Digital Product Training for your Mobile Salesforce
Effective product training to its salesforce is crucial for any organization’s success and brand value, and this holds true especially for product manufacturing firms. How well a salesforce can deliver the message to existing and prospective customers can make a big difference to its sales figures. But it’s not an easy task, especially when you are constantly innovating and have an extensive range of products, parts and accessories.
A lot of training managers at manufacturing companies typically cite product training as one of their key challenge areas. And this is why:
- Most of the organizations release new products or product updates frequently. Sales representatives keep going on and off the board constantly. It thus becomes a challenge to ensure that they have standardized and up-to-date knowledge on all products at all times.
- A lot of times, salesforce is spread across geographically. Also considering that they are often travelling on sales calls, it is a huge task to gather them in one place to attend trainings. It costs in terms of logistics, time invested in travelling and interruption to their work schedule.
- Considering the number of trainers involved across multiple locations, maintaining consistent and accurate training content becomes difficult.
- Considering multiple product releases and in-turn, their sales collateral, sometimes there is ambiguity on the latest version of such collateral received by the salesforce.
All of this could directly impact a company’s bottom line. In the absence of comprehensive, current and easily accessible product knowledge, the sales person could struggle to deliver a smooth pitch about the product, handle customer questions proficiently, recommend right products, gain customer’s trust and essentially get business.
A training manager had once asked me, “Then how do we train our salesforce effectively?” My answer to her was “Mobile Learning.” This is the best solution for today’s tech-savvy and mobile salesforce. The various benefits for mobile learning are:
- On-the-go learning via smartphone or tablet, convenient with their schedule and pace
- Real-time access to current and relevant product knowledge just before or even during customer meetings –leading to ‘Performance Support through Just in Time Learning Solutions’
- Ability to continuously review completed courses, podcasts and documents
- Complex product specifications, engineering drawings, installation and servicing information made easy through compelling multimedia content
For product manufacturer
- Better trained, successful and motivated salesforce which can even lead to higher retention
- Complete control on the training content across multiple locations
- Boost in training attendance
- Reduced logistics cost such as hotel or travel expenses
- Ability to track training attendance, completion and performance
- Opportunities for increased sales due to strong product knowledge at the point-of-sale
While there will always be a place for instructor-led training for some part of it, mobile learning can greatly impact sales through a well-trained sales force, which will always be on top of their game.
It would be wonderful to know your thoughts, questions and experiences in the comments section below.