Right after the pandemic hit, sales reps all over the world were forced to adapt virtual selling techniques.
According to the U.S. Census data, there are 5.7 million professional sales professionals in the U.S. alone. As field sales spiked to 52.8%, over 3 million sales reps switched to remote selling roles.
Adapting to a remote-selling environment is not a smooth journey. You have less face-to-face communication with your prospect and most of the conversations happen on emails, chats, or calls. Ineffective interactions are bound to occur.
To alleviate this, follow these best practices for cold calling, so you can make the experience worthwhile for your customers and improve your own productivity too!
1. Understand The Buyer’s Psyche
Being able to tap into human psychology is a gift that top salespersons have in abundance.
Rather than jump right into the pitch, ask questions and listen to discover what the customer is looking for and how you can help them meet their needs. You will quickly learn if your offering fits into their life at all, and if yes, how best it fits in.
No doubt, discounts, free trials, limited period offers, no strings attached and consultation calls all help to encourage reciprocity. But it’s empathy and tapping into your buyer’s psyche that will help you engage with your customers in the most effective way long-term.
2. Build Effective Messaging
Building effective messaging is about tailoring your pitch. The most effective pitches are personalized and customized to the context rather than being one-size-fits-all. They’re also mindful of the mood of the times.
For instance, lockdown is not the time for aggressive messaging. Instead, maintain a soft, caring tone that is empathetic to the present situation of your prospects.
Rather than pushing your agenda, be sensitive to your customer’s needs and moods. Tailor your pitch accordingly. Even if they don’t engage with your business immediately, your customer will remember the friendly, personalized tone of your chat, which will go a long way in cultivating the relationship.
3. Encourage Queries from Customers
Remote selling is conversational and not just about salespeople giving presentations. Of course, the seller does most of the talking, but you must create an environment that encourages customers to ask questions.
If your client wants to go deeper into the product features, then let them interrupt you! Answer their questions as best as possible. It’s an opportunity to educate them on the product and educate yourself on their needs and preference so you know what to focus on.
4. Use The Right Tools
To maintain productivity when remote, you need powerful remote working tools.
Begin with your unique problems in mind. Declutter any existing ineffective tools that aren’t adding value to you. When choosing software and tools, consider how they solve your specific challenges. Compare features, pricing, support, and do read online ratings and reviews. Consider free alternatives but don’t hesitate to invest in high-impact areas.
The key is to use the least number of tools, where each tool is high impact. Wherever possible, choose software, tools and platforms that have multiple uses.
5. Host Virtual Video Demos
Product demos via web conferencing are a bit of extra effort but are highly effective. Here are some tips to ensure a smooth event:
- Ensure you have good internet connectivity and backup connectivity.
- Keep your face 2 feet away from where your camera is positioned. The camera angle shouldn’t be too above or below you.
- Check your internet speed before the meeting. Having enough bandwidth for a video call is essential for a successful meeting.
- Arrange your seating around a natural light so you look your best.
- Rehearse before the real thing and run through the demo in full to choreograph it perfectly!
6. Leverage Online Networking, Creatively
Leverage every opportunity to engage with your prospects. Connect with your prospective customers on social media and engage with them whenever appropriate.
Here are some great ways to network online:
- Connect with prospects on social media. Make following your most active channel a Call To Action (for instance, your LinkedIn page)
- Engage with their posts once in a while through likes, comments and shares.
- Share your learnings, industry insights, or other trends to educate your prospects.
- Use engaging formats like videos and gifs on social media.
- Share some cool, candid pictures of your workspace; it’s always an ice-breaker.
- Use regular email newsletters to build trust with your prospects.
- Invite your prospects to value-packed webinars and demos. Doing this will help you educate your prospects well.
7. Create Environments Conducive To Remote Work
Working remotely has its own perks and distractions.
Working from home may make it especially hard to demarcate work time from downtime, so setting boundaries is key:
- Have a fixed physical workspace, be it a room or desk or a spot on the couch to work from.
- Ensure you have good internet or phone connectivity and all the right tools, like earphones or software to facilitate your work.
- Fix your time to work, create a to-do-list and stick to it.
- Be sure to take regular breaks so it does not get monotonous.
- Do maintain an online calendar to help you plan and organize your work duties better.
Finally, if you’re a manager, don’t assume that everyone has the same environment. Check in with your team to learn how your company can help facilitate the best environment for working from home, to set all teammates up for success.
8. Effective Team Building When Remote
While working virtually, it is easy to lose touch with your team. However, there are some things you can do to rebound:
- Define KPIs clearly, and track them.
- When remote, over-communication is better than under-communication, so everyone is on the same page. Keep your team in the loop about everything. Actively engage in group chats.
- At the same time, know when to keep it low-touch and give teammates their space, so as not to overwhelm them.
- Video call your colleagues once in a while
- Schedule occasional one-on-one meetings to track progress and discuss where they need training.
9. Virtual Learning
To stay competitive in the sales field, it is essential to upskill your industry knowledge. Indeed, remote working saves a lot of time as you don’t have to commute and spend less effort getting ready for work.
Make education an essential part of your workday lifestyle. For example, watch educational content on YouTube or enroll for courses on Udemy.
As an organisation, offering employees opportunities to upskill in the
As compared to in-person selling, remote selling certainly presents its own unique challenges. But you don’t need to reinvent the wheel.
You can easily master remote selling with your existing sales understanding, experience, and skills. All it needs is a bit of time and thoughtfulness.
Follow the above sales call best practices tips and ace your virtual selling game!
You can build a team of star performers in no time with minimal effort. Book a demo to see how.