December 5, 2022
Digital sales rooms (DSR’s) are a relatively new development, and most current DSR solutions are very limited in terms of functionality and impact. However, as our customers roll out Filo DSR’s across their global sales teams, we regularly get asked:
“When should sales rooms be introduced within a sales cycle?”
Digital sales rooms are the bridge between product led and sales led selling models. They make the entire process easier on the buyer (while also saving the sales person time). However, for DSR’s to work to their potential they should be leveraged throughout the entire sales cycle … starting with the first call.
Digital sales rooms should be created before the first call, introduced during the call, and play a key role in post call follow up. DSR’s should help you gather relevant material, communicate your process up front, and be introduced to the prospect as a key resource.
Take qualification a step further by making criteria transparent to the prospect, allow them to share requirements and details about what they are looking for ahead of and during the call, and capture and share discovery and meeting notes directly in the room for both parties to reference moving forward.
Leveraging a Digital Sales Room template can actually save precious time and energy by having follow up standardized and mostly built out ahead of time … simply filling in the information specific to the prospect and conversation.
During the first call, a digital sales room:
Once qualified, now is the time to compete and convince the prospect that you are the best solution to their problem. Regardless if the prospect has visited or leveraged the digital sales room prior to this point, the fact that a personalized, branded, and secure room exists with all the information from prior interactions together already gives you a leg up.
Continue to capture and share notes transparently within the DSR. Ensure all information about your solution is easily available and hand pick the pieces that fit best to your prospect’s specific challenges. Ensure your process is clearly laid out so your contact knows what to expect and avoids any unnecessary surprises. Finally, encourage your contact to leverage your DSR as an efficient place to ask specific questions and get personalized answers from both you and the broader deal team.
Winning over your contact is only the first step, however. Enabling them to easily share and advocate for you internally is one of the most overlooked steps in any sales process. Many purchasing efforts today include over 20 stakeholders. Luckily, your DSR does much of this work for you. Ensure they know how to share your DSR with others, and be quick to admit or approve new contacts into the fold.
As other prospect team members join and leverage your digital sales room, be sure and monitor usage for key insights into their engagement and what information is more important to them.
While competing, digital sales rooms:
By the time you are selected, your DSR has already been established as a key resource for information, the deal team, and getting questions answered. At this point, the focus should be on making the final steps as easy, quick, and painless as possible.
Nothing brings a deal to a halt faster than seeing the trust you have built throughout the sales cycle get upended during negotiation of final details and contracts.
As you work through final security reviews, proposals, and redlines, your digital sales room should be leveraged as a way of sharing all relevant and secure documents, transparently documenting decisions that are made, and providing a common and trusted place for questions, objections, and answers.
By this time, your DSR has become your customer facing CRM. It is important to maintain that momentum to get the deal across the line.
During negotiation, digital sales rooms:
Signatures are not the end, they are just the beginning. Now comes the time to deliver on the promises and commitments you have made throughout the sales cycle. Typically, an entire new team is now brought into the mix, tasked with turning what you have sold into reality for the customer. Unfortunately, many times this new team has not been very involved up to this point.
Digital sales rooms, when used correctly, make knowledge transfer a breeze. Information, contracts, people, and conversations are already organized for everyone involved. Simply remove room members who are not involved post sale, and add in key onboarding and implementation team members. Use your DSR to host a knowledge transfer call and walk the team quickly through the details already present in the room.
Just as in the pre-sales process, leverage shared action plans within the DSR to establish a high level roadmap for implementation. Continue to leverage your DSR as a place to meet and ask questions. Leverage your DSR to provide weekly status updates and document additional decisions and adjustments that come your way.
During onboarding and implementation, digital sales rooms:
Most digital sales room guidance stops at onboarding and implementation. However, this is a huge missed opportunity. A truly collaborative digital sales room solution continues to serve as a home base for interaction throughout the entire customer relationship.
Leverage your digital sales room to host QBR’s, establish and document ongoing objectives and challenges, and as a digital war room when inevitable escalations arise. Continue to keep DSR members up to date, ensuring you include everyone involved: owners, executive sponsors, customer success, support, services, and partners.
Your digital sales room should be a living, breathing demonstration of the value you provide as a trusted vendor and partner. Should additional projects branch off, don’t hesitate to create multiple digital sales rooms to manage the communication and information moving forward.
The more DSR’s serve as a home base for interaction, the most value you will provide and sticky you will be.
Thought customer relationships, digital sales rooms: