Thursday, November 6, 2014

Hey Authors, What Are You Selling?

If you are marketing or selling a book – and possibly your services or expertise as a consultant – you’ll need to sell like a pro.  There are many, many sales techniques one can utilize to enhance their sales efforts. I found a copy of The Ultimate Book of Sales Techniques by Stephan Schiffman, to be helpful.

He says one should adhere to these principles:

·         Let the prospect talk.
·         Use a cold call to set up a meeting
·         Keep track of things.
·         See an objective as an opportunity.
·         Beware of the personality type that you’re selling to.
·         Know what the prospect does, why he does it, and how he does it.
·         Be aware of who you are competing with to give the prospect what he or she needs.
·         Ask a list of questions – and listen to the answers.

He uses a strategy called PIPA: Present, Interview, Present, Agreement.

Step one is to present an option.
Step two is to inquire about past, present and future.
Step three is to use parable selling or present a new option, such as: “It is interesting you mentioned that – we did a program from ______ that addressed a very similar problem, where we ________.  What I’d like to do is _________."

One of his 75 sales techniques covers emails.  Excerpted below is a section revealing five common mistakes made with e-mail:

“Mistake #1: Not Asking for, Confirming, or Setting a Next Step
Not building a reference to some kind of Next Step into your e-mail, or preparing for one you can plan to ask for, means breaking a basic commandment of selling.”

“Mistake #2: Tone Mismatch
I’m assuming you were careful enough to send an initial message that struck a professional tone and piqued the other person’s interest.  What I’m talking about here is the message you send in response to an incoming message from the other person.  Often, the messages salespeople important conversational cues from the other side.

“Mistake #3: Sending Attachments Too Early in the Relationship
Sometimes, spam filters will refuse a message that carries an attachment, or will regard an image within the message as an attachment.  Even if the message with an attachment or image makes it through, people will generally shy away from a message with an unfamiliar correspondent that has an attachment.  Can we blame them?  This is how computer viruses are spread.  Leave off the attachment until the other person tells you that it is okay to send one.

“Mistake #4: One-Word Messages
Even in response to a one-word message from another person.  Even if the person does understand you (which is far from a certain thing), you will run the risk of being perceived as arrogant.  Do something a little more creative than writing the words “yes” or “no” in the body of the message.

“Mistake #5: Being (Perceived as) a Jerk
Here’s the interesting thing about e-mail: it is extremely easy to misinterpret. 
We, as readers of e-mail, lack any meaningful visual information from the sender.  (We can’t read body language or facial expressions, the way we would in a real-life, one-on-one conversation.)  Similarly, we as readers lack any information about the pitch or tone of the sender’s intended “voice.”  (We can’t hear whether the other person intends a remark to sound facetious, for instance.)”
Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2014

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