billy mays – rip

Various outlets are reporting that tv pitchman billy mays was found deceased in his tampa home. So that reminded me to post some thoughts on mays that I keep forgetting to post.

Mays is the world’s most effective salesperson. He accomplished this not by selling great products necessarily but by creating a “branding” of himself. The beard, the blue-shirt, the over-talking with his hands, the excitement without hyperbole. Over time, mays became synonymous with product sales on tv. By attaching himself to products that delivered on what they said they would, mays was able to become a trusted salesperson in an industry full of snake oil salespeople. You never saw mays selling crap like the sham-wow or pedipaws. No, he sold simple items that did what they saod: wall hangers, industrial strength stain remover, etc. And when you bought a product he pitched and it ended up working, a little more trust was given in to what mays might sell you next time.

Billy mays was 50 years old.

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