Implementing the concepts
“I. Love. Everything. About. This. Book. Lee Salz not only powerfully describes why DIFFERENTIATION is so critical, but he shows you exactly how to differentiate yourself, your sales approach, and your messaging. Implementing the concepts in Sales Differentiation will get you more meetings with the right buyers, elevate how they view you and your solution, and help you close more business.”
— Mike Weinberg - author of the "New Sales. Simplified." and "Sales Management. Simplified."
“Finally a book that addresses differentiation in a step by step manner that allows salespeople to apply what they learn, immediately. The practical easy to read format and examples to drive the point home are exceptional. Get this book in the hands of every salesperson you know.”
— Alice Heiman, Founder and CSO at Alice Heiman, LLC
Comprehensive and compelling
“Everyone agrees that sales differentiation is a good thing, but no one has ever explained exactly what, why and how to truly become differentiated. Until now. Sales Differentiation is a comprehensive and compelling look at an often-overlooked strategy for sales success.”
— Deb Calvert, author, Stop Selling & Start Leading and DISCOVER Questions®
Entertaining writing style
“In today’s sales environment where buyers are subjected to more sales ‘noise’ than ever, Sales Differentiation is a must-read (and must-implement) for any salesperson who wants to stand out and excel. With Lee’s engaging, entertaining writing style, peppered with numerous stories and examples, you’ll find yourself reading the book quickly. But, you’ll want to go through it again several times to absorb, highlight, and write down the many valuable how-to’s to use on your own calls.”
— Art Sobczak, Author of “Smart Calling”
Deals at the prices
“Lee Salz’s sales differentiation strategies are just what you need to stand out in a crowded market, create more meaningful conversations, and close more deals at the prices you want.”
— Jill Konrath, author of "More Sales Less Time" and "SNAP Selling"
“When I was creating the Rainforest Café, I sought to create a differentiated diner experience. In Sales Differentiation, Lee Salz provides you with the strategies to create a differentiated experience for your clientele. I highly recommend it for anyone in sales.”
— Steven Schussler, creator and founder of Rainforest Cafe, T-REX, Yak & Yeti and The Boathouse all featured at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL
World sales success
“Here’s the path to no longer hear the price objection ever again, as well as rendering your competitors as irrelevant. Lee Salz, in Sales Differentiation, shares his decades of real world sales success so all can now reap the rewards. Don’t read this book – DEVOUR it!”
— Jack Daly, CEO / Entrepreneur / Coach and Best Selling Business Author
“As I’ve traveled around the world over the past several years working with companies and their salespeople, I’ve been amazed to find that they do not know, and cannot articulate, their competitive advantage! How can a company or salesperson expect prospects and customers to give their time and attention if they do not understand,clearly and concisely, what that company can do for them that no one else can do? So, how can you demonstrate your competitive advantage? Buy Sales Differentiation by Lee Salz, read it page by page, implement its 19 strategies and you will then be able to set yourself apart from your competition and clearly show your customers what your company can do for them that no one else can do.”
— Dr. Tony Alessandra, author of "Collaborative Selling: How to Gain the Competitive Advantage in Sales"
Compel your dream
“If you want to compel your dream clients to change, you have to be different in a way that makes a difference. Lee Salz has written a comprehensive guide to differentiating your offering in a crowded, me-too marketplace. More importantly, this book will help you do the critical work of differentiating yourself!”
— Anthony Iannarino, Author of "Eat Their Lunch: Winning Clients Away from Your Competitors"
Refer my clients
“Lee Salz is the E. F. Hutton of customer acquisition. When Lee speaks, you should listen. In an over-crowded, over supplied world, Lee’s insights into differentiating yourself by how you sell ring fresh and true. I regularly refer my clients to Lee and wait for the accolades to come streaming in – which they always do. Lee Salz’s methods are practical and they work!”
— Bill Mills, CEO, Executive Group, Inc.
“I find many salespeople forget that they have an opportunity to stand-out from the competition in the way they sell so instead they fight to win sales on price. Lee’s book will help ensure that doesn’t happen to you.”
