Exactly What To Say (Summary And Review)

Business Psychology Sales

What’s in it? Quick Summary

“Exactly What to Say” by Phil M. Jones is an invaluable resource for anyone who wants to gain a better understanding of how to use the right words to persuade customers and increase their sales.

Exactly What to Say: Your Personal Guide to the Mastery of Magic Words
  • Jones, Phil M (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 148 Pages – 05/05/2018 (Publication Date) – Page Two (Publisher)

Last update on 2023-01-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon

You can buy the book in your preferable format below.

Get the Audiobook: Listen free with Audible Trial

Get the Paperback version: View price on Amazon

Get the Hardcover version: View price on Amazon

Exactly What To Say Detailed Summary

We live in the age of influencers and marketers.

All great sales people use tactics to deliver their words in such a way that they stimulate your subconscious mind, and you might not realize it at all.

If you’re a marketer or salesperson, this book summary will boost your profits by providing the exact phrases that can convince a potential customer to say yes.

Alrighty, so without further ado, let’s get started.

Lesson #1: Nobody wants to be perceived as closed-minded.

If you go and ask someone if they are open-minded or closed-minded, the answer is obvious. They’ll, undoubtedly, say that they are open-minded.

Why is this so?

Because to see the truth of it, one needs to be highly meditative.

Usually, people aren’t that self-aware enough to see the depths of their ignorance.

But since we’ve seen or heard that open-mindedness is highly appreciated everywhere on the planet, we try to show that we’re open-minded.

In other words, most people who look or say they are open-minded are not really open-minded, they just think they are.

By the way, if you are one of the exceptions, don’t feel offended.

How can businessmen benefit from this?

If you have to introduce a new idea to your customer, you can use phrases that test the open-mindedness of that customer.

For example:

“Would you be open-minded enough to try this new thing?”

After listening to this question, the person would most likely try the new thing that you want to sell. And he might like that thing, and later buy it.

Why are the chances of getting a yes are high here?

Because in general, people don’t want to be seen as a closed-minded person.

Being perceived as closed-minded means that other people will be reluctant to share their ideas with you. That’d mean less opportunities.

Salesmen often use these tricky phrases, where it’s so hard to say no.

Here is a tip: If you want to avoid such traps in life, learn the art of saying no. You don’t have to accept everything or anything that life throws at you.

Lesson #2: Use stories to paint a beautiful picture of a better future in the prospect’s mind.

Salespeople often try their best tactics, yet fail and wonder why nothing is working.

You see, it doesn’t matter what tactics you use, if your customer isn’t imagining a better future with your product, they will not buy it.

So, what’s the solution to this problem?

The solution is to tell a story.

It’s really that simple.

For example, use phrases like:

  • “Imagine yourself reaching on the top…”
  • “Just imagine what you’ll become if you keep doing this for another 10 years…”

Why does storytelling work?

It works because our brain is always trying to make sense of everything happening around us.

Think about the best advertisements.

What do they all have in common?

Yes, they all sell you a great story that you can instantly recall even if you have a low attention span.

Great marketers realize that if you don’t imagine the results, you won’t buy.

Interestingly, your story doesn’t have to be on the level of Shakespeare. It should be interesting enough so that the prospects retain it for a long time in their minds.

Lesson #3: You can influence a person to make a certain choice by eliminating options they hadn’t considered yet.

We have so many options at any given time.

So, even if you eliminate a few of them, your customer won’t even realize.

Marketers and sales professionals use this technique to influence prospects.

They guide the prospect in their buying journey by showing only the popular options.

For example:

They may say,“You have 3 best options to choose from. Which one do you like?”

Or they may say “Buy 2, get 1 free” making you buy one extra.

Prospects with fewer choices are more likely to act.

When they are faced with many choices, they tend to postpone.

Our minds are often in a state of chaos, filled with chaotic thoughts and emotions.

By using smart phrases like the ones we discussed above, you can guide your prospects towards making the decision you want them to make.

The best part is that your customers will thank you for it as you made their lives easier.

Selling is not that bad after all, right?

In fact, selling is more about helping people instead of taking away their peace of mind by cold-calling them and requesting them to buy your products or services.

