New Age Selling
vSplash head of sales Anthony Bratti pointed me to a very interesting article titled “The Future of Sales Technology“. The author, Geoffrey James writes often about the impact of technology on the functional role of sales within an organization or business enterprise. He is currently working on a book about the future of selling with Howard Stevens – a guru of sales transformation. A few nuggets from Geoffrey’s post at Inc. are worth sharing here as vSplash works tirelessly to reinvent the role and processes of the local media sales rep. They offered 5 observations:
- The End of Cold Calling – due to a variety of circumstances, the new age business owner will be markedly less responsive to cold calling. As such, sales reps will require a higher level of knowledge and trust to get through the gatekeeper. Early indications are that sales reps utilizing the BuzzBoard sales tool from vSplash can overcome some gatekeeper objections by leveraging the digital health audit imbedded in BuzzBoard. As time moves forward, sales reps across industries will require more precise customer knowledge and insight in order to get past the world’s gatekeepers.
- The Laptop is Dead – the sales rep of the future will no longer be tied to a heavy laptop. Instead, smart tablet devices, rich with customer and sales information, will be the standard. The opportunities to leverage the tablet are really endless. vSplash’s use of the iPad as it’s initial implementation of BuzzBoard already enables sales reps to create a more compelling and engaging customer contact experience. But this is just the beginning.
- Sales Management is a Data Game – use of the tablet by sales reps sets up a new age of sales management. Imbedded in the tablet are ways to understand precisely how the sales rep is using the tool. For instance, a sales manager can look at data that shows how often a individual sales rep uses a piece of collateral or shows the customer a video and see how this connects to the rep’s sales performance.
- New Age CRM – coupled with the use of the tablets and smartphones will be a new wave of smart CMR tools which will help reps engage with customers in new a better ways. Today’s CMR models are often clunky and out of date, while the new wave of tools will marry real time data with social conversations for richer engagement.
- Video Takes Center Stage – with wireless networks reaching new levels of speed and capacity, the use of video in the sales environment will become increasingly important. It is easy to imagine a sales rep linking up with a subject matter expert via video to offer the customer an even deeper and richer experience.
My take-away from these interesting observations is that the role of the sales rep is in the early stage of undergoing an incredibly pronounced and transformational process. vSplash is certainly in the middle of this transformation with a number of BuzzBoard trials currently underway. Moving BuzzBoard from the development lab to the real world will certainly reveal a profound set of learnings.