3 Reasons Why You Need Software Customer Training
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Software Customer Training: Why You Need Education And Training To Trigger Sales

Software is a complex product and the benefits are not always easily identifiable. This is especially true when considering that implementing new software often requires internal changes. It is therefore necessary to clearly show prospects how your product perfectly meets their needs and will help them stand out from the competition. In an increasingly competitive market, software customer training is a must-have to acquire new clients.

eBook Release: Outstanding Software Training – How To Turn Online Training Into A Competitive Advantage At Each Step Of The Customer Journey
eBook Release
Outstanding Software Training – How To Turn Online Training Into A Competitive Advantage At Each Step Of The Customer Journey
Discover how to develop a scalable training structure and stand out from competitors.

1. Software Is A complex Product For The Customer

Measuring the potential financial gains software will bring to a company is extremely complicated. Investing in software is often expensive and rarely yields an immediate return on investment. Most companies use Excel, allowing them to perform complex calculations on a daily basis and develop their business strategy. However, few would be able to accurately measure the exact impact Excel has on their revenue.

Additionally, implementing new software often involves in-house changes, including creating new jobs. It is imperative to be able to meet the needs of a connected economy where data management and the mastery of IT skills are crucial to stay relevant. The Salesforce platform alone is expected to create more than 3.3 million new jobs for their customers by 2022[1]. These digital transformation plans involve a high degree of risk and complex changes for companies.

Finally, the software publishing space is characterized by the constant creation of startups, as well as the presence of international giants and has become an increasingly competitive sector. It is particularly difficult to differentiate the tools currently available and identify the product that is most adapted to company and employee needs. This involves being able to meticulously compare numerous solutions before making a decision. It is the operational use of the tool internally that is the key factor in the success, or failure, of a project.

These three points can cause hesitation, delay, or even prevent, purchase decisions. They can only be overcome by providing prospects with a maximum amount of information. Education is a true industry challenge.

2. Potential Clients Are Short On Time

Creating an aggressive marketing and sales strategy to contact, evangelize the market, and make your product known to all potential customers is fundamental. In the 1990s and 2000s[2], software publishers, including Oracle, became major market players by following this strategy and have established their place within most global businesses.

Even though this may seem like the most obvious method, it is no longer adapted to our modern workplace. In an environment where each one of us is highly solicited (employees receive an average of 121 emails per day[3]), it is almost impossible to get someone's attention for more than a few seconds. How can you help them understand the benefits of a complex product? It seems impossible.

Additionally, developing such a sales method is incompatible with the pace of scaling required of all software publishers. This method was possible when the market was still small, competition almost non-existent and when publishers could easily generate significant margins. In today’s market, this is not a viable means of driving satisfactory growth and is no longer the best strategy for large corporations and small startups alike.

3. Digital Training Can Do A Lot For Your Company

To be effective, it is necessary to change how you view client interactions. First of all, you need to be able to clearly explain the utility and benefits of your product in a pedagogical manner. Training then plays a central role to demonstrate ease-of-use and help prospects see themselves purchasing the tool.

Education is extremely important at this point. We are referring to Content Marketing whose aim is to convince clients by giving them access to research and studies rather than trying to persuade them with strictly commercial arguments. You must understand the customer! Launching a project to digitize an activity is extremely risky and difficult. It is crucial to support the client by providing them with the necessary knowledge and insight beforehand. According to a Xenoss study[4], over 85% of SaaS (Software as a Service) companies have already implemented content marketing strategies. This shows how the industry is evolving and modifying how they engage with potential clients.

Once the client has been convinced of the benefits the tool will provide them, you must then demonstrate that the product is perfectly adapted to how they want to implement it within their company. The product interface and features are often the deciding factors in the purchase decision. Potential clients need to be able to clearly see themselves using your tool on an operational, concrete level. The training department can have an enormous impact if they use their educational knowledge to help the marketing department at this stage. This strategy, called Inbound Marketing, is a great tool to quickly increase growth while keeping costs low.

When a lead has been identified, there are then two possible options. The first one involves the sales team carrying out product demonstrations. A prospect that has seen your content and is interested in working with you will often want to speak with a sales representative to discover the tool and ask questions. This is a higher value situation for your sales team and a better use of their time than cold calling potential clients.

A second, more daring strategy, that is easier to scale can be elaborated using a digital learning platform. Digital learning platforms are perfectly adapted as they allow prospects to discover your tool(s) on their own, at their preferred pace. Coupled with a free trial, this practice is a particularly powerful scaling tool because it drastically reduces the number of contact points with your sales team while giving potential clients the resources they need to make their decision. This strategy, still vastly underdeveloped, is used by 20% of the most advanced companies[5]. At 360Learning, this is the first point of contact for nearly half of our leads!

Furthermore, digital learning platforms make it possible to train distributors and system integrators who sell and install your product. This is an important aspect and should not be neglected. Providing more engaging and modern training for your partners than your competitors is a major advantage. They will be perfectly comfortable with your product and have an easier time selling it. It is precisely because this method is easy to deploy and inexpensive that it is a perfect example of a scalable solution that software publishers should implement.

Training is an ideal means for software publishers to increase business while reducing costs. If you want to discover practical advice for deploying a training strategy capable of educating, onboarding, and supporting your clients and employees to drive growth for your business, download the eBook Outstanding Software Training - How To Turn Online Training Into A Competitive Advantage At Each Step Of The Customer Journey.

References:

[1] Tyler Prince, Salesforce Economy to Create 3.3 Million New Jobs by 2022, Salesforce.com, 2016

[2] Thomas Wailgum, Oracle's Decade of Acquisition: Innovative or Just Well-Financed?, CIO.com, 2009

[3] Craig Smith, 85 Email Statistics and Facts, Expandedrambling.com, 2016

[4] Xenoss, Trends in Saas for Enterprise IT, 2016

[5] Miranda Lievers, The majority of SaaS companies have gotten customer success all wrong. Have you?, Medium.com, 2015

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