Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Book Review: Makowicz on Sales

Book: A Guide to SELLING Managed Services
by Matt Makowicz

I first met Matt Makowicz in 2004 when he was evangelizing consultants on the concept of selling technical consulting services for a flat monthly fee. In addition to being ahead of his time, it was clear that Matt was also a great salesman.

I was quite eager to get my hands on Matt's book -- and I was not dissappointed. I thought this was a book on sales techniques, but Matt doesn't get to sales until Section III! He starts with a great discussion of managed services and an extremely thorough littany of products and services you should be offering clients to build continuing streams of money: recurring revenue.

And believe me, this is not a long-winded philosophical discussion. Matt's descriptions of products and services are literally one paragraph each on who, what, where, when, why, and how. He packs a huge amount of information into a nice compact discussion.

Finally, in Chapter Ten, my patience is rewarded with a spectacular discussion of successful sales techniques. Page after page of great recommendations. But wait: it gets better. Matt's sales process is marvelous. Most people just do whatever they do to sell services. They really don't have any "process" at all. Matt lays out a great framework perspective that you can start learning and practicing right away.

If your business is growing, you'll particularly like the discussion about moving from an owner as salesman to a hired salesman model.

I could go on. Matt covers more areas of the sales process than I knew existed before. And he provides one strategy after another. They won't all fit my business, but they're all great information.

The technology industry is filled with processes and procedures. Well, at least that's true in the Technology Department. But the Sales Department tends to only have techniques, not processes. Matt presents detailed sales processes that are documented and repeatable. Just as you have a variety of technical skills available to use on a job, Matt gives you a variety of sales processes to have at your disposal. After all, sales isn't something that happens, it's something you make happen.

Matt's book is a great resource for any small business consultant. It's so jam-packed with great strategies, processes, procedures, and techniques, it will take me a year to implement them all!

Overall, I was surprised and pleased with _A Guide to SELLING Managed Services_. I was surprised that is was so much more than sales. Perhaps the key to a great process for sales is to start with a great framework in which to make those sales. This is an excellent how-to book on organizing your overall business, deciding what to sell, and then selling it consistently.

A great book that will be a great addition to your business library!


Disclaimer: You might think that I'm being compensated now or in the future for pushing Matt's book. OK. You got me. I hope some day that I'll own a company that distributes this book. But in the meantime, I'm hoping that enough people buy this so that Matt will be totally guilt-tripped into buying me a beer at SMB Nation.

The book is $99.95.
I'm sure it will be less at SMB Nation.

But here is my absolute bottom line:
You need to save less than one hour of labor or sell less than one hour of labor to make this book pay for itself.
I personally guarantee that you will either save or make one hour's labor based on the ideas in this book.

I don't even have a link for you today: Matt's on a boat drinking stuff out of a blender and watching his toes wrinkle in the water.

But when you find this book, buy it.


You'll find 50-100 great ideas.

Just find it and buy it.

You may have to wait two weeks.

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