We've written many times how Sales 2.0 is actually driven by Customer 2.0 - users that expect to have conversations any time, any place, on any device. Complete access to information is now the rule, not the exception that Sales 1.0 lived on.
Nearly 1/3 of customers choose a social website over calling the vendor.
Why spend time waiting on the phone when you can see that YouTube video on demand?
More than half of customers expect a 2 hour or less response time.
This raises some simple questions: How can you empower your customer service team to respond faster? How can you make it easier for your customers to connect with your customer service representatives - so easy that they choose that interaction over talking with random strangers over social channels?
Of course you know this is the Glance blog, so fast and easy screen sharing is always the correct answer here, but the real news is we have some very interesting things coming out in the next couple of months on this front so keep your eyes on this space!
Many of our customers have taken advantage of the ability to customize the pages their guests see when they come to a Glance demo. For example this financial firm or these email marketing folks. After all it's your brand you'd like your business partners to see, not ours.
But did you know you can also customize the message your guests are left with? Or even direct them back to your website for more information?
Recently we were contacted by our customer Pharma Advisors who provide sales and marketing solutions to the pharmaceutical industry. They had a post-demo survey they wanted to offer.
They'd built the survey using the Salesforce platform, so survey results went directly into Salesforce.com, further extending the integration between CRM and Glance.
With a simple customization, after the demo ended we could redirect the visitor to the survey. We were also able to pass information like the salesperson who gave the demo.
The holidays are here and we reach the dreaded days between Christmas and New Year's. There's the lucky group taking this week off and maybe going somewhere warm or spending their huge bonus whether it's been paid or not, and everyone else who's working this week, calling on people that are probably looking to sell but not to buy.
It's little surprise that this week tends to get filled with long lunches, long range planning, budgets, complaining about gifts you recieved or complaining about your family in general. There's also the time honored tradition of wasting time surfing the web.
In that vein, instead of doing a holiday email to the house list that everyone would ignore anyway, I've assembled a list of classic videos. A few disclaimers - I was shooting for a 12 days of Christmas, but came up light on the count, so be it. Second, while many of the videos are considered great, and you need to be aware of them as classics as they come up in discussion, they actually tend to make sales look either a.) Sleazy b.)Depressing or c.)Both. But, they are entertaining.
I would normally lead off with David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross, featuring the not safe for work f-bomb loaded Alec Baldwin "motivational" speech, but that's been done in every sales video post since the dawn of blogging. If you haven't seen the holiday version you have been missing out. I apologize that you'll probably have to sit through a pre-roll ad, but that's the price of SNL videos that they host themselves.
Anyone even remotely connected with cold calling gets a kick out of Giovanni Ribisi's feedback session (warning, adult language):
Door to door has mostly gone the way of the Fuller Brush Man, but this video has generated some action thanks to non-stop patter (and yes, sorry, more adult language):
John Candy's Del Griffith has been on Trains, Planes, and Automobiles and is out of cash. With nothing but a box of shower curtain rings he's going to talk his way to closing enough to get home. Includes classic 80's soundtrack and hairstyles:
In an unbridled show of shameless self promotion I'm including this Glance video on how not to cold call. Although this may appear to be humor and holiday cheer, it's really just a stunt to get you to check out Glance for Salesforce.com. If you've ever gone through the hell of being unable to get a prospect to connect to your screen sharing session, or wish you were able to automatically track demos through integration to Salesforce.com, check it out.
Bonus Round 1:
In 2013 you'll be hearing a lot about co-browsing - applying Glance's innovative solution to customer service, so here's something for your friends in Support:
Bonus Round 2:
Although the old joke is "Humor at IBM has always been no laughing matter", I opted against putting one of my favorite tech videos, "The Universal Adapter" here since it's not directly sales. As I was checking out some others in the series I found one that's now a lot more interesting. The first one to correctly identify the "Yes Man" gets something from the Glance Marketing Closet of cool stuff. If you have any favorite sales videos please let me know in the comments.
I've been to a bunch of sales conferences, they're all the same.
There's some promoter who nervously laughs and shakes your hand in hopes that you won't see through the shell game which they have once again sucked you and 500 (their count) into.
Then there's the speakers, a mix of big company folks who are no smarter than anyone else in the crowd but because they work for mammoth company inc, we're certain they must be.
