What is Virtual sales?
Salesmen in most fields say, “selling is an art.” Add a digital element to it, and the value increases. In contemporary times, sellers need to keep pace in today’s dynamic business environment. Facilitating virtual sales for their companies and keeping the client engaged in an in-person situation is easier said than done.
The concept of virtual sales popped up on the radar in 2018. However, in 2021, these numbers have gone into hyperdrive. This calls for virtual sales training, which may seem challenging, but the returns and rewards are substantial, especially in the long run.
According to McKinsey, almost 90 percent of sales have moved to a remote model since the pandemic began. Virtually every Business to Business (B2B) company’s products and services are now being sold by employing the power of digitalization. With advancements in technology and the betterment of artificial intelligence (AI), salespersons can earn their commission without leaving home. Especially during these unprecedented times of covid, virtual sales has become the new normal. As a result, accrued incomes have increased with a decrease in commute costs and related additional costs. These savings are more than often directed towards increased customer purchasing power.
Organizations are writing their own playbooks when it comes to virtual sales.
Virtual Sales Training
VS Training is a pivotal part of the development of the organizational human resource. This Training allows them a refresher course to adjust to the new normal. Customers expect connected, personalized — and most importantly, fast — engagement from sales teams and brands. The rules of engagement shift a little each day, and the data shows virtual selling has been on the rise. Given this shift, sales teams that can adapt quickly will be increasingly effective in a digital-first sales environment. Some key elements of virtual Training are:
1: Identify Knowledge disparities
The first step is a preliminary analysis of existing gaps between coaching rules and future expectations. Managers and sales staff need to be on the same page to find a direction in this “new normal.” First, identify competencies and weak areas, then re-align expectations that enable smooth delivery of the newly formed strategy.
2: Use Recorded Videos, Not Just Live
During the training procedures, it is imperative that the staff masters the medium, i.e., video. Pre-recorded videos or demos enable sales managers to observe behavior, evaluate any possible rooms for improvement, and thus, coach remotely and asynchronously. This back and forth of sharing and feedback will eventually create a space where salespersons are flexible in taking their own decisions, making their own plans, and thus, working efficiently.
3: Identifying existing Training Issues
It is imperative that Sales managers need to understand how a sales representative might be struggling with wriggle room in the existing training mandates. Moreover, leaks in the sales pipeline need to be fixed. This means introducing a program that establishes a hierarchy between good representatives and underperforming ones. This will then allow the employees to learn from each other and work on their weaknesses.
4: Foster Peer-to-Peer Collaboration
Peer-to-peer collaboration always allows room for the best minds to cultivate better ideas. This will also ease the burden from managers and inculcate a more accommodating environment. As a result, fruitful corporate grapevines will start to grow, increasing the velocity with which new ideas are formed and implemented.
5: Deliver Consistent Messaging
Lines of clear and consistent communication are more important than they’re given credit for. It is essential for product line mergers or new product launches. This will also help in clearing any unnecessary ambiguity the representatives have regarding the process. Communication includes the ability to share relevant information promptly, with distinct talking points. This will also develop a habit of cutting to the chase and delivering the targeted message without beating around the bush while on ground duty.
6: Pre-Board New Hires
It is critical to keep a check on the time required by representatives to get accustomed to the management rules and start adding to marginal productivity. Whether hiring new representatives or vertically shifting existing ones into new roles, it is essential to reduce the time it takes to get ramped up. Pre-boarding them via virtual programming is quite helpful. This will give representatives a shot to practice their pitches and get to mingle with the executive team. Moreover, this will allow them to learn the inside-outs of the company system.
7: Amplify content
When point of sales are different locations, it is crucial that there exists a central content repository that allows all members concerned to comment on, add to and implement. This is necessary collateral for the process. Accessible, relevant content will give the representatives clear answers to situations they are dealing with, without the need to contact their managers every time something trivial comes up.
8: Make Learning Fun
Tap into salespeople’s competitive drive to build excitement and reinforce learning. Give sales managers engaging ways to observe and report on Training, pinpoint individual needs, and develop skills. Gamify training to boost motivation with interactive video contests, quizzes, and scorecards.
Sellers, in modern times, need a strong game plan, ample confidence, and skill to be able to fully embrace and execute the company’s virtual selling strategy and sales targets. The only way to gain this confidence and skill is to take a refresher training course in this area of expertise. Just as in sports, the winning team is one best conditioned to the environment and the regulations it dictates. Educating sellers about plausible challenges and giving them the ammunition of best practices will help them develop novel solutions even in a virtual scenario.
Employees will continue to make a meaningful contribution, and customers’ trust will only grow over time.