Live from Adobe Summit 2015: The three success factors to achieve digital sales excellence

We’ve seen before how mobile is the future of sales enable­ment, as 84% of sales man­agers believe it is fun­da­men­tal­ly chang­ing the nature of the job on an enter­prise lev­el. Adobe Sum­mit 2015 is all about dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion – and sales are by no means an excep­tion to that shift!

How are com­pa­nies trans­form­ing them­selves to adapt to this real­i­ty? Ear­li­er today, Ste­fan Wie­mann from Merz Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals host­ed a ses­sion at Adobe Sum­mit 2015 on the top­ic of dig­i­tal sales excel­lence, which pro­vides some valu­able guid­ance for for­ward-think­ing marketers.

The phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals busi­ness is fun­da­men­tal­ly chang­ing. Whether it’s the rise of ‘Dr. Google’ (accord­ing to the ‘Health Con­sumer Study’ by Google/OTX, 65–75% tend to research their symp­toms online before con­sult­ing a physi­cian), the explo­sion of per­son­al health data tracked by fit­ness bands, smart watch­es and oth­er wear­ables, or big­ger struc­tur­al devel­op­ments like smart con­tact lens­es, dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion is also here to stay when it comes to pharma.

With great trans­for­ma­tions come great oppor­tu­ni­ties. As patients and Health Care Providers (HCPs) are inte­grat­ing dig­i­tal tools into their dai­ly lives, Merz strives to change and adapt their marketing/sales approach. Here are their three main suc­cess fac­tors to achieve dig­i­tal sales excel­lence.

1. Engage with your customer

Merz work with high­ly spe­cialised prod­ucts in an ultra-com­pet­i­tive space, so engag­ing cus­tomers in a com­pelling and cred­i­ble way is essen­tial. Data is the back­bone to deliv­er a more per­son­alised expe­ri­ence, but pre­sent­ing cus­tomers with mem­o­rable visu­al assets and inter­ac­tive tools is also indis­pens­able if you want to effec­tive­ly com­mu­ni­cate the val­ue of your ser­vices. All of this is pow­ered by the capac­i­ty to always keep the nec­es­sary infor­ma­tion at your fin­ger­tips. The future belongs to those who deliv­er the right mes­sage to the right cus­tomer at the right time.

The next suc­cess fac­tor is what brings all this together…

2. Tell an emo­tion­al story

Great con­tent is effec­tive only if you are able to tell a great sto­ry. By com­bin­ing smart data with vivid, mem­o­rable images and inter­ac­tive tools we’re in a much bet­ter posi­tion to serve our cus­tomers, but it’s the sto­ry behind all of it that helps out­line the val­ue we’re pro­vid­ing to our cus­tomers. Hav­ing the right resources at our dis­pos­al is essen­tial; it’s our respon­si­bil­i­ty to bring those to life through storytelling.

Which brings me to suc­cess fac­tor num­ber three…

3. Train your confidence

Sales teams need to car­ry the right amounts of self-con­fi­dence, pas­sion and knowl­edge to effec­tive­ly present their mate­ri­als. The prob­lem is that basic train­ing can often become quite tedious or even bor­ing, which is why Merz also focused on chang­ing their train­ing prac­tices, com­bin­ing util­i­ty and fun, infor­ma­tion and entertainment.

By com­bin­ing their glob­al dig­i­tal sell­ing plat­form with a new dig­i­tal train­ing com­pan­ion called iLearn, Merz were able to cre­ate an iPad-based, inter­ac­tive edu­ca­tion­al pro­gram to empow­er their sales reps through the process of dig­i­tal sales. This in turn ele­vat­ed their cred­i­bil­i­ty and con­fi­dence whilst on the job, not only adding val­ue to prospec­tive and exist­ing cus­tomers but also mak­ing sure they mas­tered this dig­i­tal-first approach.

Ear­li­er this year, while dis­cussing dig­i­tal trends for 2015, we con­clud­ed that going from ‘dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing’ to ‘mar­ket­ing in a dig­i­tal world’ requires a shift in both cul­ture and strat­e­gy. With tools like Adobe DPS (and the upcom­ing Adobe Pub­lish release) we believe we’re on the right track to sup­port for­ward-think­ing mar­keters on that jour­ney, lever­ag­ing the trans­for­ma­tions that are hap­pen­ing in mar­ket­ing, sales and busi­ness. How do you see dig­i­tal tech­nol­o­gy chang­ing your own com­pa­ny? Let us know on Twit­ter @AdobeDigitalPub and join the con­ver­sa­tion at #Adobe­Sum­mit.