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Face to Face Digital Selling

There is no typical deal or approach, selling now means in person, on Zoom or Teams and a whole lot more 
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Executive Summary

The role of salespeople is rapidly evolving in response to the rise of digital selling strategies and techniques. This article explores the significance of the salesperson's role today in light of these changes, highlighting the importance of adapting to new ways of working and the tools required to succeed. It's no longer the norm to simply respond to emails and RFPs, more is needed, although not expected. 

Competition is no different now as it was twenty years ago, but business sales have become more complicated because the tools available are not being used effectively.  These include podcasting, live streaming and video.  By combining remote selling or should I say digital selling, leveraging technology such as Zoom and Teams, and embracing digital marketing techniques, salespeople can successfully engage prospects and generate new business opportunities.


Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Remote Selling
  3. Sales Presentations
  4. The Account Executive
  5. Professionalism in Digital Selling
  6. Tools of the Trade
  7. Remote Selling Techniques
  8. Combined Approach to Selling
  9. Serving Prospects
  10. BDRs and Chat Support
  11. New Organisational Structures
  12. Proactive Networking
  13. Key Takeaways
  14. FAQs
  15. Conclusion

1. Introduction

As a seasoned business-to-business sales professional and company director with over 30 years of experience, I have witnessed firsthand the impact of digital selling on the sales landscape. Today, salespeople need to fully embrace digital selling to become the face of the business, present themselves as show hosts for podcasts and live streams, and serve as video interview presenters. In this article, we'll explore how salespeople and their roles are changing, and how embracing digital selling is the most effective strategy for generating new business.

2. Face to Face Digital Selling using Technology

The rise of remote selling has drastically changed the way salespeople interact with prospects. Platforms such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams have become essential tools for engaging with clients and presenting products or services. Remote selling offers the advantage of reaching a wider audience, but also presents challenges in building rapport and trust with prospects. Salespeople need to adapt their communication skills and strategies to be effective in this new environment.

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Face to Face Digital Selling closing techniques include:

  1. The assumptive close: Proceed as though the prospect has already agreed to the deal, confidently discussing next steps or implementation details. This can help guide the conversation towards a positive outcome.

  2. The trial close: Check the prospect's readiness to make a decision by asking questions that reveal their thoughts and feelings about the product or service. Examples include, "How do you feel about our solution?" or "Can you see this meeting your needs?"

  3. The summary close: Recap the key benefits of your offering and how they align with the prospect's needs. This reinforces the value proposition and prompts the prospect to make a decision.

  4. The urgency close: Create a sense of urgency by offering time-sensitive incentives, such as a discount or bonus feature. This encourages prospects to act quickly and avoid missing out.

  5. The question close: Ask a question that leads to a closing decision, such as "Would you like to move forward with this solution?" or "Can I send over the contract for your review?"

  6. The alternative close: Present two options for the prospect to choose from, both of which result in a sale. This simplifies the decision-making process and directs the conversation towards a close.

  7. The referral close: If the prospect is not ready to commit, ask for a referral to someone else in their network who might benefit from your product or service. This can help generate new leads and maintain a positive relationship with the prospect.

What to avoid:

  1. Being pushy or aggressive: Avoid using high-pressure tactics or making the prospect feel uncomfortable. This can damage trust and lead to lost sales opportunities.

  2. Ignoring objections: Address any concerns or objections raised by the prospect before attempting to close. Failing to do so can create doubt and prevent a successful close.

  3. Overpromising: Be honest and realistic about the capabilities of your product or service. Overpromising can lead to disappointment and damage your reputation.

  4. Not listening: Ensure you listen actively to the prospect's needs, concerns, and feedback. Ignoring their input can lead to a disconnect and reduce the likelihood of closing the deal.

  5. Failing to follow up: If the prospect needs more time or information, make sure to follow up appropriately. Regular communication demonstrates your commitment to helping them make an informed decision.

 

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3. Sales Presentations

Sales presentations have also evolved in the digital age. Adapting presentations for a digital audience means incorporating multimedia elements and tailoring content to specific prospects. Salespeople should consider using platforms like Mid Journey , Adobe Firefly and Microsoft Designer to create engaging presentations that resonate with their target audience. Don't underestimate the power fo A.I. for presentation.  You have no idea how many hours I have spent trying to find the right images for my articles and presentations.  Using A.I. has meant I simply enter the article title and I get a selection of images to choose from.  Amazing.

The best strategies to apply to remote sales presentations include:

  1. Preparation and research: Understand your prospect's needs, industry, and pain points. Tailor your presentation to address their specific requirements and demonstrate your expertise in their field.

