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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 9, 2012
Do you want to grow revenue? Then you'll need to close new business.

If your reps aren't bringing in enough new business, it could be that they forgot, or never knew how to develop new business. In his hot-off-the press book , "New Sales. Simplified." Mike Weinberg puts forth an interesting proposition as to the underlying causes. In fact, he offers a "not-so-sweet 16" top reasons why reps fail at new business development.

There is one reason as to why so few reps know how to hunt for new business, however, that I find to be the most intriguing. Mike contends that because many of today's sales reps began their career during times of economic prosperity. They simply never had to learn how. During the whole of the `90s and between 2002-2007 most sales organizations benefited from high demand for their products and services. Salespeople could get away with being reactive.

Of course, we're dealing with a very different environment today.

Reps must proactively hunt for new business. Hunting takes certain skill sets and certain personality types. Reps who are great at relationship management, customer service, problem solving, and client retention are not necessarily successful hunters. That's why they are referred to as "farmers." Farming is equivalent to account management and it requires a service mentality. While both hunters and farmers are always needed, and both new accounts and current accounts are important, if you want to grow revenue in today's environment you'll need a large army of well-trained hunters and a smaller contingent of farmers. And that's where "New Sales. Simplified." comes in.

After his ten-year run as a successful sales hunter Mike spent the next ten years and fifty client engagements developing, road-testing, revising and refining his New Sales Driver framework comprised of 3 essential components:

1. Select targets
2. Create and deploy weapons
3. Plan and execute the attack

In "New Sales. Simplified." he goes into specific details on how to accomplish each task. To start with, you must ask an essential two-part question: Where is the business going to come from and who should I pursue? Launching an attack without a clear vision of your target is not a good strategy.

Mike makes a very important point about the process of selecting target accounts. It is a rare opportunity to be strategic. He states "It's surprising how often senior executives or even first-line sales managers take for granted that their people are working the right accounts. Choosing our target accounts, which effectively also means how we should be investing our time, is one of the few truly strategic things we do in sales."

It is not enough, he points out, to collect a pile of folders, trade publications, local business lists, and printouts from various databases. Instead, Reps need to create a real, workable, list based on analysis and a well-reasoned thought process. Mike explains exactly how to do this in "New Sales. Simplified."

Once you have your targeted list, you can move on to step two which is to consider what's in your arsenal. Mike offers suggestions on many weapons including social media, email, digital marketing, and content. The most important weapons, however, are the sales story, and the sales call. The chapter on creating and delivering a powerful sales story, alone, is worth the price of the book.

Mike delivers something else that many sales books lack...hard-hitting advice that may seem contrarian. For instance, when it comes to calling into an account to score an appointment, Mike advises to "Stop overqualifying!" He goes on to explain his view, "If we're proactively calling target accounts, the decision has already been made that we want to see them face-to-face."

It is a targeted account for a reason. Get the meeting. Then prepare yourself properly to conduct the most successful meeting possible. Mike's advice also shines in this area. He reveals great techniques for structuring the call, delivering the power statement, and asking questions designed for specific objectives.

The cover of "New Sales. Simplified." boldly proclaims that the book is "the essential handbook for prospecting and new business development" and it doesn't disappoint. If you need to hunt for new business and aren't sure the best way to plan your attack and attack your plan, then this book is for you. If you manage a sales team that needs to elevate their new business performance to new heights, then do yourself and your team a favor and get a copy for everyone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I have to start with a disclaimer. I'm pleased and grateful to call Mike Weinberg a friend. Having said that, I'm not willing to toss my solid reputation in the sales effectiveness community out the window, by writing a book review that is slanted by a friendship. Fortunately, I don't have to. I've read Mike's book and is it absolutely on-target and impressive. I nodded, smiled, and clapped a lot - a fact which annoyed those around me.

My friendship with Mike started with an admiration of his sales consulting work and the no-nonsense content in his blog posts (read the chapter: "A Dose of Blunt Truth" to see what I mean), so I'm not surprised that I liked it. The book is an extension of his good work and solid thoughts, based on his own successful sales experience and his consulting work, guiding sales reps, frontline sales managers, and senior sales leaders to higher levels of sales performance.

You can see the Table of Contents and there are plenty of other reviews here already, so let me just add my personal perspective. Mike's take on sales, and especially new business development and deeper account penetration, is completely based on reality. It's practical, cuts through the fluff that is sometimes tossed around in our field, and is frankly, refreshing. Even better, in my experience, it works.