Lesson #4: People often use lack of time and money as an excuse, but there is a way to counter this.

Many salespeople have faced this problem.

Often after a long exhausting conversation, the salesperson expects the prospect to become a customer, but customers delay their decision, and say “I’ll let you know later as I don’t have time.”

Sometimes, they also give excuses like, “I haven’t discussed this with my wife yet. I don’t know whether she will agree to this or not.”

Usually, when a customer delays the buying process, it’s unlikely that they will buy from you.

Of course, many people like to research all the options thoroughly, but from a salesman’s perspective, it’s usually a subtle no.

When you find that your prospect is trying to delay their buying decision, you can be smart and use phrases like:

“When would be a good time to discuss this further with you?”

Or “When would be a good time to contact you?”

Customers are also reluctant to write a product review. In that case, you can ask them: “When would be a good time to contact you for the feedback?”

When you say something like this, it sends a signal that there is a time when they can complete that action.

They might not have time then, but they’ll definitely have time in the future.

By using this phrase, you may grab that future opportunity and get feedback or turn your prospect into a customer through marketing.

Or if they say that your price is too high, you can use phrases like “If I give you a 10% special discount, will you buy it right now?”

Such phrases will help you increase your conversion rate.

Lesson #5: People are more likely to choose the most appealing side.

Answer this question:

There are two types of people: Good and Bad. What type are you?

Almost everybody would say Good.

Nobody wants to be fit into a category that nobody likes.

Most of us don’t want to stand alone and choose the options that the majority would choose.

What can you learn from this?

If you give people options to choose from, they are more likely to choose the one that shows them in a good light.

Ask someone: Do you like to learn or do you waste time?

Most people would say they like to learn.

But if you spend some time with them, you’ll realize that they waste more time than they think.

Another example:

“Most people would choose this option….”

If you say something like this to your prospect, it will give them assurance.

They’ll think that if most people are choosing this, there must be something good about it.

Although it’s not always the most logical thing to do, countless people still show this behavior and go with the majority.

Even when that silent little voice inside them says, “perhaps, this is stupid, and you should think again,” they forget all their common sense and choose security over logic.

But again, exceptions are always there.

Lesson #6: If you can make the other person that he is just like you, he is more likely to agree with your other ideas.

Familiarity breeds trust.

Just think about the people you trust the most.

Usually, the people we trust the most are people who are close to us — who are familiar to us.

They might be your parents, siblings, friends, etc.

Often salesmen try to sell without building trust. And no doubt, they fail to build rapport with their prospects.

People like to buy from those they trust.

Without building trust, it’s very difficult to sell, unless your offer is super appealing.

The question is: How can one build trust, especially when you’ve just met your prospect — and you’re far from what we call “buddies”?

You can do so by giving examples of how you and your prospect are very much alike and share the same problems.

For example, you can say, “I bet you’re a bit like me if you love playing football and playing guitar on weekends.”

Or you can say, “If you’re like me, you also don’t want to pay extra for an upgrade.”

If you and your prospect share a common problem, it’ll be easier for your prospect to relate with you and trust what you say.

Have you ever found yourself watching a movie just because all your friends are watching it?

Before making decisions, we often consider what other people are doing and how they are doing it. It’s our conditioning.

You can also call it “Herd mentality.”

This is why we subscribe to the YouTube channels more easily when they have millions of subscribers. Or download an application because it’s trending on the trending list.

If you tell your prospect that “Most people are using a particular product because they all had this common problem,” they are more likely to purchase it.

Lesson #7: Share positive news more frequently over negative news.

No one likes to hear negative news.

People are naturally drawn to the positive, and it’s a great idea to start a conversation with positive news.

By doing this, you’ll create a more positive atmosphere and increase your chances of influencing the person.

It’s essential to stay authentic and honest when delivering news. If the news is negative, provide a solution or plan of action to address the problem.

Showing the prospect that you are willing to take action and are invested in the conversation will demonstrate your commitment.

By focusing more on the positive, you’ll be more likely to influence the person and get the outcome you desire.

Use phrases like “The good news is….”

These phrases can help you capture more attention as your prospect reads your sales copies, browses landing pages, and watches sales videos.

I suggest not overusing any of these phrases. Try using two or three and observe how your prospects respond.

