Today’s buyer journey is anything but traditional and straightforward. Buyers have not only evolved to prefer more & more customised touchpoints, but they also now have access to several digital channels and their own sub-channels to collaborate with numerous stakeholders simultaneously. This implies that you (or your sales team) must be ready to meet prospects online in order to provide distinct and differentiated experiences each time to stand out from the competition. A digital sales room allows vendors to accomplish all of this and more. Let’s look at what a digital sales room is, why it’s useful, and some best practices for moving ahead.
According to Enable.us, an average buyer will typically have 27 information-gathering sessions before closing directly with sales, which means that the information supplied by the sales team in the later phases (i.e. after exploratory meetings) of the buyer’s purchasing journey is critical to the eventual closing of the deal.
Furthermore, in recent years, the sales process has undergone drastic changes (which was accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic) as everything that could be digitized, has been uploaded to the cloud. According to a recent McKinsey poll, more than 75% of key decision-makers actually prefer digital human interactions and self-service alternatives over face-to-face meetings. Therefore, in reality, the majority of sales conversations are now taking place online, due to the obvious simplicity, accessibility and cost advantages.
To differentiate themselves, modern sales teams must build individualised, yet enjoyable experiences for their customers as early in the sales process as feasible, to accelerate the deal process. This is because they must understand that the time lost essentially increases the odds of deals falling through or the prospects moving on without satisfactory closures either way. This is where digital sales rooms shine, providing the ideal platform for sharing relevant material to engage buyers and then shorten the sales process with much fewer emails and hyperlinks.
What is a Digital Sales Room a.k.a. DSR?
Well, it’s fair of you to wonder what exactly is a Digital Sales Room (DSR) is after all this hype. A digital sales room in a nutshell is a unified, all-encompassing platform where your buyers or even prospects can access all of the resources shared by your sales team during their purchasing journey. Rather than just sending a series of emails with links to a bunch of sales decks, videos, proposals, client testimonials, and other resources, the sales team just needs to send one link to the personalized DSR. All information contained in the DSR is freely accessible 24/7, ensuring that each important stakeholder participating in the decision process is always up to date at all times during the purchasing journey.
In a nutshell, this is simply how DSRs work:
- Your company will place all of the sales enabling collaterals & resources in a single or multiple repositories within the DSR and then personalize & customize it however they see fit to align with the company’s marketing & branding guidelines.
- Then the Prospects are given access to the repository by the sales team who sends them the (view-only) URL. Sometimes prospects will have to log in to access the resources, since their activities on each item may be linked back to their user profile. You can now see which pages a prospect saw, how long they spent on each page or slide of a document, and how they interacted with a resource.
Consider the following scenario. In a follow-up email after a meeting, you as a sales professional wish to send a demo video, an ICP analysis pager, an industry white paper, and a few similar client testimonials to the buyer. Instead of sending each of these items as a separate attachment or links, the sales professionals may consolidate all of these critical buyer-facilitating resources into a single digital location and send only one link to access it — the digital sales room (DSR).
Salespeople then can obtain the data that depict exactly what each point of contact is interested in. For example, perhaps CTOs spent a significant amount of time reviewing technical details while other C-suite executives reviewed price documents & testimonials whilst marketing heads looked at the ROIs and Casestudy examples.
This platform enables you as a seller, to note down and respond to buyers’ interests and requirements much more rapidly, allowing them to close more deals in lesser time than usual. More importantly, it also gives purchasers a one-stop-shop for all documents utilised during the sales process, making it easy to discover certain documents.
Why should you bother?
Keeping all of your material on a single platform simplifies content management and enables salespeople to adopt the DSR for each particular prospect. Rather than categorising everything into various folders and subfolders, digital sales rooms allow you to put in (easily editable) filters so that potential buyers may intuitively narrow down and separate the type of materials they’re looking for, such as just video content, client testimonials, sales decks, case studies, introductory materials and more.
