What is sales conversation analytics?
This blog explores how sales conversation analytics can help you shorten sales cycles, train top-performing sales reps, and increase win rates.
The Team at CallMiner
January 06, 2022
The best salespeople must constantly hone their craft to command the kinds of conversions needed to keep companies afloat. For them, although the world is constantly in motion, the sphere of sales strategies and tricks of the trade stands apart, growing at its own pace and blending into many other business concerns. Learning to master the art of sales or teach others to do so can be especially difficult when dealing with modern challenges in the industry.
The best ways for someone new to sales to learn is by doing and by listening to those who already know what they are doing. The books covered in this comprehensive article will give you a great starting point to grow your sales knowledge from. That way, you can navigate emerging trends in this space such as AI, automation and video content with confidence.
There are many paths you can take to improve at sales. In some settings, sales professionals logged net improvements of over 15% more deals and a 12% stronger profit margin after receiving the right training. At the same time, certain sales experts point out the overarching importance of understanding what the sales process is all about in the first place – helping customers get what they were already looking for. They describe the ideal sales process as being akin to a guided journey from inquiry to discovery. Leads become customers not through coercion but through careful attention, an understanding of the buying experience through the customer’s eyes, and an eagerness to lead them where they want to go.
Scott Edinger of Edinger Consulting Group describes the process succinctly: “[…] it’s almost like the salesperson wasn’t there.”
Another key takeaway from a great many sources centers on the importance of the follow-up in sales. Continuing to serve existing customers and ensuring a positive customer experience at every touchpoint instead of seeking novelty through attempting to capture new leads all the time is vital. Fortunately, sales organizations can now benefit from AI-driven analytics solutions to gain a deeper understanding of their customers and what works and what doesn’t throughout the sales process. By leveraging conversation analytics, organizations can uncover valuable insights from sales conversations to drive conversions and increase revenue.
Even with the aid of technology innovations, being a top-performing sales professional requires skill and finesse. The best salespeople recognize what they don’t know and are constantly striving to gain new skills and improve their performance. In other words, both new sales professionals and seasoned sales reps can benefit from learning the theories and strategies employed by industry thought leaders, and one of the best ways to do that is by reading the books they write. Read on to discover 25 of the best sales books that can help you refine your craft. Note that the sales books listed below are listed in random order and are not ranked or rated in any way.
1. Sales: Sales Strategies: The Top 100 Best Ways To Increase Sales (Easy Way to Sales Success by Using the Best) by McCloud, Ace
This book discusses prime closing techniques, sales mastery and more. Ace McCloud distills trade secrets from some of the world’s largest corporations in this value-packed tome. His 20-year industry experience is on full display throughout this informative book.
2. Advanced Selling Strategies: The Proven System of Sales Ideas, Methods, and Techniques Used by Top Salespeople Everywhere by Tracy, Brian
For a more philosophical take on the best way to approach sales, Brian Tracy’s Advanced Selling Strategies cannot be beaten. Tracy emphasizes reaching for your personal ideal above all else in this book to better yourself as a salesperson and simply as a person in general.
3. Sales: Techniques for Beginners - Sales 101 - How to sell anything - Sales Training - Selling (Sales Books - Sales tips - Selling online - Selling offline - Selling door-to-door Book 1) by Safavi, Aidin
Turn to this book for a thoughtful exploration of the core concepts intrinsic to the art of sales mastery – knowing your product, understanding your target customer, etc. However, there is also a wealth of specific, technical sales information contained within to satisfy those in search of information they can immediately make use of.
4. Sales: Foolproof Method to Crush Your Numbers - Selling, Sales Techniques, and Sales Strategy by Ross Elkins
To speed up your sales, increase customer spend and match your own goals, this is a great read all around. Tactics are presented with a human touch for added relatability and faster comprehension.
5. Sales: A Beginners Guide to Master Simple Sales Techniques and Increase Sales by Covey, Daniel R.
This book is aimed directly at beginners and presents details in as simple a way as is possible for their benefit. A welcome teaching aid for trainers and managers, this one is sure to inspire new arrivals to the trade to try out simple yet effective sales techniques that have served even the most experienced salespeople well over the years.
6. Strategic Sales Plan: Why Sales Fail and How Wins are Won by DeGroot, Robert
With this book, sales pros of all varieties can determine what they might be doing wrong in their own sales attempts. By following along with a surprisingly detailed body of phases, steps and actions at work in any successful sales process, Robert DeGroot has given readers a treasure trove of priceless information.
7. Sales Secrets: The World's Top Salespeople Share Their Secrets to Success by Bornancin, Brandon
This book is built like a playbook of killer strategies sourced from top performing sales experts on how to improve your sales results regardless of your industry and target audience. With numerous sales secrets committed to this teeming collection, it is safe to say that it lives up to its name.
8. Sales Techniques: How To Sell Anything. Persuasion, NLP and Body Language to improve your selling skills. by Padovesi, Luigi
This book takes a scientific approach through the lens of body language and NLP techniques to help salespeople understand others through their movements. This psychological take on sales can come in handy for sales pros engaged in one-on-one or in-person processes.
9. Aligning Strategy and Sales: The Choices, Systems, and Behaviors that Drive Effective Selling by Cespedes, Frank V.
Sales efforts are shown to have an impact on every aspect of value creation within a business throughout this book. The author marries strategy with actual execution to form a clear and comprehensive portrait of the sales process. With the guidance this tome provides, you can keep the different elements of your strategy aligned at all times and, therefore, far more effective.
