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Is Marketing Manipulative? Heck Yeah it is! Selling the Right Way - Annie P. Ruggles

Are all salesmen sleazy? Is marketing unethical or manipulative? While many salespeople and marketers use bad tactics that destroy trust, it is possible to market and sell the right way.

Show Notes

Are all salesmen sleazy? Is marketing unethical or manipulative? While many salespeople and marketers use bad tactics that destroy trust, it is possible to market and sell the right way.

Don’t be Sleazy!

  • Unfortunately, salespeople and marketers are known for being sleazy.
  • Partially, this is caused by the media and their portrayal of sales.
  • Media and art reflect reality though, and the sad truth is there are a lot of sleazy salespeople and marketers in the world.
  • Breakdown buildup selling is no good.
  • Business relationships are just that: a relationship. Treat them like one. Invest in them.
  • Don’t book a consultation call and then try to sell your services.
  • Be fair and honest.
  • Don’t sell the best “car” on the lot or the worst “car” on the lot. Instead listen to the client and sell them the right “car” for them.
  • Do you take trust seriously? Trust is the make it or break it point in sales.

Why do people use bad sales tactics?

  • A desperate salesperson resorts to bad sales tactics. Don’t be desperate.
  • Salespeople will use emotions and pain points to deceive people into thinking they are the problem and the product or service is the hero.
  • Don’t sell products or services that lead to buyers remorse.
  • Follow through with your promises!
  • Building trust is a huge investment. If you create a great experience, your clients will spread the word. If you burn a bridge, you’re also boring that bridge for many other people that you could have worked with.

Dealing with past baggage

  • It’s human behavior to be skeptical and not trust others.
  • When your clients come to you, they will assume the worst.
  • They may have had bad experiences in the past with someone else in your industry.
  • It takes a lot of trust to purchase a product or service.
  • How can we address the past baggage and build trust?
  • Know your industry and competitors, especially the sleazy things they do. Make a stance against those things.
  • Don’t have disclaimers and asterisks. Be 100% transparent. Don’t try to hide things.
  • Be blunt. Be blatant. Follow through with the things you say you’ll do.
  • Set the ground rules for you business relationship in your first call.
  • Tell them that their trust is important to you.

How to be the nice guy AND still get what you want

  • Don’t assume that they’re going to say no even before you jump on the call.
  • The price is just a price. Say the price and then wait.
  • Know where your bar of resentment is. How low are you willing to go that won’t make you resent yourself later for going too low. Stick to it!
  • Don’t apologize for you price!
  • The negotiation should be good for both of you. You should both benefit from the relationship.
  • If you’re worried about being a jerk, you’re probably not selling like a jerk… you’re probably not selling at all.


  • Is sales manipulative? Of course!
  • Manipulation simply means
  • There are too kinds of manipulation: Big M manipulation and Little m manipulation.
  • Bad manipulation is manipulation without consent.
  • Good manipulation is helping someone get where they already want to go.

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Don’t be Sleazy! [00:01:05]

Jacob Harmon: welcome to another episode of trust cast. I'm so happy you're here today and I'm really excited because I have Annie P rebels with me and she is the founder and Dean at the non sleazy sales Academy, which honestly is one of the reasons why I had to have her on the show. I just love that title.

I think that this show is all about not being sleazy. Right. So anyways, welcome to the show, Annie. I'm so happy. You're here.

Annie P. Ruggles: Thank you. Thank you so much. Yeah. I also think that trust is pretty much the opposite of sleeves. So I thought we might be peas in a pod.

Jacob Harmon: I love it. Well, let's just start there then. let's start talking about this sleazy nature of salesmen and marketers. Unfortunately, we both get a bad rap, right? I think a lot of people think of marketers and sales men as sleazy or sales women, of course. and why do you think that is? And what can we do to fix that?

Annie P. Ruggles: I honestly think that society and pop culture. Are not doing us any favors in this vein where when you watch a show where someone is marketing or selling, they're normally pretty smarmy. You know, they're normally not the most outstanding person on the show. They're normally not the hero of the show, but I think that also,  art reflects real life and.

