Business Innovation

Sales – There’s an App For That

August 14, 2012

Your smartest MARKETING investment may be an iPad sales or service app

photo of a zombieReady to kill zombie marketing investments in selling materials?

It just so happens, we’re in the middle of the budgeting season for many companies. It’s the time of year where heads of departments, CIO’s, CMO’s, and CRO’s (Chief Revenue Officers) put together their plans for how and where they are going to invest company resources to drive growth and profits.

The overwhelming tendency is to pick up the plan from last year and tinker.  2013 doesn’t look like that kind of year. 

One challenge is that companies continue to invest in selling materials that don’t sell and often just get thrown away. In addition, they trust that a sales person wandering among prospects with ad hoc powerpoint presentations will get the job done.

Walk into business after business and what do you still see – a clipboard with a piece of paper on it.

This challenge requires CMO’s and CIO’s to come together if they hope to address it (if you rolled your eyes at that idea, that’s a very real, but different problem).

Do you see yourself or your company in any of these examples?

  • A different sales process for every customer What’s the standard deviation of your customer’s buying experience. For most companies, it’s much too large. Experienced sales hands know the ropes, while newbies make mistakes on customers as they learn.
  • I’ll get back to you with that – pricing, availability, timing If you’re trying to close a deal, you have to have the up to date information available to do so. If you have to call and ask someone, your process has just regressed to about 1930.
  • Let me show you my off strategy presentation and leave you an out-dated catalog You know it’s true – if you’re letting sales people wing it and dream up poorly designed powerpoint slides 30 minutes before their meeting with your important prospect, there’s just no way to deliver a consistent, on strategy message.Anything printed on paper – like a catalog – is out of date even before it’s printed. These investments are like zombies – nearly impossible to kill. Why aren’t people even trying?
  • I don’t have access to what you told the sales team. I just service your account. Poor handoffs to your service team can be the reason why your customers undo the deal, or decide that you don’t live up to the bargain. The more off the farm your sales process, the more likely this is happening.
  • I’m not really sure what my sales team did today. I’ll see it when they update the CRM system. If you can’t see what’s happening as it happens – then you’re not on top of your business. You have to know what’s happening, not guess . . . and certainly not rely entirely on the reporting skills of your sales / service team.

If your company faces any of these challenges, it’s time to invest in an iPad (tablet) sales or service app.  If you would like to learn more about some of the benefits of such an app, don’t miss some of our sample work with clients Gables Residential and Information Tycoon.