Technology alone won’t transform your business. It only becomes transformative when woven together in a way that creates engagement, starting with the customer and moving back all through the organization. The disruptive triptych combination of migration to mobile platforms, analytics, and engagement has provided a means for marketers to transfer relevant knowledge to prospects and customers in a cost effective and measurable way.
The barriers between digital and physical have truly blurred. Companies are incorporating real-world objects, augmented reality, 3D product environments and other technologies into their storytelling. Prospects want more control over their individual experiences, allowing them to influence or become involved in events, and, as marketers it’s our job to give them power.
Marketing’s digital transformation has evolved to create mobile sales enablement tools that truly captivate and convert. Sales teams are craving engaging content that’s available across multiple platforms, providing information relevant to where people are and what they are doing in the physical world. The migration to mobile devices (tablets, smartphones, laptops, websites) has provided B2B companies with a way to cost effectively deploy interactive marketing experiences onto any device (via the cloud), regardless of location, getting interactive user experiences into the hands of those who need it most (prospects, customers, sales teams, channel partners and more.)
Each customer encounter is now a more personalized ‘mobile moment’, in which prospects are driving conversations and direct interactions with products that are of interest to them. This type of mobile interactivity has not only proven to increase knowledge retention by up to 75%, but has become a real opportunity accelerator, by quite literally putting virtual product demonstrations into the hands of every prospect, sales person and channel partner.
Creating Knowledge Experts
In addition to empowering their direct sales teams with effective product training (especially in B2B companies with complex product portfolios), organizations are making their interactive marketing applications available to their VARs and channel partners. These engaging tools create product messaging experts across all sales channels, by disseminating accurate and relevant marketing messages that are easier to articulate, digest and access.
These applications are successful in elevating the level of knowledge of all participants in the process. This is because the most useful content is seamlessly blended together with compelling virtual 3D product models, virtual environments, panoramas, flow diagrams, videos, embedded marketing collateral, and presentations in a branded digital environment. The self-driven, non-linear user engagement results in a personalized experience every time, creating a relevant transfer of knowledge to each individual within the buying cycle.
Big Data Analytics
The advanced analytics on these digital applications have given marketers the ability to track the success of their interactive programs. We’re not talking about tracking ‘downloads’ where people may use your applications once and disengage without that information even being tracked. We’re talking about actual user engagement analytics:
- How many people are using your application?
- How frequently are they using your application?
- What specific content did they explore?
- What devices did they using to engage?
- Where were they when they engaged (geographies)?
Here’s the best part: these digital sales enablement tools are available both online and offline, eliminating the challenges that come with content accessibility in remote geographies or where Internet connectivity is an issue. And, regardless of device or whether your application is used online or offline, new marketing platforms like Kaon’s Application Delivery Network (ADN), can still measure usability. This deep insight into the utilization of marketing applications by your sales force and beyond will help determine ROI and provide insight for continuous content refinement.
The combination of engaging digital applications, seamless multi-platform distribution and analytical measurement and reporting has truly transformed B2B sales and marketing, giving sales teams the tools to accelerate the buying cycle and engage prospects in a much more meaningful way.
Gavin Finn is president and CEO of Kaon Interactive.