All of us have been burned by salespeople before. So it's easier just to assume that because all of us have been burned, not once, not twice, not three times, but 3 million times that everybody out there Hocking their wares must be out to get you because other people were.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah. Do you have any interesting stories?  What's your most sleazy salesperson story that you might have?

Annie P. Ruggles: Oh man. I mean, there's, there's a million. So first off I am the used car salesman, his granddaughter and he

Jacob Harmon: Oh, that's the worst.

Annie P. Ruggles: there was a best, he was the best, but the thing is,

you know, Yeah, but I guess like that whole idea of people that will put you down and it's called breakdown, buildup selling. Right.

But the people that will put you down in the process of trying to sell to you, so they'd be like, Jacob. Thank you for having me on your cute, adorable little podcast. It is so wonderful that I had time to be on your show. Now, now that I've been on your show, your listeners are going to be so thrilled and that'll be $75,000.

And it's like, Ooh, who's doing a solid here. Like this is a relationship. This is the beginning of an agreement. If they come into it. Acting like you are the luckiest human alive to have encountered them right off the bat. I'm turned off.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah, me too. so one of the weird experiences I had is, um,  and interestingly, I saw that this happened to a couple other people on LinkedIn too, but I actually had someone reach out to me to jump on a free consultation call. For my services. And then throughout the whole call, they were trying to sell me on their services.

And I was like, Whoa, Whoa, that's weird. Like.

That that's just weird to me. And so I think that unfortunately there are some bad apples out there and because of them, us, marketers and salespeople, really, like I said, get a bad rap. so maybe what's a good story. Let's, let's contrast that a little bit.

What are, what are some good stories that you have of the right way to sell?

Annie P. Ruggles: I already mentioned my grandpa and my grandpa was an amazing dude for a million different reasons, but I sell. With, and I work with clients who are highly emotional, highly empathic people. And my grandpa was not bad at all. Like if I had a headache, he would tell me to have a pickle. If I got broken up with, he'd say, have a pickle, like literally have a pickle.

Like this dude was not emotional, but what he was was incredibly fair and incapable of swindling. Anyone. And so he would not sell you the worst car on the lot, and he wouldn't try to sell you the best car on the lot. He would listen and prescribe the right car for those people. And because of that, he garnered their trust.

And when he died, Jacob people that he sold cars to 40 years before saw his name in the newspaper and came to his funeral, came to his funeral and told us the grieving family. That my grandpa was the most upstanding salesman. Never did anything against them. Never made them feel badly pressured, but also made the sale every time because of trust and.

If that's happening with youth car salesman, there's got to be a million other great examples of people that take the trust seriously, because I think that really is the make or break point of sales. Does the trust matter to you? And do you have any interest in keeping it because if so, you're probably not going to be a jerky sleazy salesman.

Jacob Harmon: That's awesome. It's almost like we should just have that in the back of our mind. Anytime we're on a sales call. Well, this person be at my funeral, like, am I acting in a way that this person could someday come to my funeral and say, Oh wow. He was amazing.  I trusted him with my services.

Right. interesting.

Annie P. Ruggles: I mean, it's not that many jumps between that very extreme example and getting the, just the basic cost of living, of doing business referrals, testimonials case studies, right? It's not that many jumps between I'm willing to go to this dude's funeral and I'm willing to tell the entire internet about how amazing this person is.

It's not that far off.

Why do people use bad sales tactics? [00:07:14]

Jacob Harmon: sometimes I  don't understand why people use bad sales tactics because in my experience they don't work and maybe they do for other people. I don't know. But in my personal experience, Bad sales tactics don't really get a lot of results, but maybe I'm wrong. Maybe people get results from them and that's why they do.

Um, do you have any idea, like what, what is it culturally that is causing some of these bad sales tactics?

Annie P. Ruggles: I think it's the level of desperation. Of how critical and crucial the need is. And I also think it's the way the pain points are addressed. Whereas there are things that you need to buy to solve pains, right? We only buy things to solve problems, and there are times where a good, reliable, trustworthy salesperson will be able to accurately speak to the pains.

That you have in a way that feels fair and compassionate, but I think a lot of the time why bad selling works is because the pain is used to make you the buyer, the bad guy, and then the product, the hero. And the further away you stray from them, the further away you stray from happiness, and they will use that against you to make you almost feel beholden to them.

