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Secrets of Question Based Selling: How the Most Powerful Tool in Business Can Double Your Sales Results Paperback – November 1, 2000

81 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Freese has uncovered a new twist on an old adage. If you walk in your customer's shoes, you'll be better able to sell to him or her. Using that philosophy, he wields the power of questions, from introductory telephone gambits to the final presentation, inserting a query into virtually every contact with the prospect. Instead of the same old blah, blah, blah at the beginning of a conversation, he recommends a simple "credentialing"--name, company, product, service--that ends with "Did I catch you at a bad time?" The process gets better. There's a detailed description of every stage--curiosity, credibility, needs development, present solutions, and commitment. There are sample dialogues, what-ifs, and rules to remember. Most of all, his "revolutionary" approach is, as he himself will admit, based on great common sense; why not engage prospects by asking them about themselves first? Barbara Jacobs
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


"After we implemented Question Based Selling at GE Capital, we literally doubled our sales figures in six months." -- Jim Elliott, President, GE Capital, IT Solutions

"Question Based Selling is a proven sales methodology and Tom Freese is a sales phenomenon. He will show you how to differentiate yourself and your product, and he will increase your sales results." -- Steve Huey, Vice President, Compaq Computer Corporation --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 270 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks (November 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570715882
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570715884
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #266,484 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Thomas A. Freese, based in Atlanta, is the founder and president of QBS Research, Inc., which teaches Question Based Selling to salespeople around the country. The list of the author's clients includes IBM, Merrill Lynch, Compaq Computer Corporation, Northwestern Mutual Life, Sun Microsystems, Lucent Technologies, Cisco, GE Capital and MCI. Freese speaks to dozens of major corporations annually.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

64 of 68 people found the following review helpful By J. Eklund on July 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This is perhaps the best all-around sales book I have ever read. While other books point out much needed information, or say the same thing with a different perspective that is sometimes necessary to understand a point, this book should be THE starting point for any sales professional. This book has helped me greatly in my success as a sale professional. It is a sales book, a persuasion book, and a psychology book all rolled into one. Everyone seems to try to start people off with "You Can't Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar" by Sandler, but this book is everything that book is and then some.

Where are the differences? Other books take an elementary strategy to the sales process. First you prospect, then you get the appointment, then you interview the customer, then you give your presentation, then you handle objections, then you close, close, close! I have even heard one person ask what the point of "step 1" is....and his answer was to get to "step 2". while this is somewhat useful to understand, it doesn't help you DO it, it doesn't tell you what to do and how to do it, and it's little more than an outline.

Secrets of Questions Based Selling gets down to the nitty-gritty. He brings things to the table that you may never think about if you don't read this book. He talks about how people interact, how they need to ad value, how they mismatch, how different types of questions serve different purposes- some are solely for the benefit of the person doing the questioning and ad no value to the person answering (i.e.- What CRM product are you currently using in your company?), while others provide more value to the customer (How many customers do you think you are losing because you do not have voicemail and people are hanging up?), etc.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Sales Lab on March 18, 2003
Format: Paperback
I am glad to see this book at the top of the sales chart. When I bought the book, it was ranked at the lower end of the top 50 best sellers in sales. When I was half way through the book, I thought this should rank at the top and deserve a classic status. Everything is fresh and the book teaches you how to approach a sales from any industries. I am testing the concepts in my work and immediate see result from my adoption. Most sales books out there are more geared towards big corporate sales which is not relevant in my financial industry. I find this book to be exceptionally easy to borrow its ideas for my financial industry. Anyone who is serious in sales should not miss this gem. I can guarantee you that you will learn a lot from it.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
There is no one right way to sell. Different customers require different selling strategies. To add to one's tool bag of selling strategies, the author, Thomas A. Freese, offers Question Based Selling (QBS) Question Based Selling is a systematic framework, using questions as its primary tool, which strives to increase the probability of making a successful sale.

The author sees two great risks in sales. One is the risk of rejection. The author explains that by asking questions, the seller can then send out signals to prospective buyers and evaluates the response. The second risk to sales is "mismatching." Mismatching is defined as the tendency of people to automatically contradict what someone says. In this case, both the seller and perspective buyer can be guilty of this. The author demonstrates a method to disarm the mismatching reflex. The strategy includes:

· Asking more questions and making fewer statements.

· Build credibility to gain confidence from buyers

· Leverage curiosity.

The authors see the key to building effective relationships relies on a methodology known as Conversational Layering. Conversational Layering is designed to ask people the right questions at the right time. Specifically it is designed to:

· Spark curiosity in products and services

· Earn credibility

· Build relationships

· Uncover needs make effective sales presentations

· Secure a commitment to buy
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Tim Cushman on October 16, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you are truly serious about selling, this book is a "must have". It is written in easy to read, understand and implement language and will improve your success dramatically. I have been a successful, professional salesperson for 22 years and found the insight in this book effective. One caution: it is written in such a easy flowing style be cautious not to overlook or underestimate the messages being conveyed. An example that comes to mind is the section regarding the "Have I caught you at a bad time?" lesson. It reads very quickly, but is an extremely important and effective tool....I would highly recommend this book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By J.R. on February 6, 2008
Format: Paperback
Have you ever wondered why you sometimes feel as though you're not getting anywhere with a prospect because you don't know what to say next to make the person want to buy from you? If you're like most people talking comes very easily for you and when somebody asks your opinion, via directly or indirectly, you immediately go off into sales mode and then somewhere down the road you catch the prospect looking at his watchand telling you that he needs to "think it over."

If so, then a book written by Thomas Freese entitled, "Secrets of Question Based Selling: How the Most Powerful Tool Can Double Your Sales Results" might very well provide you with the ammunition you need to separate yourself from the competition and give you the tools to get the job done. I'm going to offer you something fun...something exciting...something you've never heard before. Are you ready? Sales professionals talk too much!

Yes, it's true; part of the reason why some people have disdain for people like sales professionals is because we won't shut up. Rather than learning more about a prospect and his needs, fears, hopes and dreams, we regurgitate the same canned sales pitch that we used on the last 10 people that had the same effect. Rejection without accomplishment!

This books does a very good job at illustrating a basic paradigm, a foundation shall we say, about what is needed to win...that is, to get a sale and help the client feel proud and secure.

Have you ever wondered why people some seem to flock to the gas stations every summer when gas prices go up $.05 like flies to honey? How about the beanie baby rave or the crash?

Thomas uses his sales experience to illuminate a basic social psychology principle entailing what motivates people in a group.
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