Who are the dominant players solving data ratio and relationship intelligence problems? Not sure? SugarCRM and Accent Technologies have teamed up to take that title. No matter what you call it, with AI (Artificial Intelligence) or any assistive technology, it’s important to focus on the problems they are trying to solve. Increase output of the CRM, be assistive to the sales rep and ultimately be intelligent enough to help drive change.
Here are a few things we will dive deeper into on AI, data ratios and driving change.
- Data sources are critical.
Data sources may grow in size, you may have more of them and maybe more variables that contribute to the big picture, so the more data you get in, the richer the output. But this doesn’t mean manually entering more data, this means automating data entry plays a key role. Being able to leverage various data sources will paint a better picture in the end. This makes it critical to ensure the solutions you look at, are tapping into quality data sources. SugarCRM’s Hint and Accent’s CRMSupercharger do just that.
- The tools should aim to improve the data ratio problem – not make it worse.
No one wants to manually enter data. Let’s be real – there is not a single seller today that likes to put data into a CRM. They all do it because they have to—either because of a mandate enforced by leadership or their desire to track customer relationships at that level of detail. Think about what automated data entry, an analytics engine that can seamlessly connect to different data streams, and a tool that brings back a full buyer profile from just an entered email address can do for your sales organization (Hint). It can change the perception a seller has about CRM.
It’s a pretty simple concept, but it’s often overlooked. Organizations are quick to mandate the data entry by their reps, but is that the best approach? We like to think that your reps bring more value when selling, not entering data. Ensure your sales tech solutions are capturing data sources and improving the data ratio problem, not requiring more data entry, which is the case with SFDC’s Einstein. Just look at the release notes. Really? Enough said.
Now let’s look at getting visibility and driving change. What can intelligence do for the sellers?
Experienced A-players know where to focus and what to do next, so make sure you are learning from that. Also, make sure that new sales strategies that come from the top-down are being supported and executed on at the ground level on the frontline. Let me give you an example: One of our clients is experiencing the following:
- Major competitor is a disrupter in the industry
- Revenue decreasing 6% YoY
- Need to differentiate with new services offering
- Reps need to pivot in new direction
- Sales leadership needs to change rep habits to focus on new sales strategy
What do you do? Do you trust sales teams to go down an unknown path of selling services? Do you have weekly calls evangelizing the importance of the services offerings?
Both, but at the end of the day, you can’t affect an outcome. You can only affect the activities and the effectiveness of those activities to meet the objectives. As stated before, the outcome is a result.
Visibility of activities, effectiveness and objectives is important in the realm of AI or assistive technologies. We need intelligence that can guide sellers in the right direction. Accent’s CRMSupercharger in SugarCRM provides visibility and allows you to leverage standard models out of the box to guide and prioritize deals for your reps. But we also give the steering wheel to our clients and work with them to set their own parameters. This allows them to prioritize the right opportunities for the business and subsequently indicate to sellers what are the most attractive opportunities to pursue. You’ve got the sales strategy, but Accent can operationalize it. Now that is big value.
Finally, acquiring new accounts requires time and research to determine who to talk to next, what role they play in the purchase process, how you make a connection to them, etc. If you are missing this, the AI assistance is falling flat. This is where Hint comes in. Accelerate the call prep time and reduce the amount of research you need to make a connection. Then enhance the overall picture with Accent’s CRMSupercharger by visualizing the engagement and the role of each contact. What does that mean? Well, visualize who is at the buying table, who your champion is, who your economic buyer is, who is engaged and to what extent.
Pictures tell stories. Weigh the difference. Do you prefer an analytics driven picture powered by Accent or a 1 paragraph summary of words and notes in an email from your rep? And if I had to bet, I’d say you’re still waiting for that summary from your rep.
As the world becomes more sophisticated and we get more complex, we will be in a great position to adopt assistive technology for more insight and maximizing peoples time. Keep in mind they should always be solving a problem and providing business value.