One of the recent additions to Sales Engagement feature sets is meeting management. Two years ago, meeting functionality was little more than a Calendly link, but now meeting setup and analytics are being automated, providing a much better experience for both sales reps and prospects. Reps spend less time setting up meetings, are better focused during meetings, and can review and share call snippets afterwards. Furthermore, calls are likely to run more smoothly and quickly.
Sales Engagement vendor SalesLoft has moved quickly into building meeting management after acquiring NoteNinja last year. Key SalesLoft features include:
- Automated Calendaring: The email template includes a calendar link which allows the prospect to view open meeting windows and setup the call without they typical back and forth that wastes time. Rescheduling functionality is also supported.
- Video Meetings: Calls are supported by Zoom and other video meeting platforms.
- Automated Recording: A bot automatically attends the call and records it, transcribes it, and indexes it. Reps can search by word or topic and review a call timeline color coded by topic and speaker.
- Improved Presence: Because the sales rep is no longer charged with note taking, he/she can focus better on the conversation. This allows for fewer delays, better call management, and better comprehension.
- One-Click Notation: During the call, the sales rep can click on a set of pre-defined buttons for reviewing a topic post call. Thus, next steps, open questions, issues, pricing discussions, etc. can be quickly found after the call. These are presented alongside the automated indexing.
- Sharing: Excerpts of the transcript can be shared with managers, technical staff, customer support, etc., allowing them to hear the voice of the customer. This removes bias and errors on the part of the sales rep. For example, if a sales rep feels she poorly handled a situation, she can forward the excerpt to her manager for a coaching session during their next one-on-one.
- Training: The call timeline helps the rep see whether the meeting was conversational or a set of monologues, whether too many filler words were employed (to help reduce them), or whether next steps were set. More broadly, the training department (or sales operations if there isn’t a training department) can assemble a set of best practice meeting excerpts providing a library of short videos around value proposition, objection handling, competitor discussions, new capabilities, etc.
- Best Sales Practices: Longer-term, machine learning will be applied to the transcripts, helping identify best practices and evaluate deal health.
This functionality is also coming to mobile devices to assist field sales reps and reps that need to place calls during commutes. In March 2019, SalesLoft announced an app for placing digital calls through its platform and Chorus.ai announced a similar app:
“The Chorus Mobile app, paired with proprietary Smart Playlist technology, surfaces critical moments from sales calls that a manager should review, and allows them to provide personalized feedback to their teams. Using the mobile app, sales reps can now better prepare for customer interactions by reviewing sales calls, key moments and manager feedback while on-the-go. The solution proactively identifies patterns within conversations, and automatically curates playlists of relevant calls utilizing Chorus.ai’s proprietary AI-driven technology. With the Chorus Mobile app, users are no longer tethered to a computer and can take coaching and call preparation with them anywhere.”Chorus.ai press release, March 26, 2019
Meeting Management is an exciting new set of functionality for sales reps and managers. It is likely to spread to other departments and be employed internally, particularly for remotely staffed companies.