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Dogs, Chatbots and Video Calls: The Changing World of Sales

How we sell has changed over the past three years, and it seems that the days of a hard sell with a “Buy. Buy” mentality may be gone forever. Salespeople now understand that buyers have become adept at researching products before calling a salesperson. To improve sales, sales staff may focus on repeatable techniques and omnichannel marketing to reach leads. Salespeople can also customise their approach to the buyer’s preferred communication channel and the best callback time.

For salespeople communicating with leads and prospects has never been more accessible—but that makes it more complicated. Juggling phone calls, emails, chatbots, SMS messaging, social media, video conferencing, and other forms of communication can be difficult. However, when the right technologies are in place, this can be an advantage rather than a disadvantage.

As a member of The Business Growth Network, Bruno Ulmkalns, a sales and marketing entrepreneur, shares his knowledge and experience about the sales communication loop and how sales reps have become more “relatable.” Bruno is the founder of Made You Look Media Ltd and has more than seven years of experience in the sales industry, from telesales to business relationship management. 

Bruno says, “Technology has enabled salespeople to make more touch points with their prospects. We can now easily send voice notes via WhatsApp, make video calls via FaceTime, and share a relevant article or post with a prospect, at the click of a button, on LinkedIn or Instagram. The benefit of all this is that we can communicate more with a prospect without having to worry about the deal depending on any one, sole interaction. For example, in the past, it wasn’t uncommon to make a four-hour drive to meet someone, knowing that if they didn’t buy from us during that meeting, we’d probably never get the chance to talk to them again and the deal would likely not come to fruition. Technology has changed the way we communicate with people, making everything easier and each interaction less pressured.”

Salespeople now identify how potential customers like to be spoken to build a trusting relationship with them. Relationship selling enables you to form a deep, long-term relationship with your prospect. This way, you stay in touch with them and give them personalised recommendations that help improve the bottom line of their business.

For many years salespeople were perceived as aggressive, intimidating, dishonest, and motivated primarily by the desire to make a sale at any cost. The last three years have changed those stereotypes forever. People buy from people like them, and casual clothing through lockdown seems here to stay. It has become more acceptable not to dress too extravagantly. Overdressing can distract customers and make them think you are more concerned with impressing them than listening to their needs. The key is to show your customers that you are authentic, can relate to them and value their time—not that you are not just out to impress and make the sale. 

Bruno says, “Social change has made people more comfortable being relatable. Within reason, since the change, it’s no longer seen as unprofessional to hear dogs barking in the back of zoom calls and people are now happy to spend thousands of pounds with someone in jeans and a t-shirt. This was once seen as unprofessional but nowadays, people accept that that’s part of life; we’re all human. I’ve seen million-dollar company execs live-streaming product releases from home. Think about it, when would you have ever seen inside someone’s home, in a working capacity, five years ago?”

Selling is a process that requires constant experimentation and fine-tuning. You’ll face rejection, but as you stay ahead of the curve by understanding how people make decisions, you’ll be better positioned to get your message across.


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