— Brandon Steiner, CEO and founder of Steiner Sports Marketing
Simple and effective
“Sales Differentiation is full of ideas that will immediately help you win more business. For example, Lee’s Sales Crime Theory – do your investigating before you make the sales call – is so simple and effective yet a large majority of sales executives think that doing one’s homework is finding a phone number or at best, visiting a prospect’s website. Lee gives you easy-to-implement ideas that will ensure you are relevant, that give you permission to ask challenging questions, that give you an edge in negotiations, and that separate you from just about every salesperson in every sales call, every time.”
— Sam Richter, World’s Leading Expert on Sales Intelligence and CEO SBR Worldwide / Know More
“In Sales Differentiation, Lee delivers a fine addition to his line of outstanding sales reference tools. It’s straight forward, packed full of real world examples, and presented in a fresh unique way as only Lee can. He not only addresses many common sales myths and barriers but provides examples and detailed processes to help you differentiate your products and services in a way that will catch a buyer’s attention.”
— Larry Reeves, CEO, American Association of Inside Sales Professionals (“AA-ISP”)
“Lee Salz has written a different sales book about how YOU can be a different sales professional to help you sell more. It’s a common trap that a lot of salespeople fall into, all saying the same things, trying the same strategies and selling in the same way. The problem is that doesn’t often work and it’s usually those who do it differently that win. This book is brilliantly written and talks you through how you make WHAT you sell different and the WAY you sell different to win more deals. I’ve read a lot of sales books over the years, but none have given such a great process that I know I’ll be able to use straight away.”
— Daniel Disney, Founder of The Daily Sales and Leading Social Selling Trainer
Actionable and easy
“In a sales world with so much noise, Lee’s book stands out just like his teachings. It’s actionable and easy to read, made for any level of sales professional.”
— Max Altschuler, Max Altschuler, CEO Sales Hacker & Author of "Hacking Sales"
“A treasure chest of practical, tactical, and doable ways to differentiate yourself from the competition! Read it… Use it!”
— Anthony Parinello, author of "Selling to VITO, The Very Important Top Officer"
Filled with dozens
“Filled with dozens of proven concepts as well as highly-relatable stories, this book shows that salespeople who differentiate themselves not only win more deals, but they also win at higher margins. It is a brilliant and practical how-to guide for salespeople at every level. If you want to escape the high penalty that comes from the buyer’s perception of sameness, this book is your key to success.”
— Gerhard Gschwandtner, CEO, Selling Power magazine
“Sales Differentiation is filled with great examples that are perfect for both beginning salespeople looking to develop their skills and experienced salespeople seeking to take their sales results to the next level!”
— Dawn Deeter, Ph.D., director, Kansas State University National Strategic Selling Institute
Fantastic and strategic
“In a sea of businesses and salespeople competing in the same spaces for the same dollars, being different is the only way to get an edge on your competition. Lee Salz has penned a fantastic and strategic book that gives salespeople the formula to do just that. Simply put, this book is not only incredibly useful, it’s different.”
— Ken Kupchik, author of The Sales Survival Handbook and creator of Sales Humor
Detailing multiple strategies
“Finally, a definitive approach on what it means to differentiate yourself and what you sell. Lee Salz has done a masterful job of detailing multiple strategies you can use now to genuinely set yourself apart in the eyes of your customers. The value in the book is in his examples, which allow you to understand what you need to do to create a sales differential your customers will notice and, more importantly, pay for! This isn’t a book to simply read. It’s a book to read and apply. You won’t regret it!”
— Mark Hunter, CSP, “The Sales Hunter,” author of “High-Profit Prospecting”
Opening doors to winning
“Sales Differentiation shows how salespeople are more important than ever in terms of adding value and differentiating their product or service from the competition. The concepts presented by Lee Salz will help you in every phase of the sales process – from opening doors to winning deals at the prices you want. Make sure you have a pen, paper, and highlighter in hand when you read this book.”
— Paul Nolan, Editor, Sales & Marketing Management magazine
“Lee Salz says it’s not just what you sell, but how you sell it. His 19 sales differentiation strategies are a surefire way to drive profitable sales.”
— Harvey Mackay, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller 'Swim with The Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive'
“Salespeople know that differentiation is a best practice but have been left to their own devices to figure out how to do it… until now. Sales Differentiation presents strategies that salespeople can quickly put into practice.”
