The Green Sheet Online Edition
April 13, 2015 • Issue 15:04:01
The Mobile Buzz:
Mobilizing the sales force
In the pursuit of excellence, spring training encourages ballplayers to advance to the next level under the vigilant eye of coaches armed with digital devices that can track the speed, motion and response time for every split-second decision and action required to excel in the game of baseball.
Likewise, ISOs and merchant level salespeople (MLSs) need ready access to information and support every time they enter the playing field. In the game of payments, mobile is fast becoming the quintessential tool for delivery of important information not just for agents, but also for merchants on the receiving end eager to excel, as well.
It has been said that within the first five minutes of a sales call, the opportunity to help a merchant can proceed or recede with equal force. That is why, from the initial introduction, being equipped with the right content at the right moment in the sales cycle can have a dramatic impact on the final outcome.
Just as an integrated system can bridge multiple channels for merchants, an integrated mobile platform can do the same for ISOs and MLSs. "Sales enablement directly influences the quality of customer interactions," stated Scott Gruher of Sales Benchmark Index in a blog post. "Sales enablement is no longer just a content production and training function. Sales enablement is leading the mobile movement and improving sales interactions."
Merchants today are well educated and have a better understanding of what is needed to update antiquated systems before anyone even approaches them. Equipped with answers at their fingertips, ISOs and MLSs can interact much more effectively. But to stay on target, content must be continually refreshed to reflect changing industry trends and company offerings.
Gruher recommends several steps sales teams can implement now, as follows:
- Playbooks: As in sports, an effective sales playbook offers the right content at each stage of the game. Playbooks should include targeted questions to ask based on merchant type and/or enterprise size, which can be recorded for later reference. Industry trends, resources, market issues, and specific solutions and components should be covered. Competitive differentiators, past success stories and case studies are also useful.
- Vertical profiling and decision maps: Since each vertical market has unique needs, profiles can be developed on each market with checklists of essential and optional solutions. An analysis of the decision-making life cycle in each market served, the various parties involved at each stage and indicators of an impending decision are helpful aids when aligning with potential clients in markets where timing of decisions can vary.
- Flash cards: These on-screen sales point reminders have to some extent replaced the printed sales sheet of the past, although both can work in tandem. For each vertical market, bullet points outlining key market differentiating technologies, support, products and services offered by the ISO or MLS can be displayed.
- Merchant data, account boarding: Secure mobile access to existing merchant data and comparative analyses of similar types of merchants doing business in the same region can help augment sales. Another important feature is to have merchant application and boarding tools available via mobile devices with the ability for MLSs to track all merchant account activities while operating in the field.
- Training content: Mobile-optimized sales training videos or webinars help agents brush up on the latest corporate strategies, as well as understand the inner workings of each product or service and how each new offering fits into the overall picture. Well-constructed sales training can ensure that a consistent message is being communicated in the field.
- Sharing tools: As in sports, good teamwork applies to sales. Encourage sales reps to communicate in real time while respecting the time commitments of others. Access to sales experts can be motivating, plus it helps resolve time-critical issues on the spot.
As technology evolves within individual organizations, more complex tracking systems and user metrics can be deployed that focus on repeating successful tactics to achieve greater market share in segments targeted.
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