Virtual Sales Kickoff Meetings

Conduct kickoff meetings that aligns, inspires and prepares your team

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Virtual Sales Kickoff

Life as we know it may have changed with COVID-19, but businesses still need to find and connect with customers in the same manner. Leads still need to be generated by marketing and opportunities still have to be pursued and closed by sales. 

A sales kickoff meeting (SKO) is one of the most critical ways to achieve this goal for enterprises today. Sales associates are provided with the knowledge and tools they need to be successful and meet and exceed their company growth goals through sales kickoff meetings. 

These events not only build excitement for the year ahead but also help foster pride in the sales force for being a part of the company and let them know how to prepare for the year ahead. Your organization will greatly benefit from this investment in your team.

Globally, companies have adjusted to a remote working culture after the Covid-19 pandemic breakout. Following suit, organizations of all sizes began to host their annual sales kickoffs virtually, which are also known as sales conferences. 

The events in 2021 proved that you can go virtual without being limited to one location or space. Virtual sales kickoffs can be just as motivating and invigorating as those held in person with the right mix of content, planning, and preparation. You can use these virtual events to motivate your sales team, share information, and connect with each other.

Keep reading to know what a virtual sales kickoff means and learn how to host a premium sales kickoff virtual meeting.

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Virtual Kick-off Meaning

Understanding the virtual kick-off meaning or sales kick off meaning starts with knowing how it begins. You should have a kickoff or project initiation meeting when you assemble your virtual team for the first time. Provide a video conferencing platform for your virtual kickoff meeting where all team members are able to see and interact with each other in real-time. You can easily use Google Hangouts for this purpose. You and your online team will bond faster if you meet, see each other, and respond to non-verbal communication with a camera.

Virtual sales kickoffs are typically perceived as nothing more than online meetings or webinars. It is this misperception that holds many organizations back from getting involved with a virtual sales kickoff. When considering a virtual sales kickoff, the most important thing you must ensure is that it must be a premium experience from start to finish. Even though the entertainment, social interactions, and even style may differ from previous events, it must still be very engaging for participants.

The challenges of remote selling are numerous. People who are good at sales enjoy socializing. Despite the total shutdown of in-person interactions and face-to-face events, they have adapted well. Having a virtual sales kickoff acknowledges the outstanding work they are doing, celebrates their success, and equips them with the necessary tools to exceed sales quotas. Your organization will benefit not only from increased revenue but also from a stronger bond between your team.

Virtual Sales Meeting Themes 2021

Your sales teams can achieve bigger wins with the help of sales kickoff meetings that boost morale and set realistic goals starting with something like a sales kick off opening speech. The team-building experience of a successful sales meeting will help your company gain an edge over its competition. With the right 2021 inspirational themes in mind for your next kickoff, you will be able to set goals, cement concepts, and generate inspiration that will last the entire year. 

You will be able to tie your corporate event together with a theme. After a year marked by global economic challenges, your virtual sales kickoff theme can help convey your new outlook. Focus on the solutions instead of skirting the problems caused by the pandemic. 

The theme is especially critical in the case of a keynote speaker. In a meeting, you want it to flow smoothly and not feel like a disjointed series of quick updates and trainings. When you choose the right theme, it is also possible to deliver a fun and memorable message. 

You can use this message or messages later on t-shirts and promotional items throughout the year, helping your employees remember what they learned during your sales kickoff meeting. Motivate your team members by using your theme as a mantra. 

It is common for companies to conduct major virtual kickoff meetings for sales and marketing to mark the start of a new year. A theme for your own virtual sales team meetings can be chosen in many ways. 

Make a list of activities and goals you want to incorporate into your theme. It is common to use catchy songs and phrases or variations of them. Try to keep it under five words. Make it positive and motivating to get people to take action. Some great examples of virtual sales meeting themes 2021 are:

  • Let's get started!
  • Stronger, better, faster
  • The future is here
  • Never Give Up!
  • Don't Wait!
  • Dream It
  • Uprising
  • 100 Percent
  • I'm With You
  • Let's Do This Together!
  • Make a Difference
  • Using the Power of Players
  • There's nothing stopping us now
  • It’s My Turn to Shine

Virtual Sales Kickoff Agenda

Planning your virtual sales kickoff begins with setting the agenda. Focus on the following when planning the virtual sales kickoff agenda:

  • Keep your goals in sight
  • Strike a balance among product enablement, sales skills, and customer awareness
  • Keep it motivating and inspiring
  • Network with peers and colleagues

Identify what you want your sales team to remember long after the event, and move forward from there. Here are four items to ensure a successful sales kickoff agenda.

