Consultant entertains, educates business community |

Consultant entertains, educates business community

Sally J. Taylor

When consultant Charlie Mouser began talking about marketing early Tuesday morning, it took a few minutes for the businessmen and women to respond. But only a few minutes.

Mouser’s energetic style and commanding voice quickly drew them into the program with roll-playing, questions and answers. The audience laughed at the similarities between business and love and groaned at their own marketing faux pas.

Small businesses tend to prominently post all the “no’s,” such as no checks, no returns, no shirt, no shoes, said Mouser, who has been delivering his no-nonsense marketing lessons for 39 years.

“Would you have gotten married if the rules were posted?”

The Tuesday morning general session with Mouser was just one in a series of workshops scheduled this week. Most are aimed at specific industries ranging from government and finance to tourism and retail.

About 500 people are expected to attend the seminars cosponsored by the Tahoe-Douglas and South Lake Tahoe chambers of commerce, the Tahoe Daily Tribune and the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority. Mouser talked about the difficulty of rousing customers out of their willingness to be “miserably comfortable” rather than to change what they have now.

People are very willing to be miserably comfortable or there would be a lot more divorces, he said.

Selling a product is not about reality, he said, it’s all about perception and customers being able to see themselves with the product – be it a vacation or hair cut.

A date won’t agree to go out with you, unless she can “see” herself having fun with you, he said.

“If you don’t paint the perception, I keep my money,” Mouser said. “The biggest problem with advertising is that we sell a product instead of its effect.”

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