Interactive digital sales experiences are becoming indispensable tools, especially within B2B sales and marketing. The days of linear sales presentations and death by PowerPoint are short-lived.
Conversational, consultative or narrative selling using interactive content is key to more effective sales conversations and this is where digital sales experiences come into play.
Perhaps you’re looking into how they can help. Maybe you recognise that your current sales assets and tools just aren’t having the commercial impact you hoped but you’re uncertain of what’s possible or the best way forward.
You’ll certainly want to know what features and benefits a sales experience tool will bring to the table and whether it’s worth the investment, will it really make a difference?
Before you move forward, you’ll have a multitude of these types of questions that you need answering. You want to understand the ‘art of the possible’.
With 20 years of B2B marketing and sales experience creating sales tools for SMEs and large enterprise, we’re going to share some insights into this area.
Let’s get into it!
A better world
Just so we’re clear on what an interactive sales experiences platform is below is a video showing a whole range of examples…
A fully-featured sales experience can be your sales team’s superpower. On a practical level, it can address problems which have plagued B2B sales & marketing for decades.
A sales experience is more than just a single presentation; it’s actually the tip of a powerful sales enablement platform that supports your reps and the marketing team that supports them.
- It acts as a central source of truth to manage and disseminate your sales & marketing collateral across your business whether you operate locally or globally
- It can support multiple languages and help enforce robust regulatory environments, ensuring accuracy and compliance across your business, especially important in Healthcare
- It runs online and offline, on any device or operating system, so your teams can access everything they need wherever they meet customers
- It has a creative editor so you can create that visual WOW! that draws customers in.
Sales is hard enough without all the admin overhead involved. Interactive sales tools are designed to remove a lot of this work so reps can concentrate on what they do best – talking to customers and selling.
They no longer need to worry if they have the right documents and information or the correct version when presenting to customers or worry that their presentation materials look flat and boring and confuse more than they enlighten their customers.
Instead, they’ll have the confidence (and time!) to face customers knowing that they have everything they need at hand and in a format that actively helps customers make sense of what you do as a business and how you add value.
This doesn’t mean restricting what a rep can share with customers, it’s quite the opposite.
An interactive sales experience (interactive being the key word here) allows the rep to personalise the content and message in the moment no matter who is in a meeting or their different pain points and requirements.
These are just some practical benefits, but what about the presentation itself, the creative experience?
The art of the possible
Today, it’s more important than ever to be able to differentiate your business from the competition, but ironically, it’s also getting harder to do this.
- An interactive sales experience gives you the tools to create presentations and content that bring your world to life for customers and simplify complex messages and ideas
- It helps you present information in a clear, concise and memorable way. Their sole premise is to help your customers easily understand how you can help them and make it easy for them to make more informed buying decisions, in your favour
- Interactivity within an experience allows reps to take different routes as the conversation progresses, letting the customer steer the conversation in the direction most relevant to them, immersing themselves in your world
- It opens areas up for a conversation that perhaps previously you hadn’t thought the customer would be interested in
Making it visual makes it memorable and the art of visual storytelling is a powerfully efficient tool in a sales experience, that’s because
“Your brain interprets visual information 60,000x faster than text alone and retains visual information up to 100 times longer than text alone.”
It’s important that the key information of how you can alleviate your customer’s pain points and improve their business is visualised in a way that is familiar to them, so they can easily recall and retell the key points of your value proposition.
With strong visual storytelling, you’ll be able to save considerable time in explaining complex ideas and processes. Combine this with a multi-media approach, animations, 3D modelling and video – you’ll be miles ahead of your competition.
PDFs, spreadsheets and product data can also be available for download, all of that vital information to educate and inform available from one single source of truth, your sales experience.
Finding out more is easy and immediate, with no lengthy waits for follow-up emails.
Your digital sales experience doesn’t have to always rely on your reps meeting customers face to face, they work just as well with remote meetings. It’s also ideal where your customers would rather self-serve. They are perfect for this scenario.
Get inside their head
Being able to WOW! your customers is one thing, but how do you know what’s resonating with them?
Empowering your reps and marketing to amend their strategy to match your customer’s thinking will save a lot of wasted effort on unused material and significantly improve outcomes.
Data and analytics are crucial to ongoing success and optimisation. Sales enablement experiences have sophisticated tracking tools embedded which will report back on every interaction a sales rep and customer have whilst using the tool.
This isn’t about keeping tabs on what the sales team are up to but understanding exactly what the customer is interested in and what is resonating with them. Accordingly, you can channel your efforts into content that’s proving to be most effective.
In addition to the tracking of interactions, you’ll also want definite and accurate information recorded in your CRM. Most sales teams are not good at updating their business CRM.
Integrating your digital experiences platform with your CRM automates this entire process. Again, it frees up rep time and also ensures accurate information is being recorded.
Removing the guesswork from sales helps to speed up the decision-making process by ensuring that your efforts are focused where they really matter.
Our advice – don’t be distracted by the shiny stuff!!
What’s possible with an interactive sales experience is truly impressive, and we’ve only touched on some of the key features above. But, It’s important to know what you, your reps, marketing and your business need and not to be overwhelmed by all the shiny bits!
You’ll probably find that the right tool will offer more than you imagined, more than you knew was possible, but never lose sight of your reasons for looking at an interactive sales experience in the first place – to drive sales in a competitive market.
Whatever else it offers, can it do that core task for you?
Final thoughts on interactive sales presentations!
Although we’ve listed quite a number of features and benefits above this doesn’t mean that all sales enablement or interactive sales tools and platforms do the same thing.
Some offer the complete package – the front-end sales experience, content management, analytics and integration whilst others only offer one piece of the pie.
You’ll have to work with their creative partners to develop your own interactive sales experience, to be a plugin to their platform.
So understand what your business objectives are, what’s currently working and not working and most importantly what your potential customers need when you’re selling to them.
The answers to these questions will point you in the direction of what features and benefits are most important.
We refer to the ‘art of the possible’ quite regularly and with good reason. It can be very difficult to understand what a good interactive sales experience is capable of if you don’t work with them day-to-day as we do.
It’s a bit like the difference between sci-fi films before and after Star Wars or Blade Runner, or the capabilities of CGI as seen in Terminator 2. You know that the possibilities have changed – dramatically and continue to do so at a rate of knots.
As Gartner says,
“The big window of differentiation in the next five to ten years will be those companies that come up with creative, unexpected and powerful immersive digital experiences.”
Companies not embracing this technology will soon be left behind and for this reason, we’re always available to discuss the potential and capabilities of sales experiences and to arrange demos, seeing is believing, especially here!