Episode 019: Effective Sales Process in Banking with Neil Stanley

Posted on April 8, 2020April 8, 2020Categories The SaaS CX ShowTags , , , , , ,   Leave a comment on Episode 019: Effective Sales Process in Banking with Neil Stanley

Neil Stanley talks with us about how today the average banking consumer is much savvier than in decades past. Rather than relying on a teller or manager to know everything, a new sales process is needed that recognizes customers can do the research themselves before walking into a branch.

Time Stamp: 14:00 uberizing the banking world. Because banking is so entrenched in the mentality of tradition, it’s hard to get managers and CEOs to adapt to shifting paradigms and a better sales process. However, by creating an “Uber”-level app, Neil Stanley and his team make it easier for this industry to accept change.

Show Notes

Usually, it’s not hard to find examples of adaptation and rapid development in the world of SaaS. However, one industry that seems to be slow to change is the banking and financial sector. Most of the time, big banks and institutions are timid to embracing change, thanks to a variety of factors, not the least of which is the looming specter of “tradition.” When the banking sales process lags, they feel it in their pocketbook.

Although getting banking managers and CEOs to adapt to new technology is a challenge, Neil Stanley and his team at The Core Point are making it more accessible. In this episode, I sat down with Neil to go over how his software is becoming revolutionary for bankers, how it has modernized the sales process for deposits, and what it means for other SaaS CX companies.

Bringing a Better Sales Process to Banking

Neil Stanley changing the sales process in banking
Neil Stanley

There was a time when the only way to do anything at a bank was to speak to a teller or a branch manager. Whether it was opening an account, transferring money, or one of a dozen other tasks, you had to rely on people to do it for you. This sales process is struggling in our modern world.

The first significant shift for banks was the advent of the ATM. Now, consumers were armed with the tools to do many of these things autonomously. These days, the most notable change is mobile apps. However, while institutions do adopt new tech, they are notoriously slow about it. Not only that, but the products they offer are still largely the same as they’ve been forever.

Neil illustrates this point by talking about certificates of deposit (CDs). Most banks only offer CDs with a maturity range of 12 to 60 months. However, no rule or regulation says they have to fit within those parameters. A bank could theoretically have the deposit mature at any time, but they don’t. Why? Because “that’s how it’s always been done.”

Tradition is a big hurdle for Neil Stanley and his team in changing the sales process of the bank, but his software is easy enough to understand that he’s able to get managers and CEOs on board with minimal training. Once they see the potential for upgrading the banking experience, they recognize the value in it.

Adapting to a More Knowledgeable Audience

Another reason why it’s so vital to shift the paradigm at banks is that the average consumer is much savvier than in decades past. Rather than relying on a teller or manager to know everything, customers can do the research themselves before walking into a branch.

What this does is upgrade the normal conversation – the sales process itself. Now, a customer will know to ask specific questions, which can complicate each interaction. If tellers aren’t more knowledgeable than the consumer, there’s a breakdown of trust and value.

This is another reason why The Core Point is so critical for the modern era. It not only empowers a bank to offer more flexibility, but it enables employees to keep up with the average customer.

Finding the Line Between Value Added and Simplicity

According to Neil, the biggest pain point for banks and other financial institutions to improve the sales process is data management and integration. First, because this data is so sensitive, and second because it can be so time-consuming to transfer information from one program to the next.

Thankfully, Neil and his team were able to create software that alleviated that problem, while also being easy to use and understand. As he puts it, they had to find the line between being complex enough to warrant adoption, but easy enough to avoid onboarding problems. In this way, The Core Point is symptomatic of SaaS as an industry, as most apps have to straddle that line all the time.

We talk more about banking and The Core Point in this episode, so be sure to check it out here. You can also find out more about Neil Stanley and his software at thecorepoint.com.

SaaS Lead Generation with LinkedIn

Posted on April 7, 2020March 27, 2020Categories ArticleTags , , , , , , , , , , , ,   Leave a comment on SaaS Lead Generation with LinkedIn

As a SaaS owner, you know that the key to growth lies in lead generation. However, while this element is crucial for success, it’s much easier said than done. Many companies want to leverage the largest B2B social media platform for prospecting, but how do you make SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn work. All too often, companies come up against obstacles without a clear understanding of how to get around them.

As a SaaS owner, you know that the key to growth lies in lead generation. However, while this element is crucial for success, it’s much easier said than done. Many companies want to leverage the largest B2B social media platform for prospecting, but how do you make SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn work? All too often, companies come up against obstacles without a clear understanding of how to get around them.

