But, let’s face it. Your 60-slide PowerPoint sales deck probably isn’t exactly what you’d call “engaging.” Chances are, the slapdash franken-presentations your sales reps whip up before every sales call aren’t cutting it, either. And we won’t even get into the bastardization of your brand due to inconsistent messaging and poor execution.
There has to be a better way, right?
It’s integrated. An interactive sales presentation marries your marketing story with the sales team’s need for agility.
As a marketer, you want sales to deliver a message that’s consistently on brand and supports your story. Why else would you have worked so hard to craft that perfect value proposition? But sales needs something flexible enough to adapt to each customer—no two of whom are alike—and talk to them in the context of their real-world business problems.
An interactive sales presentation defines the messaging sandbox for your sales team, supporting the consultative sales strategy that has already made your pros successful, and helping others develop the more consultative approach they need to sell more effectively. And you can create an interactive tool for a laptop, iPad or tablet—whichever device suits your sales team best.
It aligns your customers’ pains to your value story and solutions, wrapping it all up with easy navigation so sales can take each customer down a unique path that connects the dots between what matters to your customer and how your solutions meet those needs.
2. Focus on what matters. Skip over the rest.
It’s flexible. The interactive format gives you free reign to deliver a meaningful, engaging sales experience in unlimited ways.
How much detail is enough, and what’s too much? In a sales situation, the answer varies with every customer. That’s why your sales team balks when you try to force a one-size-fits-all presentation deck down their throats. Most B2B purchases involve multiple decision makers who seek different information. What the CEO wants may not be what marketing, purchasing or the people in the trenches care about. How do you cover it all in one tool?
The beauty of an interactive sales presentation is that you don’t have to bore every audience with the same story. When structured correctly, it makes every piece of content available in one or two clicks. Without the linear PowerPoint format, your salespeople can go beyond “presenting” to open up real dialog with customers, using the tool fluidly to dig deep on what’s important and skip what’s not—without interrupting the presentation flow.
3. Consolidate diverse sales assets into one tool
It’s robust. You can embed multiple media formats—from PDFs to video and sales apps—to create one truly integrated tool.
Having the right support information on hand can be the difference between closing the sale today and coming back later. An interactive sales presentation lets you combine different types of rich content, so it’s easily accessible from one place.
Forget gathering up case studies, sell sheets, videos, testimonials and ROI calculators before every sales call. All those assets can be embedded right into the tool, so sales can address purchase barriers on the spot—without needing to follow up later with information—and provide the backup needed to close the sale.
4. Customize the sales presentation—without really customizing the sales presentation
It’s just plain cool. In a competitive business world, interactive, rich-media presentations stand out and make an impact.
Combining web-like navigation with high-impact, brochure-like graphics, a rich-media interactive sales presentation lets you frame your story and arrange content in the order that makes sense. You can use pop ups, rollovers and hidden content to guide the discussion and show how you can solve specific business problems, so your presentation appears customized to the needs of each customer.
The key to developing an effective rich-media sales tool is in planning the right content, structure and assets. Do it right, and before long, maybe you’ll be able to hit your boss up for a raise.
Jim MacLachlan is Tartan Marketing's President and Co-Owner. His big thinking and big personality drive an agency culture built on strategic prowess and creative solutions. With more than 20 years of experience in marketing management, sales segmentation and strategic selling, Jim has provided the framework for highly successful programs for a variety of top B2B companies.