As a trainer and consultant of sales, I’m experiencing that even the best sales people in our industry have lost their confidence and greatness due to being out of the game for a while due to furlough and feeling overwhelmed in the new Covid world. Changes in which the way they are being managed due to teams working remotely has also tipped their balance. Let’s also not forget that customers have found new ways of communicating to purchase physical activities and taking part in physical activities. Yet, the pressure is on, probably now more than ever for sales people to perform.
So if you are selling, it’s time to take a deep breath and try new ways of connecting with prospective customers and your team of experts. It’s not a time to be discouraged or feel like the overall performance of the sales numbers is on your shoulders! It’s a time to re-think your approaches and enjoy getting back to work and doing what you do best – “selling with confidence” because your product is more valuable now than in 2019!
Get used to being on camera
You would be crazy not to create videos to demonstrate your solutions with prospects or provide fresh updates to grab attention. Build trust and connection with prospects via video. Networking at events mask free, shaking hands and sharing business cards are actions of the past at the moment but you can communicate via video, which today is accepted. Let’s not rule out other methods, such as texting, emailing, Facebook Messenger, live chat, video chat, voice recording messages and telephone calls are all great options to connect with your prospect, if they enable you to do so.
Writing has become important to your sales success. Since we are in front of our prospects less, our written communication has become an important tool to connect with prospects and customers. Writing is simply content to attract and convert prospects, you’ll focus on capturing their attention by offering them useful, enriching content. Tailor your writing so that it addresses the concerns, interests and curiosities of your prospect at each stage of their buying cycle. Use quality pictures and combine your writing and videos together. There are many things that you do. A nurture email sequence might be a good place to start to reach your prospects based on where they are in your sales cycle and this could be automated to save you time. Always make sure your content has clear CTA to give your prospects a direct path to join.
Examples of interesting things you can write about and personalise fort your prospects are:
- Case studies
- Product guides
- News and events
- Research on fitness and wellbeing topics
- Blog for your website and work with marketing to use strategic SEO (help prospects search for you)
Not everyone is great at writing and if you are great at selling but struggle with writing seek help to write great content for your prospects that feels personalised and valuable for them. Involve marketing and as a team be strategic and measure the success of your efforts.
Value your meetings with prospects
Your meetings with prospects should be more meaningful than pre Covid. Firstly, people have been through a lot recently due to Covid and there will be plenty to discuss about their physical and mental wellbeing and how you can help them with life changing solutions. Secondly, face-to-face meetings are novel because we haven’t had many of them, so skip the boring museum tours and short appointments and provide the deep conversations and meaningful value your prospects are craving for.
Communicate with leadership
The days of regular sales meetings in the office are over. Leaders may get frustrated by feeling like they don’t have a handle on sales activity and this can lead to micromanaging which may sales professionals struggle to handle. Be sure to have a good CRM system and use it for tracking all of your leads to sales. Whilst you are working remotely demonstrate how efficient and impactful you are by tracking the outcomes of your sales efforts, your pipeline and producing regular reports for leadership. Your data will tell a story and could result in getting additional support via marketing or your training department for sales training to support your lead generation and conversation to sales.
Any interaction you have with prospects (written, phone, video, in-person) should feel authentic and personal to the prospect. Lip service selling or going through the motions with a discounted offer will not result in you winning new customers. Today people want to connect at an emotional level and want to add value to their lives. Find their problems, concerns and barriers to physical activity and address them. Be a walking, talking expert of a purpose-led brand, which stimulates human values and emotions and not a feature led brand. Address the problems your prospects are facing!
Collaborate with the experts in your team.
Sales are no-longer just about the sales team. Digital has changed the way we work to sell, all departments have a role in ensuring generation of leads and conversion from the marketing department generating leads, sales team managing the pipelines and the customer support team providing the valuable experience online and offline. So as a sales professional work with the experts in your team to creatively look at ways to improve the buying journey, e.g., work with marketing to create sales automation or work with the service team to increase customer referrals.
Your success depends on you. Approach your selling with an ownership mentality. The power for your results is with you. When a sales professional starts to blame Covid, competition or others they are detaching themselves from responsibility.
Ask yourself these questions:
Am I working hard enough?
Am I seeking help?
Am I collaborating with experts in my team?
Am I blaming others or circumstances for my failures but take credit for my successes?
Check your attitude towards your work. Remember to always have an ownership mindset.