BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 17

If that doesn't lighten it enough,
add a light in front of you. You don't
need to invest in special lighting - a
simple table lamp will do.
2. Unprofessional Background
Many people give zero
consideration to the background
behind them. They'll Zoom in the
kitchen or in front of a cluttered and
disorganized space. That's a problem
because your background tells a
story about you.
Once again, the first step is to tune
into the platform and take a look at
what you see.
There are two problems with
backgrounds. They may make you
look less qualified or professional
than you are. A kitchen counter, a
shower curtain, or a pile of junk that
looks like it should be in a garage
don't look like the right environment
for an accomplished professional.
They can also be a distraction. If
your background is too busy, your
customers or the other members of
your sales team might be too focused
on what's behind you to pay attention
to what you're saying.
A simple and effective solution is
to have a plain background such as
a blank wall. If you want to raise the
bar, you need to design a set just like
they do on television.
A popular background is a shelf or
bookcase lined with books to make
you look smart. You could also have
some carefully selected and placed
artwork or photographs. Since these
are business calls, I would stay away
from personal photos. Photos of you
on a jobsite, teaching a class or at a
trade show could work well.
Look at the backgrounds of
other people on your virtual calls
or check out some YouTubers for
background ideas.
3. Your Camera
Your computer is probably
equipped with a built-in camera.
Those work just fine, but the biggest
problem I see is that people forget
to clean them. The result is that their
image is blurry.
Virtual communication is extremely
important now, so just like having
www.bsiabc.ca

a computer and a cell phone, you
should also have a proper webcam.
Eventually, companies will recognize
the need to provide these to all of their
employees. For now, you will probably
have to make this investment yourself
if you want to up your virtual game.
Webcams cost between $50 and
$200 and provide a much higher
quality image of you and allow
you to make more adjustments
than you could with the camera on
your computer.
4. Your Sound
Your computer is probably
equipped with built-in speakers and
a microphone. Do not use these.
Chances are you have a set of
headphones with a mic that you use
to listen to music and podcasts or
make phone calls. Use that instead.
A microphone that is closer to your
mouth makes it much easier for people
to hear and understand you. Your
voice will also sound more pleasing to
listen to. And that kind of microphone
will pick up less background noise, like
when the dog barks.
Headphones will make it much
easier to accurately hear what the
other people on the call are saying.
You can also invest in headphones
and microphones that have
noise-cancelling features.
You are probably familiar with
noise-cancelling headphones that
block external sounds. They also
have noise-cancelling microphones
that come with headphones. Those
will block out background noise from
where you are. They're incredibly
useful now that we're making calls
from home, where you can't be
sure that the background noise
won't compete with you for your
listener's attention.
Just like webcams, I believe that
noise-cancelling headphones and
microphones are essential tools that
companies should provide to their
employees. If your company has a
call centre, they probably equip those
employees with these.
5. Your Appearance
You should dress and look like you
would on an in-person sales call. You

should look your professional best, at
least from the waist up.
If you would normally wear a coat
and tie, wear them on your calls. If
you would normally dress in a polo
shirt for an in-person meeting, then
you should wear that.
Slacking on your appearance shows
that you aren't taking a virtual call as
seriously as an in-person meeting. If
that's the impression your customers
get, they won't take the meeting
seriously either.
6. See for Yourself
If you agree with my advice, find a
coworker and do a rehearsal call with
them and check:
*	 Can they see my face?
*	 What does my background look
like?
*	 Is the image from my camera
sharp?
*	 Can we hear each other clearly?

AN OVERLOOKED BENEFIT
OF VIRTUAL CALLS
Professional athletes improve
their performance by reviewing their
last game to pinpoint where they
could have done better. They also
learn how they should modify their
approach depending on the skills of
the opponent.
Unlike a live sales call, virtual calls
can be recorded and reviewed to
improve your skills. You can also
learn when and how to adjust your
approach depending on the type of
customer you're calling on.
You can also share these
recordings with a more successful or
experienced salesperson to get
their feedback.
Just like there is a time for an
in-person call, there is also a time
for a virtual call. Sometimes a phone
call or an email or even a text is a
better choice. 
Mark Mitchell is a Sales
and Marketing Consultant
to the building materials
industry and author
of Building Materials
Channel Marketing.
You can learn more and sign up for his
newsletter at www.seethewhizard.com.
SPRING 2021 | BSIA NEWS | NEWS MAGAZINE

17


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BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021

CHAIR’S MESSAGE
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
WAVE OF THE FUTURE – PRODUCT EXPO AND PK SESSIONS
BSIA NEWS AND EVENTS
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
IN MEMORIAM
ORION AWARD PRESENTATIONS
BURSARY RECIPIENTS
TIME FOR BUILDING MATERIALS TO GO ALL-IN ON VIRTUAL SELLING
LAST WORD
BSIA’S AFFINITY PARTNER PROGRAM & BENEFITS
PRODUCTS AND SERVICES MARKETPLACE
INDEX TO ADVERTISERS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - Intro
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - bellyband1
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - bellyband2
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - cover1
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - cover2
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 3
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - CHAIR’S MESSAGE
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - BOARD OF DIRECTORS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - WAVE OF THE FUTURE – PRODUCT EXPO AND PK SESSIONS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 7
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 8
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 9
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 10
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - CALENDAR OF EVENTS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - IN MEMORIAM
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - ORION AWARD PRESENTATIONS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - BURSARY RECIPIENTS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 15
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - TIME FOR BUILDING MATERIALS TO GO ALL-IN ON VIRTUAL SELLING
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 17
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - 18
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - LAST WORD
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - BSIA’S AFFINITY PARTNER PROGRAM & BENEFITS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - PRODUCTS AND SERVICES MARKETPLACE
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - INDEX TO ADVERTISERS
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - cover3
BUILDING SUPPLY INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION - Spring 2021 - cover4
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