A Motivational Keynote Speech will Inspire Your Sales Team

The key to starting a successful sales kickoff is an inspiring keynote. In this first meeting, get everyone pumped up about being a member of the company and the team. Aspirational goals seem to work better when everyone is motivated to work together. Take advantage of that enthusiasm from day one by bringing in a dynamic speaker.

Set Up Engaging Breakout Sessions 

Your sales kickoff content is usually dominated by breakout sessions. Focus your breakout sessions on your company's major bets, overcoming challenges, and tips from top salesmen. Choosing breakout sessions based on different departments or regions is recommended if your audience is mixed or diverse.

Showcase the Views of your Customers

Have a few of your customers speak on why they chose your company, and how they would recommend you engage with other members of the target market. Case studies based on these stories can be used as part of your kickoff. Customers can even participate in a virtual focus group for real-time feedback or participate in a breakout session.

Organize a Celebration and Give Awards

A sales rep's most eagerly anticipated event in a year is arguably the award ceremony. Honor salespeople and big wins from the previous year with this time-honored tradition. You can create categories that will spark enjoyment by having fun with the awards. In addition to fancy headphones and gift cards, prizes can include engraved gifts and other gadgets.

Sales Kick Off Ideas

Virtual sales meeting ideas can get a boost with some fun kick off meeting ideas used in different ways. Company kick-off event ideas could have a whole new impact with some innovation to them. Make your sales kick off ideas meetings relevant, engaging, and memorable with these ideas.

Make it Result-oriented

The real difference between a great and a mediocre sales kickoff is creating real value for your salesforce. Practical hurdles such as how to assist sales reps in closing more deals can be overcome by:

  • Understanding the behavior you wish to change
  • Using role-playing or other interactive exercises
  • Engaging the services of a professional sales trainer

Engage the Audience

People find lectures boring in meetings. You can try adding interactive elements to your meeting instead to make it more engaging. To reach all learning styles, it is important to appeal to as many senses as possible. Different parts of the brain are engaged when watching videos, listening to music, or using props at tables or in chairs. By doing so, information is retained and can be applied in the field later on.

You Need to Make it Stick

Share stories. One of the most effective ways of communicating and motivating your team is storytelling. 

Make sure that team members are encouraged to take measurable actions based on the lessons they learned during the kickoff meeting. A great way to do this is to provide attendees with a worksheet and a time slot during your event where they can identify their top three takeaways as well as specific ways they can apply them. 

Virtual Kick-off Event Ideas

The following fun ways to start a virtual meeting will help make your next virtual kick-off event ideas or virtual kick-off meeting ideas a big hit, no matter whether it is a one-day or a multi-day event.

  • Use interesting graphics and visual media to generate excitement for the event.
  • Come up with a theme and go all-in on it. The theme could be symbolic of where your company stands, the goals you are aiming for, or even something that is a part of your company culture.
  • Create a cohesive atmosphere with Zoom backgrounds. This gives a community-like and cohesive feel to the event.
  • Add a game design to your event, making it more fun for all the attendees.
  • Get feedback during the event to use in your next virtual events.

Kick Off Activities

Check out these kick off activities to make your virtual sales kickoff more memorable and to drive better sales results.

  • Create awards to recognize high-performing employees.
  • Get your team to come up with a magazine cover for any successful project, accomplishment, or business achievement.
  • Come with virtual sales kickoff games, bringing the team together through friendly competition.
  • Think up funny gifts for sales reps to acknowledge their contributions with a little twist.

A virtual sales kickoff is a great way to inspire your team, make them feel connected to the organization, and motivate them to reach their sales goals. It can be challenging to host a virtual sales kickoff, but redefining your mindset will help you adjust to a virtual environment and forge your own path ahead, which can be equally rewarding.