Knowledge Sharing

What do 500 sales tools learn us about digital transformation in sales?

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Since d!nk was founded in 2010, our digital tools have empowered over 10,000 sales professionals to be more successful when engaging with prospects and customers. We are happy to share what we learned over those years.

Let’s first take a step back and put digital transformation in perspective. Great digital businesses like Bol.com and Tripadvisor.com but also established players like Philips Lighting demonstrate that smart use of digital technology enables new products, new customer engagement and new business models – and are designed around the data generated by the users. As The Economist rightly puts it: Data is the new oil.

How does Digital Transformation apply to B2B sales?

Each of us has been in meetings with sales people doing a great effort to get the meeting, but once in the meeting explained little more than what’s on the company’s website. There is often a large gap between the importance of sales meetings for the seller and the limited value for the buyer.

For d!nk, Digital Transformation in Sales is about closing this gap and using digital tools to help the seller to make meetings truly valuable for the buyer.

“Digital Transformation is about increasing sales effectiveness”

Here are the 6 learnings for making Digital Transformation happen (Disclaimer: it ends with magic):

1. Digital is more than digitizing

Feet on the ground: giving iPads to the sales force and digitizing existing presentations and commercial documents is a promising start, but not digital transformation.

2. Engage: make your customer smarter

It is only a small step to turn a presentation of the products of your company into an interactive pitchbook that asks your prospects about their preferences and then shows the most suited product. A small step … but a very different customer engagement.

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3. Prove: Show, don’t tell

Don’t say you are the best but prove it. We’ve seen the best salespeople use self-made excel files that demonstrate the benefits and cost savings of their solutions. Make the best of these simulators available to all the sales force, and build in data gathering.

4. Collect data from each sales interaction

Data-driven sales interaction will not only turn your sales team into a consultative sales force. Additionally, the interactive tools used in engaging customer interactions will give you deep market insights. Use the eyes and ears you have in the market.

5. Value for the customer, yes … but also for the sales people

Sales people are a pragmatic bunch and look for immediate benefits. How to get the sales people on board of yet another digital tool? We know the key: automate the visit report. The connection between the sales tools and the CRM eliminates the time spent on visit report poetry.

6. Sales – the next level

Our most advanced customers have used the interactive sales tools to bring the sales process to a next level. When preparing sales meetings, their sales people get suggested the sales flow with proven success. For follow-up of sales meetings, the tool suggests the next best action learned from the hundreds of other similar customer interactions.

7. Play the magic of digital

Use digital to bring magic to the sales meeting. After a valuable interactive session with a smart sales person, your prospect’s smartphone chimes: a personalised offer is already in her mailbox. This smooth sales experience is a prelude to a great customer experience!

 

Want to read more? Discover our eBook on Sales Effectiveness.

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About Hendrik Vanpoeke

Hendrik has been in international sales and marketing since 1989. He set up a succesful business in China, and is proud to be called a 'China old hands'. Being back from China, Hendrik has been helping companies to set up international business activities.

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