The title is really apropos, too. I have always admired how clearly Mike sees things, and how plainly he describes them (thus, the Simplified piece). Some people seem to think there is a magic to selling. That always amuses me. As an analyst who has researched top, average and bottom sales reps for 15 years in a variety of settings (various industries, B2B, B2C, tangible, intangible, long-cycle, short-cycle, transactional, consultative, etc.), I will say that among the top 4-5%, there probably is some magic pixie dust floating around, where genetics and wiring sync perfectly with everything else to produce extraordinary results that are difficult for others to replicate. You have to find and hire those extraordinary performers. But sales for the rest of the world is neither rocket science nor magic. It's not easy, mind you, but it can be simplified into nuts and bolts or great blocking and tackling, running plays with discipline. This is the world of Weinberg: Frontline. Practical. Reliable. Repeatable. Realistic. Results-oriented.

Part of my work is about identifying and analyzing sales performance levers in organizations and aligning them. I was seriously impressed, even with Mike's "back to basics" fundamental approach, that he also provided some real clarity on strategy and alignment that I wish every CEO would read (see "Sales Follows Strategy: Mr. CEO, Please Do Your Job so I Can Do Mine!") If you are an organizational leader, pay particular attention to that section and his writings about compensation plans. Organizations should be aligned around, and support, customers, Sales, and the corresponding buying/selling processes. We need to get out of the "sales prevention business," and I tip my hat to Mike for writing so plainly about this.

My one beef? The military language. Do we really need to go on the attack? Do we need weapons and arsenals? I know this language has been around for years in Sales (hence, "the War Room") and I know it psyches people up and gives people that "go on the hunt" feeling (and we are talking about "hunting" versus "farming" for the most part here), but I still struggle with that entire lexicon. But that is the only constructive criticism I can offer. So if that language doesn't resonate for you, either, choose to think differently or substitute your own words when you read those sections. But read them anyway. That is my blunt, Weinberg-like advice. Buy this book, and read the entire thing. If you're a sales leader, buy copies for your entire team. And then ask yourself, "How can we apply this in our world?", and get started. Block and tackle with Mike Weinberg. You'll be glad you did. So will your CEO.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 27, 2012
Straight out of the gate, this is one of the best business books I have ever read; and I have read more than a few over the years. I picked it up Friday evening and read it cover-to-cover (and some chapters twice) by Sunday afternoon. The book is written for the professional salesperson, but I consider it required reading for entrepreneurs as well. This book, along with other greats such as "The E-Myth Revisited", "The Halo Effect" and "Shut Up, Stop Whining and Get A Life" contain essential truths that are of critical relevance to anyone starting up, or running, a small business.

As the owner/operator of a small business I am in charge of everything, from soup to nuts as it were. I know what I need (More customers and thus more revenue) and I know what I need to do to get that, (More sales) but getting from "Here" to "There" seemed an insurmountable task. Sure, I can work social media and advertise but my budget is infinitesimally small and as a one-man shop I would be barely a peep in the roaring ocean of the internet. Enter Mike Weinberg and New Sales Simplified. Contained in this book are the puzzle pieces that anyone can use to conduct a solid, rational and most importantly productive, sales process. This book is the capstone in the bridge to go from where you are to where you want to be. The best part? It is neither expensive nor complex, it's really rather simple. Easy? No. Simple? Yes. Any individual, with some determination, can follow the steps laid out in here and succeed.

The content is laid out in a straightforward, easy to read manner and flows seamlessly from one concept to the next in a conversational manner. While reading the book I felt as if I was sitting down with Mike Weinberg as he shared his wisdom on the tools, procedures and tactics of the sales process. It is by no means a dry, scholarly treatise, but rather a cut-to-the-chase nitty-gritty how-to on raising your income borne of experience. It is easily evident that Mike has "Been There, Done That" when it comes to sales. Mike covers everything from practical "How-To's" to more esoteric issues such as attitude and mindset throughout the sales process; from the very first contact with a prospective client through the closing of the sale.

This book came to me at the perfect time as I was feeling rather hopeless, flailing about trying to make something happen in my business. After reading this book I believe I have the tools to go out and make it happen for me, my business and my family. It would be impossible to put a value on that, but I will say this, the cover price of this book is a drop in the bucket compared to the value it contains. In strict dollars, if I knew what I was getting out of this book beforehand, I would not have blinked at paying $100 or more for it, and you shouldn't either.

