To say the past 11 months have been a steep learning curve for most people would be a huge understatement. That’s like me saying that my football team, Nottingham Forest, have been rather poor this season

The following are the lessons that I have personally learned when selling through a pandemic:

1. Mindset is everything

Be kind to yourself. Be as positive as possible. Take breaks. Exercise. Eat well. Get out in the fresh air. Spend quality time with your kids and partner. Phone your friends and family regularly. Learn a new hobby/interest. Read a book. Cook a new dish. Show gratitude and be thankful for what you have.

2. Sales qualification is more important than it has ever been

Budgets are not being approved or are being pulled part way through the sales process. Buyers do not want to take risks. We must qualify out of the sales process quickly by asking the right questions upfront and reduce wasted time in the sales process.

3. Add value on every touch point with a prospect

Adding value on every touch point earns trust and credibility, which builds long term relationships. Give more than ever to a prospect in the sales process.  This might include Industry insight, competitor information, surveys, articles, interaction on their social media, recommendations and referrals

4. Price is the key driver right now

Many companies have less money to spend. Their decisions are being driven by price. They want to save money. You must have a key focus on price but not let that affect the quality of what you deliver.

5. People buy your personal brand

Creating, building and selling a personal brand will bring more success than selling a company brand. Tell engaging stories, write articles, posts and blogs, give your opinions and tell people how you solve their problems. People buy from people, not companies.

6. Strong sales leadership is vital

Sales Leaders who support their team members and take into consideration the challenges faced by their sales team in the current climate will succeed. Understanding, empathy and support are vital.

7. Phone calls and video messaging are the most effective ways of contacting prospects

Email inboxes are more full than ever and many emails are either not being read at all or are being discarded quickly. Many prospects are saying they are getting very few cold calls and even fewer are receiving video messages. Phone and video are you most effective way of contacting prospects

8. Effective sales tools are a must

Sales tools that help salespeople sell better and more efficiently are worth their weight in gold. Investment in these tools is very important. Some of my most effective tools are Linkedin, Zoominfo, Lusha, Hunter, Loom and Crystal Knows