How To Be Successful at Selling Virtually
The pandemic changed our world. That isn’t a news flash, but it is just as true in business as it is everywhere else. In-person meetings, large events and rooms full of cubicles, each one occupied by an employee, changed overnight to virtual meetings, social distancing and working remotely. Now, as we see little signs of people returning to the office, the world of remote business looks like it’s going to be part of our post-pandemic lives. This virtual world has been an adjustment for sales teams as virtual meetings are not the same as in-person ones. But, like it or not, virtual selling is here to stay.
This means sales teams need to take a different approach to selling. Virtual selling has a lot of advantages, including increased efficiency and fewer costs for traveling and expenses. That’s not to say virtual selling wasn’t around before the pandemic, but now it’s been thrust into the spotlight for safety reasons. Although virtual selling does have advantages, to be successful at it, you first have to recognize that you need different tactics than you would use for in-person meetings. Your team needs to understand how to go about maximizing a virtual call because they can be tricky to pull off. Here are some helpful tips on how to be successful at selling virtually:
Practice Virtual Selling
You always want to prepare for a meeting, but because virtual sales is different from in-person sales, you’ll need to go a step further. You’ll need to practice before you get on with a live potential customer. Find a friend or co-worker who you can rehearse with. Go over the presentation from start to finish and see how it flows. Get feedback from them on what is working and what isn’t. Fine tune your presentation to where you’re comfortable with what you want to cover and how you are going to present it. Without practice, you might find that you’re stumbling, looking ill-prepared and losing sales opportunities.
Know Your Technology
When things go wrong with your technology at an in-person meeting, you might be able to wing it and save the meeting. On a virtual call, you might not have that option. If you lose internet connection or your PC reboots on its own suddenly, you’ll be left hanging. Or you might be at a critical part of the presentation when your kids burst into your home office and interrupt everything. These are only a few ways your call can be seriously affected. Make sure you are prepared for these and other issues that might arise. More importantly, know what to do to quickly fix them and get back on track. Know your technology, how to best avoid technical issues and what to do when you have them. The best way to do that is to simulate the potential problems and practice taking corrective action to restore the call as quickly as possible.
Capture And Keep The Attention Of Your Audience
On a virtual call, this can be harder than it sounds. It’s not that hard to see that you’re losing the attention of someone in person. But it can be more difficult to tell on a virtual call. They might have distractions at home that you can’t see and can’t address. What we do at Ingage is give you a great interactive presentation that will grab their attention from the start and hold it all the way through the presentation. Part of that is engaging them in a conversation instead of just talking at them. The more they are interacting “with” you instead of just listening “to” you, the more attentive and involved they’ll be.
Use The Presentation To Drive The Conversation
When you’re giving a virtual presentation with Ingage, whether on a webinar or a web conference, make sure you’re using the presentation to drive a conversation. If you’re just reading off slides to the prospect, chances are they aren’t going to be very excited or engaged. They can read a slide as well as you can. Instead of just reading to them, build on what’s on the slide. Use it to weave a story that captures the attention of your audience. Encourage them to participate and ask questions. That last thing you want is for a prospect to have a question that goes unasked. Essentially, what you want to do is not only present the content but also give them context. Then you can open up that conversation where you expound on the content, encourage questions, and really help that person understand what it is you’re selling them. So, let the presentation drive a conversation when using Ingage in virtual sales.
Be Creative In Building Relationships
It goes without saying that building a relationship with someone on a virtual call can be more challenging than if you met that person in their home. But it isn’t any less important. Make your presentation personal and innovative. Develop a rapport with your prospect. Make them feel as if you’re there with them. They’ll be more comfortable, more interested, and more apt to buy what you’re selling.
Look For Nonverbal Communication
You can tell a lot from nonverbal communication such as a look, a gesture, or some other form of body language. In an in-person meeting, it can be easy to pick up on these signals. You can often tell if the prospect is interested and engaged or bored, frustrated, or confused. When you’re selling virtually, it can be challenging to read body language or you might miss it entirely. This means you have to be more attentive than usual to what that person is doing as much as what they’re saying. This is something you can practice with a friend. Learn to quickly see and interpret nonverbal signs via a virtual call. Sharpen that skill, and you’ll improve your communication with others when it counts.
Send Slides Ahead Of Time
One excellent way to stir up a conversation with your prospect is to send them the slides beforehand. Don’t do it five minutes before, either. Give them time to review them and formulate questions and concerns, This will allow for a more robust conversation and a deeper engagement. You’ll be able to spend more time on what’s important to them and less time on what isn’t.
Leave Time For Feedback
You should do this regardless of whether your meeting is in person or virtual, but it is especially important on a virtual call. Even if you don’t allow time for feedback, when you’re in someone’s home, they can stop you before you walk out the door and provide feedback anyway. If you end a virtual call, they don’t have that opportunity. Reserve the last 15 minutes of your call for feedback. You can glean a wealth of information from what that person has to say.
Use Ingage For Best Results
At Ingage, we’ll help you by equipping you with the best sales presentation software out there. Talk to our team today for a product demonstration to see how we can help your company succeed.