“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…”. This is how Charles Dickens opened A Tale of Two Cities, in 1859. With the current economic downturn, this seems more relevant than ever. Businesses newly reopening their doors, wondering what their futures hold. Many of us in sales are asking ourselves what we should be doing, and should we even be trying to sell?
This is so understandable. I hear the anxiety when I talk with my clients. I feel the anxiety, too.
But…we must continue selling because professional sales people drive the economy. Can you recall a more relevant time when the economy needed a better boost than right now? I can’t. This is your job, this is your career, this is your profession.
Customers follow by example. Many of our customers are uncertain, worried, unsure what their future holds and whether they are in a position to buy our products / services / solutions right now. However, they would surely benefit from – and appreciate – a positive conversation with a positive-minded, empathetic, value-delivering human being: you.
Uncertainty provides us the opportunity to have a positive and profound impact on our prospective and existing customers.
Key actions / notes for the day (or week, or month, or…forever…)
- This is not the time to stop calling and booking meetings. Show sensitivity and be empathetic. Let’s face it, you are, anyway. Let them know you care, that you are there for them, and that you’ll also be there when this all settles down. Be sensitive. Be focussed on others. Be you.
- Your messaging needs to be sharper than ever. Get your favourite sharpening tool out and re-craft your message (sales story) so you lead with how you help / bring value / solve issues / achieve results.
- We are entering uncharted territory. As we progress on this challenging journey, we must adapt. Perhaps Charles Darwin put it best:
“…the species that survives is the one that is able to adapt to and to adjust best to the changing environment…”.
Our clients are being faced with new, painful challenges and situations. If we do not adapt and contextualise our strategy and words, we will lose.
Four things you can do today
When thinking about sharpening and contextualising our strategies and words, here are a few ideas that you may like to introduce to your messaging when pursuing prospective clients. I know that some of my clients have already found these useful:
- Let them know that you care, and that you understand their world has become barely recognisable since March 2020.
- You recognise that this may not be the best time for a serious business conversation, or even an investment decision, but you wanted them to know that they are on your radar because they look so much like [your ideal client profile: position type or company type, etc.] who have already received so much value from you.
- Reassure them that you will be there when all the dust settles, and you welcome the opportunity to have a conversation to learn more and show how you help other [your ideal client profile: position type or company type, etc.]
- Insert a few compelling reasons by sharing some (1 or 2) specific issues you / your solution address, or outcomes you create for clients, by saying something like:
For example, “ I understand that things are a bit chaotic right now, but when you’re ready, let’s meet so you can see how we’re solving PROBLEM A and driving RESULT B for [position type or company type]”.
Now finish strong by wishing them well as they navigate the chaos and that you look forward to a conversation when the timing is right.
WhiteBridge is a HubSpot Authorised Partner growth agency that works with ambitious business owners, & sales and marketing teams to scale quick, effective and sustainable growth.
Most of our clients are in technology, SaaS &/or software. However, we also have some great clients that would describe themselves as creatives &/or professional business service companies.
Want to discuss how your business can be selling more effectively, winning more clients, and increasing your competitive advantage, even during an economic downturn?
Find a date and time that suits you best, and let’s see what we might achieve together…