Hard sell

This is one of my favorite bits of L. Ron Hubbard’s administrative “technology:”

“Hard sell means insistence that people buy. It means caring about the person and not being reasonable* about stops or barriers but caring enough to get him through the stops or barriers to get the service that’s going to rehabilitate him.” — LRH, HCO PL 26 Sept 1979, COPYWRITING

* “Reasonable,” in Scientology, has been redefined to mean “accept[ing] reasons why something cannot be done.” It is seen as a bad thing. (Source: Scientology Admin Dictionary)

See what LRH did there? LRH redefined hard sell to be about caring. You don’t hard-sell someone to get money out of them; you hard-sell them because you care about their eternity. This is one of the ways LRH took advantage of his Scientologists, many of whom were (and still are) big-hearted people with a genuine desire to help. With the concept of hard sell, LRH appealed to their better nature, taking advantage of their altruism to make more money for his business.

More on hard sell from the same policy letter:

“It is necessary in writing an ad or a flier to assume that the person is going to sign up right now. You tell him that he is going to sign up right now and he is going to take it right now…. One does not describe something, one commands something. [People] respond to direct commands in literature and ads.” — LRH

An interesting religious “tenet”, eh? I wonder what Jesus or Buddah or Moses or Allah said about writing advertisements… oh wait, they didn’t.

Hubbard apologists might try to argue that the policy letter from which I am quoting comes from the “admin tech” and had nothing to do with religious beliefs. Oh yeah?

“If one does not understand this, and if he doesn’t know that Dianetics and Scientology are the most valuable service on the planet, he will not be able to understand hard sell or be able to write good copy.

“So realize that you’re not offering cars or life insurance or jewelry or stocks or bonds or houses… You’re offering a service that’s going to rehabilitate the thetan.” — LRH

If you ever wonder how Scientologists can push so hard to sell services or solicit donations – how they can harangue fellow Scientologists to give past the point that they can reasonably afford – perhaps this will give you some insight.

Imagine what these same people could do if they invested their time, energy and enthusiasm in something that really did help people.


7 responses to “Hard sell

  1. A part of this is the “resign line”. When someone completes a service they are put on a routing form that routes them to various places for various reasons. Part of this is the registrar. Per policy you should be so happy with the service you just completed that you will resign for the next one. If not, there is a problem. You will be routed to ethics, or whatever, around and around to the end purpose of getting you to resign (and pay) for your next service.
    One doesn’t easily climb off the hamster wheel.

  2. I was surprised to see that my comment was approved when I posted it this morning to http://martyrathbunblog.com

    Here is what I wrote. It is my analysis of the fight between Mark Rathbun and Scientology:

    I don’t dispute the fact that Mark Rathbun is doing Scientology 2.0 for whatever reason. But you are missing the point. Rathbun has been a leader of a group that he liked. Suddenly, after many years, he was stripped off that leadership. He is left with nothing. His logical conclusion is to vindicate himself by going after the very person that took the powers away from him.

    It probably took a while for Rathbun to figure out what he was going to do with his life. But humans make mistakes, we all do, and Rathbun’s choice wasn’t the best, i.e., vendetta.

    By going after his former religion and the leader of that religion her put himself in an untenable position because he is insulting the entire institution and all of its members. An institution, I might add, that fights back anyone that tries to destroy or impede their advancement.

    All religions in history have had their schism but what I see here is a disgruntled “priest” fighting his church. But Rathbun has the wrong motive, vendetta. Hatred, wars, fights, etc., have never brought any conflict to an end, to the contrary they are elements that encourage more conflicts.

    Look at it this way. Every time Rathbun writes an article in his blog there is always that hatred element in it, no forgiveness of any kind. He names people that are members of the Church of Scientology leaving their names out there for anyone to grab and harass. When Scientologists defend themselves and expose names Rathbun doesn’t like it, but why doesn’t he set a good example and stop throwing the names of people that want to be left alone and have never agreed to be part of his fight.

    Read his blog, it is infested with hatred. Your blog, too, does it at times. You shouldn’t be doing that.

    Rathbun has reached a state of mind that no one will ever persuade him that no matter what happens to him it is either Miscavige, OSA or some sort of secret operative being paid to spy on him. That’s his life, he can’t back-paddle, he will always say that the Church of Scientology is the reason his life in going to pieces. Rathbun doesn’t understand that perhaps his hate-filled attitude toward people is what is causing animosity toward him.

    Regardless of Rathbun’s reaction you shouldn’t push his buttons. The man is mentally sick and obsessed. Leave him alone and he will fade away in his own misery, sad but true. I feel sorry for him because he doesn’t realize that that’s what is consuming him, but the man can’t move on and needs something to fight.

    My two cents.

  3. non-sequitur two-cents.

  4. @skeptic
    The reason your comment was allowed through is because it was not posted on Marty’s blog. I’m not sure who’s blog that is, but it’s not Marty’s.

  5. oops ignore that last post. After reading skeptic’s post again I realize that he knew it was an anti Marty site where his message was approved.

  6. One interesting thing here is that LRH said “One exchanges something of value for something of value”. It is good that he said that.

    Sometimes staff are paid $9.00 a week. I have seen instances where staff are paid $3.85 a week. I know of Sea Org members who are not paid at all!
    If the staff are not getting paid for the value of the services they deliver they cannot be worth buying.

    So thank you David Miscavige and L. Ron Hubbard for being the greedy, narcissistic, selfish, ignorant, stubborn morons that you are. You lack of ablity in thes areas serves as a warning and preventative measure to the public not to get involved in Scientology.

    Now go ahead and argue with that.

  7. When I was in Scientology David Miscavige gave me a blow job.

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