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Welcome to Cloud Collaboration Technology – We’ve Been Expecting You.

Last week I described the typical, nightmarish scenario that characterizes many sales calls. In the introduction, I mentioned a real-life conference call I had with a prospect when I heard the following comment:

“I had no idea someone had brought this type of technology to the cloud – it’s about time.”

And you know what? It is about time. Have you ever lost an important prospect because of “a perfect storm of tech problems”? We’ve all been there. Collaboration technology can be tricky, erratic, and downright unreliable. And if the conferencing tool you’re using is even one of those things, your prospects are likely to assume that your company is tricky, erratic, and unreliable. What many salespeople don’t know is that things have changed in the collaboration technology world. That’s why many sales call suffer from unplanned delays because of lost access codes, software downloads, or technical difficulties. According to Wainhouse research, nearly 50% of online meetings start late. This can have substantial effects on building trust with prospects, maintaining productivity, and increasing revenue. (“Ease of Use in Web Conferencing – Why It Matters.”)

But it doesn’t have to be this way anymore. Cutting edge sales companies have eliminated these challenges. And they’ve accelerated revenue by jumping into the cloud with collaboration technology. In last week’s fable (or should I say foible?), I told you about Nicholas Foley: an ambitious – but green – sales rep, whose meeting with prospect Maxwell was doomed from the start. Like most traditional product demos, his pitch was going to take place over the phone, and involved first dialing a call-in number. That was the first problem.

 

That’s why the right collaboration technology…

…Doesn’t require a call-in number.

Savvier companies ensure that their prospects or clients never have to deal with scanning through old emails for an access code or call-in information. In fact, what they’ve got is better: a personal, online meeting room in the cloud. Which means no software to download and no time wasted waiting for everyone to join. …Makes the best first impression with high-quality audio and video.If only Nicholas had the wherewithal to use both. Let’s take another look at his story:

After a few moments of dead air, they hear the prospect’s muffled voice over the speakerphone. The audio quality is bad, Nicholas has to ask the prospect to repeat himself several times.

Perhaps Nicholas didn’t know that facial reactions are key to a dynamic interaction. Gone are the days when video conferencing meant having a video room with dedicated hardware and a network pipe to the headquarters. Now all you need is a laptop, smart phone, iPad, or a webcam, so that prospects can see your face, not just hear your voice.

…Offers an all-in-one virtual meeting room that’s easy to use for guests and prospects.

Don’t fall into the same conference call debacle Nicholas found himself in. There is collaboration technology out there that offers personalized, online meeting rooms that require no downloads. Just one URL that requires a click of the mouse. Then, boom. Everybody’s inside the meeting. Simple as that.

You may not believe it, but your company is poised for face-to-face technology in the cloud. Collaboration has evolved. Have you?

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