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Insight Selling: Surprising Research on What Sales Winners Do Differently Hardcover – May 5, 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majority of experienced sellers would agree that while a lot of existing sales wisdom is good, some things have become outdated and must change.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.
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Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
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.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great book. Definitely to be recommended to each sales person who are serious about the business of selling to achieve excellence. Read morePublished 27 days ago
Excellent Book. It's one of the best sales books that I've ever read. If you are a seasoned vet or a new to sales, this is a must read. Read morePublished 1 month ago by John Hinds
Insight Selling by RAIN is a indispensable manual for sales professional. It goes deep into the key aspects to become a successful & happy sales professional. Read morePublished 4 months ago by C.P.Lakshmi Narasimhan
Not what I hoped for. Boring to read, takes too long to get to a point. Not exciting!Published 9 months ago by Galina L. Vaintrub
Having lead two large sales organizations and managed hundreds of sales profesionals I think Insight Selling is a tremendously
useful book. Read more
An interesting approach to sales new trends in the market. Worth a reading.Published 13 months ago by Ricardo F. Sousa
I found that insight selling totally 100% transformed the way I approach each buyer. While the script I use at work to sell is undoubtedly good, it didn’t allow me to unlock my... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Christopher A Renda