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The Science of Selling Audiobook

The Science of Selling: Proven Strategies to Make Your Pitch, Influence Decisions, and Close the Deal

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Publisher's Summary

The revolutionary sales approach scientifically proven to dramatically improve your sales and business success.

Did you know that nearly half of salespeople fail to meet their quotas every year? Or that many of the most common sales behaviors drive down sales performance? In today's fiercely competitive marketplace, you can't afford to lose sales that should be yours. But with so much conflicting advice from self-proclaimed "gurus", how do you know which sales strategies actually work?

Leading sales trainer, researcher, and CEO of Hoffeld Group David Hoffeld has the answer. Blending cutting-edge research in social psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral economics, The Science of Selling shows you how to align the way you sell with how our brains naturally form buying decisions, dramatically increasing your ability to earn more sales. Unlike other sales books, which primarily rely on anecdotal evidence and unproven advice, Hoffeld's evidence-based approach connects the dots between science and situations salespeople and business leaders face every day to help you consistently succeed, including proven ways to:

  • Engage buyers' emotions to increase their receptiveness to you and your ideas
  • Ask questions that line up with how the brain discloses information
  • Lock in the incremental commitments that lead to a sale
  • Create positive influence and reduce the sway of competitors
  • Discover the underlying causes of objections and neutralize them
  • Guide buyers through the necessary mental steps to make purchasing decisions

Packed with advice and anecdotes, The Science of Selling is an essential resource for anyone looking to succeed in today's cutthroat selling environment, advance their business goals, or boost their ability to influence others.

©2016 David Hoffeld (P)2016 Penguin Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (64 )
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  •  
    Devon L. 01-21-17
    Devon L. 01-21-17
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    "Best Sales Book I've Read"
    Would you listen to The Science of Selling again? Why?

    It is packed with ideas that are scientifically proven and can be used on real sales calls. I've already begun using the ideas and my results are improving. Everything about it is 5 star!


    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven Armsrong 05-08-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Excellent"

    What a pleasure it was to read/listen to this book. Sales professionals always want to know the "why" of how to appeal to the buyer. Whether this is all new strategies or a fantastic must read application of existing behavioral science realities with art of selling i know of no other text that is more comprehensive and fact based guide to being a better you.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Boston, MA USA 05-12-17
    Boston, MA USA 05-12-17 Member Since 2017

    verysmartshopper

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    "Great book, should have hired a professional narrator"

    Great book, recommended. Would have been better if we had an outline of the contents so we can go back and review sections easily, in this book chapters are the only numbered. For example, if I want to review the 6 whys, I have to scan and or whole sections.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. 02-11-17
    M. 02-11-17
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    "A Must read if you make a living selling"

    I have been in commercial insurance sales for 25 years. Have read a dozen or more books on the subject and I can tell you this cuts through the head trash. It is easy to implement and very natural to apply!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Lee 06-19-17
    C. Lee 06-19-17 Member Since 2011

    C. Lee

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    "Good facts, but drawn out and terrible performance"

    I liked the information, though it felt extremely drawn out and dry. It could have been significantly more concise. I did not appreciate the author narrating. The sound quality was a bit fuzzy, but mostly he has an extremely nasal tonality that I found excruciating to listen to.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike A NY 04-25-17
    Mike A NY 04-25-17

    Mike

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    "Misunderstands both Science and Selling"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    See my comments


    What was most disappointing about David Hoffeld’s story?

    See my comments


    How could the performance have been better?

    See my comments


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    See my comments


    Any additional comments?

    Based on the title and reviews, I really wanted to like this book. However, it took only one chapter to realize that the author was likely never a successful sales rep (the fact that he put the word "pitch" in his subtitle should have been my first clue). Furthermore, every time he would introduce a new concept, like three levels of questions, I would get excited, only to discover that he was rehashing/stealing other people’s intellectual property and promoting it as his own.

    I take sales and sales training very seriously, they are my life. I especially take sales training seriously, because the information imparted on salespeople will likely affect their livelihood. That being said, my first instinct was to tear into and expose this author on a personal level. Nonetheless, I will try to keep this review as academic as possible, regardless of how it may come across.

    A little about me: I’ve been in sales, sales management, and sales training for nearly thirty-five years now. Prior to my sales career, I was a scientist. So, I understand both sales and the scientific method. Most of all, I understand how to read and properly interpret scientific studies.

    It would take an entire book to retort every misstatement and misunderstanding put forth by this author. As such, I would be happy to go into details in reply to any comments I receive. Keep in mind, however, that if you are a friend/fan of this author or book, then you are doing him/it no favors by asking me to go into details.

    So, how do I know the author was never successful as selling? First, I can tell by his misunderstanding of sales; he doesn’t ‘get it.” After one chapter, I could easily tell he could not have been successful selling. Each subsequent chapter drove this home. Second, nearly everything he says is geared towards mass marketing and not 'foot on the ground sales'. Even a moderately good salesperson understands the difference between marketing and selling. While similar, they are worlds apart. You may now be thinking that the author’s claim to be a VP of Sales disputes this. This could not be farther from the truth. In my time selling I have seen many like him who could not succeed, or lived off of bluebirds out of sheer luck, and moved up the latter by getting some jerkwater company to make them VP before they were in a situation that actually required real talent.

