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Rainmaking: Attract New Clients No Matter What Your Field
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
This book is excellent on so many levels. I am not a sales person but I need to use the art of persuasion to assure stakeholders that I know how to run digital media projects effectively. This book is packed with tips and examples on how to listen to client needs and ensure you have the right attitude to seal the deal in any competitive field. It is also an invaluable resource if you are preparing for a job interview, read Part III an adapt the pitch meeting and presentation guidance to an interview scenario so that you can market yourself more effectively. If you fear networking, then read Part II, it's easier than you think - we do it all the time but there is plenty of advice of how to make your presence memorable. Brilliant resource, I recommend this 100%.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2011
I work in a business which has two distinct (although co-dependent) offerings - a hugely successful administrative business and a consulting business which tends to be made feel like the 'poor relation'. I have felt, over the years, that I have been banging my head off a brick wall when it came to marketing discussions, and the need by our marketing people to have a 'one size fits all' approach. What I liked about this book was the insight into professional mindset. I understand it well enough (although I find my efforts re-energized having read the book) but I now have a basis for helping our marketing unit understand the it. This book deals with the fears that professionals face in looking for new clients and new business and rightly comes back to making yourself recognisable in your field. The challenge laid down is to make the time to do that!
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I have read other books on how to market and sell consulting work and this one is by far one of the best. The advice is very pragmatic and actionable. Ford explores different options stating what are the pros and cons. He has also interviewed successful rainmakers and got an informed view on what works and what does not in addition to his own extensive experience.

In the first part of the book he talks about marketing tactics: they are the usual (speaking, writing, etc)
Part II is focused on how to build a network and the third how to manage sales meetings. The advice is sound and pragmatic. It also touches upon the topic of cold calling and some techniques to improve this skill. The last part is mostly strategic. After having touched upon the tactics, Ford provides useful advice on how to devise our strategy.

Written in a pleasant way, very easy to read it is not patronising at all. The author is very open about possibilities and obstacles (especially in pricing services). A great book. The second edition came out in 2008, but it is still relevant today (you can add some social media activities which should not the bulk of your activity as a consultant anyway in most cases) - overall the core of the marketing/networking/sales/strategy is here.
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on 20 November 2009
This book has changed my viewpoint and has boosted my respect for a good salesman in the professional services industry. Its is full of excellent and practical tips covering the full spectrum of building reputation, lead generation, networking and how to turn leads into a closed sell. As a professional taking on more responsibilities to develop and grow our business, "Rain making" is a reference book I will keep close at hand.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 6 March 2012
Overall there are 3 ways to increase you firm's revenues and this book does a great job to covering these 3 topics:

- Increase the pool you are fishing in (increase the network size)
- Increase the percentage of buyers from that pool
- Increase revenue from each buyer (repeat buyers)

The skills to succeed at growing revenue for each of these 3 ways are quite different .This book covers these 3 angles to increase revenue in a top down fashion. It claims to be aimed at non-sales professionals but I believe everybody could pick up a couple of ideas from this book. I can imagine freelancers would find this book very useful as it covers basics like how to build a reputation (online and offline).

4 Main parts are found back:

- Marketing Tactics: How professionals build reputation and generate leads
- Building a network: How professionals develop a sustainable source of leads
- Sales Tactics: How professionals advance and close a sale
- Tactics to Strategy: What works and what doesn't

Even just dipping in the book gives tons of approaches, ideas, techniques, guidelines and charts to get those leads going. It results in a good overview classic on how to sell and market no matter what your field - A good review book I would say or starter.

I loved reading it.

Contents (Rainmaking 2nd Edition):

Part I Marketing Tactics: How professionals build reputation and generate leads
1 - Writing and publishing your article
2 - Finding a podium
3 - Marketing by mail
4 - Organizing seminars and conferences
5 - Getting publicity
6 - A few words on the web (by Matt Caspari)
7 - Eliminating the dread of cold calling

Part II Building a network: How professionals develop a sustainable source of leads
8 - Networking: The alternative to cold calling
9 - Special rules for special networks: trade associations, formal networking groups, and internal networks.
10 - Increasing network quality (by Mimi Spangler and Gary Pines)
11 - How markets structure networks
12 - From networks to leads
13 - Building client relationships that last

Part III Sales Tactics: How professionals advance and close a sale
14 - The sales meeting: The first 5 minutes
15 - The sales meeting: Questioning and listening
16 - The sales meeting: Offering your solution
17 - The sales meeting: Formal presentations
18 - The sales meeting: Handling questions and concerns
19 - Team selling
20 - Shortening the sales cycle
21 - Writing a proposal
22 - Quoting a fee
23 - Turning down small work
24 - When you lose a sale

Part IV From Tactics to Strategy: What works and what doesn't
25 - The logic of a sales strategy
26 - Simple strategies that can help you now
27 - Self-marketing: Experts make themselves
28 - Market-based strategies

Conclusion: Becoming a Rainmaker
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 12 March 2011
Excellent book for those wishing to improve their business development skills. Many good hints for people selling professional services to new clients.
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on 23 February 2015
Not sure this book offers very much to that already been said
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 August 2014
Top notch...sales is not taught in school but this delightful book is a refreshing lesson in the dark arts of the subtle sell
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