Trade and B2B thrive on personal customer contact. But what do you do when this is not possible during the corona crisis? More than any others, the sales force is faced with challenges – and sales are in danger. Yet, the crisis also offers opportunities and chances.
What the sales team can now do: 5 tips
- Find a digital substitute. Which forms of communication do you use, for instance, internally for home office that you can also use for sales talks? Be creative. Why, for example, do you have to replace cancelled trade shows solely with emails or phone calls? You can build your trade show booth on your company’s premises and showcase your products or services in live videos. Set up a special online shop for B2B trade and explain how it works via video conference, or go through a the ordering process together with your customers.
- Strengthen the connection between sales and marketing. Lots of traditional forms of sales, such as trade shows, product showcasing and personal visits, have been cancelled due to the corona crisis. All the more reason for marketing to not only grab attention, but to also support strategies for cultivating contacts, such as via automated emails.
- Analyse your target group. Of course you know your buyers and their specific requirements. But new target groups have possibly come into play during the corona crisis, which have not known about your offers to date but need them particularly now.
- Review your fields of business. Many tailors have reacted to the corona crisis and are now sewing face coverings. Maybe you can adapt your goods or services to the current situation or find a new use for them.
- Take advantage of B2B call centres. If you have to communicate with potential interested customers individually, then lead generation is often more time-consuming and tedious than with a larger audience at a trade show. If you can’t complete tasks such as phone acquisitions and follow-ups on your own, commission a call centre to take care of these for you, especially ones which are specialised in what you need. This enables you to build up more contacts than your competitors.
Why the crisis can also be a chance for sales
See a chance in the corona crisis and grab it. After all, the competition is dealing with the same problems as you are. Those who can face the challenges the fastest and most efficiently will be able to gain the competitive advantage.
Showcase yourself as a reliable partner and as a company that cares. For instance, ask your customers if they have a special product need during the corona crisis.
Showcase yourself as a reliable partner and as a company that cares. For instance, ask your customers if they have a special product need during the corona crisis. Ask about their personal experiences, maybe even worries, and reinforce your personal connection as a result.
Has the customer chosen a tool for video conferences? Do you know about an even better one? Maybe one that she doesn’t have to sign up to use, that enables more participants to take part, that is easier to use? Then recommend it. You could simplify the situation for her in this way.
Digital communication frees up additional time for you, as you no longer have to commute to/from work or go on business trips when working in home office, for instance. You can use this free time to personally contact more interested individuals. As a result, you may be able to compensate for reduced sales volumes with more customers.
And not to forget: there will be a time after the crisis! Prepare for it today. Which questions will then be important to your customers? What will they need in particular? How will the experiences with digital communication have an impact? Those with the best answers will get ahead after the crisis.