As the years go by, so does the world around us. Businesses are ceaselessly adapting to the change of times to remain relevant and financially successful. 2020 was a wild year for many companies, with many of them having to restructure their sales and adjust to the new reality that was enforced by them due to the pandemic. There was so much that needed to be addressed last year that some companies were not even sure what to do.
However, 2021 has now taken over, and most companies are operating more steadily after having struggled to ensure they could stay on top of everything. Throughout this whole ordeal, sales activity was still running actively. The pandemic has caused plenty of companies to reconsider their strategies and adapt to a whole new market. At this point, sales experts are going to be far more resourceful with the way they build their tactics, thanks to the lessons they learned in the previous year.
Of course, to ensure a company can remain on top of everything, they need to remain up-to-date with the latest trends and tactics in 2021. Knowing what the latest trends and tactics are will help you comprehend what to watch out for and what to implement to benefit your company. For this post, we’ll be going over some of the top sales prospecting trends and tactics of 2021.
Creativity has become a driving force behind plenty of sales strategies as of late. It has been so effective for many companies that it has become one of the most necessary parts of sales prospecting for 2021. Since the pandemic managed to cause an economic downturn, sales reps have to work even harder than before to ensure their company manages to continue generating a steady stream of revenue.
For cases like thee, businesses need to be careful with the steps they take. With the market getting more complicated, competitions lead to innovation, and it's only a matter of time before one of those competitors managed to create a concept that has them raking in cash. Regardless of how many days you spend working, if you are using the same strategies as everyone else, the less likely you are to gain the attention of your target audience. Plus, your competition will outpace you and leave you in the dust.
The only way for you to succeed with your sales strategy is by working smarter. Sales teams need to take a moment to consider what other competitors are doing and use a different method than the ones they are using. Even introducing a small difference in your sales strategy can help with having your brand stand out from the rest of the competition.
Sales reps cannot continue relying on the same tips and strategies all the time. It will hurt the company over time if they don’t make adjustments and changes when needed. Prospects are already receiving a similar outreach from your competition frequently. Hence, you need to make some changes to your sales strategy and make sure it represents what your company is trying to accomplish.
However, there needs to be a balance in your creative strategy. Take time to ensure that your plan is respectful and has proof of the claims it is making, such as studies or research. It's not a good idea to merely introduce a whole new concept and expect it to explode in popularity. You need to understand your target audience and devise something that is appealing to them.
Social selling has become an increasingly popular topic as of late, with some previous methods falling out of favor. If a business wants to boost their sales, they need to shift into being less intrusive. The concept behind social selling has been around for a while now, but as of late, it has been picked up by sales representatives more so than usual. 2021 has become a year where social selling needs to be practiced by many companies that want to remain competitive.
Take the time to plant the seeds in a prospective customer's mind and nurture it until the customer decides to make the purchase. Make your brand remain in their heads by always connecting with them by answering any questions and showing them how knowledgeable you are in your industry. When they are considering the purchase of a product, the first thing they will think about is your company.
Most companies these days usually have a few company profiles for social media platforms. If your company already has some social media profiles, then you are more likely already using social selling in some manner. However, if you are not being proactive in these channels and using the best strategies, it can damage your sales. Competitors are jumping on this social selling method at increasing numbers, so if you are not attempting this method as well, they will reap the rewards instead.
Technology has managed to advance so far over the years that they have become integral in our everyday lives. Intelligent tools such as Artificial Intelligence have become popular among sales teams in recent years. According to the Gartner Future of Sales report for 2025, 60% of companies are switching to data-driven selling in the coming five years. The reason for this is due to buyers seeking out more personal and relevant experience.
Implementing the use of AI can assist sales teams with gathering and interpreting data about their prospects buying trends. Doing so will offer them a way to launch successful sales campaigns. AI tools are also capable of providing suggestions to customers based on any of their recent purchases. On the business side, it also helps with forecasting buying and selling trends.
Companies were using videos quite a bunch for their sales prospecting in 2020. For 2021, this is one trend that is going to remain and continue growing in popularity. Long texts can be boring and wasteful for most people. Customers these days want to get to the point and know what the product or service is all about. The video format has provided a way for companies to provide these answers in a short but sweet way, all done in a visually appealing way.
