Instructional Design Strategies for Product Training

Instructional Design Strategies for Product Training

Product training today has become an essential commodity for any organization that deals with the selling or producing of any product. Better product knowledge is bound to give you a competitive edge. Ideally, product training takes place as a one-on-one session led by an instructor. However, with the proliferation of products, there is a need for change and product companies are looking for diverse ways to quickly train their employees.

In this regard, eLearning is seen as a cost-effective and an effective way to impart knowledge when it comes to product training. Let’s have a look at how you can create product training courses in more than one way.

Using Product Demo Videos:

At certain times, we may have products that are too complicated that a simple text and image just won’t do any justice to explain its features. In such cases, videos seem a more viable option; product details and specifications are important information that the learner should grasp like the back of his hand. Hence, videos not only help you remember the details of the product but also give you a virtual hands-on training about that product. The learner tends to connect more with moving visuals rather than just text.

Here is a product demo video which sheds more light on this strategy

View Product Demo Video

Including Scenarios:

Story telling is a powerful teaching tool and what better way can there be than creating scenarios for real life like situations that your learner may face in the future! A scenario for product training would look something like this: Mr. A is a businessman and is a frequent traveler. He has a laptop that needs charging every now and then due to poor battery backup. You as a company offer him a laptop with double the battery life and durability. Such a scenario teaches two things: 1) your product has a large audience and 2) your product is ready to meet the demands of your consumer. Scenarios not only help you learn more about the product but also reinforce the product value and customer satisfaction.

Scenarios

Providing Case study-based Training:

Case studies are one step ahead of scenarios; they are real-life situations that have taken place and are used as a reference for the future. A case study includes a systematic research of the “how” and “why” of a particular situation. It is backed by spastically proof and is a viable option to teach about the extent of sales of a product or the previous, current and the future demand of the product. Case studies add a sense of realism to your learning material.

Using Hotspots:

Hotspots engage the learner to participate in interactivities. Learners are required to click on each hotspot to gather more information. For example, Hotspots can be used to describe various parts of a laptop, like screen, keyboard, battery, speakers, etc.

Hotspots

Including Animations or Simulations:

Product training sometimes can be boring and repetitive. To solve this issue, animations can be used. They visually attract the learner, while the simulation teaches the steps of how to do, what and where. Unlike videos where you can only watch, simulations give you an opportunity to try out an activity. It portrays a reality-based situation that seems almost real. For example, with simulations you can understand the working of a desktop and you can try assembling or disassembling a desktop. Both animations and simulation are standalone teaching techniques but when they come together they make a powerful and impactful learning experience.

Animations or Simulations

Creating a Comparison Table:

It is said that half knowledge about something is quite dangerous; the same applies to product training. It is not possible to teach just about a single product. Every product out there has one or a million competitors hunting down that one customer. So how can you jump to the finish line? The answer is product comparison; product comparison helps in learning about your competitor’s product, while at the same time giving you enough information as to what exactly you need to know about the excelling qualities of your product. The use of ideal charts and graphics showing the differences between the two products is the way to go while teaching comparison.

Using these various methods, you can employee training your sales force. Are there any other ways by which you educate your sales force? Do share your experiences with us here.

View Presentation on Creating Product Training with Maximum Impact for Your Sales People

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Written By

Sharath is a Research Analyst at CommLab India. Writing blogs and articles for the marketing section is his main responsibility. Connect him at @sharath_CommLab

Tags: Product Training
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