But I think that's easiest done when the need is so emotional and so close to the surface, that much like a cult leader, you can just scoop into their brain. and implant what you want in there. And  it's terrible. It's horrible. And it's heartbreaking. And also it leads to a phenomenal amount of buyer's remorse when that person wakes up a day, a week, a year later, and realizes that the person that they've placed their trust in was not worthy of that trust.

That's devastating.

Jacob Harmon: I have an interesting example of that, actually. so you know, the classic YouTube ad comes on and they're selling you. Well, I fell into one of those, this case, Uh,


Annie P. Ruggles: okay, honey. We've all done it.

Jacob Harmon: It was targeted so well, like I'm a web designer and this guy in the first five seconds before I could skip that out, it was the classic.

Are you a web designer? Do you want to get higher paying clients? And he went in and he, and he talked to. I went and watched some of his YouTube videos. I went and listened to some of his podcast episodes and I was like, Oh, like, I think this guy knows what he's talking about. I signed up for, for this course.

And honestly, like, it was a bait and switch.  I signed up and I paid and I got this course, but then I zero support, even though all the support was promised. And so at the end of the day, like it wasn't the end of the world. I didn't spend all that much money on it, but it just made me think,  I signed up for this and then I never heard from the guy he never reached out and said, Hey, can I help?

Is there anything I can do to help you walk through this or anything?  I just never heard from him. And so

Annie P. Ruggles: I know the listeners can't see, but  I'm making this very distasteful disdainful face right now because,

and it really does just make it harder for two things to happen. Number one, for you to find the help that you actually are looking for to find the solution that you're actually looking for. And number two, that makes it harder for that provider to get. Their goods into your world because now there's this barrier.

Now there's this mistrust of. Okay, well now I guess I can't trust anything on YouTube ads anymore.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah, on the other side of that, if he would've done things differently, if he would've immediately reached out to me and said, Hey, how can I help you?  obviously you're a web designer. You're looking to get higher paying clients.  What's walk through this together. If that would have happened.

Conversely. I would have been a loyal fan of his forever, you know, and especially if he could actually deliver a night, he helped me get some higher paying clients. I'd be sending my fellow web designers his way, the rest of my life.

Annie P. Ruggles: We all would we all do because we cluster together and this is just natural human tribal behavior, web designers, no other web designers, marketers, no other marketers. We all hang out at the water cooler together, whether or not we have a physical one to go to. And so that's why when you have an incredible.

Experience how amazing that person's going to go if asked and they have to be asked that person is going to go and tell everyone around them about how amazing you are. Same thing though, without being asked, if you burn that bridge, you've also burned that bridge with 10 people that you haven't even caught up to yet, by the time they hear of you in normal means your reputation is shot.

Jacob Harmon: Yep. A hundred percent.

Dealing with past baggage [00:12:20]

And so I thought it was interesting what you said just in a little bit ago about how I might be burned for all future YouTube ads. And I know that something that we talked about before we even hit record was we want to talk a little bit about even before people ever interact with you, how.

They'll come to the, to the relationship with some baggage already. You don't actually get to start with a blank slate. So let's talk a little bit about that. , I know that the next YouTube ad, I see I'm going to be skeptical, you know? , so how does that all factor into creating trust?

Annie P. Ruggles: You know, the way I think of it, we all look exactly like our prospects. Worst acts like we all have the face of Vieques that ruined their lives. And what I mean by that is we're all going to get lumped into the worst of our industry. Sorry, but it's true. It's that experience gap, right? If I've had five great experiences with marketers and one really lousy one.

It sours the whole bushel. And the thing is though everyone, unless you're brand stinking new to something and you hit it out of the park immediately, everyone has been burned by someone in your industry and, and it doesn't have to be a third degree burn. It could be. I downloaded your free PDF to get onto your mailing list.

And then you email me 795 times and, and sold my information annoying, not necessarily painful, annoying, still a burden, right. Still something that I don't want. And yet that's what we're being compared to. Oh, I should sign up for this person's mailing list. No, the last time I signed up for a mailing list, I got spammed.

