Back before the internet, a wily entrepreneur by the name of Matthew Lesko published a popular book called “INFORMATION USA”.
The book as about as thick as the US Census, and Lesko promoted himself by dressing up and dancing around in a red suit with orange question marks printed all over it. He made quite an impression. Think Weird Al Yankovic, only for books.
Information USA is out of print, and the man himself has moved his enterprise online.
But the psychological principle behind Lesko’s quirky genius was profound…and still holds. In compiling his directory of free government programs that you could benefit from, he continuously ran across dedicated, knowledgeable experts; people who knew just about all there was to know about usually one very specific thing. These experts toiled away in typically very sheltered offices in a nondescript government building somewhere in DC or Virginia or even Fargo, ND.
In other words, they worked in nearly complete anonymity, and they were only too happy to be discovered by Lesko’s staff, and share their one unique information expertise to just about anybody interested enough to find them and … ASK.
Imagine someone who really wanted to understand the actuarial tables for farmers from the 1930’s in Nebraska! Yes! I have that information…so glad you asked!
Lesko tapped into a vein of well-meaning, knowledgeable experts that were proud of what they knew and gushed out helpful information.
Those people still exist. Sure, we’re all a little more wary of strangers on the phone these days, and people are probably busier than ever, but with the right approach, helpful experts are usually willing to offer some insights on the most arcane topics…just for the asking.
Maybe you’re one of them.
Or maybe that person might be the gate-keeper to a prospect, or a nugget of information that could turn into a legitimate VO job, or at least the possibility of one.
All just by asking the right person.