Physical Versus Remote Proximity in the COVID Era
Being a sales professional is not a job for the faint-hearted, especially in the IT industry. Add the challenges of Covid-19, and the task becomes even more herculean. You have quotas to meet. Your customers have buying options. The difference between a sale and a disappointment may be as simple as staying in front of them so that when decision time comes, they think of you first. In today’s business climate, it is essential you ensure you’re working on your customers’ behalf, putting their interests first. You may not be able to stop by to chat with a client over a coffee, but you still need to be accessible – assertively reaching out to them with quality offerings and information.
If your sales numbers aren’t what you’d like, you need to create an environment so that when it’s time for your customers to spend a pretty penny on a sophisticated CRM, choosing you is natural. Do your customers have this kind of preference or trust? If not, what is your roadmap?
You need to be doing everything possible to make it easy for prospects to choose your service and for your current customers to remain loyal. Retain contact with customers after a sale so they remember your company’s value. Every Account Executive needs to maintain strong relationships and continue to create future improvements for their clients’ continued success. If you wait until contract renewal time to pick up the phone, chances are good it’s too late.
Provide new product information, keep in touch, send emails, phone with specials offers for early renewal, and provide all the extras that your competitors are trying to leverage. To become a trusted advisor, you must demonstrate that you understand their business pain points and industry challenges. Get noticed and stay ahead of the competition.
Underselling Today Could Cost You Tomorrow
Sometimes, a customer may think the cheaper option is preferable. However, a master salesperson will think like a chess player. What will the cheaper option be like near future? Will your client have outgrown the capability you recommended? If the system doesn’t allow for projected growth, you could be doing them a disservice – although well-intended. Do you really want to have to answer why your tool that they thought was “complete” is about to cost them more money? If you start with a future-proof platform, you will be setting your client up for success and offering value over the long term.
It’s important to take the time to explain all options upfront – and the details of what each will provide. Recommend something that will meet their needs and grow with their business. They won’t want to replace everything again in a short period. If your customer comes to you with an idea of what they’d like, make sure you understand what the solution will look like later. You’ll need to address things like integration, scalability, and performance. An entry-level price may sound good at first, but it could hamper them as they grow. Don’t make it easy for your customer to leave you because they feel they were misled.
Although a job in IT sales can be challenging, it is also one of the most satisfying careers. Being a trusted resource that helps companies improve their processes is noble work. You need to understand complex systems and apply them to real-world problems. You’ve worked hard to get this far. Let’s not be dissuaded during these times. COVID era or not, we need to keep putting our customers’ interests first.