Strange Re-Tales: Whales, Laydowns, and Flops

It’s always great when this walks through your front door.

Recently, I’ve blogged about salesperson lingo, specifically, tirekickers and be-backs.

Since I’ve been diving into the vernacular of the salesfloor, here’s some more.

Just as prospective customers who never buy anything have their own nickname, so to do their opposites: the customers who buy.

In the parlance, a “whale” is a customer who’s spending big.

“Big” is relative, of course. But you’ll know a whale of a customer when meet one.

Quite often they’ll be the one paying with a big roll of cash.

A clue!

Related to, but separate are those customers who, while spending a lot, seem to say yes to everything, and raise no objections. The Laydowns, also known as the Flops.

Obviously, from the perspective of a salesperson, those are dream customers; the ones you love to have.

Once, years ago on a slow day a co-worker and I were holding the counter top down, when a gentleman walked in.

“How are you?” I asked.

“I’m good.” He replied. The he gestured to the big screen TV display at the front of the store. “And I’d like one of those, please. When can you deliver.”

So I begin putting the transaction together for him. “Oh” he interjects “Is there an extended warranty I can buy too?”

Six thousand dollar sale. Less than ten minutes of work. And at no time did we ever discuss price. We shook hands, he took his invoice and delivery note and left.

I looked over at my colleague, who while remaining professional, looked like he was going to hyperventilate.

“Tell me you’ve spoken to him before today.” He implored.

“Nope” I replied, “never seen him before in my life.”