  2. High-quality visuals: Use clear and visually appealing slides or graphics that enhance your message. Avoid cluttered and text-heavy slides, opting for minimalistic and easy-to-understand designs.

  3. Interactivity: Encourage audience participation and engagement by asking questions, conducting polls, or using interactive tools like whiteboards. This will keep your prospects involved and interested throughout the presentation.

  4. Storytelling: Use stories and real-life examples to illustrate your points and make your presentation more relatable. This will help your audience connect with your message on a deeper level.

  5. Clear and concise messaging: Keep your presentation focused and to-the-point. Avoid jargon and unnecessary details, aiming for simplicity and clarity in your explanations.

  6. Practice and rehearse: Before the presentation, practice your delivery and ensure you are comfortable with the content and flow. This will boost your confidence and help you convey your message more effectively.

  7. Adapt to technical issues: Be prepared for potential technical difficulties, such as poor internet connections or software issues. Have a backup plan in place to handle these situations smoothly and professionally.

  8. Body language and eye contact: Despite being remote, make sure to maintain eye contact with your camera and use appropriate body language to convey your enthusiasm and expertise.  Try not to look at the person on the screen and look at the camera.  Alternatively, if you want to use the right camera technology, take a look at these devices

  9. Follow up: After the presentation, send a follow-up email summarizing the key points and offering additional resources. This will keep the conversation going and demonstrate your commitment to helping the prospect.

  10. Continuous improvement: Seek feedback from prospects and colleagues to identify areas for improvement in your remote sales presentations. Continuously refine your approach to achieve better results over time.

4. The Account Executive

The role of the account executive has changed in response to digital selling. AEs now balance remote and in-person interactions while collaborating with other team members to ensure seamless customer experiences. Embracing tools like CRM systems and social media is crucial for managing relationships and staying ahead of the competition.

5. Professionalism in Digital Selling

Maintaining a professional image is vital, even in remote settings. Salespeople should adhere to dress codes, maintain proper etiquette, and build rapport with prospects virtually. The use of high-quality photography and video can help enhance your professional image online.

By following these tips, you can show a genuine servant attitude that prioritizes the prospect's needs while maintaining a professional and confident presence.

6. Tools of the Trade

Successful digital selling requires mastering various tools, from CRM systems to Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager. Integrating these tools into your sales process ensures a seamless experience for both salespeople and prospects.  It's imperative you know what's happening with your content.  Once salespeople understand what data is accessible from Google Analytics and Tag Manager, it means you can't fobbed off by anyone in marketing.  You need to kn wo if people are reading and engaging with your company's content.

7. Remote Selling Techniques

Effective remote selling involves a combination of approaches, including live streaming events and weekly shows to replace traditional telesales and cold calling. Salespeople should consider incorporating advertising banners in their email and social media campaigns to attract prospects to their live events.  It's all part of the game and process.  You have to ascertain what your competition are doing - and they're not doing this! 

Watch our live stream series, recorded live to really get an idea of what is possible: -

8. Combined Approach to Selling

A blended approach to selling leverages digital techniques alongside traditional sales methods, allowing salespeople to be more efficient and adaptable. By embracing digital tools and strategies, salespeople can better serve their prospects and build stronger relationships, simply because your prospects have not been living under a rock!  Prospects want their vendors to be fully conversant with the latest technologies and to demonstrate their competence when dealing with them. 

Using digital tools such as video and live streaming demonstrates your ability to adpt to new technologies and use the same to communicate important and necessary information to prospects for the sole purpose of helping them make a decision without being too pushy.

But don't forget about using podcasts as a medium to keep communicating your message.  I know this page is about face to face selling, however, if your prospect is not able to watch you, then podcasting is the solution, especially if they're travelling or driving.  Naturally we have a section dedicated to podcasting for both practical implementation andlinks to our own podcast show too.  

9. Serving Prospects

Today's salespeople must focus on providing value and serving prospects in a genuine manner. By understanding their prospects' needs and offering tailored solutions, salespeople can build trust and foster long-lasting business relationships.  It's no different to the analogy of feel-found-felt.  Your prospects must see that you're on their level and that you're prepared to do what it takes to communicate accurately and transparently.  And the only way you can do this today is by being accessible online, on video, live and with an open access website with no forms to fill in.

Another element of demonstrating how you serve your prospects is your salespeople conduct before, during and after the sale.  It is about demonstrating a servant attitude without appearing subservient during remote sales interactions.  It involves striking a balance between being helpful and maintaining a professional demeanor. Here are some ways to achieve that: -

  1. Active listening: Pay close attention to the prospect's concerns, needs, and goals. Ask open-ended questions to encourage them to share more information, and respond thoughtfully to show you understand their perspective.