The video format is very flexible in its application, especially when it comes to a company's sales process. Video outreach has proven to be even more effective than other methods, especially since it can be applied for almost any platform and is not constrained to only emails.
Tracking these videos offers a business insight on how much of that content a prospective customer watched and what parts they decide to skip over. That insight can help with personalizing it accordingly and convert leads quicker. Plus, it makes the follow-up stand out, making things much smoother in the sales process.
Over the years, all sorts of sales trends have come and gone. Automation is one of the few that has managed to continue sticking around. Automation is becoming a necessary aspect for an organization's sales strategy these days, especially if they want to maintain a competitive advantage in their respective industries. Statistics show that 41% of businesses are heavily investing in automation in response to the changing business climate that occurred because of the pandemic.
It may seem surprising that automation is still a trending topic on hand, but there are still companies out there that have not entirely accepted the use of automation. These companies are usually concerned that automation is taking away personalization and creativity as they scale the process. However, as businesses become more competitive and market trends change constantly, these automation tools are going to become a necessity to remain competitive.
In reality, automation is an excellent way to optimize the prospecting process and ensure that a company has more time to come up with creative solutions to sell a product and personalize the experience. If anything, businesses should be more concerned about the type of automation solutions they need to choose when it comes to this trend.
Customers don’t enjoy someone aggressively attempting to shove a load of information in their face and make them buy a product. Traditional means of selling are declining and can instead cause adverse reactions from the prospect. Prospective customers these days are done with dealing with a pushy sales rep and will shut them down before they can even set foot in the door.
The best possible method a salesperson can gain customer's attention and nudge them towards a buying decision is by convincing them to satisfy their needs instead. An excellent sales team needs to be formed and add value to every conversation they have with a prospect. These conversations need to be sincere and not aggravate the individual into making them feel as if they are being pushed into making a purchase.
Take the time to identify the needs of the prospect and tailor an offer that will lead them down a path of purchasing your product. The offer needs to be enticing to them by showcasing the benefits they receive from using it. Providing value will lower the sales friction and increase the possibility of more sales.
With the tides changing in the business world, salespeople need to make sure they can pick up any new skills or improve their current ones. Sales teams need to improve their skill set to provide what technology is incapable of handling. Companies need to provide their sales team with training consistently to ensure their skills remain sharp and ready for changes in the industry.
That is especially true with the ways things have changed in the past year. Some of your sales team may be lacking in certain areas that are required for the year 2021. With technology becoming heavily prevalent, any salesperson on your team lacking training in this will fall behind and grind your operations to a slow crawl. Some of them may even need help with improving their communication skills or improving their current sales skills. Taking the time to train your sales team will enhance your overall sales strategy.
The digital landscape has managed to change the ways we manage almost every aspect of our businesses. Customers these days are mostly found digitally, which means every department in your company needs to get involved. Each of these departments plays a crucial role in ensuring the company continues to grow and remain successfully competitive. However, if they are not communicating amongst each other, it could cause some issues down the road.
The sales and marketing teams need to work together to provide value to the prospects and increase the conversion rate. After all, marketers are well aware of the prospective customer's needs and always remain up to date with the latest trends. Factors like these are what make the marketing team know everything they need to know about a client. Having both of these teams consult with each other can help them come up with a game plan before they reach out to the next customer.
One of the more significant shifts in 2020 was the need to switch to online for most businesses. With the amount of information floating around on the internet, a sizable amount of the buyer’s journey is left up in the air. Companies are incapable of predicting when these buyers manage to become a part of the funnel since it can occur at any stage. That 60% of the purchasing process is finished before the buyer even reaches a sales rep. Plus, customers have gained access to a greater amount of channels.
A good way for a sales team to create a personalized customer experience is by having the customers sign up for something on your site, such as a newsletter. Getting their personal information will allow you to create a better personal experience for them. Research shows that 66% of customers are alright with handing over their information online to receive a more personalized experience.
Everything we have presented here is the top trends and tactics that every sales representative needs to be aware of in 2021. If your team does not remain on top of these trends, competitors will take the lead and reap the rewards instead. Consider checking out Intro.so to improve your sales team chances at closing deals.