10. Sales Strategy Playbook: The Ultimate Reference Guide to Solve Your Toughest Sales Challenges by Martin, Steve W.
With a total of more than 175 illustrations, 50 exercises and loads of examples pulled from real life, this book brings quite a lot of value to the table for both novices and long-time professionals. This playbook is intended to give ambitious sales reps an edge in growing their conversions in a repeatable way.
11. Sales Techniques (Briefcase Books Series) by Brooks, Bill
Both modern implementations and timeless conceptual details of tried strategies are offered up in this phenomenal tome to keep sales reps busy learning as they develop their skills. Whether you’re learning what it means to sell a solution instead of a product or you are looking for new ways to reach out customers, there is something in this book for you.
12. The Sales Strategy Fundamentals by Cantrell, Robert L.
This find comes complete with a special deck of strategy cards to help sales reps in training commit new concepts pertaining to sales strategy to memory without nearly as much mind-numbing effort. By gamifying the process, agents can learn core sales disciplines even faster.
13. Enterprise Selling Strategies: Proven Tips, Tools and Methods by Gillis, Ben
Three full decades of success in sales have led Ben Gillis to produce this especially useful book of powerful methods and insights. In addition to detailing personal techniques and company case studies, this tome also takes on new topics such as AI, cloud-based computing and cyber security as these relate to sales.
14. The 25 Sales Strategies That Will Boost Your Sales Today! by Schiffman, Stephan
The unique sales strategies listed in this book are delivered in such a way that they are easy to digest and apply. Advice is direct and intentionally simple so that the techniques described can be put to use the moment they are read.
15. Stephan Schiffman's 101 Successful Sales Strategies: Top Techniques to Boost Sales Today by Schiffman, Stephan
Stephan Schiffman, founder of DEI Management Group, a top-tier sales training company, and frequent guest on financial television shows of all types, reveals over one hundred powerful sales strategies in this value-packed production. His experience with a very wide range of businesses has earned him unique insight into the things that make a sales strategy float or sink. This book spills the beans on these critical details.
16. The 25 Most Common Sales Mistakes and How to Avoid Them by Stephan Schiffman
Covering the top 25 mistakes that sales pros new to the game are most prone to making, this book can play a very special role in your repertoire. Stephan sets out to inform first and encourage second, pushing you to reconsider poor sales choices and achieve more by (technically) doing less.
17. Heavy Hitter I.T. Sales Strategy by Martin, Steve W
This comprehensive sales strategy guide is sure to hit even knowledgeable sales pros rather hard with a wealth of useful and understandable information. Packed with insightful interviews featuring thousands of professionals in IT and sales divisions across industries, this particular tome is likely to live up to its name for those looking to learn something new about a craft they know well.
18. The 40 Best Sales Techniques Ever: Conquer the Leaderboard, Crash President's Club, and Make More Money by Jewett, Jonathan
This book is intended to be purely geared towards providing actionable, step-by-step information and guidance. Specific sales plans are presented in such a way that they can be followed by a novice in the craft every step of the way until they get the hang of them.
19. Sell More and Better: Eternal Sales Techniques beyond Internet (Salesman's Thoughts) by Sánchez Gilo, Raúl
For sales managers and sales training pros, this book should be a treat to read and commit to memory. Key sales concepts are approached in a more understandable light throughout this book than in others like it. As a base for your training efforts, this one is hard to beat.
20. Sales Craft: Proven Tips, Tactics and Ideas to Elevate Your Sales by McAdams, Brendan V.
Tried and true methods are brought up throughout this book and illustrated with special sales stories pulled from the author’s personal experience in industries connected to finance, telecommunications and healthcare. This read is billed as an all-around welcome addition to anyone’s library as it teaches skills that apply to life just as much as they apply to sales.
21. Selling Essentials: Your First 90 Days In Selling (Sales, Sales Training, Sales Book, Sales Techniques, Sales Tips, Sales Management) by Whitacre, Claude
Overcome the fear of rejection and track sales activities like a pro with this great sales book. An excellent addition to any professional’s library, this book can teach you not only how to sell, but also how to train your staff members to excel at the craft as well.
22. 51 Sales Tips: Keys to Sell More and Succeed Selling (Salesman's Thoughts) by Sánchez Gilo, Raúl
For anyone looking to increase their sales knowledge – from startups to managers and intrepid entrepreneurs – this book is bound to be of use. Packed with powerful tips that reflect a timeless approach to the process with deceptive simplicity, this book is brought to you by a sales pro with a long history in exporting goods.
23. Practical Sales Ideas For Small Business: Proven Techniques To Close More Deals and Delight Your Customers by Imke, Steven
Steven Imke leads small business owners through the murky waters of modern sales tactics to deliver them to a profitable destination in this no-nonsense write-up. He is a highly experienced salesperson and businessman himself with a franchise and a number of successful businesses under his belt.
24. Smart Selling: 48 Brilliant Tips and Techniques to Boost Your Sales by Slutsky, Jeff and Slutsky, Marc
This book focuses entirely on highly actionable, low spend tactics that you can use to turbo charge your sales processes. Packaged as ‘Street Fighting’ by Jeff Slutsky, the tips and techniques delivered throughout it help businesses of all sizes to carve out a space for themselves among choosy customers and a moving marketplace.
25. Sell More, Stress Less: 52 Tips To Become A Mindful Sales Professional by Duckworth, Holly and Szymanski, Eric
This book is written by the trailblazing Producer/Host of the Everyday Mindfulness Show, Holly Duckworth, along with co-author Eric Szymanski. Throughout, the importance of bridging mindfulness into profitable business culture is emphasized with the intention of improving not only your sales performance, but the impact your company has on the world at large.