For many entrepreneurs, securing new clients can feel like a never-ending struggle. Ever since the pandemic began in early 2020, many entrepreneurs have been saying it’s even harder to turn prospects into customers, especially when they are virtual visitors.
Nevertheless, every business survives or folds based on the bottom-line health of its clientele. As a result, entrepreneurs need to find ways to up their game.
Learning New Moves for An Increasingly Online Era
If you’ve been busy making adjustments to your business model to help your company navigate a post-pandemic landscape, you’re probably working diligently to improve conversions. At the same time, you may have already realized you need some new arrows in your quiver.
Listed below are three vital skills you and your sales team can adopt or adapt to help inch up sales numbers, increase overall team morale, and improve customer retention. As you and your people master each skill, their confidence and sales performance levels should show measurable improvement.
1. Learn how to crush virtual presentations.
At this point, many people still haven’t returned to the office, including some of your sales prospects. This means you will be making plenty of presentations over Zoom or Microsoft Teams. In other words, you won’t be able to “read the room” or shake hands. Instead, you’ll need to rely on other talents to help win clients over the internet.
How do we go about infusing virtual presentations with energy and enthusiasm?
Angela DeFinis, founder and CEO of DeFinis Communications, recommends treating your environment as a dynamic film set. “Your virtual presentation, just like your live presentation, should be focused on your audience,” she says. “Your listeners not only expect you to present compelling content but to keep them fully engaged as well.”
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From decluttering your “performance space” to activating both physical and vocal energy, prepare for every virtual presentation as if it were a premier event. That way, a heightened level of enthusiasm will spill out of the screen and lend an air of excitement to the pitch.
2. Lean into emotional intelligence.
Make sure you and your team are clear that now isn’t the time to leave empathy or emotional intelligence at home. Actively encourage them to bring their “full self” to work every day. You’ll want to be sure that they listen to what your would-be clients are saying. Being able to hear and understand their pain points will make your company’s pitch more appealing. Not only that, but you and your people will be better positioned to find creative solutions.
What if you or one of your team members is feeling low in the emotional intelligence department? Career coach Ashley Stahl says that walking a mile in another person’s shoes always helps. So does watching for both spoken and body language changes.
“Centering on verbal and non-verbal cues can give you invaluable insight into the feelings of your colleagues or clients,” she explains. You may be a bit rusty on your empathy, but don’t worry. In time, it’ll get better and you’ll find it easier to relate to prospects.
3. Refresh answers to your most common objections.
You and your sales team may be hearing objections to signing contracts or making commitments that none of you has ever heard before. Rather than just hoping these post-pandemic objections go away, write them all down. Together, you can work on answering these new objections in the clearest way possible.
This simple exercise will help you upskill in a number of ways. First, you won’t feel flummoxed every time someone asks a previously unheard question. Secondly, you’ll all be forced to think about the product or service you sell in a different light.
Need some help getting started? Chris Orlob, director of sales at Gong.io, firmly stands behind the idea of getting clarity. In other words, understand the heart of the objection before coming up with your responses. If you’re doing the process correctly, you’ll probably find that you have multiple answers for the same general objection.
There’s no need to spend work hours inside a classroom just to beef up your teams’ sales abilities and improve this quarter’s numbers. For now, just work on upskilling in a few ways over the coming weeks. You might be surprised at how much of a difference a little self-directed learning can make.