So, with that in mind, we want to discuss some of the ways you can maximize your lead generation potential on LinkedIn. We talked with Adrian Boysel, founder, and CEO of Lead Butler. His software focuses on turning LinkedIn into a lead generator, which is not an easy task. However, in developing his program, he learned a few things, which can help you with your business.

Don’t Rely Too Much on Automation

A big part of SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn is automating your processes and drip campaigns. While this is helpful – there are only so many hours in the day – it shouldn’t be all-encompassing. In marketing, there are what are known as touchpoints – places within your sales funnel where the right interaction can move the lead to the next step.

Want to become more efficient with your content creation?

The trick is to find these touchpoints and rely on old-fashioned relationship building and engagement. Show your leads that you’re more than just a computer program with a variety of templates. For Adrian, what helps his business thrive is that he has people crafting customized messages for clients. While automation helps his team curate lists, it’s simply a foundational tool for one-on-one interactions.

Be Focused and Direct With Your Messaging

All too often, businesses believe that prospecting on LinkedIn requires them to develop some kind of “hook” for their audience. Perhaps it’s an anecdote or personal story, or it’s an opening paragraph that illustrates the need for your product.

SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn works best when you're looking for an authentic, real connection
SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn works best when you’re looking for an authentic, real connection.

Unfortunately, your leads don’t have time to read any of that, nor are they interested in it. Instead of trying to wow the person right off the bat, start with something straightforward. For Adrian, his cold message is along the lines of “I want real connections; if you do too, then add me.” Short and sweet.

The best way to think of it is that your initial message is to get a response, not to sell them on a product or your brand. Focus on the why of their response. Is it to get discounts and deals? Is it to save them time and money down the road? Distill your message into its fundamental element and use that as your pitch. The rest can come later. SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn works best when you’re focused and direct.

Curate Your Lists Well

Which is better – to have a massive list of 1000 subscribers or a curated list of 100? Before you answer, what if we told you that the number of responses was the same? If you’re only going to get 10 or 20 replies, then it’s actually better to have a smaller, more targeted list. That way, your capture rate is much higher.

One challenge that Adrian and his team faces is that Lead Butler will generate lists, but not everyone on it is a winner. You need to update and curate your records so that you can focus your attention on the leads that matter most. Yes, it will take time, but it’s a valuable investment in your growth.

SaaS Lead Generation with LinkedIn Can Be Both Authentic and Efficient

In short, you don’t have to sacrifice authenticity with efficiency. We talk a lot more about SaaS lead generation with LinkedIn in the latest episode of the SaaS CX Show, which you can find here. Lead generation only works as well as the people behind it. Make sure you’re putting the right energy where it counts.

Episode 018: Better Sales through Sales Analytics with Todd Abbott

Posted on April 6, 2020April 5, 2020Categories The SaaS CX ShowTags , , , , , , , , , , 2 Comments on Episode 018: Better Sales through Sales Analytics with Todd Abbott

In this episode of the SaaS CX Show, I’m talking with Todd Abbott, COO of InsightSquared. This software enables businesses and managers to streamline the biggest time suck – data entry. InsightSquared can take information and distill into processes and best practices, cutting down on analytics substantially. We talk a lot about how his system and AI, in general, can help companies in their quest for a better customer experience.

Time Stamp: 7:39 InsightSquared captures sales analytics incoming from both managers and customers, which enables consultants and supervisors to use their experience more efficiently. Rather than spending so many hours finding and compiling information, these high-ticket employees can be much more productive and insightful.

Show Notes

Todd Abbott

As far as technology goes, one of the biggest buzzwords these days is artificial intelligence. It seems that everyone is using it to varying degrees, and one area where it works wonders is data collection and management.

Unfortunately, although AI is excellent at condensing vast amounts of information, companies are still struggling to deploy it efficiently. In this episode of the SaaS CX Show, I’m talking with Todd Abbott, COO of InsightSquared. This software enables businesses and managers to streamline the biggest time suck – data entry. InsightSquared can take information and distill into processes and best practices, cutting down on analytics substantially. We talk a lot about how his system and AI, in general, can help companies in their quest for a better customer experience.

Overcoming the Data Entry Gap

Sales analytics should be focused on the results, not wasting time in entering data.
Sales analytics should be focused on the results, not wasting time in entering data.

There are already so many apps available that can create sales analytics- SalesForce comes to mind as a big one. However, most of these programs suffer in the usefulness of their analytics. While you can compile information and get what you need, it’s highly time-consuming and burdensome. In many cases, you have high-level managers and executives spending most of their time on data entry and management, which isn’t an efficient use of their experience and insight.

InsightSquared alleviates this problem by pulling data from various sources and putting sales analytics into customizable dashboards. Even better, each manager can build a unique dashboard to look at the details he or she needs. Now, rather than spending hours inputting data, these executives can use it as a platform for improvement and adjustment.

