A new McKinsey report reveals that companies that implement transformational sales and marketing capabilities yield 90% higher sustained growth than those who don’t. In marketing and sales, this can be accomplished by using digital interactions and interactive storytelling to create engagements that allow customers to guide themselves through their problem-solving journeys. Below are four tips for increasing sales with digital interactivity.
1. Accelerate Onboarding with Interactive Crib Notes
According to Qvidian, on average it takes a sales representative up to nine months to get up to speed on a product line and roughly one year to become really effective in selling those products. As corporate strategies are shifting and organisations are acquired, the product marketing mix changes and sales must quickly accommodate.
As these shifts occur, companies begin marketing multiple products that are sold by the same sales force; therefore, it becomes difficult and impractical for them to know the unique features and benefits of EVERY product within the portfolio. This results in a generalized selling pitch, making the sales experiences less than stellar. The best way for sales to adapt is by using interactive crib notes that help them navigate through the product demonstration like a sales expert.
2. Hands On Customer Engagement
Did you know that interactivity increases product knowledge retention by up to 75%? Giving prospects that hands-on sensory experience allows them to explore the product features that are the most important to them in a way that they’ll remember. This empowers your customers to create an emotional connection via interactivity and engagement.
That being said, getting your products into the hands of prospects is much easier said than done. Products (specifically in the telecom, medical or industrial industries) are often large, fragile, hard to obtain and expensive to ship. Even at trade shows companies are often bringing their flag ship products and/or just a ‘shell’ of their product to avoid damage during transport.
Utilising virtual 3D Product Models (that look and behave just like the actual products) on touch screens appliances at trade shows, or on mobile devices for sales meetings can ensure that your products are available at every sales encounter and that customers can engage and navigate products as desired.
3. Utilise Universal Platforms That Reach Global Users
Make sure to utilise deployment platforms that expand your reach and get your interactive content into the hands of those who need it most (customers, sales, marketing, channel, training). Cross platform sales and marketing applications allow for interactive sales tools to be created once and used everywhere, eliminating the need and cost to create separate versions for each operating system or device. The ability to create consistent and engaging messaging internationally (on preferred devices/browsers in that geography) is a game changer for marketers because they can think globally but their sales team can act locally.
4. Use Visual Storytelling to Communicate Value
According to the MHI Research Institute, in both 2013 and 2014 companies claimed that their number one pain point was the ‘inability of their sales team to communicate their value story.’ With 65% of people being visual learners, it is vital for companies to utilise interactive storytelling applications to effectively show visual representations of how their products work. The non-sequential nature of these interactive storytelling applications make the experience very personal and clearly show the value your product/solution can provide, rather than just telling you their features/benefits. Companies that fail to capitalise on their products true differentiators result in lower sales and reduced prices, with long and expensive sales cycles.
These four tips should lead to a self-directed sales cycles for your solutions, creating the epitome of personalised experiences.
By Dana Drissel, Vice President at Kaon Interactive.