Virtual Sales

Buying behavior changes in B2B demand virtual selling skills

/ Sales Training & Coaching / Virtual Sales

Emerging trends and shifting expectations by B2B buyers require new strategies, techniques and tools

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Client feedback and our research has revealed that the pandemic and subsequent reactions have permanently shifted buying behaviors in B2B which will make skills development in virtual selling more important.

What is Virtual Selling?

Virtual selling is defined as a combination of processes, technology and platforms, through which salespeople remotely engage with prospects and customers.

With a more than half of all knowledge workers in the US and Europe now working remotely (defined by one full day a week or more working away from a physical office), from less than a third in 2019, a hybrid workforce is the new reality.

Other nations, including India and China, will also increase the share of people working remotely. Cultural differences, such as Asian nations adopting fully-remote environments less than the U.S. and UK will have to be accounted for. However, remote adoption— whether total or partial — has changed forever how people view, research, select and buy products and services.

Emerging Sales Trends & Shifting Buyer Expectations

Sales leaders will have to respond to changes in how people buy through an understanding of:

  • Changes in IT infrastructure and products, including remote-first, work anywhere capabilities of hardware, digital products and services. This will accelerate digital business transformation plans and timetables for many entities
  • Hyper Automation – Organizations will have to demonstrate the ability to identify, vet and automate as many processes as possible, using AI, automation, low-code platforms and virtual assistants
  • Public Cloud Services – SaaS-based social and collaboration tools will be must-have requirements. expectations, driven by the adoption of digital products and services, will change how IT products are purchased and used

Adopting New Sales Strategies and Tactics

Sales leaders and professionals are used to adopting new strategies, tools and tactics to reach customers, but creating successful virtual sales is among the most challenging, including calls to:

  • Move from sales professionals as the primary channel (B2B buyers want to spend less than 20% of their time with reps) to digital first channels, and appropriately think through problem-solution-requirements-selection-validation scenarios and sequences for live person vs. digital channel interactions
  • Quickly build new sales experiences for buyers that includes effective and engaging self-learning, digital assistants and automation that empower buyers with real-time next best action scripts and programs
  • Effectively minimize complexity with effective Sales Enablement strategies and tactics that “warm up” and build confidence in digital and virtual selling
  • Strategically shift thinking for head of sales and CSOs as “leaders of sellers” to leaders of selling with integrated and harmonized marketing and sales channels.
  • Leverage data to create dynamic customer engagement models, drawing on data from all customer interactions, including customer service, technical support, customer success, product interactions, and sales and marketing to create a 360 degree view of the customer.

Virtual Selling Challenges

Sales and sales enablement leaders must prepare for, execute and follow up on virtual customer meetings and sales presentations against new dynamics that include:

  • Difficulty reading customer queues, including body language, expressions and reactions
  • Shortening attention spans
  • Reliance on either/both more junior/non-decision-making representatives and sales reps conducting virtual sales calls
  • Psychological challenges to virtual environment platforms for questions, objections, pricing conversations.

Virtual Sales Training Programs

TechCXO Virtual Sales Training prepares sales leaders and executives with practical, actionable plans that include:

Long-Term Virtual Selling Strategies

  • Assessing customers’ digital footprint
  • Selecting Interaction Methodologies
  • Use of Collaboration, AI, Messaging and Cloud-Based Platforms
  • Review of Existing Tech Stack for Relevance
  • Determining Optimal Tech Stack and tools
  • Determining the value of live and virtual interactions
  • Determine major project milestones for virtual/remote meetings
  • Stakeholder Identification and Engagement Planning

Creating Pre-call, Opportunity and Account Plans and Coaching Programs that include:

Meeting/Call Planning

  • Meeting Objectives, Agendas and Desired Outcomes
  • Meeting Cadence and Prospect/Customer Expectations
  • Call/Meeting Participant Roles
  • SME Deal Support.

Sales Enablement

  • Tailored training content design and development for Virtual Selling
  • Adaptation of existing skills to new virtual selling skills.

Enhanced Communications and Collaboration

  • Ensuring Readiness for Hybrid Work Environments
  • Effecting a Clear Communication Cadence and Recognition Programs
  • Seller Recognition Programs

Virtual Sales Training Leaders

Rick Nichols
Rick NicholsManaging Partner, Revenue Growth
Matt Oess
Matt OessPartner
Brad Milner
Brad MilnerPartner

Case Study

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