New role - new industry - how to navigate?

Hi there! For the first time in my life, I am doing sales and am joining the demo calls with my colleague. Currently, I am mostly shadowing them, but in a few weeks, I will be leading the calls. I have two questions in regards to this:1. How do I practice my pitch because I am very nervous and scared that I might mess up? Any tips/resources will be helpful2. Whenever a question is asked, as I am relatively new to the industry, many times I don't understand it right away and it is hard for me to think on the spot - how do I tackle this?
Congratulations on the new role and the transition! Sales is a very exciting, fast growth space to be in (well obviously depends where you do it but generally speaking it's a promising career path).First off I want you to remember that you were hired because they believed in you and believed you can do the work so don't let your doubts take over.1) Practice practice practice until it becomes second nature. Use bullet, don't just learn sentences for the sake of. Know the points you want to drive home and have the data to back that up. Make note of how your team does it, put yourself in the shoes of the clients and pay attention to the question they ask! If they are asking things it is probably because something was unclear, so your job is to iterate and make it clearer.No one knows you are messing up and this brings to the second question2) If it is a question about a simple fact like last year how big was the market for ERP systems (just made this up :D) if it's fair you should know the answer then I'd just make sure to read as much as I can about the space I am in - ask your colleagues for resources in the industry etc. I don't know the space you are in/company you're at/type of clients but chances are your company has all the info or know the right resources where you can educate yourself, so ask your teammates for it and position yourself for success. No question is a dumb question especially on your first 60-90 days on a new job. After that they will be less tolerant. If it is a more complex question such as "what types of results did you see from client X using the same tool" well obviously you may not know this and it's totally fine simply say " that's a great question, and I want to make sure that I give you the most comprehensive answer, can I get back to you on this by tomorrow midday with a thorough answer?"It is much better to admit that you don't have a perfect answer to it right now and you need time to find it and set the expectations when they should expect to hear from you on their questions. No one needs to know you are new to the industry either, like it is good you're self-conscious about it but frankly how is it helping you? People will see you as the "cute little newbie who is trying her best to learn about our space" without even realising it you just let others put you in a box. By putting this upfront you will consistently diminish yourself and won't get the credibility, trust you deserve. The result of this: clients won't trust you and it's just bad news all around.Also remember, being new at something is the BEST time because you're allowed to make all the "mistakes" - so use this as an opportunity to learn and be a better salesperson everyday!
Congratulations Stella!! I don't want to repeat what Iynna just said as she's just made some amazing valid points so i'll be more than happy to share my own experience when I went through a similar position this year. I stepped out of my comfort zone (less shadowing and more leading) and lead calls in a completely new industry. I went from a hospitality industry to a film/advertising industry which I really love!1. Practicing your pitch - Take your time: If you've prepared a written script or your company has given it to you, read it out loud a few times, you can even record it to play it back. If you take your time, then you can annunciate your words properly and not rush through so you can feel comfortable. Slow your breath down. - Read it others: Try and read it to colleagues that maybe aren't familiar with your software to get feedback. -2. Unfamiliar questions- Prepare a FAQ or general summary of common topics: Have this ready on standby so you can refer to it. I always have my cheat sheet ready and the best part about it is that people at the other end of the call will never know or see that you've got this information! It will even help you retain more information the more you read - If there's really a question you can't answer: you can always politely tell your client, " i'll have to look into your question and i'll be happy to email you a response after this call"Feel free to DM me if you would like as i'm more than happy to chat about my own experiences via a call, I feel like I went through the same as thing as your recently!