Want to learn more about great user design? Check out this interview with Adrian Chenault.

Using Sales Analytics as a Coaching Tool

Another issue that many big companies have is the disconnect between what the salesperson thinks is happening versus what’s really going on. All too often, sales employees will put too much time and effort into a lead that won’t pan out, just because the lead is responsive or seems interested.

The reason that this approach is a problem is that, like data entry, so much time and energy is spent trying to qualify these leads. A manager may be able to go through the sales process and identify which customers are viable or not, but that’s something the salesperson should do instead.

Now, with machine learning, the system can use history and sales analytics to notify the sales team which leads are lucrative and which ones are a waste. This way, employees can remove a lot of the noise and focus on the sales that matter most. Essentially, the software is coaching a B-level salesperson to be more efficient and proactive.

Using AI to understand your prospect. Check out this interview with Drew D’Agostino.

Machine Learning and the Longer Sales Cycle

While there is a place for AI in a transactional business, where it really shines is in a longer sales cycle. There was a time when a rockstar salesperson could come in and use his or her experience and insight to improve a company’s sales, but now everything is moving much faster. Sales cycles that would take eight months only take two or three, which is why data management is so vital.

As Todd puts it, InsightSquared is much more valuable in these longer sales cycles because there are so many entry points and connections with the client. The longer it takes to close, the more complicated the process, so the software streamlines it along the way by providing the right sales analytics at just the right time.

We talk more about InsightSquared and how sales analytics can improve the customer experience, so check out the rest of the episode here. You can also contact Todd directly at [email protected] or visit them online at www.insightsquared.com.

SaaS Customer Success through Change Management

Posted on April 3, 2020March 27, 2020Categories ArticleTags , , , , , , , , , ,   Leave a comment on SaaS Customer Success through Change Management

The basis of SaaS customer success is in the successful implementation of your software. For your customer that means, things on their side will likely change. You will likely need to address the necessary change management if you want to create happy customers who stick around.

The basis of SaaS customer success is in the successful implementation of your software. For your customer that means, things on their side will likely change. You will likely need to address the necessary change management if you want to create happy customers who stick around.

What is change management?

Enterprise change can be a very complicated proposition. Once you have so many departments and managers and supervisors in play, it can be easy to lose track of even the most basic information.

To make matters worse, a CEO or executive can recognize the need for changes, come up with a plan, and it ultimately fails. Maybe employees will follow the new process for a little while, but once they come up against a challenge, they will revert to old habits.

So, how can an enterprise-level business create solutions and implement a strategy to follow-through? While a SaaS solution can help, it’s only as good as the people using it and the process it supports. Here is a step-by-step approach to implementing a change management process that supports your customer success.

Step One: Assess Your Processes From A to Z

One of the biggest challenges that companies face is that they’re focusing on the wrong problem. At first, it seems like the most pressing issue, but once you get into the details of it, it turns out that the real problem is starting elsewhere. For example, maybe sales are in a slump, so you try to motivate the sales team. However, the actual setback is that the product isn’t delivering what the team is selling, so customers are less than satisfied.

So, one of the best methods to get at the root of a problem is to walk it back to its source. How many processes, people, and systems are involved in getting to the endpoint? To ensure SaaS customer success, you have to look at each component to see where things are falling apart and then focus your attention as necessary.

Jon LoDuca talks about how documenting processes enables knowledge sharing

Paul Moynagh, CEO of Commit Works, knows the struggle all too well. His SaaS company focuses on providing software solutions for mining operations. In most cases, supervisors are trying to get something done without paying attention to all of the different pieces required to finish the job. This lack of awareness leads to costly delays and downtime.

Step Two: Eliminate Silos

Here is where SaaS technology can really thrive. In most big corporations, each department is creating and sharing information back and forth, which can create a lot of logistical issues. Documents aren’t up to date, spreadsheet formulas get broken, managers don’t receive the correct details – it can be a mess.

The best solution is to eliminate those silos and create a system of open collaboration between departments. Rather than each person creating a spreadsheet or a document, they can work off of the same program and access it whenever necessary. This way, all details are accurate and up-to-date, and no one can claim they didn’t receive it.

In Paul’s world, that problem manifested itself with a flurry of spreadsheets that would never get organized. Data would have to be transferred manually from the office to the field, and it was impossible to update it efficiently. The result was that workers would go off-plan, which in the mining industry, can be dangerous.