Each digital sales room can be customised to provide the buyer with all of the tools and information they require to make a purchase decision. Everything in the DSR, from the content to the navigation and structure, may be modified and personalised to the prospect’s own preferences. A streamlined buyer experience like this enables prospects to obtain the specific information they want more quickly, expediting the sales process for both buyers and sellers. Therefore, prospects find the information they’re looking for, and marketers can see the material they searched/looked for, thereby allowing the sales team to follow up with extra content that might sway the buyer’s choice.
Another major appeal of DSR is that data is collected every step of the way with each buyer’s click, hover & scroll. Vital information is provided as to what materials the prospect consumes, where they click and how long they watch/read it for. This more importantly gives you an idea of what doesn’t work so you may then make data-driven judgments about what to include and what not to include in the DSR to help all stakeholders in the deal go through the buying process rather smoothly. These buyer behavioural data allow salespersons to obtain valuable insights into the buyer’s needs and wants, in addition to just providing a single location for buyers to access all the relevant materials. And some DSR platforms also give you the added advantage of being able to record meetings and play them back so that the contents may be accessed by others inside the business (yours or theirs).
There is something we need to clear up though. The term “digital sales room” suggests that this software was designed specifically for sales teams. While a digital sales room (DSR) is primarily a tool used by the sales teams, marketing departments may reap several benefits from incorporating DSRs into their marketing stacks as well. Marketers frequently spend hours developing sales material with little visibility into whether or not this content effectively pushes the buyer further through the funnel. Choosing the correct material to support or allow sales might be challenging due to poor content management and limited visibility into sales activities.
This is where digital sales rooms come into play: marketers can readily access and understand how well their content performs with potential buyers thanks to data and behavioural insights, which can be applied to the rest of their marketing content outside the funnel. Furthermore, the platform enables improved content management and better communication between the sales and marketing departments. The fact is that while digital sales rooms are a primary tool for sales, the benefits extend well beyond the sales teams.
Let’s look at the main advantages of DSRs and why salespeople and marketers like us adore them.
1. Tracks Buyer Engagement – As we mentioned before in this article, DSRs allow you to track every single action of the buyer within its digital room. Buyer behavioural data is collected each time a buyer interacts with any collateral in the DSR. This data reveals exactly what the buyer interacts with and does not interact with, as well as how long they look at a certain section of it. The DSR’s data allows the marketing team to be more involved in determining how the material should be used to fully optimise its purpose and potential. This stands out in comparison because marketers frequently don’t know how or whether the sales resources are being utilised to the fullest extent
2. Personalized prospect experiences can be created in digital sales rooms – Customised video welcomes, for example, can be made to address clients by name and explore their unique problem issues. It doesn’t end with greetings. You should only include relevant items to guarantee that their buyers find them useful and informative. Usually, attachments (let’s say in a google drive for context) lack relevant data but, digital sales rooms track buyer interaction which allows sales to make data-driven choices on what to circulate. Each transaction has its own digital sales area. This implicates salespeople to adapt the information in the salesroom to that individual buyer, presenting them with exactly the resources they require and no extraneous fluff. Not only that but the DSR may be styled to meet the buyer’s brandings and themes.
3. Keep prospects engaged throughout and conform to the ever-evolving demands of your customer – You may utilise digital sales rooms to keep your prospects warm over a lengthier sales process or to re-engage and heat up cold prospects. You can, for example, check if a prospect has read an asset you’ve provided them. Whether to or not, follow up a day later to remind them to review the material. Furthermore, because digital sales rooms are highly customisable, they could instantly be aligned to the needs of a prospect. That’s because most platforms leverage cutting-edge technology, such as live demos you produced for your prospects and short product vignettes that enlighten prospects fast and on their own conditions.
