«Return to Blog List Arming Sales Teams with Customer Slides
Marketing teams don’t just create materials for marketing; they also have to keep sales reps supplied with the tools to help close deals.
If they don’t provide materials in the format sales prefers, then sales reps create their own materials – all too often.
In a Web 2.0 Journal article this week, Ardath Albee of Marketing Interactions pointed out:
Research shows that salespeople spend an inordinate amount of time recreating that collateral in ways that work for them.
When it comes to customer case studies and success stories, what specifically do reps need?
Often, reps are using slide decks. Why not package summarized versions of your customer case studies and success stories on slides?
Albee calls them "validation slides," but they might also be called customer slides, ROI slides, case study slides, etc.
The point is to capture the highlights of your best customer experiences in summary in a way that’s super simple for sales reps to run with.
Make a point of creating slides to accompany every full success story and case study that you develop. Tell a story with your slides.
Who is the customer?
What was the challenge or business goal?
Which solution was applied?
What were the specific results?
The closer you match the featured customer with the one the rep is pitching, the better the outcome.
As Albee says:
These kinds of mini stories help them to believe that the outcome they want is actually viable.
Good point. Stories, especially customers stories, work.
Customer success stories are key to selling enterprise technology solutions–few want to be the first. Including these stories as slides in the sales rep’s presentation deck affirms to the prospect that this solution can indeed solve their problem.
Customer success stories are essential when selling enterprise technology solutions — only a select few want to be the first. Including these as slides in a sales rep’s presentation deck affirms to the prospect that this solution has already been successful in a similar situation.
Great information, Casey! I would add that almost as important as these case study slides, are talking-points and coaching documents to accompany them. What we find from our customers is that these talking-points, even in bullet format, are just as important as the slides themselves because they can be re-told over and over in any situation, not just during a formal presentation.
Absolutely. Case study content is essential for enterprise technology. It’s hard to imagine anyone investing without this validation.
Thanks for the valuable comment about talking points. Excellent way to ensure that reps actually know how to use and elaborate on case study slides by arming them with talking points and coaching docs.