Sales Technique Pitfalls to Avoid in the Digital Age

4 Minutes

The digital era has changed everything. From the way we work to our communication channels and lifestyle, modern life is incredibly different to that of 30 years ago. But it’s not just on a personal level that the digital age has revolutionised the world. Companies too have had to adapt to the changes brought about by the advent of the internet, not least when it comes to sales. In the modern world, the way people communicate with and sell to customers has evolved greatly, with new tools and methods influencing how to sell.

It’s important that salespeople and businesses stay up to date with the latest changes to remain ahead of the competition. Some traditional sales techniques have transferred well into the digital age, such as offering solutions to help prospects rather than selling directly. But at the same time, many others have become outdated, inefficient or largely ineffective in the modern environment.

Find out the common pitfalls associated with sales in the digital age and ensure you’re employing the best sales techniques to help your business grow.


Dry Pitching

Pitching remains incredibly important, though it has adapted to reflect the digital age, with the emergence of email and video pitches designed to complement face-to-face alternatives. Dry pitches that use the same template and run through a lot of boring facts and statistics, selling directly by only explaining the benefits of a product or service, don’t sound effective but often found success in the past.

In the modern day, it’s less successful. Attention spans are shorter and if a pitch is delivered online, the audience will turn off far quicker than they would if they were sat in a room with the person presenting.

Little things can also make all the difference. A dull email subject line will lead to instant failure, while prospects can easily identify spam pitches sent out to the masses – so avoid these lazy sales techniques when pitching to potential clients.


Lack of Personalisation

When you’re dealing with prospects via email and online communication, it can be easy to forget you’re communicating with another person. Email newsletters are a useful marketing tool, but as sales techniques go, they tend to be less impactful. Part of this is down to the lack of personalisation they offer.

Spend a little extra time personalising emails, not just with the recipient’s name but possibly a short line asking about something specific to them. If it’s someone you already have a relationship with, this could be anything from their favourite sports team to where they live or work. With a prospect, it could be about a recent business or industry development.


Complicating and Delaying Communication

Communication methods have changed dramatically in the world of sales, from calls and meetings in person, to the majority now occurring online. The time and costs involved with face-to-face meetings make emails far more efficient, but there are still a few pitfalls to avoid when it comes to this type of communication.

The right balance and tone is required before, during and after a sale. Constant harassment, firing over many messages via email, social media and calling won’t work, but neither will sitting back and waiting for a response in some cases. Always follow up a reasonable time after, even if it just serves as a reminder to the recipient.

If you get a response, don’t dwell on it either. Late replies will result in the client losing interest and you losing a lead. After a sale, try to stay in touch to further the relationship, but keep it reasonable so as not to be overbearing.


Ignoring the Power of Social Media

Social media has changed how to sell online and the way brands reach customers. Its importance today can’t be understated, but many businesses fail to fully realise and take advantage of its selling power. Just having accounts isn’t enough, you need to use them effectively to increase brand awareness.

This is most likely where prospects and existing customers will find out information, so everything needs to be accurate and up to date. Regular new content can drive engagement and boost a brand’s presence. Some of the best sales techniques involve using social media to introduce new products and services, connect with customers and gather feedback.

Help you and your team realise their full potential with sales training from Pareto. Learn more here about the range of courses available to ensure you avoid these sales technique pitfalls.


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