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June 28, 2022

Way of the Wolf: Straight Line Selling: Master the Art of Persuasion, Influence, and Success by Jordan Belfort…Book Review

I just read Way of the Wolf: Straight Line Selling: Master the Art of Persuasion, Influence, and Success by Jordan Belfort

If you are in sales right now, you absolutely have to read Jordan Belfort’s new book. I ordered mine in March, and it was finally published and arrived yesterday. It took the day to read it, and was well worth the wait.

Jordan Belfort has a deep and profound understanding of human nature and how to convey the right image to make a sale. From your tone of voice, cadence, enthusiasm, certainty, and belief in what you sell, he knows how to put that all together to generate sales at a rapid rate.

OK, the book tells about his history selling stocks, training salespeople, and a little about the adventures he has had along the way. But mostly, for the price of a lunch, you are essentially getting the meat of the Straight Line Sales System that sells online for about $2,000 (at least that’s what I remember a few years ago). I’ve watched the Straight Line Selling video program and read the book.  Way of the Wolf: Straight Line Selling: Master the Art of Persuasion, Influence, and Success is the condensed version of the course.

One caveat, this book tells the hard truth about making sales. If you sell arts and crafts at a bazaar..maybe this isn’t for you. But if you sell high end products, that truly benefit those who buy, this is the book for you.

If you sell anything by phone, you can use about 100% of what’s in this book. It will all apply to you. But if you are like me, and sell by appointment, maybe 90% will apply. But that 90% is pure gold.

If you are going to learn from someone, learn from the best. If your goal is to make money selling…learn from someone who made a fortune doing exactly that.

One thing you should know…Belfort talks about not using “pressure”, but the techniques he teaches create an urgency to buy, and for some salespeople…that can be a little intimidating. Belfort’s personality may turn a few off…you may not even particularly like him. And he swears. So if that hurts your ears, don’t buy the book. But if you are hungry…and want to get ahead in selling….this book is the map.

Chapter 4 talks about tonality. And as another reviewer said, this chapter alone is well worth the cost of the book.
It’s more than just the tone of voice…it’s the cadence, amplitude, timing, certainty in the voice, “caring” in the voice…and more.

And this is really advanced selling. For example, the reason hypnosis works is that the subject believes the hypnotist’s suggestion of reality. And for that belief to transfer, the hypnotist has to sound certain…absolutely certain. It’s this transference of certainty that drives hypnosis. And it’s this transfer of belief..of certainty…that drives sales.

Belfort teaches the same thing..how to transfer certainty to the prospect. And it’s done mostly through how you speak (and body language and facial expressions in person), even more than what you say.

And it works powerfully. Belfort talks about tonality, because he sells over the phone. When he talks about “Tonality” it isn’t just about the pitch of your voice. It’s about using your voice to captivate attention and keep it. It’s about conveying emotion, conviction, empathy. It’s a huge part of what actors learn. Watch a great actor…a slight change in expression can carry loads of meaning. A shift in posture, a raised eyebrow, leaning forward slightly, lowering your voice slightly…can make a big difference. And it’s that kind of thing Belfort is talking about.

It has been brought up in discussions with friends that he sounds (in his sales videos) like a hustler.
His voice is annoying. There, I said it. And my guess is that most of his reps had less than a radio voice as well. And they were mostly uneducated young men.

And that’s one of the things that impressed me the most. Even though his voice is aggravating (to me)…he still sold millions of dollars of product a month. And he taught others…frankly less than brilliant reps..how to do it as well. His methodology is that good.
His methodology is so well thought out, his understanding of human nature is so profound, his knowledge of the core of what makes people buy (or makes them object) is so deep… it overcomes all of his flaws (and ours) when pitching over the phone.

And in his book he lays it all out. He is a gifted teacher, and it’s impossible to not understand what he is teaching, and use it to your immediate profit.
I’m going through my second reading now, with a yellow highlighter. This is the kind of book you study.