Book Summary: Whale Hunting

Have you ever pondered how to explore, seek, and harvest the bargain that would permanently change your business?

The ancient Inuit faced a similar problem hundreds of years ago: how can we search, hunt, and harvest the meal that will sustain our whole tribe for a year?

When the ice began to melt in the spring, the Inuit understood that the whales would be on the move, which meant one thing and one thing only.

It was time to go whale hunting.

The ice is breaking up, and big accounts are ripe for the taking. We'll teach you how to get started landing whales accounts that are ten to twenty times larger than your ordinary account in less than ten minutes.

Lesson #1: Know the whale

2 individuals standing on a pole on top of the clouds to navigate what's going on up there.

First and foremost, we must navigate the seas. There are other boats in the water, just as there are other fish in the sea. The goal is to understand the competitive landscape and ensure that your brand promise stands out.

This is a simple concept to grasp conceptually, yet it appears tough to put into practice.

By definition, whale hunting entails pursuing a relatively small fraction of your target market. To make this work, you'll need a target filter.

Your goal filter may resemble a graph with revenue, budget, growth strategy, and transaction type on the Y-axis and your "A" and "C" prospects on the X-axis.

That way, you'll know what to expect when a whale appears.

Lesson #2: Send out the scouts

A female worker searching through the database to list out all the firms that meet the criteria of the target.

Following that, you'll create a "whale chart," which is basically a list of firms that meet the criteria of your target filter.

Now is the time to start gathering information on them. Look for information about the firm, as well as its key executives and board members. There is a slew of tools available to help you achieve this, and they're becoming better all the time.

The essential is that you want to be notified whenever any information on these people is published anywhere globally.

Then you'll figure out how each of these important decision-makers is related to you. LinkedIn is an obvious place to start with this.

Lesson #3: Setting the harpoon

An online network as people can communicate and make a connection with one another.

You should have identified your whales and acquired as much information as possible on them by this time. It's now time to make a connection.

Remember, it's not who you are, but who people believe you are, so keep control of the "aperture of perception" throughout the process, as the authors put it.

You'll rely on your digital presence and sales collateral you've developed and your team during your initial encounter. Make certain that these items give the impression that you want.

When you walk through the door, you should be asking probing inquiries. The authors point out that the greatest essential questions assist you in grasping the whale's history.


They do so because they can anticipate their future conduct and define how they work. As these questions are being answered and the dance begins, make sure you pay attention to two important factors.

First, double-check that you're knocking on the right door. Back up and start over if you aren't talking to the person making the decision.

Second, be wary of little bites that promise great things. In the author's experience, these small pieces of labor seldom transfer into the huge account you're hoping for.

Lesson #4: Launch the boat

A male product manages overseeing the launch of the new product as a rocket flies off from his computer.

Launching the boat entails devoting one's time and resources to actively pursue the whale with the sole purpose of closing the sale. But first, you must be able to answer yes to three crucial questions:

  • Are our chances of landing this contract good?
  • Will we be able to devote sufficient resources to ensure a successful hunt?
  • Is it possible to catch the whale if we land it?

If you can say yes to all of them, that's great. It's time to get started.

You'll now be making a pitch to a group of folks at the whale. Two sorts of buyers will attend this event.

The first is the financial buyer, who is in charge of both the budget and the authorization for your services.

The second group is specialist purchasers, who come from various departments and are potentially affected by this purchase.

This second group is crucial because, while they don't have the authority to say yes to you, any one of them can put you under the bus and cancel the entire agreement.

At this stage, it's important to make a distinction. Most small businesses think that these individuals are there to help them choose the finest potential supplier.

However, their true goal is to keep you from making poor judgments. According to the author, the nature of these whales is to prefer safety over benefit. As a result, fear takes precedence over all other emotions while making a decision.

So, to improve your hunting skills, you must first learn how to quit scaring whales.

Whales are most afraid of four things. Change, disagreement, extra effort, and failure are all part of the process. Make sure your proposal addresses all four points.

Lesson #5: Capture the whale

An IT coder catching the bugs present in the code, showing that you need a procedure to capture the whale.

Whales aren't captured overnight, so you'll need a well-defined procedure that you can manage if you want to complete the transaction. Each and every sales stage has six important requirements. They're right here.

  • Who is the owner of the step?
  • The step's roles and duties
  • The necessary resources
  • If necessary, a sub-process for the step.
  • The success criterion and matrix
  • The timetable

If the whale is ready to go forward, make sure your proposal is well-thought-out. Make it a point to give it to someone in person. If the purchasers don't want to hear it in person, they're probably not interested in doing business with you.

Lesson #6: Sewing their mouth shut.

A businesswoman presenting the proposal flawlessly and with precession as the prospect pays a visit.

So you've made your pitch, and the whale has indicated that they're leaning toward you. Alternatively, you may have received verbal approval and, in certain cases, a formal contract.

Have you ever had a deal fall through at this point? I'm sure I have. So, here's how you may reduce the likelihood of your whales swimming away beyond this point.

At some time, the whale will wish to pay you a visit. This is the point at which you must pull out all the stops. I can't explain it better than the author, so here's what they advise you should do on the big day.

"When the company is coming, do everything you can to meditate the fear. Prepare with precession, implement flawlessly and follow up with speed and care."

So we've told you about the key points you need to consider in building your whale hunting juggernaut at your company.

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