Virtual selling is the new normal. Here are three tips for preparing yourself for a successful transition onto the virtual sales stage and for making a good impression in your virtual meetings.
We can all agree that this has been a year to remember. We were introduced to many new experiences, like homeschooling our children and donning masks as part of our regular routine.
The world of business changed as well. Those face-to-face Starbucks meetings shifted to a video call and coffee on our couch. Regional sales conferences moved from Vegas to virtual. Even our internal team meetings had to switch from the boardroom to the breakfast nook.
Now, as the vaccine is starting to be distributed, many are wondering if everything will go back to normal. While our children may go back to school and restaurants will start to open, the business world has likely changed for the long-haul.
Step Onto The Virtual Stage With Confidence
As sales professionals, we have to be well prepared to sell in this “new” virtual world for the indefinite future. Here are three tips for preparing yourself for a successful transition onto the virtual stage and for making a solid impression in your virtual meetings.
Accept and Embrace
When the pandemic first struck, we all thought it would pass and that things would be normal again in a few weeks or even a couple of months. I heard several salespeople (and sales leaders) say “we can’t wait to get back in front of our customers” as they sat at home and worked on home improvement projects.
Now that a year has passed, we must not only accept the changing world we live in but fully embrace it. While I would love to be mingling at a networking event to gain referrals and make new introductions, those events are still a long way from reality.
We must engage with our networks and develop relationships in a virtual setting. Changing your mindset is the first step to getting comfortable with virtual meetings and maximizing your future selling opportunities.
Blending is Essential
Video meetings are not the only important component of virtual selling. Remember that there are other methods you can blend to build customer and prospect relationships. Develop your network on LinkedIn each day. Call customers to set appointments for new opportunities. Mail a handwritten thank you card to your top accounts.
Salespeople can also improve their virtual close ratios with video messaging. According to a SalesLoft study, incorporating a video message into your sales process can increase your closing rate by up to 75%. If you haven’t sent one yet, make this the time to start.
Conquer Your “Video Game”
Yes, we are all feeling video-call burnout. What was fun at first, is now causing cognitive overload. Being on camera for hours each day is mentally and physically exhausting. It can be tempting to join a virtual meeting when you’re not camera-ready and hide behind a non-shared screen…but don’t!
According to a survey conducted by McKinsey & Company, the majority of B2B companies have shifted to virtual meetings and only 29% of sales meetings are conducted in person now. If our buyers want to stay digital, then we must adapt.
Would you walk into a C-suite in your PJs? Of course, you wouldn’t. If you want to stand out from your competition, then step-up your video game. Always be camera-ready, never join a customer (or internal meeting) underdressed.
Are you still conducting business from a couch or kitchen table? Improve your home office set-up. Is it messy? How’s your lighting? Do you need to invest in a new webcam? While you might not think of it, your buyers are noticing these things while on a virtual meeting with you.
As you prepare for having a successful year, start by thinking about how you can incorporate these three items into your normal routine. Making these adjustments now will help you build your pipeline and stand out from your competition.