Reviews On: Using Technology to Sell: Tactics to Rachet Up Results
Jon London and Martin Lucas deliver 300 pages of sales strategy magic. They target a real life problem that all sales organizations have -- how to sell in a business environment where technology runs our lives. He breaks down what tools you should be using and explains how to use them in easy steps. Buy the book. Put some fuel on your sales effort flames.
Written in a direct conversational tone, London and Lucas have crafted a toolbox for sales reps and managers alike.
There is a lot of good information and advice in this book. Too many salespeople don't understand the basics of technology and the book seems to cover them nicely. There is plenty for the intermediate user as well.
On first pass, I found almost too much information in a somewhat dense presentation format. I don't see this book as one someone would read from front to back, although it seems to have been written to be read that way. I might have liked more of a reference book format. Having said that, readers can use the book to gain important insights and knowledge that can help improve sales.
If you're in sales and your scratching your head about how to leverage technology, invest in this book.
The authors provide an excellent foundation by discussing that while technology continues to bring us new ways to communicate and analyze, certain human traits are constant and need to be considered and adapted to as part of any successful selling methodology. No new shiny technology can change why and how people make buying decisions.
The reader is then presented with dozens and dozens of examples of buyer behavior patterns, personality charts; tables and templates to use before, during and after sales calls; and perhaps most importantly, sound sales advice (planning, delivery, objection handling and follow-up) gleaned from decades of sales experience.
Different in this particular sales book is that it specifically refers to a plethora of current technology trends and internet resources. The authors admit early on that technology is changing much faster than what print can keep up with. Even so, this book successfully offers hundreds of current examples and resources that good sales people will go to for more information. If you like to see data in lists and tables this book has plenty to offer. It also includes plenty of pictures used when needed to accentuate content. And of value to the up and coming sales rep, there are plenty of sample call scripts, emails and objection/response scenarios to help get you started.
My elevator pitch for this book: "More than 300 pages of time-tested yet current sales mentoring, tactics and tools that can help sales reps and managers be more successful. This is not a single method book, it is a collection, a treasure trove of sound advice that includes the latest technical and social media trends." (As an aside, I've been working in IT for 20+ years and attended London's training years ago. I truly believe you will find this book useful and encourage you to reach out to London's company Improved Performance Group if you want to help your sales teams become more successful.)
Jonathan London and Martin Lucas clearly show how technology can be used to better support the sales process at its different stages. Chapter 2: What Hasn't Changed, Chapter 5: Using Social Media to Sell, and Chapter 6: Using Technology at Each Stage of the Sale, are noteworthy. The book under review is at times repetitive. Chapter 3: Foundation: The Sale Process overlaps to a large extent with Chapter 6: Using Technology at Each Stage of the Sale. Furthermore, too many examples come from the respective businesses of Messrs. London and Lucas. In summary, the book "Using Technology to Sell" gives its readers some nice tips about how to make a better use of technology in the sales process.
I have known and worked with Jon London for over ten years. If there's anything he loves more than selling, it is training sales professionals to greatly improve their selling efforts and profitability. Jonathan is intense about sharing his sales skills because he knows what works. I have never seen any obstacle daunt him. If he can't get around or over it, he will go through it and make an even more profitable sale on the other side.
His latest book is a power-packed combination of learning how to use the new technological tools (which are always changing) and how to enhance your understanding of unchanging human nature. Along the way, he adds his own tools developed and battle-tested during years of field work. This unique mix is one reason this book will remain current for years to come.
As London says:
"Human behavior is also still pretty much the same, although it does seem that there is often less consideration and respect given to salespeople. Respect has always been a scarce commodity. People still:
- Make decisions based on what they want to achieve and what they want to avoid.
- Need to feel comfortable and trust the people or company they are buying from.
- Want to get a good deal or value.
- Rely on others to help them with their decisions.
- Want you to react to them and answer their questions.
- Make decisions based on referrals, quality, convenience, reliability, support, reputation, ease of doing business, safety and security, price, etc."
With this book in hand you will be able to add imaginative and flexible technological tools to your sales kit, as well as prepare yourself to deal effectively with the human resistance that every sales professional encounters during every sales call. But be warned: In the end, after you earn more money for yourself and your organization, you might have to buy better clothes.
Being a sales leader who prides himself on already using technology to sell and doing this very well - I was pleasntly surprised and now happy to say that this book has enhanced my pitch and methodology. I have also passed this book onto my team and received similar and positive feedback - along with some tangible closed results. Good to have a sales guide where you don't have to trawl for value and relevancy.
The book is an excellent primer for understanding how to use technology effectively during the selling process. The narratives on the pros and cons of various socail media platforms is especially helpful. They have also done a good job of interating basic sales fundamentals into their discussion. This book should be requried reading for every salesperson.
Practical, down-to-earth, and very readable advice for sales professionals. Lots of useful information, examples, and exercises. My only concern about this book is its length. It could be more concise: 339 pages is probably 1/3 longer than it needs to be. Yet some readers could find the extra material of benefit. I'd recommend this book to anyone who might benefit from using technology to sell, as well as anyone who could use a refresher in basic selling skills.