With the global health pandemic, re-defining the new work culture, setting up a remote sales team, has become the need of the hour. As firms across the globe are constantly improvising on their strategies to build and manage a sales team remotely, there are a lot of unanswered questions in the air.
This is where we come in: In this blog we will bridge the gap between your apprehensions of building a successful remote sales team and a detailed guide on actually putting this plan in action.
By the time you finish reading this piece, you will have answers to your doubts regarding not just the setting up of a remote sales team but also the right skills to look for while recruiting one. You will also learn about the right set of remote working tools and resources that will be needed through the process of managing a rock solid remote sales team.
Read along, you are in for a knowledge tour with us!
Laying the foundation of your sales team
Most of the successful startups are founded by engineers, product managers and folks who possess in-depth technical knowledge. But their tech skills do not always translate to being a success in the sales part of the business.
That’s where the problem arises, since they are the ones who will lay the foundation of the sales that the organization will carry forward. If this techie is you, then keep reading, the framework below should make a good starting point to building your remote sales team.
- Understand the concept of sales. What will be counted as a successful sale?
- Learn the art of selling before you hire someone to take up that role .
- Hire folks who want to climb the corporate ladder.
- Your role as a sales head never ends. Always work with your team to keep abreast of the latest.
- Know the difference between a lead and prospects. This will save you time!
Hire slow, but only the best
The sales world can be broadly categorized into three kind of people:
- The Mavericks: These folks intuitively know how to work their way through a sales process. By hook or by crook, they know how to seal the deal!
- The Journeymen: This set of salespeople lack creativity of the mavericks but their never-say-die attitude makes them an indispensable part of the sales world.
If you have a sales process and a product in place, they will close the deal.
- The Superstars: They are a fair combination of the above two. They make good sales team leads.
While hiring, it would be a good idea to start building the team with Mavericks. Once the processes and goals are established then hire the journeymen. And towards the end, hire superstars, who know how to lead both of them.
A mixture of these three will make a killer sales team.
Managing your sales team remotely
The on-going health pandemic, COVID-19 has thrown business into uncharted waters. With new rules and directions each day from the government, most companies have accepted remote working as the new normal. While every department of an organization is differently impacted, it is the sales teams that are facing extreme pressure to keep the money flowing into the firm.
In times like these it is not uncommon for a team to go haywire. You will need to take extra measures to keep your team together and work as a unit.
Afterall, it is the sales team, which is the backbone of any business!
The below listed steps can serve as a fair starting point to hold the reins of your team together.
- Make sure your entire team is well aware of their individual goals and the goals of the entire team alone. Re-iterate if necessary!
- Asynchronous modes of communications such as recorded videos work well with remote teams, unless a task needs immediate attention.
- Make sure your team is in the habit of discussing problems and apprehensions the moment they face them. That way you will achieve more in less time.
- Build a bond with your team that goes beyond work too. Make time for these agendaless meetings too!
- Make use of rapidly advancing technology to always be connected to your team, track productivity and iron out bottlenecks . More on this in the sections below!
Make sure your team knows its goals!
It is clear and validated, setting clear expectations help employees feel engaged and in most cases they strive harder to meet expectations.
The benchmark that you set for your sales team should include:
- Specific sales objectives that have to be met;
- Well-defined procedures; and
- Goals which when achieved will be rated as exceptional performance.
You must always be available to hop on to a call with your remote team individually as well as a team to make sure they not only know their individual goals but also the goals of the team.
Using tools to manage a remote sales team
Technology has seen an exponential adoption in recent times. Firms are now using technology to generate and nurture sales leads via videos, organize events, sign sale deals and much more.
Since there are tons of remote tools and platforms in the market, before adopting any resource, you need to define a goal that you intend to reach.
The key to selecting a perfect resource is: Maximize productivity in the shortest way possible!
For example, the goal of your team is to make sure that all prospective leads are attended to via calls. How will you make sure this is done?
Using a cloud-based call management tool like MyOperator, you can ensure all your business calls are attended by your sales team, while each of them are working remotely. This cloud-based call management system also provides you an option to keep a check on the team’s performance by including real-time data for the calls routed.
Another efficient trend that most firms are adopting nowadays for communication are videos. While there are conferencing tools that allow you to carry out a face-face conversation, face and screen recordings makes the entire process not just smoother, but also gives the person the freedom to access the recording at their own time.
This video explains how your sales team can use videos as an efficient communication tool:
Trust me, this will not just save time but increase productivity of the team by leaps and bounds.
Asynchronous communication is the in-thing now!
If you want to walk down the path of success, then gift your sales team the superpower of communicating via videos!
With remote working becoming the new corporate culture, too much communication and the expectation to respond instantly has not just led to digital overload but also fatigue.
Adopting Asynchronous communication gives your team the time, space and control to draft meaningful conversations and make sure they get across to the person on the other side in the clearest way possible.
This way neither your sales team nor your clients are waiting for an instant response. Send the videos across and the rest happens organically (However, please do follow-up with a call, if the response time is overdue!)
How to train your remote sales team?
Did you know that if an employee does not feel one with the company, the organization is bound to lose money. A study conducted on 1500+ employees reported that $11 billion dollars are drained annually, the reason being – employee turnover.
With the pressure that a sales team undergoes to bring in revenue, especially while remote working, it is a no-brainer that these numbers will only increase with time.
Wondering how to avoid this situation?
Offer your sales team training opportunities and invest in their career development. This step is bound to strengthen the bond between your team and your organization.
The trend of organizations using videos to train their employees has risen exponentially. There are various kinds of training videos that your team would need:
- On-boarding videos
- Demo videos
- Introduction to new products/services
- Quarterly development programs
This list can be never ending, like they say – more the merrier!
The best part is that these videos can easily be created in-house. Alternatively, there are tons of freelancers and agencies too who can create these videos for you.
We can not emphasize the importance and effectiveness of using videos to train your remote sales team. It saves time and time is money!!
Webinars and live interactive sessions. How important are they?
They are also a great way to reach out to a large number of potential customers, initiate sales deals and provide value to the customer.
For example, WebinarJam is a popular platform that has been recently revamped in February 2020. They claim themselves to be device-agnostic and can reach upto 5000 people in a single presentation.
Now that is something that would get a sales person excited!
It’s time to hit the ground
Given the pandemic and its resultant effects, remote work is not just the present but also the future of corporate culture. The earlier you start working towards building a sales team, the stronger your business will become. The right time is now!
Empower your sales team to sell more serve more
Join 7000+ brands using MyOperator to equip their remote teams for managing sales calls and close deals while working remotely or on-the-go.
About the Author: An avid marketer, Suchita has been helping B2B brands with content marketing for over three years. She loves penning down complex concepts in a way that doesn’t make readers scratch their heads.