September 6th, 2016
It seems like new sales books are coming out every week but I can promise you this; this is one that must be in your sales library. It has made the Acumen Sales Book Club list.
High-Profit Prospecting by Mark Hunter, published by AMA (American Management Association) has laid out solutions to one of the top sales problems facing every sales organization. In 2015 Acumen performed a survey at every conference we spoke at asking each member of the audience to define the top 5 challenges they face in sales-filling the pipeline/prospecting were consistency listed #1 or #2!
It is my belief that organizations that expect Marketing to be responsible for lead generation and pipeline development are wrong-to win market dominance, Sales must drive prospecting.
As frequent readers of this blog know, I measure the successful books I read by the number of “page corners I turn”, Mark’s book earned an award of 24 pages with a host of underlined, circled and marked-up sections. His sub-title says it all: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results, Mark broke the book into four sections with 23 chapters of jammed-packed ideas and tactics to help every salesperson at every level propel their business.
Just a few of the chapter titles will help you understand why I felt this is a powerful book:
- Fit the Prospecting Plan to Your Market
- Time Management for Prospecting
- Best Practices for Making the Initial Contact
- Winning at the Enterprise Level
- Customer Engagement Dos and Don’ts
The chapters that justify this book and after 19 years of consulting with sales organizations I have found are the most challenging and overlooked are:
- Referrals and other Major Pipeline Builders
In this chapter Mark shares many ideas but his four-step referral development process is great. He details how and what actions the salesperson must execute to ensure success in using a referrals. It is a sales training session all by itself!
- Email, Communications and Connection
Many people believe we can sell or prospect using email, in the majority of situations it fails. This chapter is a must read for Marketing teams and all Salespeople, Mark shares tactical steps, specific email scripts that can be tailored for your business, many examples but his 3 Strategies to “get the email opened” are absolutely right on! Buy this book.
It is my recommendation every salesperson in your organization read this book and follow the Acumen Book Club process: Assign a chapter to each salesperson, ask them to lead a discussion on a weekly basis during your sales meetings. As a Sales Manager develop a plan to train your salespeople how to prospect but also a plan to Inspect what You Expect that your salespeople are executing effectively.
What is your best method to prospect and fill your pipeline?
Ken Thoreson “operationalizes” sales management systems and processes that pull revenue out of the doldrums into the fresh zone. During the past 19 years, our consulting, advisory, and platform services have illuminated, motivated, and rejuvenated the sales efforts for organizations throughout the world.
He was recently ranked for the fourth year in a row by Top Sales World magazine as one of the Top 50 Sales & Marketing Influencers for 2015. His blog has been rated in the sales blogs in the world!
Ken has written 5 books, his latest book is: SLAMMED! for First Time Sales Managers, Ken provides Keynotes, consulting services and products designed to improve business performance. Need more sales management resources? Check out his Sales Management Tool Kit or the Acumen Project and his new Ignite Your Sales Team online video training program for sales leaders.