An Early Year Sampling of Business Reading

In the several months since we last alerted our readers to the wealth of books devoted to sales and marketing, many books have come to our attention. It’s never too early in the year to line up your business reading. Here are some books for your consideration.

You Have 3 Minutes:
Learn the Secret of the Pitch from Trump’s Original Apprentice

by Ricardo R. Bellino, 209 pp., $21.95, McGraw-Hill
Bellino, the young Brazilian entrepreneur, reveals everything readers need to know to pitch their own ideas and achieve real results — even with the toughest audience. Whether trying to land a new job, selling an idea, or making a positive impression, the author offers tried-and-true tips on the impact of the first impression, the power of intuition, and the importance of image and non-verbal elements.

Jeffrey Gitomer’s Little Black Book of Connections
by Jeffrey Gitomer, 208 pp., $19.95, Bard Press
Offers the 6.5 Assets for networking your way to rich relationships. This is the latest in the author’s red book-black book series. According to the author, “Connecting is all about your friendliness, your ability to engage, and your willingness to give value first. When you combine those three attributes, you will have uncovered the secret of powerful connections that lead to rich relationships.”

151 Quick Ideas to Increase Sales
by Linda Sparks, 192 pp., $12.99, Career Press
Whether it is a product, service or idea, the bottom line of any company demands a steady supply of sales. To meet that demand, a constant supply of new ideas for identifying and contacting prospects is necessary. This book is a compendium of ideas for meeting the changing needs of clients and increasing the return on the investment in an organization’s business development program.

The Lead Ladder: Turn Strangers into Clients, One Step at a Time
by Marcus Schaller, 116 pp., $19.95, McGraw-Hill
This book offers entrepreneurs and self-employed professionals a proven, step-by-step formula for attracting only the most viable clients; generating dramatically higher sales while reducing advertising and marketing costs and wasted efforts. Most importantly, you don’t have to be a “born” seller, cold-call hundreds of strangers every week, or participate in endless networking events to follow these strategies.

Achieve Sales Excellence: The 7 Customer Rules for Becoming the New Sales Professional
by Howard Stevens and co-author Theodore Kinni
231 pp., $24.95, Platinum Press
This book, which surveyed 80,000 customers in 15 industries, reveals a new paradigm for business-to-business selling. By outlining the cus-tomer-defined practices sales professionals must embrace to succeed, and supported by empirical data, the book defines a salesperson’s nec-essary response to the marketplace and details the seven best-practice benchmarks that world-class salespeople must possess.

Why Johnny Can’t Sell … and What to do About It
by Michael J. Nick and Robert F. Kantin
206 pp., $19.95, Kaplan Press
The authors reveal how to merge sales and product training practices to dramatically increase sales. This new guide invites readers to ac-company the proverbial “Johnny,” the every-day sales professional who has tried it all and still hasn’t found that special formula for steady success.

Your Attention, Please
by Paul B. Brown and Alison Davis
224 pp., $14.95, Adams Media
This book provides a strategic guide for communicating to the reluctant consumer. It shows you who the new audience is, how to reach them, and how you must communicate differently, or risk losing mind share and market share.

The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World with Kindness
by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval
127 pp., $17.95, Doubleday/Currency
The authors flip the age-old mantra of “nice guys finish last” on its head, exposing it as a lie that actually undermines success, not only in business, but in every aspect of your life. Through examples from their own experiences as well as those of other individuals, they provide a plan of action dedicated to harnessing the power of nice for everyday use.

Hot Button Marketing: Push the Emotional Buttons That Get People to Buy
by Barry Feig, 263 pp., $16.95, Adams Media
The author shows marketers and salespeople how to identify and push the right hot buttons that will get consumers to purchase. Sixteen consumer hot buttons are identified and more importantly, the author describes how to push them to get your product sold.

Retire Rich and Happy: 12 Secrets to Retirement Success
by Jeffrey B. Harris
151 pp., $21.95, Aames-Abbott Publishing
Drawing on more than two decades of practical experiences as a financial advisor to successful business owners, the author tells powerful true stores of what works and what doesn’t work when people seek a retirement that’s not just rich, but Rich and Happy.

Juicing the Orange: How to Turn Creativity Into a Powerful Business Advantage
by Pat Fallon and Fred Senn
225 pp., $26.95, Harvard Business School Press
To get your creative juices flowing — and achieving — the authors recommend that you:

  • Throw out everything you know about a brand and start from scratch.
  • Demand a ruthlessly simple definition of a brand’s problem or weakness.
  • Discover a proprietary emotion that will resonate with a brand’s market.
  • Collaborate or perish because the best creative ideas come from teams, not geniuses.

Sales and Marketing the Six Sigma Way
by Michael J. Webb, 298 pp., $27, Kaplan Publishing
The author takes readers into companies like Standard Register, ServiceMaster, Hong Kong Shanghai Bank, Motorola and others to show how they doubled revenues and cut sales costs by re-thinking how selling is done. The shift these companies demonstrate heralds a new style of scientific sales management.

The Inner Game of Selling:
Mastering the Hidden Forces That Determine Your Success

by Ron Willingham, 253 pp., $26, Free Press
Willingham defines selling as “a process of identifying and satisfying people’s wants or needs.” In his book the author encourages salespeople to forget the old, destructive selling myths they have been taught, like negotiation strategies and closing techniques, and instead to embrace who they are and what they stand for.

No More Cold Calling: The Breakthrough System That Will Leave Your Competition in the Dust
by Joanne S. Black
242 pp., $23.95, Warner Business Books
This book takes a hard look at why so many sales reps cling to cold calling — which typically yields a meager 2% return on time invested — as contrasted with developing referral prospects, who buy 50-90% of the time. With humor and enthusiasm, the author presents a proven system for sales reps who want to get out of the “dark pit of cold calling.”

Questions That Sell: The Powerful Process for Discovering What Your Customer Really Wants
by Paul Cherry, 179 pp., $16.95, Amacom
When it comes down to it, making a sale isn’t a matter of providing a potential client with some magical piece of information about the goods or services they’re considering — it’s simply a matter of asking them the right questions. This book provides readers with the key questions that get orders and a process to uncover the real needs of their customers.

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