The phrase “just-in-time” is used quite frequently in sales, but the term is more than just a buzzword. It’s an increasingly popular sales training strategy in B2B sales that’s changing the way sales leaders coach and sales reps sell.
Read ahead to learn what ‘just-in-time’ means, why you need it, specific scenarios where it can drive change, and how to implement it in your organization.
What is Just-in-Time Sales Training?
‘Just-in-time’ refers to the idea of getting reps what they need, when they need it. This can be anything from content, messaging, value preps, or internal resources such as kill sheets. Just-in-time delivers the information through CRMs, browsers, mobile devices, and more. The strategy is focused on making needed information readily available and accessible to sales reps.
How Does Just-in-Time Sales Training Work?
Each sale is unique and requires a different set of information and skills from the rep. A sales enablement tool can provide dynamic sales training content that can adapt to the situation, recommend the most effective training materials, and outline best practice next steps for sales reps. When your team is equipped to communicate value, answer competitive threats, and build compelling businesses cases, they can sell more effectively and win more deals. Just-in-Time sales training brings this to the next level by delivering the content when stakes are high. This insures the reps will not only open the email, but consume the content.
Why is Just-in-Time Training Important?
Here are the problems with sales and sales training today:
- B2B buyers think that 80% of sales reps add no value and are unsatisfied with their engagements with sellers (Forrester)
- Almost 90% of sales training is forgotten within weeks (CEB)
- Only 1/3 of sales reps meet or exceed quota, and only 10% are consistently high-performers (CSO Insights)
It’s no secret that B2B organizations have increasingly ambitious sales goals. This means salespeople are constantly facing pressure from upper management to overachieve. This means sales reps need to be able to effectively and efficiently engage prospects in conversations that are personalized and relevant. To achieve this, just-in-time sales training needs to be implemented as a constant and ongoing process – not a reactive measure at the end of the quarter.
Just-in-Time sales training gives sales teams the insights, tools, and information they need to engage with prospects so they can be radically more effective. They’ll be able to position themselves as subject matter experts and a go-to-resource for the buyer. This increases the quality of sales engagements resulting in faster sales cycles, higher win rates, and increased revenue.
Who Needs Just-in-Time Sales Training?
Not sure how or where to get started with just-in-time sales training? See how it can change your selling game:
Scenario 1: Sales reps provide the same generic content to every buyer, regardless of sales situation.
It is no longer effective to simply pitch products in the modern B2B sales environment. Instead, buyers expect an individualized purchase process and solution that is tailored to their unique challenges and priorities. Content that is irrelevant to a buyer’s industry or pain points is not going to help – it’ll only confuse.
Sales reps need to be prepared with the right content, messaging, and sales strategy to deal with the needs of each buyer. With the right information, they can customize their interactions. By doing so, they add value to the sales conversation and make their leads much more likely to convert.
Scenario 2: Sales in a fast-paced marketplace where the products and services are always changing.
It can be challenging to keep up with industry trends, not to mention new offers, products, and processes. This means your own product and value propositions constantly become outdated and reps may not be able to message correctly or guide a prospect to the best-matched solution.
With just-in-time learning, reps can stay up-to-date with the most current content. Information is constantly updated and sent out to the reps, making them experts on the product, the industry, and the buyers’ pain points.
Scenario 3: Information Overload
There is often too much information for reps to remember. Up to 90% of sales training is lost within weeks of the training session. On top of that, there is the constant pressure for reps to meet their sales quota.
Instead of expecting reps to retain all of the information they learned in sales training, just-in-time learning means they’re always learning, in periodic increments. This makes the information digestible, meaning your sales reps can learn about complex products and services in depth and efficiently. This type of training enables you to decrease ramp-up time by up to 50%, potentially generating 170% more revenue in just the first year.
Scenario 4: Your reps struggle to get the right content and messaging on-the-go.
Your reps cannot easily access large masses of content and training materials when they are in the field and in meetings. Often they only have a few minutes to prep before walking into a meeting with an important prospect. They don’t have time to connect to the network and search for collateral and messaging. At the same time, they can’t risk sharing information that is out of date or wrong.
The rep needs to feel prepared and make the most of the meeting – that means knowing exactly what to say and what info to share based on that buyer’s specific situation. With just-in-time guidance, the rep knows exactly what to share and can quickly access it on the go. This can come through mobile sales training applications, doing regular training, or case studies. Just-in-time training will ensure the information is easily accessible, up to date and relevant so that your sales reps will not only read it, but learn it.
Just-in-time sales training gives your reps the right information and strategy that can mean the difference between a deal and a loss.
About the Author: Shelley Cernel is a Senior Marketing Manager at SAVO.