Insight Selling: Surprising Research on What Sales Winners Do Differently Hardcover – 20 Jun 2014
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“The majority of experienced sellers would agree that while a lot of existing sales wisdom is good, some things have become outdated and must change. The hard part is deciding what to keep, what to change and what to discard. Insight Selling lays out a convincing case for which parts of current practice we should keep, which parts must be tweaked, and which parts must be changed entirely. Whether you’re an experienced seller or just starting out in sales, you stand to learn something useful from this book.”
―Professor Neil Rackham, author of SPIN Selling
“Wow! Even your most experienced strategic sellers will sharpen their game with these insights. RAIN Group′s research and application to real life situations will educate your team on how to inspire buyers with possibilities and demonstrate the value add for your offerings like never before.”
―Sandy Miller, Partner, Strategic Accounts, Aon Hewitt
“While “solutions selling” isn’t dead, it is now just the price of admission. In this book, Mike and John provide the fundamentals and techniques around advanced “insight selling” and how you need to become the change agent for the customer to be a true sales winner! After all, in sales the second–place finisher is just the first loser.”
―Jim Madson, Vice President, Sales, Tyco SimplexGrinnell
“Professional salespeople a decade ago wouldn’t even recognize the landscape, challenges, and skill sets required today. This content is essential for contemporary sellers.”
―Peter Ostrow, VP and Research Group Director, Customer Management, Aberdeen Group
“The recipe for growth today is dramatically different than just a few years ago, yet many sellers have failed to adapt. For those aspiring to elevate their game, you’ve picked up the right playbook.”
―Richard Tober, Senior Vice President, Capgemini
“Few sales books are destined to become classics that will make a real difference in the world of selling. This one will join that rare club that will stand the test of time.”
―Gord Smith, Partner, Hitachi Solutions
“Schultz and Doerr are truly among the elite sales thought leaders. Insight Selling outlines exactly what you need to do to set yourself apart and find yourself in the winner’s circle. It’s a must read for even the most experienced sellers.”
―Jill Konrath, bestselling author of Agile Selling & SNAP Selling
From the Inside Flap
What do winners of major sales do differently than the sellers who almost won, but ultimately came in second place?
Mike Schultz and John E. Doerr, bestselling authors and world–renowned sales experts, set out to find the answer. They studied more than 700 business–to–business purchases made by buyers who represented a total of $3.1 billion in annual purchasing power. When they compared the winners to the second–place finishers, they found surprising results.
Not only do sales winners sell differently, they sell radically differently than the second–place finishers.
In recent years, buyers have increasingly seen products and services as replaceable. You might think this would mean that the sale goes to the lowest bidder. Not true! A new breed of seller―the insight seller―is winning the sale with strong prices and margins even in the face of increasing competition and commoditization.
In Insight Selling, Mike and John share the surprising results of their research on what sales winners do differently and outline exactly what you need to do to transform yourself and your team into insight sellers. They introduce a simple three–level model based on what buyers say tip the scales in favor of the winners:
- Level 1 “Connect.” Winners connect the dots between customer needs and company solutions while also connecting with buyers as people.
- Level 2 “Convince.” Winners convince buyers that they can achieve maximum return, that the risks are acceptable, and that the seller is the best choice among all options.
- Level 3 “Collaborate.” Winners collaborate with buyers by bringing new ideas to the table, delivering new ideas and insights, and working with buyers as a team.
They also found that much of the popular and current advice given to sellers can damage sales results. Insight Selling is both a strategic and tactical guide that will separate the good advice from the bad and teach you how to put the three levels of selling to work to inspire buyers, influence their agendas, and maximize value. If you want to find yourself and your team in the winner’s circle more often, this book is a must–read.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
If you're engaged in high-value, complex sales - particularly those which require pro-active need creation or elevation - this is a must for your bookshelf.
So the kindle sample is to give you an insight into what the book will be like, yet we start at 70% of the sample at a Foreward, that takes up to 83% to a Preface, which takes us to 92% before we hit the first chapter and we are allowed to look at about 5 pages!
When will some publishers learn? In a book shop we can peruse the book to see if we like what it contains, in a proper kindle sample you can! Sadly the publishers and authors of a selling book have a lot to learn about selling on kindle!
