Coronavirus has changed everything — from how people work and learn, to how they shop, dine, exercise, and more. The transformation to a virtual world that many thought could take years or decades to achieve happened in a matter of weeks. Experts agree that it’s not likely things will go back to how they were when the pandemic is over.
Millennials and younger people have always been comfortable doing everything in the virtual world they were born into. Their elders, not so much. Every step they’ve taken into the digital future has involved translating a deeply-ingrained real-world habit or behavior into a brand-new virtual one.
In certain circumstances, the transition has been relatively easy. After all, it doesn’t take much encouragement to get someone to watch Netflix, connect with family via video chat, or find long-lost friends on Facebook.
For other things, it’s been almost impossible for many to make the change. This is especially true when it comes to making large purchases or handling business-to-business (B2B) transactions. Many haven’t felt comfortable sharing personal or business information, finalizing legal agreements, signing contracts, or transferring money online. They don’t feel secure making final buying decisions based exclusively on online information or virtual chats. It usually takes face-to-face meetings with sales reps to build trust and close deals.
How many times have you heard: “Do you have a brochure? I like holding a piece of paper or being able to file something away when I buy something. It feels more real.”
The same is true for many businesses. Owners have not felt comfortable — or found it necessary — to translate their in-person businesses into virtual operations. They always imagined doing what they do face-to-face, not device-to-device.
The last few months have changed all that. There’s nothing like a crisis, such as the Coronavirus pandemic, to break through barriers. When old-school behaviors are no longer possible, even those most resistant to change are forced into a brave new world. Most actually like it when they finally get there.
This has been true for companies that can’t conduct business in the same old ways AND consumers who’ve been forced into new buying and customer service experiences.
- Doctors have had to figure out how to deliver their services online and their patients have become comfortable with it.
- Accountants, lawyers, bankers, and financial advisors have figured out how to provide advice virtually and clients have grown comfortable sharing documents and other personal information digitally.
- All types of business-to-business operations have had to rapidly move from just building awareness and gathering leads digitally to moving their entire sales and closing processes online.
Despite how clumsy the rapid process of going exclusively digital has been over the last few months, it’s unlikely that consumers or businesses will ever go back to the old ways.
That means there’s a whole lot more rapid digital transformation and refinement ahead, which opens businesses up to very significant risk. During times like these, companies either evolve and succeed or stumble and fail.
How can you ensure that your business will be one of the virtual winners when the COVID-19 pandemic is over and we move into a brave new world of seamless virtual marketing, sales, and customer service?
Don’t make the common mistake many operations make during times like these, losing discipline and rigor when speeding the development of something new.
Sales enablement provides the structure required to get things right during periods of extreme change. This was true during other dynamic periods like the tech bubble, post-911, and during the Great Recession. Companies that took a fast but disciplined approach to meet new marketing and sales challenges through sales enablement made it. Others did not.
Sales enablement allows you to create new marketing, sales, and customer service processes and procedures in a highly collaborative way. This is important during times like these when bringing in a broad array of perspectives is key to building something that will appeal to as many potential buyers as possible.
Sales enablement also makes it easy to train on new ways of doing business. This will encourage full adoption by everyone in your organization. You’re setting yourself up for failure if your sales, back-end operations, and customer service teams aren’t ready to respond to buyers coming through different channels and deliver on promises made in new marketing campaigns.
Perhaps most importantly, a solid sales enablement system, like the one offered by Mobile Locker, gives you the real-time data needed to optimize opportunities, course correct, and fix mistakes quickly as you change your marketing and sales model. You’ll be able to clearly see what’s moving customers forward and holding them back — or driving them away — as they move through a virtual relationship with your business.
So are you ready to sell in the brave new virtual post-COVID-19 world ahead? Contact a helpful Mobile Locker rep to find out how you can start preparing now so you get a jump on the competition. Tomorrow isn’t as far away as it used to be.