Oh, I should click this YouTube ad. Oh, no, I shouldn't. Because last time I bought something from you to add it wasn't worth the dime and that it's not necessarily conscious, but it's definitely there.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah. Yeah. That psychology is really deeply rooted. I often think about how sometimes the bad things outweigh the good things like you were saying, our bad experiences are gonna outweigh our good and part of that's just because we're human and we've evolved to protect ourselves, right. Because you could be out on the Plains of Africa for.

A hundred days and nothing bad happens, but then one day a lion comes and that's the day you're going to remember. Right.

Annie P. Ruggles: That's the day you're going to remember. Exactly. And the thing is buying is scary. Even when it's something that you desperately want, you are partying with something that you currently have, which is money, energy time, normally a combination of the three you're giving that away to a stranger or near stranger.

You're putting trust in their hands. You're putting faith in that person and you're making yourself vulnerable by saying, Hey, will you help me? That is off putting, and then your brain is going to hunt for information of why you should not do it right? Because the brain loves the status quo. The brain wants you to stay in the problem that you're in, because it knows that problem.

So when you go to make. Uh, change your brain's going to freak and it's going to go. I, Jacob, Jacob, Jacob, that guy didn't even email you last time you dropped all that money on that thing. And it sounded like it was just for you. And like, I didn't even email you. Why would you click on this ad? They probably won't email you either

Jacob Harmon: Interesting.

Yeah. Oh, wow. So how do we, how do we fix that? Especially when someone reaches out to us, we have a brand new lead, um, we're jumping on a sales call with them. How do we address that past baggage?  in a way that's building.

Annie P. Ruggles: Know your competitors and know their BS in that. You know, if, you know, if you know that most web designers out there always blow deadlines, that deadlines are a joke to most web designers. Then you can say on your website, you don't have to name names, but you can say in your copy in your content, I know in the industry, deadlines tend to be a bit of a joke.

But here I take them very seriously, no blown deadlines ever in my business. That's my motto. Take a bold stance against what the sins of your competitors are. Another thing is don't relegate. Anything to find print. We are so conditioned to distrust, anything where things get suddenly smaller or where you there's an asterisk and we have to return if you're not hiding anything.

Then don't hide anything. You don't need to put your prices there. You don't need to put your cancellation policy there. You don't need to put any of these things buried. Where no one can find them. If you're not hiding them, then the more transparent you can be about how reliable and how trustworthy your sales process is the better.

Because if they go and they don't sense gimmicks and they don't sense tricks, they're already going to go, well, wait a minute. Something's different here. What could it be? And then when you get. Right. What's the catch point in a good way, right? What's the catch. What's the catch because then as they go deeper and deeper into your content, into your website, into a sales call with you, then you're loading up trustworthiness.

Great examples of when you went above and beyond, right? Your case studies, your customer service stories, your testimonials, all the things that lend credibility, your why, your story, your unique selling proposition, all of those things. But. It's not a bad idea to say, Hey right from the jump. Hey, most of the time when people find me, they've been burned by my competitors.

If that's true for you, I want you to know I'm aware of the issues in my industry. I take them seriously. And these are my promises to you. Put it out there. Why not be blunt? Be blatant.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah. And then follow up, right? Like if you're going to

make those

Annie P. Ruggles: Please follow up. Oh, or else you make everything Tripoli worse, right? Or else you're like, I would never hurt you. Do you want to go to the prom with me, Carrie? Oh, you're a prom queen. That's not weird where this pig's blood come from. Like don't do that. Don't lure people into a false sense of security and then mess up.

That would make it really hard for the rest of us please. Don't but it's not that hard to speak to. In a way that feels natural and organic. And it's also not that weird or that hard to tell someone in a sales conversation that their trust is valuable to you.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah. Yeah. I think that that's probably a conversation that almost every sales call should have  here's the ground rules of this business relationship and here's the things I'm going to do. Here's the things I expect of you. And I take this very seriously. I take business relationships very seriously.

Annie P. Ruggles: Relationships.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah, I love it.

How to be the nice guy AND still get what you want [00:19:57]

So I kind of have a selfish question for you, Annie.

Hopefully you'll indulge me here.

I don't feel like I'm a very good salesman. Like just being completely honest. I don't feel like a great salesman. I do feel like I'm decent at the trust building part, I'm decent about being transparent and being real.

