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Argue and Win Everytime

You might ask what arguing has to do with marketing, sales and global growth. Everything!

How do you better get people engaged in your offering, and to buy more? It’s all about creating your most compelling case that creates a win-win.

One of the my all-time favorite books on this topic is “How to Argue and Win Everytime” by Jerry Spence. It is one of about 25 that sit on my bookshelf because it makes several key points very well.

How to Argue and Win Every Time teaches you how to argue in everyday life—at home, at work, with clients, with teachers and with your kids. It is also a book with implications for American society because at its heart Mr. Spence suggests that winning may not be what you think it is, and that your enemy’s loss may be your loss as well.

So arguing is about winning – and win-win. Here are some key points. I recommend picking up the book and reading yourself.

First, listening is OK. In today’s world – at least in U.S. politics – there seems to be a belief that ignoring or talking over the opposition is a good strategy.  We know in business and in life that it is not.

On this point, here are some points taken from the book. To win, says Mr. Spence:

  • Disarm an opponent by listening to the other side of the argument
  • Realize that words are often weapons of combat
  • Decide when to argue and when not to argue
  • Embrace the soul and argue out of the heart zone
  • Unlock the internal prisoner that prevents you from achieving victory

Second and very applicable to marketing, argue (and market) in the “heart zone”. Make a personal appeal and connection. Logic doesn’t work with juries or customers. Connect emotionally.

Third and finally, the “magical argument” comes together when you’ve listened, connected emotionally and THEN made your point that can’t be resisted.

Mr. Spence’s book was written in 1995 and is still applicable today. Seth Godin’s “All Marketers Are Liars” is a good supplement with more specific marketing guidance – and another of my top 25 – but Mr. Spence was in that storytelling and emotional connection place first.

Enjoy and grow!

About Doug Bruhnke

Growth Nation is a global full-service marketing and business growth firm that creates more leads, stronger brands and higher revenue for clients in technology, manufacturing, healthcare and professional services. Our growth process has created over $1 billion of new revenue.


  1. This is a book I have on my shelf, and oddly enough right next to “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. In all, a very complete picture of working with people to everyones benefit. Thanks for sharing Doug.

  2. This sounds like a terrific book. I’m always into personal development and strengthening skills for business, so I’ll definitely look this one up. Thanks Doug!

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