What Does the Local News Have to do with Selling? Nothing!

What Does the Local News Have to do with Selling? Nothing!

Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at gitomer.me.


Watching the local news there’s a great use of your time. Thirty to sixty minutes a day of useless information presented in 100% problem format. “If it bleeds it leads.” That’s the local news philosophy of presenting information. How does that affect your sales? In the worst ways possible.

No one cares that Billy got all A’s on his report card, or Mary earned her girl scout badge. Good news doesn’t sell, therefore it’s omitted. Rather what you get is distorted, negative information about two to three percent of the people affecting those who view it in the worst way possible.

(NOTE WELL: I am NOT saying don’t watch (or read) business news. Information that can impact your industry or your customer should be watched and read intently.)

What does watching the local news have to do with selling? Negative nothing. (What?)

Selling is solution based, the local news is problem based. If you watch an hour a day of problems every day for years, you become problem oriented. Then you drag the news crap to work, and begin to negatively affect others with your pukey stories. Hey did you hear what happened on the news…? (barf) The news sickness is contagious. You get it by watching, and then infect others by telling them about it.

Do you think local news adds or detracts from your selling skills?

“Hey, Jeffrey,” you say, “The news is the most popular show on television.” It’s popular because most of the people watching it lack direction or focus, or are miserable and looking for something or someone more miserable than they are I guess to make them feel better.

Need to know the weather? Poke your head outside in the morning. It’s a lot more accurate than the weather guy.

Think the local news is so important? Got to watch it every day to keep up?

What happened last Tuesday? What happened yesterday? Same crap different day.

Think the local news is worthy of your time? How many of you can look in the mirror and say “I’m successful today, I’m where I am today, because I watched the local news.” See what I mean. (By the way the same goes for Rosanne and Cheers eh, but not Seinfeld, Seinfeld is funny.)

Here’s a wake up call (if you’re still not convinced). Let’s say you’ve been watching the news for just a half hour a day for the last year. That’s 7.5 full 24 hour days you spent watching problems. In 5 years, that’s 38 full 24-hour days. In terms of 40 hour workweeks, that’s 23 weeks every five years and that’s only if you watch the 6 pm crap. If you tune in for more crap at 11, double it! That’s the equivalent of 46 forty hour weeks of work.

Imagine the possibilities if you diverted that energy in a positive direction. Imagine what you could do with that time, accomplish in that time, if you put it to productive use for yourself. WOW (by the way, you don’t want to know the twenty year figure it’s too scary).

Which do you think is a more powerful use of your time. Watching other people’s problems OR investing in yourself and creating plans and solutions.

Here are 4 solution based (home based) uses of your time:

Read. Trade journals, self-help books, positive attitude books, sales books, The Business Journal, annual reports and brochures of your biggest prospects, anything humorous, trend setting books. Study.

Listen. Self help podcasts or audio books. Nightingale Conant (Chicago), have a catalog of thousands of hours of profound, impactful information. Invest.

Mastermind. Attract (smart) friends and associates to your house once a week to create new ideas and action plans. Invite.

Compute. This includes writing, planning, and learning, and Googling. Explore.

The next time you say “I don’t have enough time,” substitute that phrase with “I don’t choose to spend my time in that manner.” It’s closer to the truth. The real truth is, you’re not investing your time in the most important person in the world you!

If you devoted the time to learning that you currently spend watching, you could be an international expert on anything. Me? I studied sales instead of watching the news. It’s working pretty well for me so far.

Me? When I need information to guide me for tomorrow I read for 15 minutes every morning. Napoleon Hill, Norman Vincent Peale, or Dale Carnegie. Good news all about me. What do you do?

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