Product training is essential for two segments of people – the individuals who sell it and those who use it. Customers or employees who are users of the product will need extensive training with respect to the product, its features, troubleshooting and so on. However, the approach to product training has to be different when it comes to sales people. In this blog let’s examine the key areas we need to focus on when planning product training programs for sales people.
Typically product trainings for sales people should consist of the following:
Product features: Sales people need to be well-versed with the product features to be able to convince prospective customers about the product. It is particularly important because prospective customers are likely to post many questions with respect to the features of a product. Therefore, training the sales team to respond to such queries will help them in the sales process. The information should not be too technical, but sufficient to be able to answer the doubts that are usually posed by the customers.
Product installation and configuration or operation: Sales personnel should be taught to install the equipment as this is important when they need to demonstrate the working of a product. If it is software that they are selling, they should be well versed with the configuration requirements of the system and the installation process so that they are able to answer customers’ queries with respect to these issues. Hence, sales personnel need to be given hands-on training with respect to product installation, configuration and operation. Though most organizations have implementation consultants for this purpose, a sales person should at least have a high-level overview of the various aspects of installation and operation.
Product USPs: It is important for sales people to know and understand the unique selling proposition of the products that they are selling. This information is essential when they are trying to convince prospective buyers as they will be able to better showcase the product features.
Knowledge about competitors’ products and their comparison: Sales personnel should also be trained about competitors’ products and their USPs because customers are likely to compare between products before making a purchase. Sales people should be provided with not only the information and unique features about the competitors’ products but also the explanations as to how, despite those features, your products have a competitive edge.
Troubleshooting: There are typical problems that customers face when using products. While complicated technical issues need to be dealt with by the service engineers, there are many minor issues that do not require the technical expertise of a service technician – these could be as simple as correct assembly of the product, using the appropriate accessories etc. Having knowledge of the typical issues that customers face will help sales persons be proactive and attend to customer’s problems without having to rely on service protocol. This helps in fostering customer relationship and earns good-will.
Thus, it is no exaggeration to say that an effective product training for sales personnel helps promote products and increase their sales; thereby augmenting the overall profits for the organization. Would there be anything more that sales people need to know with respect to products apart from those mentioned above? Please let me know your views.