11 Ways the World of Sales Has Changed Over Time: Part Two
We’re back with part two of our “World of Sales” blog series. This time around, learn about video, multi-channel sales, and more, and how each of these has played its part in changing the world of sales.
Sales reps wear a lot of hats
With all of the changes in technology, it’s no surprise that sales reps have had to step up their game and grow in their respective positions. A cold-caller is no longer simply someone who has a general knowledge of their product. Instead, they’re a strong resource that’s capable of answering a majority of questions prospects might ask. A veteran sales rep now must be able to work with marketing and their initiatives, utilize email marketing, LinkedIn, and be able to show and educate rather than directly sell.
Video increases accessibility
We’re talking Skype, GoToMeeting, and all the rest of the major video platforms. Sales reps and prospects now have ample opportunities to meet and develop a relationship without actually having to set up a physical meeting. Now, sales reps are able to set up a Skype call to show off a product demo, or even just to have a personalized interaction. In the past, the best sales reps could do was record a video or set up a call. It’s safe to say that video is one of the newest resources available to sales reps, and certainly one that shouldn’t be ignored.
Sales and marketing comingle
The traditional lines that have existed between the departments of sales and marketing for decades are starting to blur. Now more than ever before, sales and marketing are working side-by-side to go after the same goals. Marketers are now creating content (white papers, eBooks, blog posts, landing pages, videos, etc.) specifically for the use of sales reps so that they can educate prospects and persuade them to make a purchase. Similarly, marketers are relying on sales reps for their insight on what consumers are asking about and the resources that they demand the most.
Selling is multi-channel
The days of face-to-face sales are becoming a rarity. While trade shows and print media are still heavily relied-upon, they’re not at the heart of a sales and marketing strategy. Instead, they’re a small piece of a multi-channel strategy. Sales and marketing departments are no longer focusing in on one major tactic. Online marketing (SEO, PPC, Social Media) are all a major facet of a sales and marketing strategy, along with trade shows, email marketing, traditional print media, video development, and more.
Word-of-mouth, or rating and review sites
Admit it, in the past 60 days you’ve looked at product or business reviews and weighed them heavily before making a purchasing or investment decision. This hasn’t always been the case. Word-of-mouth was never so easily accessible and so demanded as it is today. There’s no doubt that rating and review websites such as Yelp, G2 Crowd, Facebook, and Google reviews are influencing buyers one way or the other. For sales reps, this means that they need to take advantage of good reviews, leverage brand ambassadors and people that are willing to share their positive experiences, and handle negative reviews before they fester.
Cold calling lost some value
Cold calling has its time and place, but certainly not to the extent of what it used to. With the change from inbound to outbound marketing, consumers are, in many cases, expected to make the first move, or in other words, become a qualified lead. Since these prospects are often seeking a solution to a problem, and are more educated and invested, they’re more preferred in sales, and the changes that have taken place in technology and consumer motivations have made them much more commonplace.