Step Three: Influence Change Within the Environment

This last step of creating SaaS customer success is crucial because change only works when it’s implemented over the long term. All of your plans and ideas are worthless if no one follows through. There are several components that you can use to influence this change more efficiently:

  • Individual – train key members of the business in how to perform tasks and make sure that they get help whenever necessary.
  • Group – in most cases, you can use peer pressure to your advantage. If more people know what the plan is, they can hold each other accountable.
  • Environment – if you want someone to enter data on a computer, how can they do it without a computer in front of them? Overall, you want to structure the environment to be as conducive to change as possible. Remove obstacles and make it super easy to follow through on various tasks and objectives.

On the back end, you also need to monitor the situation and step in whenever necessary to keep people from falling back into old habits. Without accountability and reinforcement, the change will never take hold for the long-term.

If you want to hear more about Paul’s approach to supporting customer success through change management, check out the latest episode of the SaaS CX Show here. You can also find out about Commit Works at their website, www.commit.works.

Episode 017: Successful CRM through Sellsation with Thomas Kattnigg

Posted on April 2, 2020April 5, 2020Categories The SaaS CX ShowTags , , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment on Episode 017: Successful CRM through Sellsation with Thomas Kattnigg

In this episode of the SaaS CX Show, I’m talking with Thomas Kattnig, CEO of Sellsation. Thomas and his team have created a highly capable CRM program that delivers results and has very little churn. In fact, according to Thomas, Sellsation has a 95-percent customer retention rate!

Time Stamp: 11:00 One of the biggest challenges facing medium and large-sized businesses is the disconnect between sales and marketing. Sellsation alleviates that problem by helping clients visualize the processes that both departments are doing so that they can find points of collaboration and communication.

Want to participate in the Sellsation Raffle? Follow these instructions.

Show Notes

Thomas Kattnigg

These days, one of the most significant elements in the SaaS world is customer relationship management (CRM) software. However, while so many companies try to develop new tricks and methods for startups to retain customers, there is a bit of a disconnect between the developers and the customers.

In this episode of the SaaS CX Show, I’m talking with Thomas Kattnigg, CEO of Sellsation. Thomas and his team have created a highly capable CRM program that delivers results and has very little churn. In fact, according to Thomas, Sellsation has a 95-percent customer retention rate, which is almost unheard of within the industry. I picked his brain about why his company has been so successful, and here are some highlights.

Helping Customers Find Their Alignment

Typically, the challenge that CRM software faces is that businesses don’t have a clear expectation of their goals. They know that they need some way to build relationships with customers, but they don’t have a specific objective in mind. Unfortunately, without that guiding principle, no CRM program will deliver – after all, how can it?

So, when Thomas and his team work with clients on Sellsation, they first discuss what the company is trying to achieve and how they plan to get there. Without that clear understanding of alignment, it’s impossible to utilize the software to reach the destination. Ultimately, even though Sellsation is a software company and not a service company, they provide some level of consultation to ensure that clients know what they want and what they need.

Bridging the Gap Between Sales and Marketing

Another challenge that many businesses face, both large and small, is the disconnect between sales and marketing. All too often, these two departments aren’t talking to each other or coordinating, which can lead to problems down the line. The sales team over promises on a product, or the marketing team is promoting something that’s hard to sell. Whatever the case may be, it can become a significant issue.

Sellsation bridges the gap between these departments by helping the business owners visualize the processes that both sides use and how they can merge. By seeing the similarities between sales and marketing and how one can feed into the other, it’s much easier to get them to coordinate. Overall, having a cohesive business model is the key to success.

Episode 009: Marketing Automation with Brad Banyas

Tying Sales to the Customer Experience, Not Just Revenue

Finally, many software companies (and businesses in general) take a narrow approach to motivating the sales team. Typically, it’s the commission that drives a salesperson to improve their efforts, but Sellsation takes a slightly different approach.

Because customer retention is such a vital KPI for the company, Thomas tells the sales team that their pay is also tied to the level of support that a customer requests after the fact. Ideally, new clients won’t have to open any new tickets because the sales and onboarding process was so thorough. If a customer is unhappy, the sales team needs to adjust its messaging and delivery.

We talk a lot more about CRM and how Sellsation is navigating and disrupting the industry, so be sure to check out the episode here. You can also find out more about Thomas and his product at www.sellsation.com.

Sellsation CRM Raffle

Sellsation has agreed to give away 1 free annual contract with 5 user licenses and an 8-hour onboarding & training package with a total value of $9400.

To participate, here’s what you do:

  1. Follow the Sellsation LinkedIn page
  2. Write a LinkedIn post stating: “Just submitted to the @sellsation CRM giveaway” and hashtag #sellsation and #thesaascxshow

That’s it and you’re in!

Sellsation will contact the winners directly.