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by Neil Rackham

How do some salespeople consistently outsell their competition? Why do closing techniques work in small sales but fail in larger ones? How can salespeople dramatically increase their sales volume from major accounts? If you're in sales--or if you manage a sales force--you need the SPIN strategy. Developed from 12 years of research into 35,000 sales calls, SPIN--Situation, Problem, Implication, Need-payoff--is already in use by many of the world's top sales forces. Now these revolutionary, easy-to-apply methods can be yours. With wit and authority, Neil Rackham explains why traditional sales models don't work for large sales. With supreme clarity, he unfolds the enormously successful SPIN strategy, using real-world examples and informative cases. You may find the techniques controversial; they often go against the grain of conventional sales training. In the end, the powerful evidence Rackham presents will convince and convert you.
Download Spin Selling epub
ISBN: 1565112601
ISBN13: 978-1565112605
Category: Business
Subcategory: Marketing & Sales
Author: Neil Rackham
Language: English
Publisher: Highbridge Audio; Abridged edition (August 1, 1998)
ePUB size: 1533 kb
FB2 size: 1352 kb
Rating: 4.5
Votes: 769
Other Formats: doc mobi mbr lit

I feel like 99% of self-help books, be it self-help in work, love, friendships, what have you, are useless. They always have fluff chapters of 'act motivated and be motivated!' or 'think like a winner!' and various platitudes of that nature. You wind up finishing the book and realizing you read nothing but pseudo-motivational dribble that will wind up having zero impact on whatever you were looking to improve upon.

Enter 'SPIN Selling' - this book delivers where all of those other books have failed. In this book is a solid layout of how you should structure your sales calls, and not only that, but data to back up their claims and examples to on how to lead. Read this book, take notes, and I guarantee if you weren't already aware of how to sell in this style, your selling WILL improve.

I'm a novice to sales. Last year when I was interviewing for a sales position I was asked to put together a sales presentation and to sell a product. I was given the product brochure and 1 day to come up with something. Using 'SPIN Selling' as my guide, I put together a list of ideas and pitched them in my presentation. My interviewer was blown away. After I got the job, my manager told me he had never had someone deliver such a good presentation - everyone always focuses on selling the product, but they never try and sell the customer. Taking a note from this book, I asked the questions I needed to ask, developed them into problems for the buyer, and then walked them through the solution with their own words. It was a total and complete win.

I was tempted to give this book 4 stars because it really does falter in a few areas. For one, some of the research is tenuous at best - <100 sales calls that they then base their report on. That's frankly not enough data to prove or disprove anything.

Secondly, this book is very weak on opening/closing a sale, which are both obviously rather important. The book mentions briefly what you shouldn't do to open a call, but doesn't really expand on good ways to introduce yourself. Even worse, it has a whole chapter on closing, but doesn't give you specific advice on what to do! It gives you a whole lot of data on why you shouldn't constantly close, why the worst sellers are always trying to close, how it annoys customers, etc. It never actually says 'Here is the best way we found to bring a sale to the next level: A/B/C". It kind of boggles the mind because the book even shows a study where sales that had no closers in them had something like 20% the success rate - obviously a close is necessary, but the book skimps a bit on that aspect. I couldn't bring myself to give it less than 5 stars because the meat of the book is just so good.
Great framework summarized as follows:

1. Pre-call planning:
a. Pre-determine your principal call objective. Data gathering and relationship building are necessary but not sufficient. Strong objectives must advance the sale.
b. Do your homework in order to minimize fact-gathering questions
c. “Before the call, write down at least three potential problems which the buyer may have and which your products or services can solve.”

2. Preliminaries
a. In a large sales, first impressions do not matter all that much.
b. Especially with senior people, do not dwell much on nonbusiness areas if at all
c. Avoid talking about your products and services until late in the call
d. Just establish who you are, why you are there, and gain permission to ask question.

3. Investigating (by asking open-ended or closed-ended questions)
a. Situation: Ask a very limited number of fact-finding questions. Just enough to setup/uncover a problem. For instance, “What system/process are you using at present?”
b. Problem: “The purpose of Problem Questions is to uncover Implied Needs.”
c. Implication: The purpose of Implication Questions is to increase the size of the problem in the customer’s mind. For instance, “If x is happening, could that lead to an even worse y?”
d. Need-payoff: Need-payoff questions are positive, solution-centered questions designed to have the customer express an Explicit Need. “How would you find (related benefit) useful?” Note: “The worst point to ask a Need-payoff Question is when the customer raises a need you can’t meet.”
4. Demonstrating capability:
a. “Make Benefits showing how your product/service meets Explicit Needs which have been expressed.”
b. “Benefits… involve showing how you can meet an Explicit Need… Unless the customer first says, ‘I want it,’ you can’t give a Benefit.”
c. “In larger sales, Features have a negative effect when used early in the call and a neutral effect when used later.”

5. Obtaining commitment
a. “Larger sales contain a number of intermediate steps that we call Advances.”
b. Use a very limited number of closing questions on only after ___’
c. “Sellers who were most effective… would… ask the buyer whether there were any further… concerns that needed to be addressed.”
d. “Successful salespeople pull the threads together by summarizing key points [especially benefits] of the discussion before moving to the commitment.”
e. Suggest as a next step “the highest realistic commitment that the customer is able to give.”

Other great tidbits:
- “Successful sellers concentrate on objection prevention, not on objection handling.”
- “In a multi-call sale, the most important discussions and deliberations go on when the seller isn’t present.”
- In large sales, costs to the buyer include money, effort, and reputation
- “The most important lessons come from the way you review the calls you make. … Ask … Did I achieve my objectives? What would I do differently?”
I am a corporate sales professional. I have studied sales and have read many different sales books: zig Ziegler’s, Strategic Selling, Selling to VITO, Little Red Book, Challenger Sale, You inc, Relationship selling, among many others.
Neil Rackham has hit one out of the park with SPIN Selling. Once you understand his methodology and what SPIN stand for (Situation, Problem, Implication, Need Pay-off) , I truly believe you can sell the shoes off of someone’s feet. He arms you with many techniques to use on a sales call. On major concept he has is that you, as a sales rep. will never be there when the real decisions gets made. That’s why, you must arm your prospects/champion with the tools to represent your company and sell for you internally when you are not there.

This is a very easy book to not only read and understand but it is also very easy to go back and reference. The only other book I have felt has made a major impact is Strategic Selling. With these two books you will have everything you need to sell in a corporate environment. Honestly SPIN selling can help you sell in any sort of environment B2B, B2C, even C2C. This is a must read for any sales professional looking to improve their skill sets!
go on youtube or google the best sales books and see what sales professionals recommend. The one book you will find at the top or near the top is this. I have read a lot of sales books focusing on the b2b arena and the vast majority you see the route back to the concepts made in this book.

Don't get me wrong this is not the only Sales book you will ever need to read, but this is the back story that you have to have to make sense of all the other Sales books you will find.