We sit on the edge of our seats awaiting clarity and direction, only to find we are doing much of the same. (and in many cases we're the more progressive thinkers)
Of course you have the "consultants" and "industry experts" who chase after mammoth company execs like teenagers after Beiber.
And then there's the vendors, the hair-styled-suit-coated-carbon-copies of one another, ready to pounce as soon as you reach for a cup of coffee.
They hit you with the most predictable lines ever created, yet are certain of their originality.
I sit back and look at the whole charade and realize why the outside world looks down upon so many of us.
We're a predictable lot.
It's hard to be a nonconformist amongst this peer group, but I believe that's what it takes to be truly successful as a seller or marketeer these days.
It takes courage and intellect to understand that if you approach customers from the non-traditional perspective you have a much greater chance of being successful.
Why do such a foolish thing?
Because customers actually have brains, they know your shtick and the next guys and the gal after that, and they put up with our disingenuous bullshit constantly- so when the real deal, the honest human comes into their over pitched world, it's like a breath of fresh air.
I'll never understand why 99.9 percent of us engage conversations so wrapped around our corporate scripts that we refuse to listen to our human instinct and just engage in a straight forward conversation?
I think it's because down deep we're afraid to fail, and know if we remain inside our programmed robotic sales shell, well then, it's easier to take.
I mean we're just supposed to follow "the program" - right?
Wrong, very wrong. Don't follow the program.
Here's a news flash, in todays real time, social-mobile-world, the program doesn't work. In fact, tell your boss his program sucks.
Once you free "your creative seller" from the box its trapped within, you'll be amazed with the result.
But don't trust me - just do me a favor - trust you.
Glance (www.glance.net) is looking for a QA Engineer. We're a small Internet company located in Arlington between Mass Ave and the Minuteman Bike Trail. We provide a simple, quick screen-sharing service for remote demos and presentations. We’re a bootstrapped company, cash-flow positive and growing. We have thousands of customers world-wide, including well-known names in the technology industry.
We’re looking to expand our QA team, particularly to support some new and existing web services. We’re looking for someone who wants a challenge and always likes to learn the latest technologies; who takes pride in shipping a polished, reliable product but also understands the urgency of getting something out the door.
Experience in QA for a consumer or B2B SAAS product or web application, preferably on a small team in a small company.
Expert at testing web sites and web applications, particularly web application security, stress testing and UI/UX testing.
Familiarity with web testing tools, especially lower end or open source security and load testing tools is desired
Experience with Windows and Windows application testing
Experience with Macs and Mac application testing
Familiarity with bug and defect tracking systems and QA/Release procedures
Ability to create and write test plans
Should be willing to interact with customers on escalated support calls or to reproduce or diagnose problems
Familiarity with web and Internet technologies, TCP/IP, HTTP, HTTPS, proxy servers, firewalls, various browsers and settings, cookies
Some experience with HTML/CSS, modern web site technologies
Any of these would be a plus:
Familiarity with mobile operating systems (iOS, Android) and mobile web sites.
Salesforce.com and Salesforce AppExchange applications
Experience using FreeBSD or other Unix variant
SQL-Server database and SQL queries
Interested? Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts on this position and links to your LinkedIn profile/resume/blog/twitter/whatever-you-got about you!
This is a full-time, on-site position, local candidates only please. We would only consider a contract if you’d be seriously interested in a contract-to-perm, no contract agencies please.
Marc Benioff's latest move underscores two big shifts happening in today's sales and support space:
Companies large and small are realizing the value of migrating management of their entire customer lifecycle to the cloud -- not just the sales process. We're excited to see the Salesforce juggernaut double down on this trend, both in terms of what it means for the customer service market as a whole and (selfishly?) for ourselves as an AppExchange partner.
Pairing next-generation screen sharing and co-browsing technologies with traditional voice and chat takes customer sales and support to a whole new level of productivity. Instead of wrestling with a heavy-duty web meeting tool like WebEx or GoToMeeting, which can take minutes to download and still not connect, innovative companies realize huge productivity gains by instantly seeing what's being discussed.
The first point is no surprise. As Salesforce.com continues its push towards enabling "The Social Enterprise," adding screen sharing and co-browsing to customer interactions is a no-brainer. An instant web demo tool can help companies shorten their sales cycle and boost close rates, sharply reducing their sales and marketing cost-per-close.
