Episode 12: Anthony Iannarino – Teaches Exactly How To Steal Customers From Competitors

Who is Anthony Iannarino?



Anthony is an International Speaker, entrepreneur, bestselling Author who has written a couple of interesting books. His Book [The Lost Art of Closing] gives you some major and useful ideas on how to generate sales. Anthony is also a speaker on leadership, entrepreneurship and personal development. His new and upcoming book [Eat Their Lunch] is yet to be released.

Anthony has been listed as one of the most influential people in the world of sales and marketing. He speaks to and provides transformational workshops to sales organizations throughout the world. His blog www.thesalesblog.com is read by over 60,000 people each month.


What is Anthony Current book about?

Anthony’s book The Lost Art of Closing is about 10 commitments that are necessary for B2B (business to business) salespeople who sell products to other businesses, rather than selling them to consumers. Anthony’s team was told to always be closing like Glengarry Glen Ross style. Let customers tell you when their ready to take the next step.

Clients are expecting us to have solutions in helping them to get the results that they need. You cannot wait for customers to know the results. As a business person, you have to implement ideas and give advice to your customers. Customers will look to us as trusted advisers for advice without wanting to come across as being offensive or manipulative.  


There’s this set of commitment we have to ask:


·       Commitment for Time

·       Meeting

·       Explore what this change look like

·       Collaborate and build whatever it is we’re going to do together that is necessary for the client to get result that they want.


Anthony third (3rd) book [Eat Their Lunch] is about how to win customers from your competitors. This type of action is called Competitive Displacement. Some businesses grow by taking business away from their competitors. The strategy is to gain market share by taking it from their competition. Most of us go into a company and start developing mind share and start doing necessary work to steal competitor’s business from them.


How do you change from someone who is a salesman to a trusted adviser who guides them through the process like you mentioned?


To be a trusted Adviser you need two (2) things:



1. Trust  

You need to be Other-Oriented. Anthony further went on to talked about questions you need to ask yourself in order to work together as a team to build their business. The more self-oriented you are the more your income will suffer. You tend to ignore the needs of others and are excessively concerned with yourself. When working together you understands what is to be done to move the business forward. When trust is created among team the more income will be generated into the business.  


2. Advice

Anthony knows the intersection where businesses can come together. Sales person need to know their product, company’s history and other features that’s necessary. Sales person are interested in what you know about their business and that area where your business intersects with their business. Salesperson needs to be an expert in their area of enterprise and have solid advice to offer to customers. 


How do you ensure that there is that commitment to change when you deal with a client but doesn’t follow through and buy your services?

Anthony team follows a Sales Process. They present the solution to the clients by doing discovery and presentation. When a presentation is normally completed, the solution is given to clients for a decision to be made. Clients made commitment to explore, have meetings to talk about it and even look at the solution but still not a 100% invested in it.  

Anthony’s opinion is that the conversations have to take place in a timely manner to conclude if what had been said make any sense. This scares many sales persons because of certain strategies and implementations that must be done for the growth of their business. Are we going to be able to get the resources, time, energy and money that is necessary for this approach?  

They have to discuss if the rest of the organization is ready to come along for the growth of the business. Are the team players committed to what is taking place and what the company is aiming towards?


How do you go about from your perspective? What is the best way to handle these objections and things that they could say early on to so that you can actually carry on that process?

Different measures are approach when no is given as an answer. One might fall behind base on no as an answer. As a trusted Adviser you need to be consultative.

Opportunity needs to be developed from necessary steps that will be approach.

·       What can we do?

·       How far can we go?

Anthony helps others to get some work complete in their company also for the development of that company.  


On the topic of being a trusted Adviser, how do you develop that mindset of someone you knew before and with someone? For someone who is new to the notion of this, what do they need to do differently to be doing this for and with a prospective client?

Actually, a change of position and have having empathy towards what’s it like being in the other person shoes. Anthony is a practical and tactical kind of guy. You want those persons to go slow instead of fast and understanding what they are doing.

We want to help them get through this decision-making process. If you want to go slow or get a no then try to go fast. From this you are helping someone to make a decision to change. Sometimes this leads to disconnection because you still have to explore change, collaborate and what the solution looks like.

When your team comes in, we’ll talk about the money. When you keep the connection with persons and move them through that process, it goes faster than when you are disconnected to them. Every stages of this process are of importance.


How do you go about being that person asking for their time without asking too much?

Anthony developed 2 rules in his book:

Trade Value: – “Once you get rid of time you can’t get it back”. Anthony talks about needing that time back if time spent with a sales person who is pushy, self-oriented and not effective.  

There is so much resistance and no’s because a lot of people come in and show Anthony 8 slides about, the company and starts off with product offering further asking about picture of his kids which is unnecessary. Anthony shares in his meetings the things that they think are going to impact their business the most over a period of time.  

