We all know that digital selling is now part of today’s sales process. Whether it’s a first-time meeting with a prospect or a check-in chat with a client, virtual meetings are common aspects of modern sales. This is a fairly new, and fast, development, and sellers may still struggle to to optimize the virtual customer experience. Thankfully, professionals are happy to share their own helpful sales tips for ensuring each online meeting is a success. Here are two simple suggestions to consider:
- Optimize your camera angle.
- Be mindful of your background.
Helpful sales tips for making virtual meetings even better
Writing for Selling Power, Shelley Goldon asks sellers a single question that inspires reflection in regard to digital sales: “What do you want your virtual presence to say about you?” This simple question can kickstart thinking about how you want to improve your online meetings. Just like when you’re meeting in person, how you present yourself impacts both engagement and your sales credibility. By being thoughtful about how you come across virtually, you can improve how others perceive you and your offering.
Your camera angle can increase trust
It may sound trivial, but the simple angle of the camera you use has an impact on viewers. This specific helpful sales tip is rooted in research: The Journal of Applied Instructional Design reports that being at eye-level with viewers boosts your trustworthiness. And being at eye-level also benefits you. Your upper body will be visible, allowing for you to engage in positive body language, which is especially important when you can’t meet with someone in person. Golden recommends making sure you are seated about arms-length from the camera and that you’re allowing for some visible space above your head. This should put you in the perfect position to comfortably engage with the other person.
And don’t let being at eye-level go to waste: Eye contact, even through a webcam, is still a must-do. As Julie Hansen, a sales trainer and on-camera expert, explains, “You are aiming to make eye contact at least 80% of the time… As you move through your video sales call, identify moments that smoothly allow for you to break eye contact.”
Be mindful of your background
Another helpful sales tip for improving your virtual presence is to pay extra attention to how your background may be perceived. While you don’t have to have a perfectly professional office backdrop, it should at least be well-lit, clean and not too busy. Golden’s tips go a bit deeper; she suggests small tweaks that can improve what viewers see behind you:
- If you have bookshelves, keep books stacked vertically and don’t clutter the shelves with too many objects (including picture frames, which can cause major glare).
- Consider adding a little bit of interest with a piece of art or a plant.
- Whatever the background, wear contrasting colored clothing to stand out. Solid colors are the best choice.
And while using a background blur effect is acceptable, she warns against using a virtual background which she believes can hurt your perceived credibility and professionalism.
While these are only two of the many suggestions Goldon shares, each one is actionable and easy to undertake. And you’ll find that they can have a big impact on how you come across on-screen. “By intentionally taking control of how you show up online, you give yourself, your team, your customers, and everyone you communicate with the best possible opportunity for more successful online engagements – creating a win-win on both sides of the screen,” she writes.
And for even more helpful sales tips for mastering online meetings, check out SalesFuel’s collection of advice.
Photo by Mizuno K