Sales during crisis: Take a supportive role
When I planned to write this blog I was going to talk about my recent venture into empty nesting, how this major life change has affected both my wife and me (positively and negatively) and find a clever way to apply all those lessons to work.
Well, a lot has changed for everyone around the world in the past few months. All of our lives have changed. Our nest is unexpectedly full again with two adult kids and two of us are working from home. This situation has everyone wondering what the heck to do. No one has the right answer, and I don’t think there is one. This is a situation no one has ever experienced before!
Over the past couple of weeks, I have read a lot of articles and listened to a lot of webinars (some good, some not so much). From a sales perspective, I think we can all agree now is not the time to pursue new business. There may be outliers—companies whose services, people or companies could really benefit from the pandemic—but that is still delicate because most are working hard to figure out how to operate in abnormal times.
So, what can salespeople do? We can focus on being a resource and support system for our current clients and customers. One of the good webinars (Adweek’s How to Change Anyone’s Mind: Best-selling Author Jonah Berger Shares Insights From The Catalyst) I recently listened to said, “Your best sales people are your existing customers.” Keep in contact with them as best as possible. Be genuine and authentic (this works on all occasions in my humble opinion). Keep an eye on industry trends, share relevant information, listen to webinars and podcasts relating to your industry and maybe to just learn something new.
I think one of the best things we can do is lend support to existing customers with new ideas. New circumstances prompt new challenges, requiring new solutions. It’s true that our clients know their businesses better than anyone else. But sometimes when they are too close to something, they can get caught doing the same things repeatedly, over-analyzing and over-thinking—especially in uncertain circumstances. A fresh perspective may be exactly what your customers need to guide their marketing strategy, employee interaction, social presence or how to operate from home.
While I’ve gotten tired of some of the clichés already, we are all truly in this together. If you need support, please contact us. Our entire staff is still working and ready to help in any way we can. Stay safe and stay healthy!