Authorities /
Developers /
Investors /
Notable People
Key Characteristics of Salespeople at the Time
Snake Oil Selling 1800’s Exaggerate and misrepresent to get the business
  • Former peddlers
  • Commercial travellers
  • Had the “gift of the gab” – glib presenters
  • Sounded authoritative
  • Controlled the sale
  • Customers needed them for information
  • They were the “experts”
Pyramid Selling 1886 Identify key decision makers. Use to introduce to other prospects
  • Patterson – NCR
  • Well dressed
  • Professional presentation
  • Better informed
  • More knowledgeable than customers
  • Controlled the sale
  • Introduced new ideas to customers
  • Manipulates customers
Trust Based Selling 1916 Improve professional image by building trust
  • DM Barrett / Patterson
  • World Sales Congress
  • Professionally trained
  • More knowledgeable than customers
  • Verbally agile
  • Controlled the sale
Scientific Selling 1916 Use phrenology to identify prime prospects
  • World Sales Congress
  • Phrenologists
  • Trained to keep eye contact and study the forehead of buyers
  • Used their knowledge to bludgeon buyers
  • Took early control of the call and directed the sales interaction
Mood Selling 1920’s Use emotion to persuade customers to buy
  • American Bible Society
  • American Bible Tract
  • Used emotional “blackmail” to persuade prospects
  • Employed tricks such as having their children with them
  • Relied on the goodwill of people to buy their product
Brand Based Selling 1925 Use the publicity for a brand to prove success
  • NBC (National Broadcasting Corporation)
  • Had in depth product knowledge
  • Controlled the sales interaction
  • Used the popularity of the brand as evidence of its success
Psychological Selling 1930 Learn to understand what makes buyers tick
  • Dale Carnegie
  • (Ford Motor Company
  • Used pseudo psychological jargon to confuse buyers
  • Used the sales interaction to direct prospects’ perceptions
  • Controlled the entire interaction
  • Seldom introduced anything new
Barrier Selling 1930’s Get prospects to say ‘yes’ often enough to be trapped
  • Peter J Wosh
  • Used leading questions to trap and embarrass buyers into agreeing
  • Used to use heavy shoes in order to stop door from being closed on them
  • Manipulative style of selling gave salespeople total control
SELL 1940- 1950 Tell-Sell process leading customer to a commitment
  • Retail industry in the USA
  • Seldom allowed customers to give detailed thought to what was being said
  • Overwhelmed customers with information
  • Took control of the sale
ADAPT 1940- 1950 Develop some pseudo technical jargon to keep buyers intrigued
  • Unknown
  • Used jargon to confuse buyers and then came to their rescue with explanations
  • Controlled the sale
  • Follows own instinct
  • No firm guidelines
  • Always discussed things customers were familiar with
  • Never introduced new concepts
ARC 1940- 1950 Cross and up selling in retail
  • Richard S Tedlow
same as above. same as above. same as above.
Formula / AIDA Selling 1950’s Use the same, fixed approach to get Attention, Interest, Desire and Action
  • David Ogilvy
  • Canned presentation
  • Customers told, not sold to
  • Salespeople had in depth knowledge of the product
  • Kept customers at arm’s length
  • All customers treated the same
  • Had a large compendium of ways to handle objections – an answer for everything
Needs Satisfaction Selling 1968 7 step process to uncover needs and introduce benefits
  • Don Hamalian
  • Xerox Corporation
  • Allowed customers to have some control of the sale
  • Understands the customer’s business
  • First time ever customers partnered with sales to discuss what they wanted
  • Salespeople knew where they were taking the sale – customers did not know what was taking place
Strategic Selling 1970’s Use fixed planning process to highlight danger areas and penetrate decision-making process
  • Miller Heiman
  • Salespeople had and used their
    in-depth knowledge of the product and the customer’s market
  • Penetration of the customer’s business pre-planned
  • Detail oriented
  • Salespeople trained to plan for the close and to harness support across the company
Consultative Selling 1980’s Use in-depth questioning techniques to understand customer pain and then consult by helping buyer see impact for themselves
  • Neil Rackham
  • Salespeople well trained to conduct effective analysis of the customer’s business requirements
  • Understands the customer’s business
  • Use of probing skills to help buyers understand the implications of a proposed product
  • Customers and salespeople shared control in order to find a solution
Relationship Selling 1990’s Develop strong trust-based relationships to encourage buyers to make a commitment
  • David Ogilvy
  • Mike Bosworth
  • Willing to do more than is needed to satisfy customers
  • Becomes an advocate for the buyer in the sales organisation – often challenges his own company
  • Same old sales skills and methods used as in 1968, only repackaged
Solutions Selling 2000 Work with customers to develop a mutual understanding of the solutions that would be a best fit
  • Unknown
  • Self assured and confident
  • Detail oriented
  • Understands the customer’s business
  • Wants to work with buyer
  • Shared control of the sale
  • Negotiates a win:win outcome
  • Overcomes any conflict between best fit solution and selling the products / services of the company
Challenger Sale 2011 Challenge customers to think differently while controlling the sales process.
  • The Corporate Executive Board
  • Has a different view of issues
  • Understands the customer’s business
  • Prepared to debate and challenge customers
  • Introduces new ideas
  • Manipulates customers (1886 methodology)
  • Tries to control the sale
  • Uses knowledge to manipulate customers