The Bud Fox guide to gifting elephants

Howdy there, fellow Gift·ologist.

So lots of talk lately in the ol’ blog about strategic gifting to influencers.

I’ve had one or two sales pros reach out and ask about the differences between wooing a media influencer… and wooing a dream client.

“Dream client” meaning a decision maker at a large company.

Like in a B2B selling situation.

Somebody who –if you can get their attention and close ’em– will yield a large 4, 5, or even 6 figure (!!) commission. 

The boiler room whales, if you will.

The glengarry leads. 

Yes, there are DEFINITELY nuances when using Gift·ology to get an elephant’s attention:

  • An elephant is used to having their butt kissed and caressed
  • An elephant’s hobbies, needs, wants, and favorite pasttimes are not easily accessible-to-all
  • An elephant is much more guarded (in certain cases, angered) by random solicitation
  • Which is why an elephant has gatekeepers, whose job it is to keep pesky B2B sales people (like me) away 

So how do you turn the tides in your favor?

Gift·ology, of course. Duh.

But the dollars are in the details. 

To all of you sales leaders who want a better method of approaching big dollar accounts?

Your assignment is thus: go rent the movie WALL STREET on Apple or Amazon.

(The original. Not the sequel. Yuck.)

Even if you’ve seen it before, watch it anew with a Gift·ologist’s eyes.

It is a roadmap for successful execution.

… … …

For you Wall Street movie noobs, it’s about a young broker named Bud Fox.

An every day, low-man-on-the-totem-pole, account exec who decides that he’s donezo with calling company leads and playing client-punching-bag.

Instead, Buddy-boy wants to make his own destiny with his dream clients.

The dreamiest being a multi-millionaire named Gordon Gekko, whose every Wall Street move turns to gold.

(As the movie evolves, we find out how and why.) 

These are Bud Fox’s moves I want you to model:

(Check out this dialogue. I simply love this flick.) 

Building relationships with gatekeepers

Bud Fox: (over the phone) “Hello, Natalie? Guess who?”
Gatekeeper: “Mr. Fox.”
Bud Fox: “That’s right. Every day I tell myself, ‘today could be the day.’ …will you marry me?”
Gatekeeper: “I’ll think about it.”

 Boldly showing up in person

Bud Fox: “Hello, Natalie. Recognize the voice? I’ll give you a hint. You’re seriously considering marrying me.”
Gatekeeper: [speechless that he made it in the building]
Bud Fox: “You’re lovelier than I pictured!”

Studying the elephant every way possible

Bud Fox: “I have Mr. Gekko’s birthday present.”
Gatekeeper: “You can’t come barging in, and what makes you think it’s his birthday??”
Bud Fox: “It’s in the bible, see? (holds up magazine with Gecko interview) You better buy him a gift!” 

Gifting the right gift

Bud Fox: “Please, Natalie, let me give this to him. Cuban cigars. Davidoff, his favorite, and very tough to get.”
(Note: Your target’s ‘favorite’ + ‘tough to get’ = a practical luxury = the perfect cold client gift)

Refusing to take NO for an answer

(Bud Fox enters Gekko’s office)
Gekko: “This is the kid who calls 59 days in a row, wants to be a player.
Oughtta’ be a picture of you in the dictionary under ‘persistence,’ kid.”

… … …

Simply epic.

Are YOU a Bud Fox level gift·ologist?

Or are you the mush cookie sales person who is too timid or scared to go after the biggest fish in your industry?

It’s easier than ever to “spy” on your gifting targets nowadays:

  • Social media accounts.
  • Googling for public interviews.
  • Connecting with people on the periphery of the elephant’s network.

Study them. Learn about them.

And then do what it says in this book to leap gatekeepers in a single-bound! 


Here’s a random B2B sales tip (don’t remember where I heard this)…

If you’re ever cold-calling a company and have *no idea* who the decision-maker is?

Don’t call the main directory or the switchboard operator.

“I haven’t done my homework… whine, whine… can you transfer me to the person that…?”

Weak sauce.

Instead, call the SALES DEPARTMENT and ask them.

They know how the organization works and (in many cases) will be empathetic to what you’re trying to do since they live the same grind.

Of course follow up with a kick-tail thank you gift when you close the deal.

So there ya go.

My second best B2B sales tip behind this one:

“Do everything written in this book.”

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