4. Digital Sales Rooms are more versatile – Digital sales rooms are extremely adaptable and dynamic because they tend to allow you to rapidly convert to the demands of the consumer, regardless of how frequently they tend to change. This was not the case with traditional sales & marketing techniques, which required each modification to have its own handling and administrative approach. They use short/long videos, prior demos, product vignettes, decks, and conventional sales materials to combine with current technologies. Adaptability, variety and agility are all vital characteristics of any sales-focused organisation, and digital sales rooms enable you to design a digital environment that suits the demands of your prospects as well as potential clients. There are various methods to express your message, whether your client responds best to product demos, ROI Decks, or by watching client testimonials who found success with your services.
5. Accelerates the trust-building process – You and prospects can communicate on a regular basis thanks to virtual contact and online conversation. As a result, creating trust takes much less time. With digital sales rooms, you will be able to respond to consumer inquiries and needs more quickly, with accessibility and convenience. The majority of customers always have their phones in their hands, which provides a terrific tool for talking directly to the sales personnel and greatly streamlining the entire selling procedure. Furthermore, you as the merchant may collect individualised information from their buyers and advertise with personalised sales tactics, which can aid in sales retention. A prospect is more likely to make a purchase choice with a seller they trust, whether they are a B2B buyer or a B2C customer. Salespeople can be present in digital sales rooms at all phases of the customer experience. In the long run, this fosters trust and faith.
6. Collect new contacts- Another benefit of using a digital sales room is the ability to track shares and capture new contacts and integrate them into your funnel. Digital Sales Rooms once linked to LinkedIn allow you to see who has visited the room, their seniority, and what their function is within the firm. As a result, whenever one of your key contacts shares one of your sales assets with another person, you are introduced to a new prospect (quite possibly within the same company or even to another company as a referral – how great would that be?).
7. More productive and increased sales capacity – As your company grows, your sales team will have more deals to work on, but unless processes are improved, some deals and contacts will surely fall through the cracks. With DSRs and their integrations, it increases capacity by making it quick and straightforward to connect buyers with the appropriate resources at the right time. Digital sales rooms enable salespeople to complete transactions more quickly and efficiently, whether it’s curating information or getting specific insights. Sales rooms simplify the purchasing process, leaving your competitors in the dust. Furthermore, the buyer enablement programmes becomes more and more active!
8. Aids in visual marketing – The visual component was a fundamental strength of the face-to-face sales cycle, as it is the most interesting segment of it. A sales representative demonstrated a product live and answered any questions that arose. Likewise, visual selling is a great strategy for convincing potential consumers to buy in. To compensate for the loss of live product demos, several businesses employ demo films or share their screen during video conferences. Even still, these techniques fall short. On the other hand, digital sales rooms offer significantly greater potential to assist your sales teams in telling the story of your product or service. These systems are capable of more than just displaying virtual presentations as the entire digital sales room could be designed to be visually aesthetic so that you can highlight the most important bits and pieces of information and even go one step further to match the room with the theme of the prospect’s branding. This is truly taking your funnel to the next possible stage, which you obviously cannot replicate in the bygone era of physical sales pitch meetings.
9. Obtain access to a dispersed workforce on both the buyer and seller sides – All of the current buzzwords, such as work-from-anywhere and hybrid work, are here to stay whether you like it or not. Your buyer groups may still be primarily operating under different roofs, and future WFH patterns appear to indicate minimal transitions to the way things were before. The same could be said for your sales crew. Sales groups are still dispersed and operate from home. DSRs truly allow for a sell-from-anywhere-to-anywhere mindset since a scattered workforce is the new normal from both ends of the candle (you and your prospects). When the globe turned to digital selling last year, it appeared to be a solution for social alienation, multiple makeshifts were put on to hold us over until the world opened up again. However, due to their numerous advantages, digital sales rooms have emerged as the preferred option for both buyers and sellers. The figures and facts show that digital sales are here to remain, even in the post-covid era.
