Joe Ades

How Joe Ades sold potato peelers


Joe Ades is a New York legend.

He sold potato peelers on the streets. And became a millionaire.

He used the same pitch every day for 15 years.

Let's walk through it

The first challenge any salesperson faces is stopping traffic.

Joe pulls in passers-by, assuring them he won't ask for money.

Once Joe's got the crowds attention he talks to them directly.

Every sentence is peppered with “you”. It’s hard to walk away when someones talking directly to you.

Joe’s sentences are punchy. The majority six words or less.

He also favours simple words. 79% just one syllable.

When Joe does use more elaborate language there’s a purpose to it. Often the punchline to a joke.

Joe’s a master of language. How does he sell a potato peeler?

Whilst Joe’s hands show you features. His language sells you the benefits.

Joe’s got your attention and got you interested. All that's left to do is close.

People are happy to buy. But they don’t like feeling influenced.

He takes a wad of notes out his pocket, and moves his peelers to center stage. This signals “time to buy” without explicitly stating it.

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Harry Dry
by Harry Dry