Um, and that's one of the big reasons why I'm doing this podcast is because I feel like it's needed in business, but when it comes to sitting down at a sales call, I often. I feel like I kind of just give too much and don't take enough for myself and for my business, because, because I want to be the nice guy, right.

Like I feel like I am a nice guy. And so I definitely sway too far on the pendulum to being a pushover and letting people, um, in negotiations, I often get the shorter end of the stick because of that. So. How do I get what I want, but still retain the relationships and the trust , and not be the bad guy.

If that makes any

Annie P. Ruggles: Yeah. Yeah. There's a couple of different things. Also good on you for the vulnerability of this question, especially on your own show. I want to give you like 17 gold stars for that, but you know, the first thing is there's, there's a mindset component and a strategy component, and I'll go through them, both the mindset component before you get on the call.

Make sure you're not assuming that they're going to say no. I know that that sounds totally ridiculous, but I listened to a lot of people, sales calls, and you can just tell when they get on that, they know that their rate is going to get pushed back on. So the whole call becomes the lead-up to an apology when they say the rate.

Jacob Harmon: Hmm.

Annie P. Ruggles: tell, you can tell now the next thing is, the price is just a price. So when you say it, I want you to say the price and then I want you to shut your mouth for three whole Mississippi's, which in a sales call feels like an eternity, but here's why if I'm squawking at you, You can't make a decision.

You can't do math in your head. You can't pull up what the competitor's told you. They're charging. You can't do any of that. And the thing is, it's not like we have a tendency to fill in that time with valuable information. We don't. We babble because we're uncomfortable. So what we do is we say, you know, and the price for your website overhaul is going to be $2,995.

And I take that in payments. How does that land on you? You know, I know that it may be a little bit more than you were expecting because my competitors, some of them are cheaper or you could go on five or I'm sure you could find someone, or maybe if you like find somebody in Bangladesh, like that would be helpful, but what are you doing? You're taking the number.

Jacob Harmon: my calls.

Annie P. Ruggles: Right. Oh honey, you are not alone. And I've done this too. I have done this too. I teach I've had to learn and perfect myself, but when we babble at the price point, we just showcase the fact that asking for money makes us very uncomfortable, which signals to the person on the other end of the call.

I think this rate is a little more flexible than they let on. And as such, I'm going to see if I can push here. The other thing is know where your bar of resentment is in your pricing. And what I mean by that is if they're going to talk you down, no. Before you get on the call. How low you are willing to go before, you're going to wind up resenting yourself for taking that work or ending the client for bringing it to you and resenting your bank account for not being where it should be, even though you're wasting time on this work.

Right. So, cause that's what it's going to feel like if you take it for too low, it's gonna feel like a waste. So if you say I haven't, all right, my price is here. If anything, I'm going to let them haggle me this far. This far, but not an inch more than you know, that there's no risk of you getting on the call and going, okay.

Okay. I'm not going to do this for less than $2,000. I'm not going to do this for less than $2,000. I'm not going to do this. Realized in $2,000, someone says a thousand dollars. That's too far apart. That's not even in the same village, that's not even in the same state. Right. Then, you know, okay, this is a safe place for negotiation.

If they're saying, you know, for 2000, I was really expecting a little bit more. Then you can tinker. Then you can tailor. It's still above that bar. Resentment. You can add something, you can take something away, you can rush a timeline, you could slow it down. You could. Do a million different things to make that work for both of you.

But if you apologize for the number, if you excuse the number, if you talk over the number, right. If you show that you're uncomfortable with the number, or if you allow them to think that your number is one that you just made up or not all that Firmagon, they will push you around even good people, because they're like, Oh, I might be able to get a deal.

Jacob Harmon: yeah. one of the things that I love that you said was, you need to find something that works for both of you, right? the end of the day, trust goes both ways. And if I'm afraid of charging too much, I should also be afraid of them taking advantage of me and making me charge too little.

Right. And so honestly, like if I want this to be a good business relationship, I need to be willing to say, Hey. You got to scratch my back too, you know? And I don't think that that is manipulative. I don't think that that is sleazy. I don't think that that is wrong. It's a business relationship and you should both benefit, right?

