Like many professionals today, salespeople have had to pivot their practices and routines to adapt to the new realities of society.
In-person meetings and conferences have been replaced with webinars, zoom meetings, and email chains. And while a key function of their job has been flipped upside down, the sales industry must redefine how they build customer relationships, educate consumers, and ultimately cultivate new clients.
The concept of remote buyers yields some appealing benefits – scalable cost savings, increased access to key stakeholders and schedule flexibility.
Here are four tips to leveraging these advantages and effectively selling in a virtual environment:
1. Create an environment you feel comfortable selling from
Control and engagement are two key elements to any sales call. A salesperson must not only feel confident in their subject matter, but also in themselves.
The best way to foster this mentality is to create an environment that makes you feel comfortable and empowered. We have a few tips for that too:
- Designate an area where you can focus;
- Plan ahead if you need to coordinate with others in your household who are working from home;
- Try to have no visible distractions; and
- Find some good lighting.
2. Respect everyone’s time
The best way to respect everyone’s time is to have a clear outline for whatever your sales process may look like, create goals and stick to them. No matter who your customer may be, their time is valuable and should be treated as so.
3. Leverage your active listening skills
Although it may be hard to read a person’s body language over a video call and near impossible over the phone, try to take advantage of other active listening skills.
What is your prospect’s tone of voice? Are they asking many questions? Do they seem to be distracted? By leaning into these social cues you may be able to better understand your customer’s needs and steer the conversation in your favor.
4. Stay organized and persistent
Now even more so than before, organization is a key element to success in sales. Have a clear plan for how you are going to follow up with your prospect.
Remind your client of their key goals and how you will help them achieve these goals, but keep messaging concise and digestible. Continue to follow up and stay persistent in grabbing the attention of your clients – they are busy and you want to catch them at the right time – but know the difference between persistence and annoyance.
Sales professionals must take an agile approach to selling in the years to come. Companies must adapt our strategic approaches to selling, like selling in a virtual environment, to the situation rather than following a regimented plan.
Traditional ways of closing deals might return, but virtual sales are here to stay.