Linda was in a pickle.
After working for weeks to secure a sales appointment at the Port Authority in Houston, her distributor partner was unable to join her for the appointment due to a last-minute conflict.
The prospect was naturally distrustful, since he’d only interacted with Linda’s partner up to that point.
That predicament left Linda with two choices: leave her prospect with a brochure and business card, hoping to return in the future, or try something new to grab the prospect’s interest and manage the sales call alone….
Hard cold reality time here.
A study of over 600,000 sales people reveals 74% of them are failing.
As Marketers and Sales Managers, we’re often tasked with solving this problem. When digging deeper, we find its triggers and manifestations are many:
- Revenue is declining
- New products are not selling fast enough
- Not enough qualified leads
- Distributors are not hitting quota
- Sales cycles are taking longer
In this article, we share one actionable tactic that will increase your sales team’s conversion rate, using the mobile devices they already own.
Tactic – Use short product videos to hold prospects’ attention, increase buy-in and recall during in-person sales calls.
Emphasis on SHORT.
Here’s why this is important.
Modern consumers have the attention span of a goldfish – 9 seconds. That’s less time than it takes you to shake hands and introduce yourself!
Yet, we know that based on online sales data, consumers are up to 85% more likely to buy a product after watching a video.
Video is a proven persuasion tactic, enabling prospects to visualize the problem/solution that hits them right where it hurts, priming them to say “yes” before you detail your pitch, or make the ask.
Reversing this order is a common error for marketers and sales people. Rather, “Master Persuaders” lead with the conclusion—a tactic often called “talking past the sale.”
Product videos on your website leverage the “talking past the sale” tactic, so why not deploy them as a competitive advantage for your reps in the field?
9-second attention span vs 85% more likely to buy. I’ll take that math to the bank.
What might that look like in action?
Today, we share how Linda used a short video to crack a tough prospect that didn’t even want to let her through the front gate of a government facility. Then we’ll share insights into how to deliver this type of content properly to give your sales team a fighting chance.
Let’s jump in.
How Linda Got Past the Gate and Secured a Huge Deal
Why is Linda featured in this article? (you can see her bio here)
Linda sells some pretty high-dollar security doors, and often needs an approved vendor partner to get her into government facilities to meet with prospects.
On a visit to Port Authority, Linda got stood up by her partner (albeit unintentionally), and was left talking to an irked prospect who was trying to shoo her out the door.
To have a fighting chance of winning over this prospect without her partner, Linda had two options:
Option #1: Leave the prospect with a brochure and HOPE she got another chance to return with her partner (can you say extended sales cycle?).
Option #2: Share a short video to grab the prospect’s attention fast, and use it to trigger a conversation.
Fortunately for Linda, she opted for #2.
How’d it go?
Linda knew time was money, so during the walk from the front desk to her prospect’s office she took her iPad out of her bag and paid attention to her surroundings to mentally gather examples of where her products could benefit the prospect. (Linda sells doors, remember ;0).
To grab the guy’s attention, she dove straight into a short hi-res demonstration video showing a security system currently in place in a similar government facility.
The video showed the conclusion she wanted him to reach—e.g., “These doors could fit right into our facility today and solve a major problem.”
The prospect had no problem visualizing this because Linda set it up perfectly and her Marketing team gave her a contextual video. The video fit what the prospect knows of his industry and peers, so he could easily picture the result past the sale.
As Linda tells us, the prospect ended up watching 10 minutes of videos of different doors and features on Linda’s iPad. (Ten minutes is an eternity if you ever tried to engage a prospect that doesn’t want you there in first place.)
45 minutes later, Linda and her prospect were discussing how to solve one of his pain points: “tail-gaiting” (when people sneak into a building at the last moment after someone swipes their security card).
Not bad for a sales rep that should, for all purposes, have been shut out of the call in the first place.
We can’t guarantee you Linda’s results, given variables like your reps’ training, skill level, and so on. But, at a minimum, Linda’s story should spark ideas for employing visual cues and assets in a mobile sales tool, or app on devices your team already owns.
Best Practices for Creating Videos for In-Person Sales Call on Mobile Devices
If you’re thinking of sending your reps links to all your company videos right now, don’t.
To be effective for in-person calls, videos need to fit four key criteria:
- Short: 8-20 seconds is plenty of time to get your point across. Consider removing flashy corporate intros with theme music from the beginning and end. Your sales team doesn’t need them, and they’re distracting to prospects.
- Available Offline: To be useful to sales people in the field, product videos must be resident on the device (tablet, phone, laptop). There’s nothing more awkward than sitting in a prospect’s office trying to google a video or waiting for it to load on YouTube. Rather, create short videos that can be downloaded quickly to a video player or mobile sales app for offline viewing. (Apple devices require videos to be .mp4 or .m4v.)
- Contextual: Think about the locations where sales people meet with prospects. On-site like Linda? Coffee shops? Context is king for visual learners. Most likely, you already have videos that show your products in action. Considering the context of the sales meeting, cut out irrelevant footage so your reps have what they need, and waste no time on what they don’t.
- Sharable: Prospects often ask sales reps for materials they can share with colleagues and decision-makers. Marketers can make this easy by providing links to the video on YouTube or similar services like Wistia for tracking. Plus, many mobile sales apps enable marketers to create pre-formatted emails with embedded video links, saving reps valuable time in the field.
Here are few tools to help you modify existing videos for your sales team:
- Handbrake: Convert any video so it will play on Apple devices (iPhones, iPads, etc.)
- Camtasia: Easiest tool we’ve seen to cut videos small usable snippets and the ability to save as .mp4 for Apple devices.