Q: SHOULD SELLING BE VIEWED AS A BUYING EXPERIENCE AND WHY
WILLIAM: Selling has always been a part of the buying experience. Great sellers act as a trusted consultant to help diagnose problems, solve pains and guide purchasers to the product or solution that best fits their needs. More importantly, they educate at a level that is ideal for the sellers’ learning style. As technology solutions grow more complex, we see the role of sellers increasing.
Just a few years ago, some analysts predicted that most sales people would be replaced by AI. Obviously, those analysts didn’t know much about B2B sales or AI. The truth is that AI cannot navigate nuances or create meaningful relationships well enough to sell when thousands or even millions of dollars are involved.
However, AI can help human beings create a better buying experience. For example, AI can help sellers understand context, offer helpful content and scale themselves by automating manual processes and tasks.
Q: HOW SHOULD COMPANIES DECIDE WHICH BUYING EXPERIENCE IMPROVEMENT INITIATIVES TO START WITH - ASSUMING THEY CAN'T DO ALL AT ONCE?
WILLIAM: Gartner’s great report, “Top CRM Sales Technologies for the New Realities of Selling in the COVID-19 World,” recommends that teams focus in part on adopting conversation intelligence and guided selling applications.
Conversation intelligence applications are great because they use AI-powered insight to alert sales managers when their teams need coaching on common problem areas in live sales calls at scale, such as pricing objections or questions about competing solutions.
Guided selling applications are incredibly important because teams need to enforce sales processes and remove the guesswork from the sales process. Now more than ever, managers need to make sure that reps are making the most of every opportunity.
On a more basic level, a great place to start is removing as much friction from the buying process as possible. This means making your sales reps more accessible and available in a variety of customer journeys. For example, you should have an intelligent process set up for your website AI chatbot that seamlessly transitions qualified prospects to an appropriate sales rep.
For inbound calls, set up a phone menu that routes buyers to a specialist. But for advanced sales stages, many enterprise buyers appreciate texts as they enable quick conversations on the go.
Q: WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS FOR ENSURING THAT TECHNOLOGIES CONTRIBUTE TO THE BUYING EXPERIENCE IN MEANINGFUL WAYS?
WILLIAM: With legacy sales enablement platforms, sales reps must know exactly what content, information and even training they need, then go and specifically search for it within their company libraries.
Sales enablement platforms of the future use AI to determine what sales reps need in real-time based on the conversations they have and contextual data from their deals. The platforms then present reps with the right content or the right messaging at exactly the right time. Advanced platforms can even suggest dynamic talking points in real-time.
These platforms can also empower training and coaching by surfacing coachable moments for both reps and managers and offer on-demand trainings. In short, your technologies must make your reps better sellers. If it doesn’t empower or enable your reps to be more productive, efficient, or effective, it may not be worth it.
Q: HOW DOES YOUR SOLUTION HELP SELLERS IMPROVE THE BUYING EXPERIENCE?
WILLIAM: ringDNA enables every seller to be great by transforming sales productivity, performance, insights, playbook execution, coaching, training and more. More specifically we use AI and intelligent automation to arm sales teams with the information, insights and engagement tools needed to perform effectively.
For example, ConversationAI surfaces coachable moments that reps and managers can use as teaching moments to improve sales performance. The product also offers on-demand training libraries to reps, so they can self-educate and learn from top performers without extra attention from their managers. We have a great platform video that describes how all our capabilities work together at https://ringdnamedia.wistia.com/medias/2rzyiodajx.
Q: What are some good resources if someone wanted to learn what questions to ask, what others are doing, or factors related to sales transformation?
WILLIAM: The world’s top sales thought leaders appear on The Sales Enablement Podcast, with nearly 800 episodes of brilliant content.
In addition, we love analysts like Gartner, TOPO and Smart Selling Tools.
William Tyree is the Chief Marketing Officer of ringDNA, where he works collaboratively to drive growth while creating a brand that inspires companies to elevate performance. Previously, he was CMO at FaceFirst and VP of Marketing at DemandResults. His thought leadership has appeared in Forbes, Entrepreneur, Selling Power, The Deal, MarTech Series and elsewhere.