Mark: Welcome to the “Burning Presales Podcast.” You are joined here today by myself, Mark Green, your ever-present host from Consensus, and Laura Krebs from SAP Concur. Wonderful to have you on Laura. Why don’t you tell everyone a little bit about yourself?
Laura: Wonderful. Thank you, Mark. Well, I’m excited to be here, and as you mentioned, I’m the global digital presales director at SAP Concur. And my role is to help scale our presales team through, taking all of the expertise from our solutions consultants [00:00:30:981] and our security and technical consultants, bottling all of that up, and delivering digital demos, if you will. To all of our sales teams to deliver to their end buyers, which we know helps drive speed, scale, and hopefully a good customer experience.
Mark: Well, good customer experience, that’s what we’re all about. And it’s wonderful to have you on because I see such amazing things going on there, and so, it’s a real honor. Now, you said that you wanted to cover a couple of things. [00:01:00:992] We will try to get to them. We’ll probably record one today, and one next time. But the first one, where are you applying all of this wonderful stuff?
Laura: I’m super excited to talk about this topic, Mark, because that is a question that I come up against almost every single day. Everybody wants to apply some sort of rule to demo automation and say, no, this is only for the most simple of deals, or the most transactional opportunities, [00:01:30:756] or we wanna apply an 80-20 rule, or a 90-10 rule to somehow simplify the way in which we think this is where our buyers really want to see a demo, digitally. And the truth of the matter is, is that we’ve been successful in every single segment, in every single industry, in every single opportunity size. And the reason for that is our buyers are really driving the way that they wanna consume the information. Our buyers are telling us [00:02:00:119] that they want to see demos digitally, they wanna see product information earlier in the sales cycle. And so, I’m combating that every single day. I’m having conversations with our organization, with our sales organization, my team is having those conversations of course as well. And we’re continuing to collect win stories and success stories from every single facet, every single area of the organization. And I continue to say everywhere, you have to apply it everywhere [00:02:30:045] across the entire organization, our buyers need it, our buyers want it.
Mark: Wow. Well, I mean, everywhere is a big place, especially when you’re a big company. But it’s very interesting because you find a lot of people saying, oh, well, they’re a big company, they obviously, they’ve got all the resources to do it. So, of course, it’s easy for them, but what would you say to businesses trying to do it, and they don’t necessarily have huge departments of lots of people? How do you get that knowledge out of smaller teams [00:03:00:078] that have got perhaps very precise bits of knowledge that they wanna share?
Laura: You know, I was talking to other presales leaders just a couple of weeks, back and this was a conversation that came up was, we built all this really good content, you know, we have these demos available, we have these demo boards now available through Consensus that we can send out to our customers, but nobody really knows how to use it, or they’re not ready to use it yet, or they’re not comfortable using it yet. Where do we start? And I think that that’s kind of, [00:03:30:243] that’s a problem that some organizations fall into, is they build all of this amazing content, and they don’t start the change management process early enough. And so, one thing that we’ve seen in our organization is that you have to follow a process. And I think that this could apply to the smaller organizations that are starting, trying to get started.
We follow the Prosci or the ADKAR change management methodology here, starting with awareness and taking steps into what are we talking about? What [00:04:00:123] do we mean by digital? What do we mean by demo automation? These aren’t concepts that people necessarily even understand or know, or understand the value of. We find that awareness is a larger trajectory than maybe you even realized. So, we spend time and awareness letting them know what’s there. And then of course, the next is desire, finding some folks who desire to make this change, desire to help bring speed, scale, and better customer experience to their buying experience, to their customer experience. [00:04:30:987] The third step of ADKAR is knowledge, and that’s where we really need to get deep into, here’s the content we’ve created, here’s the digital demos, here’s the demo boards. And now within the, like I said, the segments, the organization, where should those best be applied?
And that’s where it gets a little tricky because that’s where the rules that people wanna start putting the rules in. You mean at 80-20, the 90-10? And this is where it takes a lot of work to rewire their brains a bit and say, no, it’s everyone, [00:05:00:674] it’s the buyers, everyone wants to start using this. But I won’t lie to you, it does often rely on a really good partnership between sales and presales. We know this and really need to build that solid foundation within your organization so that presales is a trusted partner. And when you’re coming to your sales organization with this information of, I have this really great demo automation tool, it’s gonna help scale your organization. You not only have a great tool, but you have [00:05:30:765] that foundation of partnership and trust, and they trust in the data that you’re gonna be able to provide at the end of all of that to measure what those actual business outcomes are to the organization.
Mark: Laura, that was a really, really interesting insight into how you apply and where you apply your digital presales efforts there at SAP Concur. And I’m gonna be, a properties for everyone for next week that we are gonna come back and talk about [00:06:00:112] how we measure the impact of this. So, thank you Laura for coming on, and I really look forward to inviting you back onto the “Burning Presales Podcast” very soon.
Laura: Looking forward to it.