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Intranet Solutions_Sales & Marketing

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  • 1. Intranet Solutions for Sales and Marketing Overview An organization’s sales and marketing efforts are closely aligned with its other business processes. Basically, all of the goals associated with business operations are directly or indirectly achieved through effective sales and marketing processes. As such, effective communication, collaboration and orchestration are at the heart of successful sales and marketing processes. Yet there are many challenges that must be overcome. An effective intranet solution can result in higher productivity, improved responsiveness, reduced costs, and improved sales results. Challenges Gathering and maintaining accurate and up-to-date sales and marketing information requires consolidating data from diverse sources. Much essential product, service and market information is paper-based, making it time consuming and expensive to produce, distribute and update. Further complicating the problem is the fact that competitive and market information changes rapidly and delays in obtaining it can make it obsolete even before it is distributed. Collecting and consolidating sales forecasts, proposal and performance information in a secure and timely manner is also difficult. Many companies have both direct and indirect sales channels scattered locally or even throughout the world. Although these channels have various interdependencies, at the same time, each channel has different requirements for reporting and analyzing forecasts, performance data and other critical business data. Typical Sales Staff Challenges: • Managing a large volume of continually changing information and keeping customers up to date on changes in products, pricing, services and the market. • Gathering and acting on sales leads in an effective and timely manner. • Collecting and consolidating sales forecasts while providing management information needed to monitor and manage sales performance. • Coordinating and managing multiple types of proposals. Typical Marketing Staff Challenges: • Managing multiple, interdependent, time-critical projects, such as trade shows, press tours and product launches that may involve multiple groups scattered across wide geographic areas. • Keeping the sales department informed of marketing programs, such as new pricing strategies, trade show participation and special promotions. • Keeping sales and other departments up-to-date on the competitive environment. • Collecting and responding to feedback on program effectiveness. 2
  • 2. In addition to the need for a high level of collaboration and communication between the sales and marketing groups, there is also a need for communication with other functional groups throughout the organization. For example, managers in other functional groups may need real-time access to sales forecasts and sales performance data consolidated at different levels. Marketing and sales managers need access to corporate data, such as manufacturing forecasts and product cost information. The Intranet Solution Sales and marketing groups can take advantage of Intranets to enhance communication and collaboration with each other as well as with other functional groups and external resources. The corporate Intranet enables centralized publishing of product, service and marketing information. It also provides quick but security controlled access to relevant company assets that contain product or inventory availability data, sales forecasts, performance figures and customer information. Corporate Intranets are often used to supplement or enhance information stored in CRM or ERP systems. An Intranet is a powerful tool for proposal development as well. Past projects and budgets can be referenced by size, scope of project and resources required to provide critical background information to insure future projects are successful and profitable. With an Intranet, marketing and sales personnel can collaborate more effectively and ensure that the field sales, outside contractors, channel partners, distributors and dealers all have immediate access to the information they need, and can provide feedback to ensure a rapid, quality response. The result is higher productivity, improved responsiveness, reduced costs, and improved sales results. 3
  • 3. Sales and Marketing Uses Product Demos and Scripts Sales force access to download standard product demonstration scripts and sales presentations. Product Information Central repository for employees, customers and business partners to access information such as product availability, price lists, catalogs, brochures, data sheets and specifications. Benefits from Intranet Deployment • Much faster and less expensive than producing and distributing paper based materials. • Ensures inclusion of latest features in presentations. • Ensures immediate access to the most current informa- tion to better facilitate consistent branding and appropriate use of collateral. • Speeds the locating and distributing of time-sensitive data. • Facilitates access to current, detailed and informed product information from the office, as well as outside the office or even from a customer site. Sales Forecast and Performance Reports Sales management posts consolidated sales goals and performance data. • Enhances communications among field sales, regional sales management and headquarters. All have access to the most current sales attainment and quota information. • Gives management better tools for tracking sales performance, such as comparing forecasts to actual sales. • Helps manufacturing perform more effective production scheduling. Sales Lead Management Capture, distribute and track leads through the sales process. • Ensures timely collection and distribution of leads to maintain their maximum effectiveness and delivers visibility for sales process stakeholders. • Enables fast follow-up for sales management to maximize close rate. Market Research Researchers access the Internet to locate market information such as industry trends and competitive products and publish information on an internal web site. • Instant access to a wealth of Internet data improves product planning, marketing strategy development and product pricing. • Provides a central source of critical information, allowing the capturing and sharing of competitive information, changing customer requirements, and emerging market trends. Input from Field Personnel Distribute questionnaires and surveys gathering feedback on products, services and marketing campaigns. • Ensures that products and services meet the needs of the market. • Helps tune marketing programs for maximum effectiveness. 4
  • 4. Sales and Marketing Uses Prospecting Sales reps collect and share information about prospective customers. Press Releases Publish press releases and other company announcements. Sales Team Collaboration Establish newsgroups, online discussion groups, and chat sessions for sales teams that are geographically dispersed. Calendars Publish schedules and calendars for trade shows, seminars, advertising and PR campaigns and project plans in a central location. Sales Training Post online training and reference material for products, services, competition, sales skills and other subjects useful to field personnel. Sales Proposals Sales teams post and collaborate on complex sales proposals. Benefits from Intranet Deployment • Increases productivity of the sales force by providing easy access to in-depth information regarding the prospects in their assigned territories. • Faster distribution of corporate communications. • Can be archived for historical purposes. • Increases sales by enabling sales and support reps to coordinate activities for national and multinational accounts. • Sales representatives and marketing teams can take full advantage of marketing events in their areas to tighten relationships with customers and help boost sales. • Improves skills and knowledge of sales force in a costeffective and timely manner. • Provides centralized repository for easy access. • Improves access to proposal documents by sales process stakeholders. • Reduces the likelihood that an out of date or incomplete proposal is forwarded to the customer. 5
  • 5. Weidenhammer Intranet Solutions In today’s world of instant access to information, Weidenhammer provides services and solutions that improve organizational communication, collaboration, and workforce productivity through the establishment of web-based gateways. Through a combination of industry and technical expertise, and leveraging “best of breed technology” from partners such as Microsoft and IBM, Weidenhammer has assisted hundreds of clients in delivering improved business performance and functionality in the areas of Portals and Intranets. Weidenhammer provides solutions that help connect people, processes, and information, ensuring that information reaches recipients quickly, through the most appropriate medium. Microsoft Office SharePoint Technologies Microsoft Office SharePoint Technologies provides a single, integrated location where employees can efficiently collaborate with team members, find organizational resources, search for experts and corporate information, manage content and workflow, and leverage business insight to make better-informed decisions. SharePoint Technologies provide services that enhance: • Collaboration - Allow teams to work together effectively, collaborate on and publish documents, maintain task lists, implement workflows, and share information. • Search - Quickly and easily find people, expertise, and content. • Document management – Including integrated records management, version control, and Web content management. • Workflows and electronic forms - to automate and streamline your business processes. • Information worker access - to critical business information, data analysis and review, reports to make more informed decisions. > For more information, visit our website at www.hammer.net. 6