10. Less cost, more scalability and unlimited playback – Digital sales rooms have enabled organisations to shift away from costly work travel and time-consuming face-to-face conferences and toward digital experiences that take a fraction of the time to develop while producing the same or even better outcomes. Another advantage is that digital sales rooms offer the ability to record conversations and chats so that the contents may be accessed by others inside the business (from both ends of the candle). This can help speed up the sales process because key stakeholders can watch a meeting tape on their own time. This implies that the whole team’s sales cycle isn’t stalled as they wait for an open place on one or two staff members’ calendars. Covid-19 revolutionised (for the better or worse), a change in how businesses conduct businesses, especially within the sales and marketing community.
In addition to leveraging Digital Sales Rooms in your sales processes, (thanks to Covid Pandemic), hybrid or even fully remote work is a notion that is here to stay. This is mainly because most new recruits require virtual onboarding, adopting digital sales rooms may be a significant plus point to your sales enablement and training programs. You can even treat the new recruits as a prospect and set up Sales onboarding and sales training sessions in DSR which can be combined into a single room with all required contents accessible via a single link. You may also track your new hire’s progress and recommend further training courses as needed. How cool is that?
Now that we got the introductions out of the way, What are the best practices for fully utilising Digital Sales Rooms?
Buyers are more knowledgeable than ever before since they are connecting with more materials prior to initial calls. Buyers that are well-informed want to choose the company that has the greatest solution, can answer their inquiries and can create a long-term connection. Answering the buyer’s inquiries should be your primary focus. Content in DSR should assist salespeople in following up on inquiries from buyer discussions and clear any clarifications buyers might have even before they ask them. Digital sales rooms provide a space for buyers and sellers to continue their dialogue.
You must make sure that all the information in your digital sales room is relevant to all of the stakeholders on the purchasing team by ensuring that the digital sales room is constantly up to date by uploading fresh information as discussions with the buying team as they occur.
Furthermore, it is vital to make yourself available to the buyer at all times possible. They are likely to have questions as they engage with new information, and digital sales rooms provide a perfect location for sellers to reply to or collaborate with customers within itself.
A good digital sales room is one in which:
- You can distribute highly relevant deal-related material
- Gather information on buyer involvement by tracking Buyer Engagement
- Cooperate with all internal & external stakeholders
- Ensure a source of truth throughout the sales cycle
- Create a Convenient and Personal Buying Experience
- Ensures a Presence in Your Absence
- Customize and personalize by adding a Human Touch
- Provides total Control of Security, Privacy, & Access
Because negotiation is so important in the buyer experience, you can even bargain immediately within the salesroom using two different communication channels: video calls and chat messages. Quite convenient isn’t it?
Digital sales rooms are very effective because they correspond accurately to how customers interact throughout the sales cycle. According to Gartner, buyers frequently participate in ‘looping,’ or the act of accessing channels many times during their buying journey. Digital sales rooms streamline this disjointed experience by providing a dedicated place for buyers to discover the material they want when they require it, wherever they have an internet connection.
Before wrapping this up, here are some short facts concerning digital sales rooms and their importance to both buyers and sellers. It is:
- A safe digital environment that connects buyers and sellers
- A brandable library of sales collateral
- Account-based selling experiences that are elevated
- A location to monitor and identify deal progress and other stakeholders.
- A digital environment in which the seller’s brand and personality may shine through
- A safe shared collaborative area
- A platform for Dynamic content creation
- Offers you knowledge about prospect engagement and interactions
- A conduit for collaborative communication.
- Offers branded virtual experiences and many Possibilities for customization
Digital sales rooms are used for more than simply sales. A DSR’s tools, integrations, and data help marketers to develop even better sales enablement collaterals, understand the buyer’s journey, and ultimately affect revenue generation targets that are aligned with sales and lead-gen. By deciding to invest in digital sales rooms, you may save your existing and even future sales teams a lot of time as well as financial resources for the organisation. By adopting a digital-first sales approach, you may shorten the sales presentation process and close new businesses much more quickly. Digital sales rooms may make a significant difference in your organization’s profitability and we believe it is the future of Sales!