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Selling To VITO (The Very Important Top Officer) Paperback – 1999

4.2 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"After twenty years of selling, I realize not having this information has probably cost me four million dollars income!" -- Frank Hayes, Charlotte, NC

"As a result of implementing Tony's ideas, I won my company's Rookie of the Year award, became the third ranked salesperson in a company of 1,000 salespeople, and emerged as the #1 sales rep in the West." -- Peter T. D'Errico, Sales Representative

"Destined to become a widely recommended reference by all sales professionals who are serious about achieving greatness." -- Tom Hopkins, Author, How to Master the Art of Selling

"With Tony as your coach and Selling to VITO as your training guide...you'll become unstoppable." -- Dr. Denis Waitley, Author, The Psychology of Winning

About the Author

Anthony Parinello is one of the most innovative sales trainers in America today. His passion is in his sales and public-speaking career. When he's not on the speaking platform, you can find Tony with his wife Nancy trekking the Himalayas, scuba diving in Palau, on a photographic safari in Africa, or in any number of other exotic locales. Mr. & Mrs. Parinello live in California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Adams Media; 2 edition (1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580622240
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580622240
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #608,860 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Joanna Daneman #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 8, 2001
Format: Paperback
One of my former bosses said "Selling is an unnatural act." You have to do things you would normally shy away from, put your ego in your pocket and be exceptionally brave. And calling on decision-makers (VITO's) requires some real guts, and also some special know-how.
The problem with most sales trainings is that they say "call on the decision-makers" but neglect to teach you the right way to reach that person. Many large firms now have preferred-vendor programs and limit from whom they will buy; if you aren't on the "A" list, you won't even get in the door. So if you tend to call on the end user or the purchasing manager, you may find you have trouble making sales except to your established customers. Real explosive sales growth comes from developing new customers, and if you sell important services or capital equipment, or even supplies you should be talking to the decision-makers.
Important people have rings of handlers, gatekeepers and other systems to protect their time and attention. You might have just the product that will save their company money, streamline their production, solve a pressing problem and be just what they are looking for. But if you don't have the tools to get your message across to the man or woman who can make it happen, they may never find out.
Years ago, I had sales training done by a VP of a successful firm. He explained how to contact top decision makers by making yourself be seen as a mutually beneficial business partner. For example, the book explains how to write a value proposition in a letter that explains how you can provide mutual benefits, without trying to get an in-person sales call.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Everyone talks about how to sell to the customer once your in the door and have an established relationship with the account. Anyone who's gone through Solution Selling, SPIN, etc., understands the need to listen to the customer and direct him/her to your solution. The unanswered question remains - how do you get in front of the right person to begin with. What if you've never called on the account before and have no relationship. Selling to VITO will give you a workable blueprint for effectively getting to the right person. I've tried it and I like the structured approach. It also offers great advise on how to avoid spending much time with SEMORE, the guy who will suck up your time with never ending requests for information but unable to actually buy your product. While your "hit" rate will depend on how closely aligned your product is to who you think VITO is in your suspect organization, with "Selling to Vito" you will be better armed to get in the door and stay there. - SM
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Format: Paperback
I read this book when it was first published (1994) and recently re-read the 2nd Edition. As others have already noted, some of the material seems somewhat "dated" but perhaps that is because other books published since the 2nd Edition (1999) have recycled many of Parinello's best strategies and tactics. Also, I suspect the competitive marketplace Parinello surveyed six years ago has changed substantially since, in large measure because of online merchandising, segmented marketing (e.g. to minorities, gays and lesbians, and now seniors), and especially the shift from vertical (hierarchical) to horizontal organizations within which authority as well as responsibility is more widely dispersed. There are far more decision-makers with VITO-like power in each organization now than ever before. In my opinion, Marinello's book is more relevant...hence more valuable.

Others have shared their reasons for thinking so highly of the book. Here are mine. First, I appreciate the humor. Consider the names which Marinello selects for various role players which he employs to illustrate stereotypes.

Seymour: one who "sees more" and is highly judgmental but never makes perilous decisions, has tunnel vision, no sense of humor, knows the price of everything but the value of nothing, sees only black and white "cats" in the alley, is a self-appointed "protector" of VITO, loves technology, is risk adverse, thin-skinned, and insecure but dangerous when threatened. "Seymours may be tinkerers. `Can we take the top panel off this thing and look inside? (Engineers are often the most influential Seymours in an organization.)" Marinello goes on to suggest, "They will talk facts, features, and functions (the `F-words' beloved by Seymours the world over) all day long, if you let them.
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By A Customer on June 3, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read Selling to VITO. It is the best book I have read as a 25 year experienced sales person and sales manager. The recommendations WORK. I was a top sales performer for our company using VITO as my guide. All people in our team who read Vito ended there year at least 300% of plan. For anyone that trully wants to over achieve and view sales as a profession this is a MUST read. I read the entire book in one day. Could not put it down. The approach works for small companies and big. I work for a $80B Technology company and I find that Parinello's advice is applicable for both big companies and small.
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