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Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology: How to Penetrate the C-level Executive Suite and Convince Company Leaders to Buy Hardcover – September 1, 2009

5 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Steve brings a whole new light to the golden rule of sales...  People buy from people who understand how they are wired!  --Gene Gainey, SVP Sales, Learn.com

Steve Martin brings a new level of thoughtfulness to the psychology of sales. Understanding your own linguistic profile and uncovering the "bully with the juice" will help you achieve success in the ever changing landscape of complex selling. --Sam Adams, Senior Vice President of Sales, Picis

Now more than ever, you need an unprecedented understanding of the customer's perspective, motivation and true intent. Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology provides the path to build more meaningful executive relationships that will separate you from your competition. -- Charley Knight, Vice President of Sales, Shaw Industries

Star salespeople are not always cognizant of how they go about closing C-level deals. Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology does a great job describing the foundation and process that comes naturally to successful Heavy Hitter salespeople. --Todd DeBonis, Vice President of Global Sales, TriQuint Semiconductors

This brilliant and practical book dissects the minds of C-level executives so you know how they think and make purchase decisions. --Teck Ho, Haas Business School Marketing Chair, University of California, Berkeley

Steve Martin has done it again, giving you more real world sales strategies to make sales at the highest levels. -- -- Brian Tracy, President, Brian Tracy International, author of The Psychology of Selling

A fascinating instruction manual for securing meetings with C-level executives and persuading them to buy! --Steve Clarence, Vice President of Sales, Convergys

The first book that truly teaches salespeople how to converse with CEOs. Pray your competitors don't read it first. --Craig Eckstrom, Vice President of North America Sales, PayPal

From the Inside Flap

Although closing a complex enterprise account may take many months to complete, every deal has a critical moment when it is won or lost. While you will frequently meet with lower-level and midlevel employees at companies whose business you're trying to secure, the rare face-to-face conversations you have with C-level decision makers will directly determine whether you win or lose the deal. Even though you have most likely been in sales for years, you have probably neglected to improve your most important competitive sales weapon your mouth and the words you speak!


     Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology presents a revolutionary new C-level sales philosophy based upon the interrelationship between psychology and language. It is the first book to fully explain how to master sales linguistics, the study of how the customer's mind uses and interprets language during the decision-making process. Contrary to traditional sales psychology books that rely on generic personality assessments, Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology focuses on language-based interactions with C-level executives and how to convince both the rational and emotional minds of senior decision makers.


     Based upon more than 500 interviews with C-Level executives, this book provides psychological strategies and linguistic tactics to secure C-level meetings, expert advice on how to prepare for and conduct C-level sales calls and presentations, and specific instructions on what to say and do during meetings. Martin also supplies the psychological models behind organizational politics to help you understand how senior executives think and act in group decision-making environments.


     The conversations you have with C-level executives are quite complex. They consist of verbal and nonverbal messages that are sent consciously and subconsciously. As a result, Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology includes nineteen practical exercises, thirty-seven illustrations, and extensive real-world examples to help you internalize the concepts and apply them on your next executive sales call.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: TILIS Publishers (September 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979796121
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979796128
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,059,523 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Steve Martin is the founder of the Heavy Hitter sales training program. The Heavy Hitter Sales philosophy has helped over 100,000 salespeople become top revenue producers at companies including IBM, HP, EMC, Lenovo, Oracle, PayPal, NEC, and McAfee Software. He is the author of critically acclaimed "Heavy Hitter" series of books about enterprise sales strategies for senior salespeople. Visit www.stevewmartin.com for further information.

His new book is titled Heavy Hitter IT Sales Strategy: Competitive Insights from 1000+ Interviews with Key Information Technology Decision Makers and Top Technology Salespeople. The book is based upon extensive sales research from the win-loss analysis studies he conducts on behalf of his clients

Heavy Hitter Sales Linguistics: 101 Advanced Sales Call Strategies for Senior Salespeople is the most comprehensive book about "sales linguistics," the revolutionary new field of study about how customers and salespeople use and interpret language during the decision making process.

Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology: How to Penetrate the C-Level Suite and Persuade Company Leaders to Buy is the first book to truly explain what to say and do in meetings with C-Level executives. The book is based upon extensive interviews with over 500 C-level executives.

Heavy Hitter Sales Wisdom: Proven Sales Warfare Strategies, Secrets of Persuasion, and Common-Sense Tips for Success is considered mandatory reading by Selling Power Magazine and Customer Relationship Magazine. Heavy Hitter Selling: How Successful Salespeople Use Language and Intuition to Persuade Customers to Buy is recommended reading by the Harvard Business School and has been featured in Forbes and the Wall Street Journal.

