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Honored Contributor
Posts: 9,012
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

On 1/21/2015 Hildegarde Withers said:
On 1/21/2015 Johnnyeager said:
On 1/20/2015 Porcelain said:

- Push/Pull Take Away: Removing items from the screen as colors sell out. Showing items briefly and then whisking them away without saying when they will be shown again, teasing.


The way the QVC hosts employ this is really strange to me. David V gets absolutely manic when a color sells out and it must be removed from the display immediately! Last Sunday he was so woundup about it, as if something terrible would happen if the stagehand didn't remove the red one.

They do the same with handbags.

It gives the impression that the items are "flying out the door" and you'd better hurry and order because there are only a few left.

Look! We only have 2 colors left! Hurry!


They do the "rush act" to get you to hurry and order. Many times when I look online after a show, some of the colors are indeed still available--maybe from orders cancelled. Also, when a vendor (like Isaac or Tara) act so sad when a color or an item sells out. Didn't they bring it to QVC to sell it?

Honored Contributor
Posts: 9,012
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

Even my local chain grocery store has the clerks or guy in the produce department saying "good morning; how is your day going so far?, etc." Same with telemarketers which I really don't like and have most of them blocked.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,014
Registered: ‎09-14-2011

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

On 1/23/2015 Daysdee said:
On 1/23/2015 JustJazzmom said:
On 1/23/2015 ECBG said:
On 1/20/2015 Sooner said:
On 1/20/2015 gailchap said:

Makes sense but would you buy anything from a person you find distasteful - No. So why add all the psychobabble - you buy from a salesperson that you like. You turn off the TV when someone you dislike comes on. I imagine that shopping channels audition lots of people for a host position - trying to find one that is universally pleasant and able to sell.

Of course I'd buy from a person I find distasteful. If it was a product I trusted and wanted. I don't have to LIKE someone to buy from them. . . I'm there for the purchase, not a friendship. It's business. . . the salesperson and mine. That's all.

It may go back to Kathy Levine days, but I remember one host telling that as part of her host audition she had to sell a pencil. She suggested thet thought if you could sell a pencil. you could sell anything!

I am pretty sure it was Antonella that sold the pencil and got the job.


Jane Treacy tells that story too. When she had an interview appointment, her mother gave her a pencil and said "sell this." She practiced it at home and when she went for the interview at QVC, they asked her to demonstrate how she would sell a pencil. Now I'm wondering if all these stories are true.

The sell-the-pencil was used in auditions for a long time, so many hosts have a story about it. When Amy auditioned, she did a sales pitch for her own engagement ring.
This kind of audition shows how well you can enthusiastically talk non-stop for 10 minutes about an item. I remember seeing Kathy Levine when she came back to QVC selling her La Vintage jewelry. She started off saying something like "Ok, it's been a while, I have to get back into this" then took off on the non-stop chatter about the piece of jewelry.

It'a a job skill. The QVC hosts are very good at it.

Super Contributor
Posts: 321
Registered: ‎04-19-2010

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

To me this is very wrong. To think that QVC or any shopping channel, actually sits down and plans like this is obscene, let alone deceptive to the customers. I wouldn't be able to work for a company that did this.
On 1/20/2015 Porcelain said:

Yep, I agree they use that tactic. They also use several others:

- Scarcity: "We only have 300 left in size medium!" "Blue will be the first to go!" "This will be Isaac's only mid-calf suede tassled shootie Today's Special Value for all of 2015!"

- Artificial Time Constraints: Time-limited deals that are not based on external factors, just sales decisions.

- Social Proof: Testimonials and hosts and models claiming they use the products and love them.

- Push/Pull Take Away: Removing items from the screen as colors sell out. Showing items briefly and then whisking them away without saying when they will be shown again, teasing.

- Need to Belong: "Everyone will compliment you on your blouse and ask where you got it!" Tribalism: Mallinistas, IT girls, Quackers, Geller gals, Dimitri's Dazzlers...

- Status: "It screams money, honey." "You'll look like you own the company." "Very Hamptons boho chic." "It reminds me of something you'd find in that famous little blue box."

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Registered: ‎04-05-2010

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

On 1/29/2015 Queen Aud said:To me this is very wrong. To think that QVC or any shopping channel, actually sits down and plans like this is obscene, let alone deceptive to the customers. I wouldn't be able to work for a company that did this.
On 1/20/2015 Porcelain said:

Yep, I agree they use that tactic. They also use several others:

- Scarcity: "We only have 300 left in size medium!" "Blue will be the first to go!" "This will be Isaac's <em>only</em> mid-calf suede tassled shootie Today's Special Value for all of 2015!"

