Making sales in the post COVID-19 landscape will depend on demonstrating care for your existing customers; supporting existing products better; and seeking new customers online.
COVID-19 has plunged economies into disarray; conventional markets are now permanently altered by insolvencies, limited liquidity and bankruptcy, while whole sectors have moved online. Writing for Raconteur, Nick Easen explains how to seize this extreme buyers’ market and succeed.
INVEST IN EXISTING RELATIONSHIPS
Old-style customer care will be king in the post-COVID landscape. “This is not a market for selling; it’s a market to be close to your customers,” says Andrew Hough, chief executive of the Association of Professional Sales (APS).
Make clients feel reassured of your commitment to them. Connect with them on a personal level and sympathise with their struggles to manage the universal challenges of COVID, while also acknowledging and addressing their own unique concerns. “Solidarity and empathy today will build relationships tomorrow.” Proving that you understand and care about your customers’ business needs builds loyalty for the future.
SHIFT SALES STRATEGY
Solving the pain COVID has caused must be your guiding principle for the foreseeable future. At a time when global recession makes investing in costly new products unappealing, it’s not your company’s product or service that should change, but the way you present it. Shift your sales strategy to one centered on providing solutions to your customers’ most pressing problems, and work hard to combat the economic and logistical constraints of lockdown and its aftermath.
Focus on your digital content. COVID-19 nullified face-to-face sales techniques and turbocharged the shift to digital. Companies providing the online services people need have flourished, while those dragging their feet have been left for dust.
Strengthen your existing business relationships and add value to your existing product range by ramping up support through webinars, LinkedIn how-to’s and Zoom webcasts. Gain clients’ trust by quickly resolving problems and suggesting workarounds online. Web content creation adds value to your business and reinforces your commitment to your clients.
IDENTIFY NEW GROWTH AREAS
Hook new clients by offering free services, entering new markets, and using digital technology to go direct to consumers: “Agile sales teams who move resources rapidly to sectors that spend will win,” says Richard Mathias, senior technology architect at LiveArea.
The post COVID-19 business landscape calls on firms to shift sales strategy. Focus on strengthening existing customer relationships through personalised support, work to attract new clients through COVID-specific sales messaging, and harness the potential of digital technology to access new markets where there is growth potential.