Today Rick and I spent a while in Glenwood working on the handout material for our eBay class to be held on May 2 from 1-4pm. Rick had to get his VW Van worked on and so I went along and we made a business meeting out of it.
After the van was done we stopped at the only tech store in Glenwood (Staples) and looked at all of the computers (about six of them) and other goodies.
We walked over to the digital cameras and looked them over quickly. While we were talking a salesman came over and asked if we needed help. "Yes," replied Rick, "What is a megapixel?"
The salesperson gave a short definition. "Are more megapixels better?" Rick asked. The sales person’s answer was amazing in its accuracy yet it showed how clueless sales people can be about thier customers.
His answer went something like this, "If you set it on low megapixels you can fit more picures on a card but the pictures won’t be as good. If you use higher megapixels then your image will be sharper and more detailed but it will use up more space on your memory card."
To this Rick asked, "What’s a memory card?"
"Well," said the sales person, "Memory cards hold pictures and we sell them in the store, there are a bunch of different kinds like SD and XD and they come in all different sizes but you probably want one that’s 256 or 512 Megabytes."
We wanted to ask, "What’s a megabyte?" or "How much bigger is a 512 megabyte card than a 256 and will it fit in my camera since it’s bigger?"
We stopped before our questions became rediculous.
Here’s how I would sell a digital camera to a customer – I would sell almost anything in a similar fashion.
Me: Hello, do you have any questions?
Customer: No thanks, I’m just looking.
I would then wait within earshot to see if they were really just looking or whether they felt stupid asking questions. Let’s assume that they had questions but they weren’t sure where to start.
Me: Is the camera for you?
Customer: (They may say yes or no, it really doesn’t matter)
Me: What kind of camera do you have now?
Customer: I don’t know the name because I never use it.
Me: What do you like to take pictures of?
Customer: (The answer could vary. People, wildlife, scenery, sports, low light, etc.)
Me: Great, it sounds like detail is going to be very important, but you also want something inexpensive…
I would continue on to help them find the right camera for their needs. If they ask what a megapixel is, I would tell them that it is a measure of the detail in a photo (more is better), if they ask what a megabyte is, I will explain that when a camera takes a picture the amount of detail and color in the photo affects how much memory the camera needs to remember the photo.
I don’t believe that we need to use lingo to explain technology. When I explain how much memory a computer has, I do it in encyclopedia sets and volumes. For example an 80 gig hard drive holds about 80 encyclopedia sets worth of text and pictures. I really don’t care what a byte is or a gigahertz or a megapixel as long as I know why it’s important.
The next time you are looking to buy a computer, digital camera, scanner, printer or any other tech device, feel free to call the show, we love helping people learn what’s really important.