Maybe they should make a purchase from Amazon, one of the many books on selling a kindle book!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
First, what I like is that this book is research-based, and the authors have not manipulated the research to support their thesis. It's pretty straightforward and understandable: Based on interviews with 700 buyers, here's what first-place finishers--the sales winners--do differently than the second-place finishers--the sales losers. In other words, these are the top factors most separating winners from second-place finishers:
1. Educated me with new ideas or perspectives
2. Collaborated with me
3. Persuaded me we would achieve results
4. Listened to me
5. Understood my needs
This research completely resonated with me. I've written seven books on building clients for life, and interviewed thousands of C-Suite executives about their most trusted advisors. And the Insight Selling model rings true. If you think about it, if you get a first meeting with a prospect, you have to convince them it's worth having a second meeting. And today, you do that by adding value in the conversation. "Value," as the authors point out, differs from client to client. But we can make some general statements about it. The great rainmakers educate and inform and enlighten and challenge their prospects. The other person goes away thinking, "That was a useful conversation. I learned something. My thinking has been sharpened." That's why "Educated me with new ideas or perspectives" is number 1. No surprise there.
Second, Shultz and Doerr go on to frame their very useful tools and techniques in the framework of Connect, Convince, and Collaborate. Great salespeople make a connection between the customer's needs and their potential solutions. They also connect on a personal level. New research shows that we make that connection (or not) very quickly. A executive very rapidly--and in part, subconsciously--assesses your warmth and trustworthiness, on the one hand; and your competence, on the other. Convince means convincing buyers that they can get the results you promise, that the risks are acceptable, and that you're the best choice. Collaborate means being responsive, proactive, and easy to buy from. But it's not just about being easy to get along with--it's working very hard with the buyer to help them achieve their goal.
Insight Selling is an excellent and needed addition to your sales library.
(Andrew Sobel, author of Power Relationships: 26 Irrefutable Laws for Building Extraordinary Relationships and six other books on building clients for life.
Educate me with new ideas and perspectives
Collaborate with me
Persuade me we would achieve results
Listened to me
Understood my needs
Helped me avoid potential pitfalls
Crafted a compelling solution
Depicted purchasing process accurately
Connected with me personally
Overall value from company is superior to other options.
This is a book for sales leaders and high performing sales people to buy read and take to heart. No pages are wasted so this makes a good coast to coast air flight read
Schultz and Doer's words ring all too true for me, a salesperson in commercial real estate. Cold calling and door knocking are thankless, painful parts of my daily life. Insight Selling has changed that. In three simple ways, a sale is much more achievable: Connect, convince and collaborate. Bringing the pitch down to a basic conversation--a connection--is what the root of the sale. This book shows how to remove the clutter, reduce the brain damange, and close. Based on customers and research, not sales people and schmoozing, Insight Selling is an effective tool for anyone's sales-kit.
This book does a great job of establishing the benchmarks, based on their in-depth analysis and research that drive strong value selling. You can achieve greater success by aligning with customers at a whole new level. They guide you through a process that helps you understand how you can create insight across three dimensions or levels:
1. Connect – they go beyond just relationship building. Insight selling drives solution building and connecting the dots between key business issues / drivers and value-driven solutions
2. Convince – persuading a decision requires understanding customer risks and what is acceptable, and then bringing solutions that deliver a strong return on investment. This is how you win today, delivering ROI.
3. Collaboration – I like how they establish a new way of thinking about collaboration. It is not just engaging in an interactive discussion, it is about managing the sales process by leading an exchange aimed at getting results. It is about creating demand and guiding an opportunity to a successful close.
They go on to profile the attributes and competencies required for Insight Selling, as well as the mistakes to avoid in selling this new way.
High performing salespeople (and their managers!) would be well served to read this book. Bring your highlighter, you’ll need it.
I learned, from the buyer’s point of view, the top ten things that Winners do that separates them from the Second-Placer finishers:
1. Educated me with new ideas or perspectives.
2. Collaborated with me.
3. Persuaded me we could achieve results.
4. Listened to me.
5. Understood my needs.
6. Helped me avoid potential pitfalls.
7. Crafted a compelling solution.
8. Depicted purchasing process accurately.
9. Connected with me personally.
10. Overall value from the company is superior to other options.
I think you’re going to come away with an in-depth understanding of what makes a top-tier professional salesperson, in a way you’ve never seen or heard before. The three C’s—Connect, Convince, and Collaborate—are going to become embedded in your selling lexicon, I promise.