Interview with David Thompson

Interview with David Thompson, CEO – Genius.com, on web 2.0 based tools for marketing automation to improve sales productivity. April 1, 2009 by beyondsnakeoil.com:

Real-time Marketing Automation Connecting Marketing & Sales

Genius.com is the first SaaS solution that delivers the benefits of marketing automation to both Marketing and Sales, embodying the principles of Sales 2.0 that make it easier and more efficient for Sales and Marketing to close more deals “in the cloud”. Our powerful, intuitive and instantly available demand management software automates marketing workflows and provides real-time sales alerts on qualified lead activity so Sales can provide immediate, informed follow-up. Genius delivers a complete sales and marketing solution including: email marketing, lead nurturing, lead scoring, website tracking, instant alerts, and closed-loop reporting capabilities to manage and qualify sales leads, shorten sales cycles, drive revenues and prove marketing ROI.

How can Sales 2.0 webinars, presentations and virtual conferences evolve beyond the 1.0 style?

In her blog post Making Webinars and Presentations Sales 2.0 Anneke Seley, author of The Sales 2.0 Book, says

“I’ve had many opportunities to participate in Web and speaking events on the topic of Sales 2.0. While I am grateful for the invitations to spread the important message of reinventing sales to achieve better results, something has been troubling me: the typical approach many of us take to presentations is best described as Sales 1.0. Sales 2.0 is about collaborative, two-way communication and sharing of ideas with prospects and customers. Sales 1.0 describes the traditional feature/benefit-oriented pitches or presentations that we often make in one direction – to our customer or audience – without engaging them and letting them tell us about themselves and their business objectives.

Isn’t the PowerPoint presentation the ultimate Sales 1.0 offender, whether given face-to-face or online? […]”

I could not agree more. Besides the fact that customers should be there as additional speakers and present their own case study I would even go further and say that as few people as possible should be in ‘listen only mode’. ‘In browser virtual worlds’ with 3D spatial audio like the Lenovo eLounge, where anybody can un-mute their avatar at any time or decide for their own audio stream who to mute (for example people on a bad connection), would be a great space for really 2.0-like webinars, presentations and virtual conferences that break the one-to-many pattern. @skribe wrote a review of former web.alive now Avayalive Engage, the technology used for the Lenovo eLounge.

Lenovo eLounge

[Disclosure: Until October 1, 2009, I used to work for the company behind web.alive]

As you can see in the comment below @skribe also did a video walk through of the Lenovo eLounge

Content Landscape – feature rich web application for Sales Enablement

The videos below by Moritz Stefaner (his blog), a recognized expert on interface design, visualization, statistics and data mining, show how he applied his ‘Elastic Lists’ (Example 1, Example 2) to Sales Enablement resources. The result is called ‘Content Landscape’ and has been developed by the Sales Enablement vendor BizSphere.

From http://moritz.stefaner.eu/projects/content-landscape/

“Content Landscape is a feature rich web application for searching and browsing digital resources in the enterprise. It facilitates not only content access, but also the understanding of resource distributions. […]

A regional marketing manager for a product group wants to retrieve resources only for his specific region and product, restricted to marketing materials. Other users may be interested in the latest news across all areas, or material only related to contract preparation. […]

The browsing mode allows to select multiple filter settings in flat (’Content Area’, ’Sales Step’, ’Media type’), hierarchical (’Region’, ’Offering’ and ’Resource type’) and numerical facets (’Rating’ and ’Date created’). […] Understanding resource production, use and distribution across departments, regions, and product groups is one of the core challenges of knowledge management in the enterprise.

’What are the most downloaded contents?’, ’do the presentation materials for a given product cover all important sales regions?’, ’what parts of my resource collection are growing? and which are declining?’ are typical questions in this area. […]”