Annie P. Ruggles: Absolutely he's comes in and the manipulation comes in. When I'm going to try to railroad you into buying whatever I want you to buy, no matter what you need. That's where the manipulation comes in. That's where the sleeves comes in. I want to sell this car on the lot. I only want to sell my number one web design package.

I only want to sell this and everything else. No, no. When you get on with someone and they explain to you what they need, if you are the right person for that, and you know it, and you confidently communicate it and you asked to be fairly compensated for it, there's nothing sleazy there.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah, a hundred percent. And I think it's, it's really just changing that mindset then. Um, and I'm sure that this is something that in my case, at least it's probably ingrained in me from childhood, you know, um, just this mindset towards money and thinking, Oh, getting money is bad or, or asking for money is bad.

And I think that I'm getting over that it's something that I've been working on, but still, still have a way to go too.

Annie P. Ruggles: well, so does everybody, you know, don't beat yourself up about it. If we all could work for free, a lot of us would, but we can't pay our landlords and our mortgages and buys food with free. Right? Like you have kids, you can't feed your kids on good intentions. You just can't. So you taking time and energy out of your life to work, need to be compensated for that work.

It's that simple, but everybody has that little thing of like, Oh, well I don't want to turn someone away. None of us want to be a jerk, but if you're worried about being a jerk, you're probably not selling like a jerk. You're probably

not selling at all.

Jacob Harmon: That is a very, very good comment. I think that's going to be like the quote of the episode. Um, well, thank you for that. Thanks for indulging my, my somewhat selfish question, but I think it definitely has helped already. I'm already thinking of some things that I can change my sales calls.

Manipulation [00:28:08]

I'd like to talk a little bit about the word manipulation.

Uh, I went to your website. I did a little bit of research before we jumped on a call and you have,  I think it's a YouTube video embedded on your site where you talk a little bit about this word manipulation, and I just loved what you said.  I like to talk a little bit about what it means to be manipulative and how we can actually manipulate in a non sleazy way, um, and help people out.

Annie P. Ruggles: Oh, I love it. I love it. Yeah. So I call that the big M versus little M like capital L versus lowercase, um, um, manipulation. And, and what I mean by that is, is sales. Manipulative. Abso-freaking-lutely it is. Hundred per cent. But what I mean by that is to manipulate a situation. If I have clay, right. If I have Play-Doh and I'm forcing that into a shape, I am manipulating that thing, right.

It just means to lead a process. That's what manipulate means. Right. So if you read, I just read this incredible book called Mexican Gothic. It just came out in 2020. It's wonderful. I highly recommend it, but that book is creepy. It's creepy. It's a horror book. It's supposed to be creepy, but the act of me turning those pages with, with that edge of my seat anticipation, that is the book manipulating me. That is a carefully crafted manipulation of my emotions and actions to get me to feel a certain way and do a certain thing. But here's the difference. Although the book is manipulating me, the book is not manipulating me without my consent. I read the book, I pick up the book. I know that the book is creepy.

It has the word Gothic in the title and is filed under horror. Right. Same thing. In sales conversations, people are coming to you to solve it problem with them. And for them, if you are unlocking door by door, trust by trust. If you are unlocking the ability to have them walk that path with you, then you're taking them along for the ride.

Guess what? Manipulating them, but where the sleeves comes in. Is if I start driving so aggressively that I stopped caring where you want to go, Jacob. And I'm like, nah, this is my show. You're going to come along with me. How I want you to go and you stop having a say and you stop having power and you stop having consent.

If I start pulling the wool over your eyes, that's a negative manipulation. If I start. You know, building you up, breaking you down, treating you terribly, doing all these things so that you feel these things more deeply. That's a manipulation. If I'm relying on gimmicks and tricks to get you to give me your credit card number in the next 27 seconds, that's a negative manipulation, but it's still a manipulation.

If at the end of a sales call, you go. Wow. I feel a lot better. And I feel like Jacob really can help me with my website. Guess what? That means that you, Jacob positively manipulated the situation, taking them from a period of time when they were feeling less than good. And less than hopeful and less than productive.

And now you've shown them the light at the end of the tunnel of what's possible. They're not in that head space anymore. You facilitated that change. Guess what? Technically that makes you manipulative.

