An interesting byproduct of the pandemic is that it created a somewhat involuntary experiment in remote work. Many businesses that were previously reluctant to allow telework — and remote sales, in particular — have learned that they can be highly effective.
If your company continues to deploy a remote sales staff, don’t assume it will “run itself” or that this tech-based approach is finished evolving. Here are some tips on keeping remote sales on point.
Devise sound strategies
No matter what the method, sales efforts should be targeted. Remote sales teams can lose their focus when they’re able to literally reach out to the world via the Internet. Don’t let sound sales and marketing strategies fall by the wayside.
For example, it’s far easier to sell to thoroughly researched prospects or, best of all, existing customers — who are already familiar with your products or services and those with whom you have an established relationship.
Continuously leverage technology
This might sound like a silly point given that remote sales are wholly dependent on technology to occur, but tech solutions are constantly evolving. Stay on the lookout for video chat and virtual meeting solutions that might work better for your business.
In addition to video-based products, other types of technology can enhance or support the sales process. For instance, software platforms that enable you to create customized, interactive and visually appealing presentations can help overcome some of the challenges of remote sales. And salespeople can use brandable “microsites” to:
- Share documentation and other information with customers and prospects,
- Monitor customers’ activities on these sites, and
- Tailor follow-ups appropriately.
Also, because different customers have different preferences, it’s a good idea to offer a variety of approaches to communication — including email, texts, instant messaging, videoconferencing and live chat. Good old-fashioned phone calls should, of course, be an option as well.
Provide an outstanding experience
The ultimate goal of any remote sales team is to close deals and bring in revenue. But, rather than getting too caught up in the numbers, your salespeople should always be cognizant of the experience they’re helping provide customers.
Today’s buyers, whether consumer or business-to-business, largely prefer the convenience and comfort of self-service and digital interactions. That’s half the battle. However, your remote sales staff must still ensure that customers’ experiences with both your technology and people are overwhelmingly positive. This might entail occasionally taking off their sales hats and donning a customer service or tech support hat to solve a problem.
The lasting impact of the pandemic isn’t yet completely clear, but the manner in which it has accelerated the use of remote technology is readily apparent. To stay competitive, businesses need to continue incorporating and enhancing remote sales techniques and IT solutions. Contact your Rudler PSC advisor at 859-331-1717 to assist you in weighing the costs, risks and advantages of your investments in this area.
RUDLER, PSC CPAs and Business Advisors
This week's Rudler Review is presented by Jim Gyimah, Senior Accountant and Melanie Smart, CPA.
If you would like to discuss your particular situation, contact Jim or Melanie at 859-331-1717.
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