    My perception is that this author read Daniel Kahneman’s book, Thinking Fast and Slow, and chose to use those concepts to write a book of his own. I believe this, because 98% of the science put forth by the author is directly out of Kahneman’s book, along with a few tidbits from the Invisible Gorilla, and some other stuff that he likely got on Google. He basically just copies sales techniques from other programs (most of which are also BS) and cherry picks the science to back them up. The techniques he promotes are not from the science, rather the science is chosen to fit the techniques. Oddly enough, he fails to mention the science written about by Kahneman (like regression to the mean) would dispute many of his self proclaimed successes.

    Here is my summary of this book:

    - The author drives at nauseum, that people must like you to buy from you. This is a huge myth. Likability never hurts, but people don't have to like you to buy from you, they just can't hate you. Think about it, how many sales have you lost to the most despicable competitors that even the prospect stated they do not like, but colnd't turn down the deal? Follow this author’s advice, and you will be the salesperson that everyone likes, but darn you just don’t seem to have anything that they want to buy. Comment if you want me to elaborate

    - His anecdotes and role-plays are grossly unrealistic. They take place in a perfect world where he has the perfect product or service and the prospect answers exactly how he wants them to. The problem with role-plays is that when you are in front of actual prospects, the prospects forget their lines

    - In order to dissuade you from category questions, the author quotes the science that the brain can only process one function at a time and trying to remember to ask all the right questions is too confusing. He then goes on to give at least 100 steps throughout the book for you to apply during a sales call as well as his own category questions that he calls levels

    - The author states that category questions do not work. Then he contradicts himself by giving his level questions, which are basically identical to SPIN selling category questions. In essence, he stole SPIN questions, that he says don’t work, and renamed them as levels (Level 1 - SPIN Open Ended Situational questions, Level 2 - SPIN Situational and Implication questions, Level 3 - SPIN Need Payoff Questions). Even his ‘orange antidote’ was taken verbatim from a SPIN workshop.

    - He says the old sales strategies aren’t working anymore, but these old sales strategies are what he is recommending in his book under the guise of science

    - He correctly speaks against feature and benefit selling, but contradicts himself as most of his scripts employ feature and benefit data dumps

    - Reciprocity is great for mass marketing, but it DOES NOT work in sales. This is why consultative selling is a fine line. You want to give enough value to hook the customer, without giving so much value that the customer gets the information they need and takes it to the lowest bidder

    - He makes the statement, "The longer it takes for the sale to occur, the lower the probability that the sale will close.” This shows the author’s ignorance of both capital and complex sales, which can take years to close. In fact, it can take a year just to get paperwork though the prospect’s legal department

    - He contradicts himself on the number of options to offer. First siting studies that show people will buy if offered more options. Later in the book he sites studies that show people will buy if offered fewer options. BTW, the latter is correct. Like Henry Ford said of the Model-T, “You can have any color you like as long as it is black"

    - Most of the heuristics quoted do not take into consideration the dynamic of competition

    - The science he writes about has been around and applied to mass marketing for decades. The reason it has not been applied to sales is because selling is dynamic (hence humans, not billboards or signs, are salespeople). Don’t get me wrong, there are proven frameworks, strategies, and tactics that can be applied depending on the dynamics of the sale, few of which are referenced in this book. Also, keep in mind that all these studies were conducted by psychologists and sociologists, all of whom have never carried a bag and lack the proper knowledge to interpret the data within the framework of sales

    - He is correct that trial closing is a vital component for successful selling. However, even here he misunderstands and describes trial closes that are not trial closes. He follows this section with a new section labeled: “How to know when the customer is ready to buy.” Duh, that’s what a real trial close would do (again, comment if you want me to go into detail on trial closes).

    - The bottom line is that sales isn’t really that complicated. If you master just three concepts, then you can be successful. The first is time management and qualification (knowing when to walk away from opportunities rather than to waste your time on them). The second is hustle and quick follow-up (procrastination is the death of a sale). The third is asking for the sale. As Bob Janet says, “The answer is always no until you ask for the sale.” This is what makes trial closes so valuable. If you spend your time learning and mastering these three techniques, along with a basic understanding of asking consultative questions, an expertise in your products, and hone your technique to your specific field, then you are 99% there.

    I really do hate to be so hard on this book and the author. I’m sure the author is a nice guy and, like the rest of us, is trying to make a living.Nonetheless, I would feel remiss if I didn't expose this book for what it is.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jackie 04-03-17
    Jackie 04-03-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Good information Narrator hard to listen to"

    This is very informative. Will need to listen to 2times to let soak in good. But a lot of good thoughtful information. A new up to date way a dealing with sales in our ever changing world. The only negative is that the narrator is very difficult to listen to.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    OnenessSaint 03-28-17

    OnenessSaint

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    "Loaded with facts, not practically"

    I was disappointed with this title. It goes in depth on scientific research associated with selling, but offers very little practical advice. Some may find it useful, but I found nothing substantial to aide in my present sales situation.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    04-25-17
    04-25-17
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    "Holy -. Stop selling me"

    The whole first hour and first 3 chapters of this book are just trying to sell you on his amaaazing selling method, but doesn't actually give you the method. I gave up after an hour and a half. He's said nothing that most sales people haven't learned from hundreds of other books. He just keeps saying, "But no one else had the scientific proof before! Until now." He's still talking about how awesome his idea is without really telling you what it is you do to implement it. So irritating.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeremy 02-10-17
    Jeremy 02-10-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Reader of it was difficult to understand at times."

    As most of us know this is a continuing of the tips and understanding that we have come to expect out of a self help book.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • Mark
    Garforth, Leeds
    1/15/17
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    "Excellent sales book."

    Really liked this book. Well structured and presented ideas and techniques that can be easily implemented. It's a shame about Hoffeld's nasally voice.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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