The COVID-19 pandemic has put businesses in uncharted territory. Some businesses have paused their operations and have pivoted what they were doing, while others have tried to go on as though it were business as usual. After a few weeks of adjusting to the new normal, many of us are realizing that conventional behaviors - in business and in life - need some serious rethinking for us to make it through together.
That said, businesses still need to be able to sell. Without sales, we cannot continue operating. Many business owners and salespeople are trying to continue their sales process while remaining sensitive to the current situation.
How do you continue selling during COVID-19? Here are a few strategies that have worked for me.
Transcript: Hope you are staying safe, or if you are anything like me and working from home with a rambunctious 3-year-old and a 9-month-old, hope you are staying sane, Godspeed.
I just wanted to hop on here real quick to share some thoughts as they pertain to COVID-19 and our new "business as usual." A couple of things that we've been talking about with my colleagues, a couple of things we've been talking about with peers in our now-weekly COVID-19 open forum, and ultimately a couple of strategies that have worked for me in a sales capacity to this point.
I do think it's really important for us as individuals to make sure that we change our messaging. We need to make sure that we are sympathetic to the fact that there is literally a global pandemic happening and it's altering lives, it's altering businesses. It's also important for us to recognize that it's not time to let our foot off the gas completely or hit the breaks. There is definitely still opportunity that is out there. For example, one thing that I have been doing is that I have been reaching out to attendees on lists of canceled conferences that I had planned to attend, if I have access to them. I'm basically reaching out saying, "Hey, listen, I was planning on reaching out to you on Brella, obviously that's no longer an option, still would love a chance to meet you, maybe you're open to a Zoom call, WebEx, whatever it is that you use."
Another thing that I have been doing is reaching out to prospects or leads that had kind of kicked the ball out down the road and pushed our opportunity out 6, 12, 18 or even more months. I am reaching out to them with basically what I like to call "three options" because I'm not very creative like my marketing peers, but I'm reaching out and saying, "Listen, I understand that this is sooner than we ultimately agreed to reconvene, but circumstances have obviously changed quite a bit. I'm not even necessarily calling you to tell you about Accelity or all the great things we can do from a marketing standpoint, I'm just trying to be a resource for you in anyway that I can and I'm hoping to have a conversation about you, your business, how you guys are handling COVID-19 and if there is something that I can do to help, I would love to. So the three options that I am giving them is:
- A lot of companies are telling me, "You know what, I would rather wait until we weather the storm and we emerge from the other end before we talk to anybody."
- "Yeah, I am at home, I'm working from home, reflecting on how to do things a little bit better internally. I would love to have a conversation and share your thoughts right now. The timing couldn't be better."
- "I would like you to go fly a kite completely and never call me again, Mikey Henninger."
Hopefully that gives you guys some ideas. Again, it's really important to be empathetic to the fact that there is a global pandemic happening, and it's affecting people in was that we could have never imagined. But it's also important, now more than ever, to be reaching out to your prospects with value and letting them know you're there to help them and their business.
Hope that helps!