Steve is also the author of The Real Story of Informix Software and Phil White: Lessons in Business and Leadership for the Executive Team. Based upon the six years he worked at Informix, the book is a Silicon Valley sales, marketing, and executive leadership case study. It chronicles the meteoric rise of Informix Software, how it became a technology giant, and the scandal that ultimately led to its spectacular fall.

Visit www.stevewmartin.com for further information.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A sales professional's survival guide to one's job and career!

It is more difficult than ever to deliver sales and income particularly in these unprecendented economic times. Any product or service of any consequence requires executive level approval right now. In the past, decision empowerment would be given to key members in the lower ranks of any company. Today, budgets are fluid and therefore competing projects are subject to executive triage of all business investments. It is more critical than ever how you approach and position yourself favorably to persuade a C-level executive to buy from you.

Martin's prescriptive approach will challenge any sales professional regardless of experience. People are in survival mode today where keeping one's job is paramount. In sales, if you do not hit your numbers, whether you are a VP, Region manager or individual contributor, you will be gone as companies continue to winnow their work forces. This is a must read from that perspective alone.

This book clearly defines the business, psychological and political makeup of senior C-level executives. You must understand their language and the factors these decision makers face daily. This is more intimidating than ever because you must be prepared when approaching these people. Martin takes away the mystery and/or assumptions you may have in reaching these key executives in your business.

Without this awareness, you will fail in today's business climate. Steve Martin does a superb job in preparing you to sell to the C-level executive. This is an environment unlike anything we have seen in our lifetime. A must read for every VP of Sales and sales professional. "Business as usual" is over. Outstanding material!!
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Format: Hardcover
I'm a little biased because I did enjoy good results from Steve Martin's last two books. He has unique vision that I suspect will transform the sales process and will be incorporated by the other sales training gurus in the industry. Like most sales thinkers there are stronger and weaker areas, but the specific focus on psychology of upper level prospects is excellent. I've personally found even if my official target is a lower level buyer, I often should be selling to the upper level decision makers anyway.
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Format: Hardcover
On very rare occasions, a book comes along that causes us to see a topic in a completely new light. A seemingly innocuous book is so loaded with insight and practical wisdom, that the reader will never look at a subject the same way again. "Good to Great" is probably the best example we've seen in recent years.

I think "Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology" may deliver that same type of impact for senior enterprise sales professionals. The book begins with a somewhat outrageous first sentence; "There is no such thing as reality." Steve Martin begins building a foundation, and it doesn't take long to understand what he means regarding the C-Level Executive. Each succesive chapter adds more insight. Some of the concepts seem a little esoteric at first, but by the end of the book I was amazed at how each section built into a cohesive and logical finish. One of the best side benefits of the book is the understanding you will gain of your own company.

This book is easy to read, the concepts are clear, and nearly every page is loaded with an amazing array of practical insight. This is one of those books I plan to re-read every year. Read this book and don't be surprised when your understanding of C-Level executives is changed forever.
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Format: Hardcover
Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology is the latest installment in Steve W. Martin's Heavy Hitter book series. I have read his other books and this one continues in that strong tradition of extremely useful and practical sales wisdom to help win your customers' hearts and minds.

I work in marketing and work with a lot of sales people and a lot of customers. I wish every sales person at my company would read this book and read it sooner rather than later. And if you are in marketing, this book will help you understand the mind of an executive and what makes successful sales people tick. In the end, it will make you more successful in conversations with your sales teams and your customers.

Martin lays out "9 C's" of successfully penetrating the C-suite in an organized and logical manner with plenty of exercises to make you think and stories to keep you engaged. If you are in sales and regularly sell to executives, this book is a must read in today's business world. If you are in marketing, this book is a fantastic tool to make you more successful in your day-to-day activities with sales teams and customers.
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Format: Hardcover
Be forewarned sales newbies, Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology is for senior people who have been selling for years. That's exactly why I like it!!! It's not a regurgatation of all the sales 101 stuff you learned eons ago. Heavy Hitter Sales Psychology focuses on "sales linguistics," the study of how the customer's mind uses and interprets language during the decision-making process. The book provides sophisticated strategies and detailed examples of language-based interactions with C-level executives. Tons of examples, exercises, and illustrations make it enjoyable reading. I agree with Mr. Martin, "Sales Linguistics is the new Sales Psychology!"
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