Remote Selling has become an important focus for every sales organization. Digital sales technologies, by default, are what enables remote selling. In this interview series, we ask executives at leading salestech companies to describe how their customers are leveraging technology, what metrics are now possible, and more.
Q: What are your customers doing to adapt to - or leverage - the trend towards distributed sales teams and remote selling?
As companies began operating remotely, it became clear that sales organizations needed to reassess their sales tech stack. General productivity solutions such as video conferencing tools helped them replicate face-to-face. Still, they lacked sales tools to help them be more effective at deal strategy and deal execution with remote sales teams.
Sellers no longer were having hallway conversations or could walk over to a colleague’s desk that may have the insight to help with their current opportunities. And sellers could no longer get face-to-face with prospects and existing customers.
Sales leadership realized they needed tools to boost sales effectiveness and facilitate remote team-selling, deal reviews and deal collaboration.
Q: What metrics should customers of Deal Coaching Software use to measure the impact or progress of their activities?
The two KPIs to measure are Win Rate and Win/Loss Ratio.
Deal coaching is about sending signals around the health of a deal.
- Is the deal legitimate? and
- How-well are you positioned with the buyers?
Objective deal health assessment provides managers and sellers insight into which deals sellers should abandon vs which to double down. Formalized deal coaching is helping our customers to win fast and lose fast. Losing fast allows the seller to burn their calories on the right opportunities.
Remote selling has undoubtedly accelerated the need for our deal coaching software. For our customers, the timing could not have been better. Central to our design is the ability to collaborate on deals from anywhere. Sales teams will jump on a Zoom and pull up two or three deals every week and poke holes in it. They are trying to identify the gaps and red flags. With a one-page summary for every deal, collaboration is simple and efficient.
My favorite customer story is about a must-win deal with one of their existing customers. There were 50-people on a video conference call, including the CRO and VP of sales. Everyone on the call was collaborating on one deal using DealCoachPro as their virtual war room.
Remote selling has enabled more metrics around seller and pursuit team engagement. Involving stakeholders across the company seems to be the key to winning larger, high-value deals. DealCoachPro is helping to facilitate team-selling and deal collaboration.
Sales teams that are collaborating are more likely to hit their target and company goals. The pursuit team extends beyond the sales team. Sellers include their colleagues in marketing, product, and finance. We encourage team-selling, and it is the decision behind our pricing model. We price by deal-pack and include unlimited users.
Q: What steps can users of Deal Coaching software take to best facilitate their prospects’ decision-making given that interactions are likely remote?
One of the driving forces behind DealCoachPro is to shape a seller’s approach to deal pursuit. It is like a golf swing. The more you do it without professional training, the worst habits you accumulate.
Based on decades of evidence-based selling pathology, our patented deal pursuit framework tries to guard against the happy ears of sellers. Sellers often get wrong information from the prospect about the likelihood of a deal. This experience is now elevated because the seller is less likely to get face-to-face with a prospect; they have far fewer ‘signals’.
With more and more companies going remote permanently, this will become a norm. Our entire application centers around the buyer and the buyer team. For each buying influence, our framework guides sellers with customizable questions to better: what is their impact, is it a priority for them, are they advocates for the seller, and are they accessible?
Our customers have sellers use DealCoachPro on their high-value deals that involve multiple buying influencers. The manager will coach the seller in their 1-on-1s by reviewing the deal in DealCoachPro. Sales pursuit teams collaborate on their weekly calls using DealCoachPro as their virtual deal room to review the deal to find the gaps and build strategy and tactics to move the deal forward!
Q: What are one or two examples of how a customer is using your solution in surprising ways.
There are many use cases for DealCoachPro, including Guided Selling, Deal Reviews, Remote Selling, Team Selling, and Forecasting. One of our Enterprise customers is uniquely using DealCoachPro, which we initially did not think of: to pressure test stalled or no-decision deals to help them create an accurate pipeline.
They use DealCoachPro’s objective deal intelligence to determine which opportunities to walk away from and which to double down. DealCoachPro provides the right signals to help focus seller’s efforts on healthy opportunities they can drive to close.
Q: How is deal coaching different from sales coaching?
Sales Coaching is about advancing sales skills which are lagging indicators, meaning you are looking back at past actions. On the other hand, Deal Coaching is about advancing deal execution activities which are leading indicators, meaning you are looking forward to future actions. Of the two, Deal Coaching has a more immediate impact on quota attainment.
This view is affirmed by research from Gartner. Gartner examined the anatomy of World-Class Sales Managers and uncovered that those that emphasize deal execution activities outperform their peers. Managers that place a greater emphasis on deal coaching, such as helping advance deals, negotiating for sellers, and deal strategizing, are seeing far greater success.
Q: What is the impact on organizations that adopt deal coaching software?
Often, sellers pursue deals by guessing or using their gut. They spend more time on deals that are lost than won. Sales pipelines are bloated while legitimate deals slip from quarter-to-quarter. Teams are still using spreadsheets and paper-based sales methodologies to manage deal execution, making deal collaboration nearly impossible. Today’s approach to deal pursuit is antiquated, subjective, and inefficient across the team.
Sales teams that adopt DealCoachPro will boost sales effectiveness and win rates. Their teams will follow a consistent, proven buyer-centric framework that will keep them focused on deal execution activities using a simple-to-learn and use tool.
Founder & CEO,
With over two decades of experience, Erik has led software development and product management teams at IBM and Constant Contact. He founded two software companies: e2M Systems, event management software acquired by Constant Contact and DealCoachPro. Erik has an M.B.A. from M.I.T. and a Masters in Civil Engineering from Florida Atlantic University. Erik is the Organizer of TEDxBocaRaton. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time outdoors in South Florida with his two Miniature Schnauzers.