If you care about yourself, your business and your future; get this book, put it to work and make it happen.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on April 18, 2015
Rarely does one find a book, particularly as related to this topic, that is both comprehensive and straight to the point. Mike tells it like it is and in so doing sets you up to be successful in developing new business. The only other possible outcome is that you might realize that you are not suited for this field - and that's alright too.

This is not a text on academic theory or tome outlining hypothetical scenarios. Mike has crafted a must read that is 100% about practical actions that must be taken for sales professionals to increase their productivity by landing new accounts and driving incremental revenue.

Beyond the pure common sense effectiveness of his recommendations, I was most impressed by Mike's willingness to call everyone to the mat - up to and including the C-Suite. Not only does it prove that Mike has "been there and done that" for years and across various organizational levels, but holding the CEO and his / her leadership team responsible for setting the strategic direction is spot on correct (Sales Follows Strategy: Mr. CEO, Please Do Your Job so I Can Do Mine! - Chapter 3).

I read 'New Sales. Simplified.' over a weekend and was so impressed that I had a half dozen copies in the hands of my business development staff by the following Thursday. Stop contemplating this purchase and just do it - you'll be very happy that you did.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 14, 2013
This books is an essential in my business library and I reference it as much as needed when implementing a sales campaign.
I highly recommend this book to any business owner looking to stimulate or increase sales.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 28, 2014
Please read this carefully. I am seasoned in the field of marketing and sales, however I am continually looking to develop my skill. As I desperately searched for a basic sales blueprint to help me deliver impact and immense value for a specific project, I was turned onto Mike's book through a business podcast - HERE IS WHAT I FOUND. Fortified, insightful, and actionable content that guided me in creating doorways of opportunity that led to...well yes, you guessed it, increased sales! If you are on the fence about this book, look no further. By the time you finish reading this book, you will have gained a fresh and clear perspective that simply elevates your understanding and delivers a practical, real life sales foundation that is built on integrity and insight. Bravo Mike ~ I reference New Sales Simplified with each sales opportunity I encounter and find new application every time. I will pass this on to anyone looking to succeed.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 3, 2012
NEW SALES SIMPLIFIED is "simply" a must read for new sales professionals and veterans alike. Mr. Weinberg gives you all you need to know to be successful in a sales career if you are cut out for it, and tells you quite bluntly if your not. Account Managers and glorified customer service reps, heed my warning... if you think you are in sales but really prefer the comfort of calling on existing accounts and handling customer problems, this book may make you feel naked. Sales Hunters love prospecting and cold calling. If you don't, you are not, and this book will be uncomfortable for you.
Weinberg also gives great insight into the corporate structure necessary for a company, small or large, to succeed in new business development. It's not always the sales folks fault. Therefore, CEO's, Sales Managers and anyone in a company that has concern or is responsible for new sales development should make an honest read. I recently worked for a company for a short period that simply had an anti-sales structure. Problem is, being an executive or CEO of an anti-sales company seems to include as part of the affliction the inability to see that you are in one. As Weinberg suggests, leave the pride and predispositions at the door.
Finally, for my fellow sales hunters out there, this isn't a book to read and put on the shelf. It is a working hand book that should be an active part of your learning and reminding ourselves of the essential tools of our trade. "
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 28, 2012
New Sales. Simplified. shines a much needed light on the art of prospecting for new business. Mike speaks from experience and simplifies new business development into a clear and customer-focused framework. Chapter by chapter, the sales experience is broken down, built up and formulated into a logical methodology that will foster success in new business prospecting. Mike sets you up for success with everything from identifying prospects to crafting the ever important sales story to winning the sales call. The questions/issues/challenges I had before reading this book were answered, thoughtfully and practically, within the pages of New Sales. Simplified.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 26, 2012
I try not to overuse the 5 star rating unless a book is truly exceptional. This book is almost there. Great value. Great principles and concepts. A great reference for developing a real sales process.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 2, 2014
This book made me examine myself and our small sales department and made me understand what my shortcomings are. However, it excited and focused me at the same time. Going to buy copies for my other two salespeople. I'm using it as a guideline and refer to it constantly. I'm also already implementing the principles in it.
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