- Artificial Time Constraints: Time-limited deals that are not based on external factors, just sales decisions.

- Social Proof: Testimonials and hosts and models claiming they use the products and love them.

- Push/Pull Take Away: Removing items from the screen as colors sell out. Showing items briefly and then whisking them away without saying when they will be shown again, teasing.

- Need to Belong: "Everyone will compliment you on your blouse and ask where you got it!" Tribalism: Mallinistas, IT girls, Quackers, Geller gals, Dimitri's Dazzlers...

- Status: "It screams money, honey." "You'll look like you <em>own</em> the company." "Very Hamptons boho chic." "It reminds me of something you'd find in that famous little blue box."

Every store you walk into does the same thing, even the grocery stores. The stores are set up to direct customers to the more expensive lines. Wall colors, floor design, window displays, music - everything is planned to get the customer into the store, keep them there and have them purchase something. They have special sales and discounts for card holders - always limited quantity, limited time.

Every line of "up-scale" clothing builds on status and need to belong - look at the logos on the shirts, handbags, etc. That's why there's fakes of the expensive handbags - people want to look like they "belong" and have the "status" to own that bag.

It's called marketing and sales.

Super Contributor
Posts: 281
Registered: ‎10-12-2014

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

A poster wrote about sales/marketing knowing every aspect of a store. So true! A grocery store tempos their music to how fast they want you in and out. For example, during the weekends (heavy traffic) the music is more up-beat, but shop on a Monday morning and it's pure elevator music because they want you to take your time and make those impulse purchases.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,367
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

On 1/23/2015 Daysdee said:
On 1/23/2015 JustJazzmom said:
On 1/23/2015 ECBG said:
On 1/20/2015 Sooner said:
On 1/20/2015 gailchap said:

Makes sense but would you buy anything from a person you find distasteful - No. So why add all the psychobabble - you buy from a salesperson that you like. You turn off the TV when someone you dislike comes on. I imagine that shopping channels audition lots of people for a host position - trying to find one that is universally pleasant and able to sell.

Of course I'd buy from a person I find distasteful. If it was a product I trusted and wanted. I don't have to LIKE someone to buy from them. . . I'm there for the purchase, not a friendship. It's business. . . the salesperson and mine. That's all.

It may go back to Kathy Levine days, but I remember one host telling that as part of her host audition she had to sell a pencil. She suggested thet thought if you could sell a pencil. you could sell anything!

I am pretty sure it was Antonella that sold the pencil and got the job.


Jane Treacy tells that story too. When she had an interview appointment, her mother gave her a pencil and said "sell this." She practiced it at home and when she went for the interview at QVC, they asked her to demonstrate how she would sell a pencil. Now I'm wondering if all these stories are true.

In Kathy Levine's first book, she also talks about having to sell a pencil as part of her interviewing process.

Super Contributor
Posts: 281
Registered: ‎10-12-2014

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

On 1/29/2015 NiteStar said:
On 1/23/2015 Daysdee said:
On 1/23/2015 JustJazzmom said:
On 1/23/2015 ECBG said:
On 1/20/2015 Sooner said:
On 1/20/2015 gailchap said:

Makes sense but would you buy anything from a person you find distasteful - No. So why add all the psychobabble - you buy from a salesperson that you like. You turn off the TV when someone you dislike comes on. I imagine that shopping channels audition lots of people for a host position - trying to find one that is universally pleasant and able to sell.

Of course I'd buy from a person I find distasteful. If it was a product I trusted and wanted. I don't have to LIKE someone to buy from them. . . I'm there for the purchase, not a friendship. It's business. . . the salesperson and mine. That's all.

It may go back to Kathy Levine days, but I remember one host telling that as part of her host audition she had to sell a pencil. She suggested thet thought if you could sell a pencil. you could sell anything!

I am pretty sure it was Antonella that sold the pencil and got the job.


Jane Treacy tells that story too. When she had an interview appointment, her mother gave her a pencil and said "sell this." She practiced it at home and when she went for the interview at QVC, they asked her to demonstrate how she would sell a pencil. Now I'm wondering if all these stories are true.

In Kathy Levine's first book, she also talks about having to sell a pencil as part of her interviewing process.

Ha! I'm surprised the Q never capitalized on this and sold a pack of pencils with their logo on them!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,761
Registered: ‎03-15-2014

Re: I Have Been Reading Up On The Psychology Of Selling Used By Television Retailers

Yes, the "selling a pencil" thing is a well-known part of QVC lore.