Magnify Sales Book Club – Selling in a Recession

Magnify Consulting - Selling in a Recession

Is it a recession or just a blip on the economic graphs? Whether we’re in a recession or a blip, read this book to see that your business doesn’t have to struggle. Even if the economy is TOUGH (as emphasised in the title), this book will help you chart a course through the troubled waters that 2020 presents.

What’s special about this month’s book?

Selling in a Recession is a timely read, given that our post-lockdown Covid-19 world is potentially teetering on the edge of recession. Whether you think there is a recession happening or not, this book contains 21 Tips & Strategies for Finding New Business in a TOUGH Economy designed to help you succeed against the odds.

Book Details for ‘Selling in a Recession’

Book TitleSelling in a Recession: 21 Tips & Strategies for Finding New Business in a TOUGH Economy

AuthorMatthew Aaron

Publication Date –2009

Publisher – Ornery Tiger Press

Who is Matthew Aaron?

Matthew Aaron’s original career as a financial advisor has now evolved running his own professional copywriting business, specialising in financial writing projects. He also earned a Master’s Degree in Economics. Which means he knows a thing or two about the economy (such as whether we’re in a recession or not!).

Economies are cyclical. Matthew Aaron wrote ‘Selling in a recession’ at the time of the Global Financial Crisis. Just over ten years later, Matthew Aaron’s book has exactly the title that many business leaders probably want to read right now.

What is the book’s premise?

That you can do something to help turn your sales around, no matter what is happening in the world outside.

We might be selling in a recession, or a TOUGH (emphasis from title) economy, but we don’t have to live in this reality. There are positive sales strategies and actions that we can take to change our business reality, despite what is happening around us.

Can revenue levels be maintained and even grown for every single business? Possibly not. But with the 21 Tips and Strategies (which each contain several related actions) in this book, there is bound to be something you can do to improve your sales prospects.

Does the book deliver on its premise?

Yes, this book is an excellent springboard for the creative thinking business leaders and salespeople need to do to find the opportunity in any crisis.

What is the author’s voice like?

Matthew Aaron’s copywriting and financial expertise shines through with 21 short, sharp, easy to read chapters designed to help you beat any recession or tough economy. This is the shortest book we’ve reviewed (134 pages) and is full of easy to understand, brief, practical tips, and strategies. An excellent book to help you quickly take positive sales actions.

Any memorable quotes?

This is brief, punchy book that wastes no words. Here are some quotes to help you see your best way forward:


Like the Chinese symbol that embodies both danger and opportunity, recessions bring trouble and instability while at the same time offering savvy professionals the chance to increase their customer base and position themselves for the future – Introduction


Remember, a recession is nothing more than an economic storm. To the smart salesperson, this just means it’s time to start calling on the umbrella factory. – Pg 19


Treat a recession the same way you would a diet – as a chance to trim some of the fat out of your day.

– Pg 106


Remember, a recession is like rain. It might spoil your day at the park, but it’s necessary in order for living things to grow. Keeping that perspective can help you tackle a soft economy head-on while the people around you focus on the negative. – Introduction

What are some insights I can get from reading this book?


In tough times, people are quick to get rid of vendors; but they hardly ever fire a friend and trusted advisor. – Pg 79

The single biggest tool in your customer-retention arsenal: personal attention.

– Pg 80


A recession … quickly separates those individuals and companies who can adapt from those who can’t. And in every case, those who can manage and deal with change are going to come out on top. – Pg 60


You want to attach a concrete story to every hefty discount you give. Otherwise, your sale is likely to become permanent. – Pg 50


So, if you work in an industry that seems to be sinking like the Titanic, take heart: there might be fewer sales to be made, but you can more than make up for that by grabbing a bigger piece of the pie. All you have to do is pay attention to which of your competitors is falling apart, and then be there to help their customers pick up the pieces. – Pg 70


The real key to making any of these strategies work is understanding the situation for what it is, and then applying a consistent effort. Personal incomes and global interest rates aren’t under your control, but your own efforts and activities are. The only one who can decide whether to make it or not is you. – Pg 127

How relevant is this book right now?

Very relevant. This is one of the toughest times in living memory. The whole world has been impacted by an event that only Bill Gates (and perhaps a handful of others) appears to have foreseen – a global pandemic. Impacting businesses across the economic spectrum and with some parts still in lockdown, Covid-19 is an ‘unprecedented event’ unlike anything we have ever seen.

It is a much more challenging situation than Matthew Aaron probably had in mind when he wrote this book back in 2009. Still, even in a soft economy, there are going to be people and companies that are doing well – sometimes very well. – Pg 16

This book will help you turn your mindset to the ‘unprecedented’ opportunity you could be missing.

Did the book live up to expectations?

Yes. The short, punchy chapters contain actionable tips that you can use right now to help get your sales back on track.

Selling in a Recession is not a book with all the answers – because the answers will be different for every business. Mostly it is a book of strategies, and an excellent springboard for the fresh, creative thinking needed to help you see the opportunities in the middle of any sales crisis.

Who would you recommend this book to?

Everyone responsible for sales during this once-in-a-lifetime pandemic would benefit from reading this book.

Who should buy this book?

  • Salespeople should buy it to sharpen their skills in a highly competitive market.
  • Business leaders should buy it to pivot their sales approach in a tough economy.
  • Business builders should buy it to develop effective, proactive selling in a recession.

Where can I buy this book?

Order from Mighty Ape here.

Recommended snacks to accompany reading this book?

Chocolate cake and jet plane lollies. Let that sugar rush power you to new heights of creative thinking about how you are going to maintain and grow your sales post-lockdown.

Wondering how to break through the tough sales obstacles you’re facing?

Book in space for your free sales strategy call. Let’s talk.