Even if there’s not a next step you’re going to have different ways that will help your business by looking at it in a more positive way. He goes as far to explain the value on how to collaborate. To collaborate is an important step that must be carried out.

If they tailored a solution for your organization, you get better results. To get these results make a commitment of time so that your results are going to be so much better. We have to trade value in every interaction.

How do you ensure that you’re working with them to create a process where you ensure that the door doesn’t fall through, because we all know time kills gills, right?

Anthony explains that you have to control the process and make sure that they understand some of the decisions they have to make, that they don’t recognize they have to make.  

In many cases these sales persons don’t know that they need consensus. And when we realize that we need to bring in these other people or we’re going to be disconnected. And by the time they find out they’re going to put the brakes on. Anthony thinks they should put the brakes on because they don’t understand what we need. So, you ask about their process so that you can try to line it up.  

When you have done this before what does the process look like on this side because he wants to make sure he’s serving them in their process and to carry out what they need to do You have to be willing to have conversation without being afraid. If it’s part of the process it’s reality which can be very persistent.


How are you being comfortable in this situation or giving something for them to look over in a way that still carries on the deal and doesn’t cause even more problem than actually helping them understand the product?

One of the things Anthony recommend in his book which he calls the commitment to review and rather than giving them a final proposal that could be wrong. They love to get feedback on what other changes they would need to make for you to be certain that this is right and that it’s going to work in your company.  

And just taking that step by having logical questions for your company to make things right. Now it’s their proposal together. People need to be shift into this thinking that now it’s ours because if they own it, they’ve contributed to it. 

One of the things you talked about in your book is the commitment to execute. What do you do as a sales person or what do you do as a company who is selling something? Do you follow up with the perspective customer, even though they don’t ask for it? What is the best way you feel that you can agree on a process?

Anthony speaks about the selling of an outcome and if you don’t help them get that outcome then you will have fewer sales in the future. Anthony further talks about alignment on what is your role to ensure that you execute. You have to go back and sometimes go back to your company and help them to execute.  

Sometimes you have to go back to clients and have different ways of how to win back those clients with new implementations, new ideas. Anthony’s company wants to make sure that you get the outcome that you paid for. His team normally implements different ways on how to reset and restart to get things done.  

It has been important for you to make that change and it’s important for them to help you do it. In selling you have to do good work to be successful. Develop an idea and share your ideas to get better results. 


Retaining clients is a lot easier than getting new clients. What is the Principle use as a sales person as well?

If he has a 10-million-dollar company and I lost it to a 2-million-dollar client then getting the 12 million means that he first has to cover the 2 million to get back the 10 million. You would rather succeed for them so that you are starting your next year above where you were the prior year and not behind it. That’s a rat race for people to run.


What would you say are some of your tips on how to steal business from other competitors? Give us some highlights of the book and some strategy.

The book is the first book of its kind. Anthony doesn’t think that anyone has written down the rule set for winning customers away from your competitors. You have to start with a greater differentiation on the level of value that you create. It’s about what you change to yourself, so that you look and sound different.   

You have to capture mind share. You have to change the lens out that they’re looking at they’re business through. From their point of view, they are looking at it like this is the right answer. And you have to change that mindset and say no I want to look at it through this view. Ultimately it takes time to nurture the relationships.


How do they maintain things so that they see things in a different way and start to recognize new opportunities?

You help them to discover the reason they have to change. We’re asking people to fire their friends and people who they have work with for years and you have to do a lot of work and be in a position to say you should fire them and hire me to do this. It’s more subtle and difficult. Anthony thinks for most of us in sales growing our business.

Behind me on the shelf is The Blue Ocean Strategy Books. We don’t live in a blue ocean. Most of us live in the reddest of Red Ocean. If you’re going to live in a red ocean be the great white shark. That’s the better position to hold.


Can these smaller companies win in this game of stealing away customers? What would you say is your advice on how to tackle that aspect of it?

Anthony has been doing this is whole life. He takes multimillion-dollar accounts from billion dollar companies. He started working in a company. His family had zero dollars in sales before he moved to LA to play music. He had to go out and win business with zero dollars in sales. He came back and started taking multimillion-dollar accounts away from larger clients.  

Larger companies are more difficult in a lot of ways to work with. They have more customers, more complacent, they don’t have the high intimacy and caring. You use their great strength of we’re really big and have this Giant Footprint. And you can use that against them and say, “They don’t really care about you”. You can take your largest accounts from your largest competitors by being who you are.

If you are high trust, high value, caring and high insight; if you occupy that space it’s going to be easier to do. His book that he wrote is based on his decades of experience doing just that. 

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