In today’s dynamic business environment, sales professionals must be well versed in both modern and virtual selling techniques with effective sales training. The widespread adoption of digital technologies and a shift in buyer behavior have created a need for salespeople to adapt and innovate. In this blog post, we will discuss the combined approach of modern and virtual selling and provide a list of best practices of sales training for conducting sales meetings using Zoom.
A Combined View of Sales Training for Modern and Virtual Selling:
Modern selling refers to the process of understanding and adapting to the contemporary buyer’s journey, while virtual selling involves conducting sales activities through digital channels. By combining these two approaches, sales professionals with sales training can better engage with their prospects and customers in today’s digital landscape.
Modern buyers are more informed, connected, and empowered than ever before. They often begin their buying journey online, conducting extensive research and comparing multiple options before engaging with sales professionals. To succeed in this environment, salespeople must engage with prospects early in the buying process, providing value through educational content, and being responsive to customer needs. That is why creating your own professional brand and being seen as a thought leader is so important.
Virtual selling complements modern selling by providing the digital tools and channels necessary to engage with today’s buyers effectively. By leveraging video conferencing, social media, and email, sales professionals can quickly identify, engage, and nurture potential clients without the need for time-consuming and costly travel.
You can follow some easy steps to do this:
- Design your LinkedIn profile to reflect a thought leader in your space.
- Connect with people who represent your ideal customer profile.
- Share relevant content. This should be a combination of what your company releases and unique content that you create.
- Like, comment, and share your prospective buyer’s content and authentically engage with them.
- Message your prospective buyers with something they may find valuable, based on what you see them engaging with online, and what a typical buyer like them cares about.
- After sharing a few pieces of content that are relevant, seek to engage with them by asking for a meeting to discuss those things and understand their priorities around them better.
This process takes time. It can take months or even take years. But you will eventually be seen as someone your buyers can trust. They will start to turn to you for relevant information and use what you post as part of their decision-making criteria. They will use your content in early research and proactively reach out to you to engage you in buying conversations. Again, this can take time. While you are building this brand, you are increasing your credibility every day. When your modern buyer does their research, they’ll see someone who understands them. They’ll be more likely to engage with you, and they’ll respect your opinion in the early stages of the buying process. If you are not doing these activities, your competition will have a leg up on you in almost every selling conversation.
Once you book meetings using these techniques, it is important to show up well to those meetings. Using Zoom and other virtual selling platforms can seem daunting at first, but by following the basics and the best practices that top performers are using today, you’ll get the results you’re looking for.
Best Practices for Zoom Sales Meetings:
Zoom has become an indispensable tool for virtual selling, enabling sales professionals to connect with prospects and customers in real-time. Here are some best practices of our sales training for conducting successful sales meetings using Zoom:
- Prepare and Test Your Technology: Ensure your internet connection, camera, and microphone are all working correctly before your meeting. Conduct a test call with a colleague to ensure everything is functioning smoothly.
- Set a Professional Background: Curate a background that builds easy rapport. Remember when we used to go to people’s offices and start the conversation by commenting on things in their offices? Enable a similar conversation to take place. As an example, in my background, I have books I enjoy, a fish tank, plants, etc. In many meetings, people comment on those things and we build connections using them. If you aren’t able to do this, consider using a virtual background that reflects something about you. People will comment on these things and engage with you, making early rapport-building easy.
- Dress Appropriately: Even though you are meeting virtually, dress professionally. I wear a quarter zip sweater or athletic shirt to all meetings (choose what works best for you).
- Be Punctual: Join the Zoom meeting a few minutes early to ensure you’re ready when your prospect or customer arrives. This also gives you time to turn on the recording ahead of time without having to create an awkward moment during the call. You can also use software that will record and transcribe calls for you. These are exceptionally helpful for auto-generated recaps and for coaching purposes.
- Use an Agenda: Share an agenda with your prospect or customer ahead of the meeting to set expectations and keep the conversation focused. During your call use the ACE+M Framework. Appreciate the time, confirm the time, the end game (what to expect in the call), and a mutual agenda. “Thanks for taking the time today! We scheduled 30 minutes for this call, does that still work for you? Today, my thought was to spend 10ish minutes getting to know more about you and your business, then spend the back half of the call connecting the dots to areas of impact. Does that sound good to you? Before we get started, is there anything that would make today’s meeting more productive, and I’ll make sure to add that to our agenda?”
- Engage Your Audience: Encourage interaction by asking open-ended questions and inviting your prospect or customer to share their thoughts and concerns.
- Leverage Screen Sharing: Use screen sharing to present visual aids like slide presentations or product demonstrations, to help clarify your points and keep your audience engaged.
- Take Notes: Jot down key points from the conversation to reference later and demonstrate that you are actively listening.
- Follow Up Promptly: After the meeting, follow up with a summary of the discussion, any agreed-upon next steps, and additional resources that may be helpful to your prospect or customer.
- Watch the game tape: Every week, pick a few zoom calls to listen to; by yourself, with your team, or with your manager. Look for areas in which you did well and where you may need to improve, to ensure you’re solidifying your strengths and improving upon your weaknesses. Don’t boil the ocean here. Try to get better every week at one aspect of your virtual calls. Over time, you will see improvements as you make more calls and ultimately, that will lead to more success.
There are a multitude of components necessary if you want to truly master sales in a virtual world. Hopefully, the tips we shared with you today will help you become more effective in the virtual world.
At The Sales Collective, our team of experts has a wealth of knowledge and decades of experience helping companies of all types and sizes become more effective in the world of virtual selling. Many of our clients have seen dramatic increases in revenue, win rates, and profitability, and we’d be happy to share more if and when the time is right. If you’d like more information, please visit us at: TheSalesCollective.com.