October 14th, 2009
How to Sell to Minnesotans
I'm not a native Minnesotan: I've only been here 26 years. Some things took
me a long time to get. Like when a Minnesotan says "not now", I used to pull
out my day planner and ask "when?". I finally figured out " not now" is
Minnesotan for "not interested."
So when the Realtors Association offered a class on "How to Sell to
Minnesotans" I signed up. And this is what I learned:
*The city with the largest per capita of age 65+ in the country is Edina.
*Minnesota has the highest per capita in the country of golfers, boat owners
*Minnesota has 90,000 miles of shore land: more than Florida, California and
Beyond the statistics the highlights were:
*Your Minnesotan customers don't want to chit-chat. They don't need you for
a friend as they are still hanging with their friends from High School.
*Minnesotans make quick decisions-they just take a long time to inform you
they have decided.
*Minnesotans are much more into public policy and local government
involvement than others in the country. (Which isn't always a good thing
when your development proposal is at planning commission.) Minnesotans pride
themselves on being educated and well informed. So a good way to reach them
is to teach a class.
*Whoever designed the "Sane Lane" must not have been a Minnesotan:
Minnesotans don't like to car pool-they are too independent and want to keep
their options open. Not into trends and not into flash.
*When a Minnesotan tells you to "call me next week" they are blowing you
off. But when they say "call me next Tuesday"-they are interested in doing
business with you.
*Your Minnesotan customers don't want to know about your personal business
and don't ask about theirs. They like to keep a wall between you and them.
*Minnesotans expect full honesty from you and will walk the minute they
sense insincerity. Yet Minnesotans will often lie to you about who the
decision maker really is.
*True Minnesotans who grew up with this culture can't see these things in
How much of this bodes true with your experience?