Talkdesk Opentalk

Speaker: Emmanuelle Skala, VP Sales, Influitive

This blog post is an Opentalk 2016 panel recap.
For more Opentalk content, check out Opentalk Full Coverage.

“Communication has been lost”

Drake said it best when he said, “You used to call me on my cell phone.” It feels as if, with all the emojis and gifs, we’ve lost the art of just talking on the phone and having a conversation. According to a 2013 study, only 43% of cell phone users actually use their phones to talk.

What does it mean in the business world when people don’t know how to have conversations anymore?

The modern sales conversation

Reps are no longer speaking to people on the phone, they are reaching out via email. What does it mean when a rep says they “messaged” a prospect? What are the implications of a speakers asking audience members to tweet at her after a talk?

Reps are achieving less and less quota because of all the digital conversations. Sales have become over-automated to the point that it is no longer human-to-human. We spend too much money on sales tools. We’ve become over-scripted.

The perceived sales experience is the second most important criteria for buying

People don’t want to be sold to. They want to feel as if they’re buying. They want an emotional connection. The best reps educate, collaborate and listen rather than rely on communication tools.

Tactical changes to improve sales conversations

Treat everyone like a customer from the first touch

Don’t prospect; value. Change your language to reflect a buying process, rather than a selling process. Don’t hold back content and best practices from prospects.

Co-create with your customer pre-sale

Start being part sales and part customer support and success. Create a vision with prospects before they become paying customers.

Pick up the phone

Instead of spending an hour crafting the perfect email, try calling the prospect.

Focus on the quality of the conversation

Invest in tools and training that focus on enhancing the conversation. Younger hires may not have as much experience on the phone; train them!

Compensate for customer loyalty/ growth/ advocacy

Don’t just value the win. Compensate sales reps on the long-term loyalty of their customers.

Sales is the foundation of the customer experience

The rest of the company’s ability to be successful in their roles is dependant on the buying experience. Give prospects the conversations they seek.

For more Opentalk content, check out Opentalk Full Coverage.

About Opentalk
Opentalk is a forum on the future of customer experience and communication. It brings together forward-thinking business leaders to explore how technology can improve the customer experience by enhancing customer loyalty and happiness.