While a traditional sales model would include face-to-face sales pitches with clients, in today’s world tighter travel budgets can make this a difficult and expensive task. However using software solutions for organizing remote sales presentations can leverage both your time and the time of your clients.
While business travel and on-site sales presentations are at times necessary, many on-site pitches can easily be replaced by online presentations at a fraction of the cost. By incorporating online presentations into the sales process, the costs of both travel and time can then in fact be better used to generate further sales. In this blog post we take a look at how desktop sharing software can be used to organize online sales presentations at five different areas of the sale process.
Desktop Sharing in Sales: Effectiveness Bundled into a Simple Solution
Desktop sharing is used in a wide range of industries (some are listed in our Benefits Articles) to save companies both time and money while simultaneously increasing productivity. In the case of sales, desktop sharing enables salespeople to reach more prospective clients and an acceleration of the sales cycle. When a sales presentation can start with a click of the mouse and reach customers and potential customers around the world, the result is an increase in the bottom line.
We’ll take a look at how desktop sharing can be employed through the following five areas of sales: Lead Generation > Qualifying Leads > Sales Calls > Closing the Sale > Customer Support
1. Lead Generation
Breaking Down Geographic Barriers: Regardless of geographic location, desktop sharing enables sales professionals to schedule online presentations with entire groups of prospects even though the individuals of the group might be spread over different cities or countries. Web conferencing also enables businesses to collect leads in new distant markets, that they might not otherwise have reached without the expense of traveling there to meet possible new clients.
Passive Lead Generation: Desktop sharing software also provides companies with the opportunity to offer website visitors to attend online presentations and demos about the company’s product or services. Prospects then volunteer themselves to take part in the sales process, and as such can be highly valuable leads for salespeople. Furthermore keeping records of these online demos and making them available on the website, allows new website visitors to sign up and watch the informational product/service presentations. This again generates potential new leads for the company.
Existing Customers Become New Leads: Desktop sharing allows new products, services, or specials to be shown in order to upsell or cross-sell existing customers. Current customers make excellent prospective customers for new products. The current customer is already familiar with the company and hence normally very at ease to talk about new products/services. The salesperson can then initiate a desktop sharing meeting with the customer without any need for an on-site visit.
Educational Seminars Hook Prospects: Online meetings can also be utilized as a non-sales marketing tool to present live educational seminars to potential customers, who then become qualified leads. This differs from web presentations that aim to demo a new company product or service. Rather the idea here is to address a common challenge faced by the company’s potential customer base. For example, consider a company that sells CRM software. They could host a webinar on the best and most effective practices on how to build strong on-going relationships with customers. Those who use CRM products might be interested in this and hence sign up for the webinar. Later the sales team could contact these attendees regarding their own products and invite them to a desktop sharing presentation.
2. Qualifying Leads
When marketing tools, such as white papers, recordings of product demonstrations, and customer testimonials, are posted on a company’s website, potential customers self-select by downloading or accessing the materials. This process begins the selling process prior to a sales team member contacting a prospect. Similarly, if a salesperson is in an online meeting with a prospect it is very easy for them to quickly present such marketing material to the prospect via desktop sharing. The appropriate material can quickly be presented to the prospect and questions regarding the content instantly answered and discussed with the salesperson in detail.
3. Sales Calls
Desktop sharing is most useful during sales calls, and represents a tremendous savings of resources. The salesperson can invite one or more prospects to a presentation or project demonstration, regardless of the geographic locations of the potential clients, thereby saving both time and travel expense.
Presentations and Product Demonstrations: By enabling prospects to view the sales professional’s computer screen, desktop sharing allows the salesperson to easily present information about the company and its products and services. If the salesperson is pitching a new software product on their screen, the prospect can even be granted remote control of the salesperson’s computer, which enables them to browse the new technology and gain hands-on experience.
Building a Virtual Bridge: When some members of a potential client’s company can attend an in-person meeting but other key personnel cannot, desktop sharing allows those who can’t be physically present to participate in the meeting to attend from a remote location.
Cold Calling: During cold calls, the sales professional can quickly initiate a desktop sharing session and invite the prospect to review the company profile and view slides or other information about the product or service.
Immediate File Sharing: During an online meeting, desktop sharing allows the sales professional to provide potential customers with any material they may request. This enables a very transparent approach to sales and can reassure the customers about the salesperson’s genuine efforts in pitching the product/service. It also encourages a quick discussion about anything in the marketing material that may interest the prospect.
4. Closing the Sale
Desktop sharing is a powerful tool for closing sales and shortening the length of the sales cycle and increasing revenue streams.
Document Collaboration: Desktop sharing streamlines the process of working on proposals and contracts, since it allows both the salesperson and the client to modify proposals together in real time.
Team Leader Involvement: A salesperson’s supervisor can sometimes be instrumental in closing a sale. Desktop sharing solutions enable sales team leaders to join a sales presentation without ever leaving the office, thereby enhancing the interaction and increasing the client’s level of satisfaction.
Client Authorization: When a sale hinges upon the go-ahead from a potential client’s higher-level manager, desktop sharing solutions can smooth the way to closing the deal by allowing managers to attend meetings without ever leaving the office. In addition, the flexibility inherent in the tool makes it possible to initiate or reschedule a presentation at a moment’s notice.
5. Customer Support
Once the deal is closed, desktop sharing tools can be utilized to enrich the relationship with the customer.
Transitioning to Customer Support: Desktop sharing can become a bridge to provide the customer with the support needed to implement the company’s product or service. For example, desktop sharing can be used to introduce the company’s customer support team and walk the customer through the support services offered.
Follow-Up Meetings: Desktop sharing can also be utilized to conduct follow-up meetings, during which the sales staff can stay in touch with new customers. A series of weekly online conferences, for example, can go far in demonstrating a company’s commitment to their new clients.
Customer Retention: Similarly, desktop sharing can be incorporated as a way of keeping in regular contact with existing customers. Inviting customers to educational seminars, new product launches, and company news events are just three of the ways that desktop sharing can help ensure customer satisfaction and pave the way for future sales.
So as you can see, desktop sharing can be used at any or all stages of the sales process.