3 Critical Sales Skills to Develop This Year

BY Rachel Cagle
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When was the last time you made a list of sales skills to develop? 2020 was such a roller coaster that you probably spent most of your time trying to meet your sales quotas. You were one of the lucky sales reps if you got time to breathe and focus on improving your skill set. But now that the worst of the pandemic (knock on wood) is behind us, your manager and prospects will be expecting more from you. According to Jason Richman, writing for HubSpot, there are three sales skills to develop this year:

  1. Video Prospecting
  2. Coachability
  3. Handling Objections

Sales Skills to Develop

Video Prospecting

A newer form of reaching out to prospects made popular during the pandemic is video prospecting. This doesn’t mean scheduling a time to video chat with the prospect. “Simply put, video prospecting is customized outreach in a short, two-​minute max, video format,” says Richman. “Unlike a phone call or an email, the prospect gets to connect with you on a more personal level without the time commitment that comes with scheduling a Zoom call.”

Video prospecting is popular among prospective customers for a few reasons. The first is that videos tend to be easier to absorb than text. Second, as previously mentioned, video calls also seem more personal than phone calls or emails since the prospect will actually get to see your face as you introduce yourself and your product or service. The third reason is that there’s no need for the prospect to take notes on what you’re saying; they can just watch the video again. All of these factors combined give video prospecting efforts more of a chance of being responded to than traditional methods of outreach. So, it’s obviously an important sales skill to develop nowadays.

The Ability to be Coached

Richman says that coachability is on of the most important sales skills to develop. No matter how long you’ve been in your sales career, there are always new things to learn and ways to grow. If you are stuck in your ways, you won’t be successful for long. And your manager will quickly get tired of you ignoring their feedback. Asking for coaching from higher ups in your company is the best way to develop sales skills. Using coaching solutions such as CoachFeed can make the process even easier.

Handling Objections

You will never be able to avoid objections from prospects. If handling objections isn’t a sales skill you possess, get ready for your sales processes to get delayed or even stop. According to a previous SalesFuel post, highlighting HubSpot data, the three most common objections sales reps will run into are:

  • When prospects won’t answer your calls
  • Being asked to email information to the prospect
  • The dreaded price objection

Overcoming objections is a skill that most reps get better at over time because they’ve come to understand all the solutions their business provides and have seen them work in creative ways,” says Richman. “When you can position these solutions to eliminate a pain point for the prospect, you start to develop trust with your prospect, which is a key factor that influences whether they’ll buy or not.”