If you are an outside sales person then you know the difficulty in carrying multiple sales materials, bulky files and the heavy laptop that you have managed to stuff in your back pack. You are in a hurry to meet the client at the far end of the city and you have left a few of those important documents back at your office. By the time you get the file you need and make it to the client’s office, you are totally stressed. The problem doesn’t end here, as Murphy’s Law states ‘anything that can go wrong will go wrong’ and so goes your meeting. You couldn’t arrange the data, sales sheets and multiple brochures and present them effectively, thus negatively affecting your presentation and losing client interest.
If you are a salesperson in a conventional sales situation you must have certainly faced many of the problems below:
Cumbersome Sales Collateral:
Managing huge amounts of content and delivering it effectively was a significant challenge. Imagine carrying large numbers of fliers, brochures and bulky laptops to show various product capabilities and portfolios.
You feel tired and drained because of the countless nights you have spent working late to prepare for your meetings and understand the sales materials sent to you by the marketing team. Your marketing team is not able to utilize their time effectively because of constant changes and versions made to the materials being used in the field. Even worse, new and revised sales materials are not delivered in a timely manner to the sales team.
Imagine the situation where the changes made by the marketing team on important data or price points are received by the sales person only after his meeting with the client. The entire sales and marketing operation becomes counterproductive in such a scenario. According to ‘Forrester Report 2014’ on sales process within an organization, 20% of a salesperson’s time is spent on arranging sales materials before a customer visit. Basically that is equivalent to having two people on a 10-man team doing nothing but managing sales material.
An organization spends $135,262 in support costs each year for each salesperson. The biggest part of the sales budget goes to creating and printing brochures and flyers. ‘Forrester Report’ says that only 10% of marketing materials really provide a good ROI, suggesting that 90% of those budget dollars could be wasted.
Organizations end up using a lot of paper and paper products because they want their sales presentations to be perfect. Our carbon footprint is also increasing due to the excess use of paper.
You are in the middle of a client meeting when you realize that the key members are either half asleep or not listening to you. The problem is not you but the boring, bland sales material. Most sales people will lose the client’s attention during the first 25% of the sales presentation. Most often the presentation doesn’t convert into sales.
Presenting Outdated Information:
A high dependency on printed sales material is the main reason behind outdated presentations. Sending out printed flyers and assuring it reached the sales team was a painstaking process.
Making changes in sales collateral in a traditional environment is not easy, is time consuming and thus changes are not incorporated as often as they need to be. Without updated information, sales people are not properly equipped to handle the incoming barrage of questions and objections coming from the clients. For the marketing team, easy and quick delivery and distribution of updated data to the sales team was difficult to achieve. Most often small changes were ignored because making changes and maintaining consistency demanded precious time and money.
Tablets Redefine the Sales Environment
In 2010, the billion dollar company ‘Apple’ introduced a thin-compact device named ‘iPad’. Though its many predecessors didn’t make any impact in the market, ‘iPad’ popularized an entirely new category and introduced a cutting edge solution for sales people – tablets. Imagine a computer which can fit into the palm of your hands and is more effective. It reduces the effort needed by the salesperson and helps them to manage the activities in fun and engaging ways. Tablets are the new “must haves” in sales.
Tablets have become the new sales “must haves” in the following ways:
Sales conversations can happen anytime: over lunch, in a hallway or even on a train. You no longer need to carry an elaborate setup with you all the time. Tablets are light weight, easily portable and have a good battery life. While having a conversation with the customer, you can simply switch on your tablet and demonstrate what a great product you have to offer.
Rich Content Delivery:
When using a tablet, your content can be converted into an interactive story by using the right tools and apps providing a greater appeal. Who doesn’t like bright pictures, dynamic images and videos?
Improved Customer Experience:
Tablets make the conversation flow more naturally, increasing customer engagement, thus enriching the overall experience. Comprehensive information is now easily accessible with a simple touch, tap or swipe. Tablets are more effective for one to one conversation or for a convenient counter mount, for direct consumer interaction.
Tablets eliminate the need for massive printouts and elaborate handouts. Sales materials such as price lists, photos and videos can all be digitized. The customers can swipe through important pieces themselves, at their own pace, leading to much greater engagement. This leads to minimal waste of paper and paper products.
Here is an interesting example of how Mitsubishi Electric Cooling and Heating achieved high lead generation recently. The brand carefully incorporated tablets and other mobile devices into the sales system. Their products like mini split and ductless air systems require an installed wall-mount unit. Their salespeople found it difficult to demonstrate this to the prospective homeowners. A special app for the brand was developed to create a new interactive model between the salesperson and buyer. Mitsubishi expects a $50 million increase in sales with the use of this new interactive app. The salesperson no longer has to carry heavy presentation props or bulky collateral.
Sales-Enablement Software Enhance the Usage of Tablets
Sales enablement software like Brandificant has strengthened the usage of tablets further for the sales industry. It has allowed sales and marketing to seamlessly integrate and organize sales content through cloud computing.
Having effective sales-enablement software like Brandificant can benefit your team in the following ways:
- Build and deliver interactive multimedia stories on smartphones & tablets with offline capabilities
- Centrally manage digital assets to seamlessly distribute content to your sales team (Everyone is on brand and on message all the time)
- Real time analytics measure and track the effectiveness of your collateral & sales teams
So, have you switched to the next generation of sales enablement yet? If not, it is high time to restructure your marketing strategies. Visit www.brandificant.com to see how we can super-charge your presentations on the iPad for higher customer engagement.