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"Many the successful seducer knows not to put anything between the object of seduction and the pillow, as it were.

Yet merchants routinely put obstacles – obstacles that cool the passion..."
Alexi D. Gutzman

Featured Article
by Alexis D. Gutzman

Volume 1, Number 10
All Sales is Seduction

Recall the last time you seduced anyone.

Did you tick off a list of the benefits of acquiescing to the seduction? Of course not.

You knew that wouldn’t work.

Instead, you took pains to pick out the right words to convey both the excitement of the possibilities ahead, and the urgency of taking action now.

And you wrapped it all up with words that made the object of your affection feel like this was a unique opportunity she didn’t want to miss. If you’ve ever succeeded at seduction, this is how you did it.

Consider two alternatives. You could have laid out the features and benefits of intimacy in rational terms. Alternatively, you could have just asked something to the effect of "Do you want to buy?"


In either case, your overtures would
probably have been rebuffed.

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Why Online Marketing is So Forgettable

Part of the problem with online retailers or marketers of professional services – and certainly much of the problem with the first casualties of the Internet hoopla – is that people who are not experts in marketing or sales suddenly find themselves in that role.

For them, and for those of you who are experts, I offer today’s column as a reminder: all sales is seduction.

There should be two kinds of sales literature – and what is the Web but the ultimate in sales literature? – sales pitches that entice you to buy, and sales pitches that don’t quite entice you to buy, but leave you with lingering regret or at least planning to return to buy.

Forgettably Rational Sales Literature

Unfortunately, there is a third kind of sales literature. That is the kind most frequently seen on the Web. It is utterly forgettable, and worse! Even if the consumer arrived at a site convinced he needed the product, he might fail to make the purchase because the sales literature actually cooled his desire.

The analogy to seduction is simply unavoidable.

With successful seduction, the object of seduction either acquiesces, or later wishes she had. The same goes with making a purchase. If the object of seduction/sales declines in either case, she finds herself thinking about the next opportunity she will have.

Dim the Lights

Is it time to revisit the product descriptions on your site? Dim the lights, light some candles, put on the seduction music – Lionel Ritchie will do fine --, pour two glasses of chablis, and let the seduction begin.



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Feel, Don’t Think

Sales is not about thoughts, but about feelings. Who do you think sells more products, Oprah Winfrey or Ben Stein? Feelings win out over thoughts when it comes to sales, every time.

I have heard from a variety of prospective clients lately who all seem to share the same lament – lots of traffic, but no sales. A quick visit to their sites reveals the same problem on all of them: facts about products but no allure.

They all make the mistake of thinking their customer buy because they think, rather than buying because of the way they are made to feel.

Don’t Cool the Passion

Of course, once you have the interest of the object of your affection, you can still chill things out by dispelling the passion you’ve aroused or the passion she demonstrated from the outset.

In life, you might do that by turning the discussion to an assessment of the pitching for tonight’s World Series game. Online, you might offer her a subscription to your free newsletter or a chance to purchase an insulated coffee cup with your logo on it for 40% off.

Many the successful seducer knows not to put anything between the object of seduction and the pillow, as it were. Yet merchants routinely put obstacles – obstacles that cool the passion – between the product information page and the order confirmation page.






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Copyright 2001 The Alexis Gutzman Group.

Consult with Alexis Gutzman - Alexis Gutzman is available to discuss your E-Business Strategy with you. Sometimes all you need is an hour to talk with an outsider to get a better perspective on what you're doing right and on what you need to do differently. If you're not getting what you expected from your online investment, consider a consultation with an expert. Call Alexis Gutzman at 203-798-9777 to schedule an hour to re-visit your E-Business strategy.

Topics include: Online Marketing   -  Online Advertising  -  Marketing Research - Where technology meets business B2B E-Business strategy - E-Business Research  -  Wireless Infrastructure   -  Technologies to Watch - Business Intelligence  -  Rich-media E-mail  -  Search Engines - The Future of the Internet  -  CRM  -  Customer Service - Private exchanges  -  XML  -  eMarketplaces

About the Alexis Gutzman Group -The Alexis Gutzman Group provides strategic e-commerce and e-business consulting. It was founded by Alexis D. Gutzman, author of The E-Commerce Arsenal: 12 Technologies You Need to Prevail in the Digital Arena, which was named one of the 30 best business books of this year.

Mrs. Gutzman is a columnist for -The ECommerce Guide where her newsletters, the Business Illuminator and EC Tech Advisor are published weekly. She's also a judge for the 2002 SIIA Codie Awards

What's Working in Online Marketing -The 3rd Quarter Online Marketing Report at has just been released. What we found was that online marketing is an essential part of marketing campaigns, but not generally the first step in a marketing campaign.

From the Executive Summary -Online marketing works well for businesses that understand its strengths. It can provide measurable, targeted messages to the appropriate audience, once a common ground has been established between the business and the audience. That common ground can be found in the mailboxes of existing customers, via sponsorships of relevant sites, or on search engines at: