The sales world is continuing a new journey as augmented intelligence steps further into customers’ lives; people working in sales teams have now begun incorporating it into their everyday work activities.
What is it about augmented intelligence that makes it a major shifter in the way sales are conducted and won? Could this new technology positively influence the sales world, yet move human minds out of the sales picture?
Understanding augmented intelligence
Let us first define augmented intelligence to better understand how it works in the business world. Augmented intelligence is the creation of a close-to-human intelligence through modern technology. This is different from artificial intelligence in that augmented intelligence serves to complement – rather than replace – the human mind’s decision-making process.
Augmented intelligence in sales
You can place augmented intelligence systems anywhere inside a business organisation, but one of the most notable departments where it is currently used is sales. Why are businesses supplementing their sales reps’ work with augmented intelligence (AI)? Here are some reasons why:
1. Intelligent use of data is paramount to the success of a sales team. Using it in CRMs used by sales reps helps them manage the data easily, and to their benefit.
2. AI-powered CRMs take the burden out of manual data entry work by incorporating faster ways to upload and manage customer data.
3. AIs are capable of analysing data inside their systems. Not only that, they can also translate this into actionable data which reps can easily utilise in whatever stage of the sales cycle they are in.
4. AIs do not dictate things to the salespersons; they are programmed to anticipate actions and aid its users to act based on human insight.
The result is a better future for the sales world. Sales are closed faster than if a sales rep has done it without an AI-guided CRM. Time, effort, and expenses are all cut to a minimum, and best of all, the human mind and efforts are not overrun by augmented intelligence – after all, sales is an activity too complex for only a machine to handle.
Data-driven decision making
The business world recognises Data-driven decision making (DDDM) as an approach that places emphasis on the importance of decisions backed up with credible and verifiable data.
You need to learn about your customer first before you can sell something of value to him or her. You can’t make a sale if your product or service isn’t aligned with the customer’s needs and preferences. This is precisely why gathering data for a DDDM approach is important.
Data processing and augmented intelligence
Modern CRM programs like Salesforce are now graced with the powerful presence of augmented intelligence. This technology lets your salespeople enjoy a streamlined approach to data gathering, verifying, grouping, and analysis. AI also enables users to apply customer data during various decision-making points in the sales cycle.
Here is a sample situation to show DDDM, augmented intelligence, and human intellect working together to achieve a common goal.
A salesperson asks himself if he should continue with a product demonstration to a prospect who becomes reluctant to accept his offer. Data he collected from personally interacting with this prospect could be quickly reviewed from the AI-driven CRM tool to look for behaviours or factors that might have affected his change of sales thought.
He finds out that the customer became reluctant because of a lack of description for the product’s use. Previous data showed the customer’s buying behaviours is anchored in scrutinising the product descriptions first before proceeding to buying it.
The salesperson decides on the matter and takes appropriate steps guided by his own insight, his Customer Experience skill level, and the customer data he retrieved from the CRM tool.
He sets out to fill in the gaps about the product’s description so that his reluctant customer may understand the totality of the product offered to him. This way, he wins back the customer’s trust and made his prospective customer an actual one.
Had the salesperson not looked up to customer data in the AI-driven CRM tools, he might not have learned about the source of the prospect’s reluctance to buy, and might have missed a chance to make a successful sale.