— Verne Harnish, founder Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) and author of Scaling Up (Rockefeller Habits 2.0)
I spend much of my time working with companies to help them identify and hire the right sales talent for their company. One of the biggest frustrations that I hear from my clients is that they struggle to get people to apply for their jobs. Thus, they feel they have to settle for the few candidates they get and make a hiring decision. In essence, they risk hiring the wrong person for the wrong reason. From the client’s perspective, they see no other choice. They have a seat to fill and must select from the small pool of sales candidates.
When I hear this, I ask to see the ad that they are using on the job boards and in print. And, oh my! The root cause of the problem is quickly exposed. Somewhere along the way, a practice has been developed of using a job description as a job advertisement. Sadly, these are not synonyms, nor are they designed for the same purpose. This is the equivalent of trying to hammer a screw into a wall. It’s not the right tool for the job. A job description is the spec sheet for the job. There is no flair, just information. A job advertisement should primarily be flair!
I came across a sales job advertisement that said that accurate forecasting was required. I can appreciate the importance of accurate forecasting, but is that going to entice someone to send in a resume? I highly doubt it. Then, why do I see that in job ads all over the Net? Not only is it superfluous, but it could create a negative impression on a potential sales candidate such as the illusion of there being much sales administrivia, a bugaboo among sales professionals. As a result, they don’t apply for your job.
My favorite non-sense expression in a job ad is “other duties as assigned.” Again, I understand the importance of having that identified in a job description as an all encompassing expression, but in an ad? I know when I’ve looked for a job I couldn’t wait to apply for the ones that offered that as a benefit.
The bottom line is that the sole purpose of a job advertisement is to attract people to apply for the job. I know that seems obvious, but many miss that point. Since that is the sole purpose, then the ad should be structured in a way to accomplish that objective. There is an old expression is sales that says to sell the sizzle, not the steak. In sales, it means to focus the discussion on the benefits, not the features of the product. When designing a job advertisement, it means that the ad should excite, not completely inform.
In sales industries where leads are generated for sales people, the lead is structured to provide just enough information for a prospect to call a sales person. The ad does not include all of the information so that the person can make a buy/no buy decision without making the call. The same holds true for recruiting. The ad should attract candidates to apply. The resume review and interview process screens out the undesired candidates.
In some respects, this issue is about control. Not to belabor the contrast with sales, but sales people are trained to control the buying process. They learn to facilitate buying discussions with potential buyers and control when and how information is shared. When advertizing a job, the more information that is placed in the ad, the more control the candidate has to make an apply/no apply decision without ever talking with your company. Thus, you want enough information in the ad to entice them to apply for the job, nothing more. Once you have the application, you are then in control of the process and get to make the pursue/no pursue decision.
In my mind, there are three types of candidates out there. There are those that apply for every sales job they can find. Chances are these are not your rock stars. They just want a job, not your job. There are those that are what I refer to as “semi-passive.” These are sales people that have their pinky toe in the “new job opportunity waters.” They haven’t made the definitive decision to pursue another opportunity, but would be receptive if they came across one to their liking. The third are the passive candidates, those that are not even thinking about another opportunity at this time.
Thus, the ad should be designed to attract the semi-passive candidates. The passive ones probably won’t see the ad because they aren’t looking for a job. One industry that you can learn much about recruiting semi-passive candidates is supermarket retailers. Man, they have it down to a science! Everything that you see on the shelves has been placed there with the consult of psychologists. They have gotten inside the minds of buyers and structured the store so that they increase their average check out order. For example, milk is almost always in the very back of the store because it is a necessity. You are going to buy it because you need it. Other items are placed strategically around the store so a semi-passive buyer will be enticed to pick it up and put it in their cart. How often do you go to the market and buy only what you intended to buy? Rarely.
With that in mind, where do you start when developing your ad to attract these “semi-passive” sales people to apply to your company? For starters, how about interviewing your current sales team members? Ask them what attracted them to the company and what keeps them there. You will be surprised by the valuable information you will learn.
With that information, visit with your marketing department and ask for their assistance in designing an ad that will attract sales candidates to apply. If you can provide them with the mission of the program and the data learned from the sales organization discussions, I’ll bet that they can develop an ad with super sizzle! Remember, this is a marketing person’s area of expertise so leverage it.
The goal of this exercise is to grow your candidate pool so you don’t have to settle for the wrong candidates just to fill a seat.