Lesson #8: Prospects don’t want to be sold.

Everybody buys stuff all the time.

But why is it that salespeople have to work so hard to sell anything?

That’s because people don’t want to feel that their decision was made by someone else or they feel bad when they realize that the salesman outsmarted them.

If you pressure people into buying a product, they’ll outright reject it.

Prospects always want to feel in control.

It’s much better to influence their emotions and attract them first instead of logically pressuring them to buy.

No amount of explaining features would work if your prospect isn’t feeling attracted to your product.

You’ll always find this written in marketing books “People buy emotionally, and then use logic to justify their purchase.”

To achieve this, you can use phrases like:

  • “Would you want an extra pair of this thing?”
  • “Would you feel good if you had more features in this product?”
  • “Do you have more questions about this? Don’t hesitate to ask.”

While answering such questions, your prospects will feel more in control of their decisions.

Lesson #9: Convince your prospects to open both their hearts and wallets.

This is a bonus lesson that’ll boost your understanding of sales.

A good salesperson always reaches the heart first instead of reaching wallets directly.

Allow me to explain.

When you try to reach wallets first before reaching the heart, you spend a lot of energy explaining the features of your product and still sometimes are able to generate a sale.

But the catch here is:

Most prospects don’t really care that much about the technical features, they are more concerned about the benefits.

They care more about how they’ll feel while using that brand new product in their everyday lives.

It’s more about emotions.

To reach the hearts of prospects, it is important to understand what they are looking for and guide them to the right product.

This concept is more advanced and requires practice.

But it will help you master sales presentations and grow your business.

Bullet Summary

  • “Exactly What to Say” teaches you the exact phrases to use to influence a customer to buy.
  • Learn how to test open-mindedness so that a customer is more likely to say yes.
  • Use stories to paint a picture of a better future in the customer’s mind.
  • Counter excuses by asking when a good time to discuss further would be.
  • People are more likely to choose the most appealing side.
  • Make the customer feel like you to increase the chance of agreement.
  • Share more positive news than negative news.

Exactly What To Say Review

The book offers plenty of phrases that can help you master selling skills.

But the catch here is: Every situation is different. Every person is different.

So don’t assume that you’ll know exactly what to say in any given situation.

Great sales professionals and marketers often speak from their experience. And most of the time, it’s difficult explicitly why they said a particular thing.

Sometimes, it’s just a hunch, while other times, it’s practice.


  1. Easy to read and jump around.
  2. Gives you simple phrases to apply in your marketing and sales.


  1. One can’t rely on them heavily.
  2. Not all phrases provided in the book will work in every situation. Improvisation is needed.

Who Should Read “Exactly What to Say”?

Marketers, salespeople, and entrepreneurs who want to take their business to the next level should read this book as it provides valuable insight into the psychology of sales, and offers practical advice for using language to influence customers.

Buy the book

Reading book summary isn’t enough. Buy the book to gain more clarity and support the author of this book.

You can buy the book in your preferable format below.

Get the Audiobook: Listen free with Audible Trial

Get the Paperback version: View price on Amazon

Get the Hardcover version: View price on Amazon

Now It’s Your Turn

I hope these lessons will definitely help you get more wins as a businessman or sales professional.

The right phrases at the right time can make a huge difference in what others think about us.

Now you tell me:

What are your best takeaways from this book summary?

Do you have some feedback?

You can contact me anytime and let me know.

Spread the wisdom:

If you liked this, don’t hesitate to share it with your friends and family members.

Thanks for reading.

Shami Manohar

The Brain Behind Wizbuskout.com

I am Shami Manohar, the founder of WizBuskOut. My obsession with non-fiction books has fueled me with the energy to create this website. I read at least one book every week on topics such as business, critical thinking, mindset, psychology, and more.

My mission is to educate and empower individuals with the knowledge that works in real life.

Connect with me on LinkedIn

Consider supporting me in my mission:

I invest a lot of time, energy, and money in things like softwares, books, design, videos, artists, designers, etc., to provide you with this level of quality content at zero cost. If you love consuming my work and appreciate it, support me. This would help me provide even more value and help humanity grow. Every little penny counts.

Donate here

Become a channel member on YouTube