What kind of person would call me at seven in the morning, bend my ear nonstop for nearly an hour about his passion for his profession, and then sell me on helping him become even more successful at it . . . all before I had taken even one swig of orange juice or bite of toast?
His name is Ramon Williamson, of McLean, Virginia, and it was not surprising to learn he is a professional sales trainer and coach, one of those caffeinated supermotivators hired to give pep talks to company salespeople to get them to move more merchandise. And I have to say, this guy delivers the goods . . . at least in getting me pumped up to work on an ad makeover for him.
Williamson sent his small-space ad for review, and my reaction was that it had a decent hook--affordability, for a typically pricey service--but still needed more to separate him from other trainers. Also, the prospect might wonder whether, behind all the pulpit-pounding, fist-pumping, rah-rah enthusiasm and self-promotion, this guy is as good as he claims to be.
Williamson probably knows that one of the best corroborators of capability is a third-party endorsement, meaning recognition for competence or excellence by some objective authority, apart from you or your clients. When you get an award, it's a form of third-party endorsement. A review of your product is also a type of third-party endorsement. And magazines often act in that role by bestowing annual "Best Of . . . " awards in various categories of interest to their readership; the honorees can then use that plaudit to promote their businesses.
Williamson got such a "best" designation from a periodical called Selling Power, which named him one of the best sales trainers. I don't know what the criteria were or how the judging was conducted, but he got a blue ribbon slapped on his lapel for it--and I recommend he leverage that recognition in his ad.