The 9 Skills Salespeople Must Have To Be Successful In A Digital-First World
In today's digital-first world, salespeople need to have a diverse skill set to succeed. While traditional sales skills like relationship-building and persuasion are still important, digital technologies have revolutionized the sales landscape. To be effective in this new era, salespeople need to adapt their skills to meet the demands of the digital marketplace.
Here are nine skills that every salesperson must have to succeed in a digital-first world.
1. Technical Expertise
Salespeople must have technical expertise to keep up with the rapidly evolving technology landscape. They need to understand the various digital tools available to them, from customer relationship management (CRM) software to marketing automation platforms.
A study by HubSpot found that 79% of salespeople who use CRM software hit their sales targets, compared to only 61% of salespeople who don't use CRM. Therefore, salespeople who can leverage these technologies will have a significant advantage in the marketplace.
2. Communication Skills
Successful salespeople have the ability to listen actively and communicate effectively so they can build rapport and long-term relationships with their customers. Strong communication skills are also the foundation of the rest of the selling skills that follow.
3. Social Selling
Social media has become a powerful tool for salespeople to connect with potential customers. Salespeople need to understand how to leverage social media platforms like LinkedIn, X (Twitter), and Facebook to build relationships with potential customers.
They need to be able to share relevant content, engage with prospects, and establish themselves as thought leaders in their industry. In fact, a study by LinkedIn found that social selling leaders are 51% more likely to achieve their sales targets than their peers who don't use social media.
click here to book seats at our upcoming online public sales training or book a private group in-person workshop.
4. Data Analysis
In a digital-first world, salespeople need to be data-driven. They need to be able to analyze sales data, customer data, and marketing data to identify trends and opportunities. They need to be able to use data to make informed decisions about where to focus their efforts and how to best serve their customers.
In fact, a study by McKinsey found that companies that use data-driven insights to inform their sales and marketing strategies can increase their marketing ROI by 15-20%.
Salespeople need to be able to tell compelling stories that resonate with their audience. In a digital-first world, where customers are inundated with marketing messages, storytelling is a powerful way to cut through the noise.
Salespeople need to be able to create narratives that connect with their audience, inspire them, and motivate them to take action. In fact, a study by Corporate Visions found that messages that tell a story are up to 22 times more memorable than facts alone.
Salespeople need to be able to collaborate effectively with other teams within their organization, such as marketing and customer service, as well as with their customer’s buying committees and user teams.
They need to understand the role that each team plays in the customer journey and work together to create a seamless experience for the customer. They need to be able to share insights and feedback with each other to continuously improve the customer experience.
In a rapidly changing digital landscape, salespeople need to be adaptable. They need to be able to quickly learn new technologies and adapt their sales strategies to meet changing customer needs. They need to be able to pivot their approach when something isn't working and experiment with new ideas. They need to be able to embrace change and be comfortable with uncertainty.
One may argue that empathy is more of an attitude than a skill. Nonetheless, salespeople need to be able to empathize with their customers. They need to understand their customers' pain points, challenges, and goals in a way they authentically want to help solve them. They need to be able to put themselves in their customers' shoes and build relationships based on trust and understanding.
In fact, a study by Salesforce found that 82% of customers say the experience a company provides is just as important as its products or services.
Successful salespeople are also skilled in dealmaking. The skills of a dealmaker involves the ability to
- identify opportunities,
- set clear objectives,
- navigate complex sales cycles,
- create win-win value-for-value deals and
- the ability to drive the strategic plan required to move the deal forward and ultimately close it.
Closing a deal refers to the final step in the process of convincing a prospect to make a decision, sign a contract and commit to the sale.
To improve your sales and dealmaking skills and those of your salespeople, click here
to book seats at our upcoming online public sales training or book a private group in-person workshop.
Sharing is caring. Remember to share this article with your social media community using the icons below 😊