How technology empowers financial sales representatives gear up for a post COVID-19 world

By now, there is a universal consensus that COVID-19 has changed the world forever. No business has remained out of its clutches and BFSI industry is no exception. With the onset of the pandemic, companies in banking and financial services (insurance, mutual funds, investment advisory etc.) saw a contraction in New Business growth. The uncertainty and unpredictability over income pushed customers to postpone their financial decisions. To make the situation grim, COVID-19 protocols minimized the possibility for any in-person connection between customers and sales representatives in the BFSI space.

Financial products are often complex and require in-depth engagement between potential customers and sales teams. Sales representatives use their experience, knowledge about their company?s product portfolio, and comparative analysis to pursue potential customers to make the desired financial decisions. As consumers feel uncertainty about their financial future, have minimal time for long in person meetings, and are overloaded with unsolicited investment advice, they need timely, relevant, and qualitative advice. If a sales representative meets this requirement, he builds a meaningful relationship with consumers.

To enable sales representatives in the BFSI industry nurture these relationships, companies are looking for alternate and effective ways to maintain the personal connect with consumers. One such way is to deploy sales enablement tools. It consists of technologies like virtual sales training, gamified onboarding activities, and virtual AI based coaching frameworks. The tool is tailored to specific business needs that connects sales and marketing, simplifies the content library, and offers powerful sales metrics.

For sales representatives, it offers a ready reference to his product brochures, technical details, cheat sheets, and customer demos. Coupled with artificial intelligence capabilities, this digital briefcase is a very powerful way to showcase financial products and solutions to consumers in a more contextual manner.

Another important aspect of driving sales operations is to nurture a capable team. An effective sales enablement tool allows the BFSI sales team to coach the new joinees effectively and ensure faster and uniformed onboarding across. The trainees can be put through different sales scenarios that reflect real-world situations. They can record their responses in these scenarios and continuously improve their pitch. They can also connect with experienced coaches in a virtual environment and seek feedback.

The benefits of using a sales enablement tool go far beyond sales volume and value metrics. It has a positive impact on all customer-facing business aspects in a company. Using an advanced sales enablement tool can reduce product launch times for BFSI companies to a great extent. Moreover, it can be used as the primary channel for engaging with consumers even when in-person meetings are reinstated and are leveraged for nurturing human relations (instead of transactional conversations).

Digital transformation is changing the way consumers and industries operate. The BFSI industry has felt the impact in many ways. The above use cases showcase the importance of sales enablement tool to help sales representatives move beyond transactional to more meaningful relationships with consumers. As a result, companies will also understand their consumers in more detail and will eventually be better prepared to meet their expectations.

The author is CTO at Stratbeans

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