Obviously all of us at Glance have a biased opinion on the second point -- the inherent power of super-simple screen sharing and co-browsing. We applaud seeing these services becoming a standard in many enterprises. GoInstant's acquisition proves that regardless of what's happening with "commodity" web meeting services, innovative approaches to lightweight screen sharing and co-browsing can deliver huge value. Eliminating downloads, connecting instantly, and making a service easy to integrate with enterprise tools in the sales and service clouds is the next wave of opportunity in our space.
Looking forward, we see two major verticals where we anticipate more M&A activity. The first is other CRM vendors, like Oracle, Microsoft and SAP. (Actually, you could say Oracle struck first, with its acquisition of RightNow.) As Salesforce.com races to roll out new features built from its GoInstant acqusition, competitors will need to respond.
The second is the call center vertical: players like Cisco, Avaya and Genesys Labs, who need to move their agent desktops beyond traditional voice and chat, so their customers can also "speak" the rich media language of online sales and support to the world of mobile devices.
Jill Konrath talks about today's "crazy busy buyers". At a recent conference, one enlightened speaker leveraged his 16-year old's cell phone bill as justification for future business strategy. What's the connection?
The 16-year old's cell phone bill has a minutes usage of 0. Nada, zip, nil. When was the last time you were able to hold much of a conversation on the phone with a teenager? They don't talk on the phone. They text, they update their facebook status, they tweet, they don't talk (at least not on a device!)
Why not? Because they're doing other stuff, and when something crosses their mind, they take action, on their time. And then, because their friends think exactly the same way, they get answers at their FRIENDS' convenience. Immediacy occurs face to face, the majority of other interactions are time-shifted.
Jill's crazy busy buyers share similar characteristics. They don't answer the phone. You have to find them on their time, at their convenience. When you do have their attention, you've got to make the most of every second: be well-versed in their business, understand and articulate your value proposition, be relevant and address their issues, bring value not distraction. People think in 3's; remember SSR:
Simplify your message, your value and your interaction with customers
Speed nobody has enough time, and nothing is more frustrating than wasted minutes even "just a few".
Recently, I’ve tuned into a number of articles about the “millennials” and “Generation Y” sales reps. They’re being measured and categorized and studied as if they were a product being launched into the market. Well, in a way, they are.
One thing is clear… they will do what works. And they’re not afraid to try new things to figure out what works. At a division of Reed Business, one such young sales rep has transformed a whole sales process, and all he was looking to do was close more business and improve his own performance! Click the video below for the full story as told by his Chief Customer Officer, who describes the transformation as bringing the ability to "really understand what was going on when we demonstrated our.. service." Could you improve YOUR sales process if you knew:
Point #1 - the web is dead. Ok, so that's a bit of an inflammatory point, but it's not the first time I've read that. The point is that we've all graduated from "looking it up on the web" to "there's gotta be an app for that". The web is now an infrastructure, and we get where we want by going someplace specific -- it's not as random as it once was.
Point #2 -- from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 to ... MOBILE! It's just not news anymore: the world *is* going mobile. With the proliferation of smartphones and tablets, no worker (white or blue collar) is tethered to a desk any longer - not even a laptop. I recently read that the majority of new 2-year wireless service contracts are going to tablets. Gartner predicts that the volume of tablets will almost double this year, and increase by at least 25% again in 2013.
Having recently attended the AA-ISP Annual Leadership Conference for inside sales professionals, it's clear that many of us still conduct our daily business from an office.. most of the time. And yet, at the conference, I used my tablet more than my laptop. I saw conference attendees using their tablets as well. When I came back, and started calling my customers, I learned that the majority of *their* customers are increasingly asking about tablet access. Just yesterday, one of my customers made exactly that point, "Our [his] customers are always tight on time, about 50-50 for technically savvy, and absolutely more and more are on smartphones and tablets."
Which leads me to wonder ... where is our selling process headed when we arm our sales people with cumbersome webinar technology with which to meet their customers for an online meeting?
Are your customers like the one described above? always tight on time, maybe technically savvy, maybe not, and increasingly mobile? Or are you lucky enough to have customers with extra time on their hands, lots of technical expertise to pour into your meeting, and tethered?