March 2, 2021

Zoom Calls or Sales Calls

By Paul Daniels

Over the last few months, I have been on several Zoom sales calls, both from the selling side and as the customer being sold. I believe video meetings are more effective when there are more than two people on the call. Recently, I have been on several that were larger meetings having several participants on each side. The most effective seems to be when both groups are together in the same room. This creates an atmosphere similar to meeting across a conference table with your customer. It enables each group to talk amongst themselves and see who has points to be made next. This seems more natural than having eight small, framed pictures of each individual on the screen.

As we get closer to a post-COVID-19 world, I believe this type of meeting will replace a lot of travel. I spent 39 years flying around the country holding these types of sales presentations to larger groups in conference rooms and as we get better at meeting like this it will make us a lot more efficient, not wasting time sitting in airports and on planes.

It is more important with this type of selling to make sure that you have planned the sales call. A good example was a meeting I was involved in recently that ended up with our side (the initiator of the meeting) holding up a piece of paper to our camera with a cell phone number on it for them to call because we could not get the sound to work. You may think this was quick thinking and a good ice breaker as our good-natured customer did, but it could have been avoided.

Zoom sales calls need to be planned like any sales call. If you are in charge of the call you might want to start by adding an emergency number for them to call if there is a problem. I have found in most companies nobody seems to know the extension number of the conference room the meeting is being held in. You should give them a cell number of someone in the room. You may want to request they send a number back to you to call with the invitation acceptance.

Start the meeting with introductions, and make sure you save time at the end to get your customers general feedback of how the meeting went. Zoom is a great tool as are other programs. You want to be careful if you are using the free version of most of these programs. They will end your call abruptly if their networks get busy (or on Zoom when you reach the 40-minute mark) and it goes blank. In our case this happened twice in one meeting. We thought we were using the commercial version but did not log in correctly as the host.

I got my second vaccine yesterday and want to thank all the medical people that are putting in long hours. A shout out to my baby sister who is a nurse and is giving up her Saturdays to vaccinate the masses at Gillette Stadium in Massachusetts. Last Saturday she vaccinated 100 people. Go Mary!!