I’m an avid reader of the predicted sales challenges for each year. Back in September 2019, I read a blog on the top sales challenges facing salespeople in 2020. Coronavirus wasn’t on the list. Everyone had to adapt quickly, the way we worked changed, buying behaviour changed. Sales teams became more remote and the world bootstrapped.
But we also became more compassionate and empathetic to our salespeople, our clients and our prospect. Humility and kindness have taken the place of determination and persistence.
The predicted challenges in the 2019 blog were fairly standard; struggling to gain appointments, getting to the right stakeholders, qualifying leads. And yes, these have become tougher in 2020. The main challenge has been surviving the Coronavirus pandemic in so many ways.
From a sales perspective, let’s review two key areas.
Appointment setting in a global pandemic
B2B sales rely on appointment setting. With face-to-face appointments and events online, we’ve seen a rise in companies feeling unsure about how to set appointments. Some of it comes down to not knowing which tech to use, and some of it is feeling anxious about approaching prospects.
Depending on your industry and market, appointments were harder to secure in March and April due to the uncertainty everyone was facing. We saw a lift in companies looking to outsource their appointment setting so that their team could focus more on closing. Outsourcing appointment setting can really help you get moving again, especially when it is pay per performance. You are only paying for the appointments that are set.
Closing during coronavirus
You may have found that it takes longer to get contracts back during this time, particularly in March and April. The early stages of the pandemic created a lot of anxiety for everyone both personally and professionally. As salespeople, we were worried about being insensitive to the situation. Empathy is an important part of relationship-building in sales. But being overly cautious about closing deals is going to impact sales revenue, your job and the overall business.
Now that we are all operating in the new normal, businesses and borders are opening up, we expect that sales cycles will shorten and closing will get easier. That doesn’t mean that the contracts are going to start flying into your inbox but you can start to tighten up timelines.
Although the first 6 months have been a shock to the system for a lot of businesses, it has also been a time to review and reassess your strengths and weaknesses as a team and to embrace technology. By continuing to sell and grow your business, you’re contributing to the economy, both locally and nationally and that is what every business needs right now.
We understand the demand for quality leads and the need for your team to meet those demands. We are here to help and add value by finding tangible, highly qualified leads where we have secured a date and a time for an appointment. These individuals are in your target audience, at the right decision-making level and have an interest in your solution. Taking away this pressure from your Sales team allows them to focus their time on closing deals and generating revenue.