“Remember ‘rope a dope?’ It was Muhammad Ali’s strategy for his fight with George Foreman in Zaire. Figuring that eventually George would punch himself out, Ali spent most of the fight doing his impersonation of a punching bag. Sure enough, by fight’s end, George’s tank was empty and Ali prevailed.
There is a lesson in ‘rope a dope’ for anyone trying to sell to a ‘price grinder.’ Sometimes you just have to climb in the ring and accept some punishment while you try to outlast him. But that doesn’t mean you never punch back. Below are some ‘strategic punches’ you can use while waiting for him to wear out. For more, check out Josh Gordon’s book, ”Selling 2.0′ (Berkley, 2000).”
– While you should do your best to sell your product this does not mean that you should sell to everyone. Is it worth your time and effort to sell to someone who will milk you for every penny? This is something you have to determine. Sometimes you just have to turn down business. First time business owners usually make the mistake of taking all comers. While I can admire their ambition (I did it myself when I first started out.) it actually can hurt your business seriously and make you much less profitable. When you are starting a business every penny counts and you don’t want to get yourself into a losing proposition for you. -ed.