I actually am more diplomatic than I let on. I’m just trying to intimidate with my pretend vastness. But, yes, I do ruffle some feathers. Those are non-clients who I don’t work with. Not everyone who walks in the door is a qualified lead.
But I’m not done yet. Here is an example of where I recommended a name change that made the startup company bucks. I merely told them their company name was boring.
The original name of the company (I can’t even remember now) but it was two multisyllabic words that sounded very academic, presumptuous, and meant nothing to me or their audience. In fact, the goal was to make math exciting. It did the opposite, scary sounding. After my usual lecture on naming, I had them read “Positioning: The battle for the mind.” We then came to a consensus that a better name would be “MathFire.”
They won $10,000 in a business plan competition shortly after where I served as their marketing coach. I didn’t win. They did.
That’s the goal: make the client a winner. If you take on clients who won’t or can’t win, you’re rightly going to get some of the blame. It’s bad for business. So be selective.