Jacob Harmon: Yeah. And according to that definition of manipulation or that lowercase M manipulation, right? Um, according to that definition, some of the best people, the best leaders that have ever lived on this earth. Have been some of the best master manipulators at the same time, because they're able to inspire people.

They're able to help people go on a journey and change and make,  a difference in people's lives. Right. So really at the end of the day, manipulation, isn't bad. It's just that a lot of us define manipulation as the capital and manipulation.

Annie P. Ruggles: Yeah, it's because we're just like, well, I cannot guide someone without hurting them. And when we say it like that, it sounds ridiculous. Of course you can guide someone without hurting them. We guide people all the time without hurting them. We help little old ladies across the street. We don't hurt them.

You know, those of you who are parents. You do nothing but guide. And most of the time it doesn't hurt them. So why then in business, do we think that guidance automatically will some way beget harm? It won't, as long as you're helping the old lady cross the street in the direction that she wants to go.

Jacob Harmon: Right. Wow. You're blowing my mind here, Amie. I, and I've already heard that, like I already watched your video on the same topic and  it's already inspiring me again because I want to change people. Right? Like the whole reason I got into business is to make a difference too, to help people.

And so. I need to be willing to do that. I need to be willing to guide people along the journey that's going to help them love it.

Annie P. Ruggles: know, one of my favorite ways to know that you're, that you're selling from a place of compassion and care and you're selling from a non sleazy and very trustworthy place is picture you and your prospect in a car. If you're driving the car. Hm. You're probably being kind of manipulative. If you're empowering your customer to drive while you navigate that's the right relationship, because they're already heading in the direction of solving the problem.

You're just along for the ride, telling them how to get there faster, better, sooner, safer, more cheaply, more effectively.

Jacob Harmon: Oh, wow. I love that.

Annie P. Ruggles: But that's to your point though,  it sounds like in some of these situations where you get taken advantage of, it seems like some money is too expensive to take. Right. And those are the people that are going to be terrible clients in that they're like, Oh, Hey, thanks so much. Come on into my car door lock you're on the freeway up.

Now you're stuck. Right. But that's because. It's not a dance, it's not a relationship. And that point you could be anyone. They just want what they want and they want it yesterday. They don't care if it's you or me or my cousin, Trudy, they just want it faster. Cheaper, better.

Jacob Harmon: Yep. The manipulation can go both ways. Interesting. Fascinating. Okay. Well, before we kind of wrap things up, is there anything that we haven't talked about,  pertaining to trust relationships, business that you'd like to talk about before we kinda wrap up.

Annie P. Ruggles: just to reiterate in a sales situation, if trust is important to you, which it should be, but if you're the kind of person that it's really, really important to, if you're like Jacob, if you're like me, tell the client. That their trust in you is valued. Tell them what your values are. Tell them what again, you don't have to name names, tell them what the does that hurts your heart.

Tell them that you understand that they may have been there before, and you can do all of this and a non-emotional. Totally cerebral business appropriate way to, and it does not have to be long and drawn out, but if the trust of your customer is important to you, make sure they know that

Jacob Harmon: I love that. Yeah. Well, thank you, Annie. I think that this has been incredibly valuable for myself and I hope that it's been valuable for you at home listening. This is the reason I have this podcast, because I love talking to business people who, who understand business relationships and building trust.

So I've definitely felt that today, Annie, and I appreciate it.

Annie P. Ruggles: I am so glad, you know, what you getting something out of. This is important to me, so that's lovely. Thank you. And thank you for trusting me enough to put me on your show.

Jacob Harmon: Of course. And if, if our listeners want to maybe learn more about you or ask you a follow-up question or reach out what are, what's the best way for them to get ahold of you?

Annie P. Ruggles: I have a free masterclass that I'm so freaking proud of called making, selling easy without getting sleazy. And you can find that at That's the. Fast way that I can get you kind of untethered from that sleazy feeling fast. And it's totally free in terms of starting a conversation with me, you would obviously go through my website, but right now the, the pure love of my life is Instagram and I'm on there at Annie preneur.

And I would love with any and all listeners

Jacob Harmon: Perfect. And I will throw those links in the show notes too.  Well, thank you so much, Annie. I really appreciate the conversation we've had and I look forward to staying connected with you .

it has been an absolute pleasure. Thank you for communicating the unbelievable importance of trust.