  2. Personalize the conversation: Make an effort to know the prospect's name and refer to it during the conversation. Personalize your interactions by tailoring your presentation and recommendations based on their unique needs and goals.

  3. Provide valuable insights: Offer valuable information, resources, or advice that can help the prospect achieve their desired outcome. This demonstrates your expertise and commitment to their success without coming across as subservient.

  4. Be responsive and accessible: Make yourself available for follow-up conversations, address questions promptly, and provide timely updates. Maintaining a clear line of communication shows your dedication to helping them succeed.

  5. Set boundaries and manage expectations: While it's important to be helpful, you should also set boundaries and manage expectations. Be honest about what you can and cannot do for the prospect, and avoid overpromising just to please them.

  6. Empower the prospect: Instead of doing everything for the prospect, guide them on how to make informed decisions and take action independently. Providing them with the tools and knowledge they need to succeed shows that you're focused on their best interests.

  7. Demonstrate confidence and expertise: Be confident in your ability to deliver value to the prospect, and display your knowledge of the product or service you're offering. This can help establish trust and credibility, preventing you from coming across as subservient.

10. BDRs and Chat Support

Business development representatives (BDRs) may start to feel they're being iced out.  Not so.  They can start supporting salespeople by utilising chat platforms like you probably already have on your website, like Zendesk or any other plugin, to engage with prospects and answer their questions in real-time. This collaboration ensures a smooth sales process and enhances the overall customer experience.

11. New Organisational Structures

As sales roles evolve, so do organisational structures. Companies must adapt their internal organisation to support the changing role of salespeople and promote collaboration among various departments.  We recognise this and have created a separate document, spreadsheet and video to explain all just click here to take a look at new organisational charts.

12. Proactive Networking

Networking remains a critical aspect of sales, with digital platforms offering new ways to connect with prospects. Salespeople should actively engage in social media, join online groups, attend virtual events, and seek out opportunities for introductions and referrals to build their network.  Digital Selling significantly improves your chances of connecting with new prospects because the intensity of desiring an early or premature meeting has changed, because they can engage with you online, via your live stream, listen tyo your podcasts or watch your instrucitonal videos, all of which builds a foundation for prospects to get to know, like and trust you before they buy from you.  Being an innovator or early adopter means there is signifiacnt opportunity for you to capitalise on your specific market.  

13. Key Takeaways

  1. Embrace remote selling and the use of digital tools to reach a wider audience.
  2. Adapt your sales presentations for digital platforms and personalise content for each prospect.
  3. Maintain professionalism in remote settings through proper etiquette and high-quality visuals.
  4. Utilise a combined approach to selling, leveraging both digital and traditional sales techniques.
  5. Prioritise proactive networking and relationship-building in the digital age.

14. FAQs

How can salespeople build rapport with prospects in a remote setting?

Salespeople should focus on active listening, asking thoughtful questions, and demonstrating empathy to establish trust with prospects during virtual interactions.

What is the role of BDRs in the digital selling process?

BDRs support salespeople by engaging with prospects through chat platforms, answering questions, and ensuring a seamless customer experience.

How can salespeople effectively network in the digital age?

Salespeople should actively participate in social media, join online groups, attend virtual events, and seek out opportunities for introductions and referrals to expand their network.

15. Conclusion

In conclusion, the role of salespeople has significantly evolved due to digital selling strategies and techniques. To succeed in today's sales landscape, salespeople must adapt to remote selling, leverage digital tools, and embrace new approaches to serving prospects. By doing so, they can effectively generate new business and position themselves as essential assets within their organisations.

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Author

The author and founder of salesXchange, Nigel Maine is a B2B marketing and sales expert with a proven track record in scaling up growth for Technology, SaaS, and Professional Services organisations. With 30 years hands-on experience and unique approach, Nigel has developed an effective strategy that dramatically increases exposure and profitability for B2B organizations.

Nigel has founded multiple start-ups, is a published author, public speaker and hosts both a podcast and business live streaming show, broadcast on LinkedIn Live, YouTube & Facebook. He also has extensive knowledge of MarTech software, creative hardware and software, and A.I. prompting tools.  Contact: 0800 970 9751 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


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If this page has helped, perhaps there is more we can do?  For starters, why not visit our Digital Selling pages to learn our approach and compare against what you have been told or understand so far.  If you like what you read, let's have a chat about the possibilities for the future.