Every conversation with a client or prospect contains valuable insight for growing your sales. They indicate pain points, topics of interest, common objections, improvement suggestions, main competitors, and much more. Unfortunately, at the end of the day, the culmination of that valuable information slips away despite your best efforts to capture it. Taking detailed notes, entering information into a CRM, and disseminating it across a team can be not only tedious but downright impossible due to time constraints.
Because most companies have been recording their sales calls for years, an intuitive solution has cropped up to transform this existing, stagnant information into useful sales intel. Let’s delve into conversational intelligence (CI) and how it can be applied to propel sales.
What is conversation intelligence?
Conversation intelligence refers to an individual’s ability to evaluate the quality of his conversation. In the organizational context, sales representatives are the main personas, who are responsible for the proper conversational intelligence. Their role is to understand customer’s pain points and to help resolve them in the most effective way. Hence in sales, conversational intelligence has a more specific definition – an ability of the sales representative or manager to assess the progress and outcome of his conversation, finding valuable insights to close deals faster.
These insights can come in many forms via sales calls, emails, web conferences, or any other digital communication format. Some of the key points that a sales team can capture during the conversation are:
- Customer pain points
- Common topics of interest or keywords
- Objections about the product or suggestions for improvement
- Common questions about the product
- Mention of competitors
- The prospect’s the buying stage
- The bottlenecks for the deal completion
Conversation analytics is an invaluable asset for sales teams struggling to meet quotas. Last year Salesforce reported that sales professionals spend only 34% of their time actually selling. Sales teams simply don’t have space in their schedules to record, take notes, and analyze communications all by themselves. That’s where conversation technologies come in place.
How does conversation intelligence work
Conversational intelligence technology records the information from these communications, analyzes it, and spits it back out into a palatable format that sales teams can apply to their sales strategy. One way it can be seen applied is looking at a sales pipeline snapshot that shows, via conversational cues, where a prospect is in the buying process.
This technology uses algorithms to identify information that otherwise might go undetected by sales professionals. For instance, using CI can identify the cues in conversation that indicate a prospect’s willingness to buy. Determining the conversation patterns of a high-quality vs. low-quality lead early on keeps sellers from wasting time on unproductive prospecting.
Sales reps can also use conversation analytics to look at what the best-performing sellers are doing differently so they can apply the same behaviors to step up their own game. Salesforce conversation intelligence can meanwhile be implemented in order to share information across a team so that individuals don’t have to carry out the busywork of updating one another — all will be right there in the software! The possibilities are endless.
Conversation analytics for coaches
With B2B sales methods ever evolving it’s always a challenge for sales managers to measure performance, identify priorities, and create repeatable practices; that’s what makes conversational intelligence so advantageous for a team.
Sure, sales leaders can instruct their teams to take better notes and pass along information more frequently, but the proactive route is to implement CI. One of the first ways to do this is to establish a “good” sales conversation based on metrics gathered from conversation analytics. Imagine how efficiency would skyrocket if you could replicate the sales calls of a top performer to be applied across an entire team!
Meanwhile, there’s the challenge of identifying skill gaps among individual sales reps. Conversation analytics offer insight as to where sellers need to develop or hone behaviors. Conversational intelligence exercises can also help sales leads to establish consistency across multiple teams to make sure the entire organization is following one go-to best practice or in training new employees.
Above all, using conversation analytics to keep track of team performance also lets sales leaders hit sales targets more frequently.
Explore conversational intelligence software
Naturally, we can’t expect any sales rep to record and study all of their own sales calls. We can’t even expect such a task to be tackled as a team. The amount of time that would take would, well, render the team completely unavailable to actually close any deals! No, instead savvy businesses incorporate conversational intelligence software that records, transcribes, and analyzes conversations for them.
Conversational artificial intelligence uses machine learning and natural language processing (NLP) to scan calls — as well as emails, web conferences, and so forth depending on the program — to identify key information. It meanwhile matches this info to relevant metadata, such as contact name, organization, and phone number. This helps with search functions and the organization of information. Here’s a glance at a couple of CI programs available to B2B businesses.
Revenue Grid: Conversational intelligence integration
Revenue Grid is the number one AI guided-selling platform that nudges sales teams with step-by-step guidance to win the deals faster. Conversational intelligence is the latest addition to the Revenue Grid features portfolio and is immediately available to all the Revenue Grid customers.
The primary role of this feature is to record and analyze any customer call made in Zoom or GoToMeeting apps, get unique insights from sales conversations, and create proper signals based on these insights. The key functionality of the Revenue Grid conversational intelligence includes:
- Auto-capture every call and find any recording when required
- Filter out keywords, transcripts, and action items within the sales calls
- Access any call recording and jump to the exact time when a specific keyword was mentioned
- Set up specific signals to make the deals move faster using relevant topics and keywords
- Take actions using the leveraged conversation signals to move deals forward in real-time
Using this feature sales managers can apply best practices in conversation performance across the entire organization. Sales representatives can perform a self-assessment of their calls and improve their conversational skills to win more deals. In addition, the entire sales team gets specific signals during the conversation to move the deal in the right direction.
Chorus: Conversational intelligence software
Chorus is one of the more widely-used conversational intelligence applications that has popped up to conquer the task of analyzing communication with consumers. Specifically, it records and analyzes calls made on web conference platforms Zoom, Skype, Google Meet, and a few other dialers. It also integrates with calendars and CRM software so that users can apply the CI data obtained to their sales operations.
Gong: Conversational intelligence platform
Gong, marketed as a revenue intelligence software, captures calls, emails, and meetings word for word. The conversations are fully transcribed and can also be searched by keyword. The program then provides insights on where each deal is in the sales pipeline while offering guidance about how to proceed.
Conversation intelligence application for sales and non-sales teams
Conversation artificial intelligence is just as beneficial for non-sales teams. For instance:
- Analytics give insight about the market, customer objections, and demand that can be applied to product development as well as by advertising departments.
- CI integrated software handles data entry and note taking so that administrative teams can direct their focus elsewhere.
- Customer support calls can be recorded and analyzed to teach new service agents or pinpoint frequently asked questions.
- CI takes some of the heat off of HR teams that have to come up with training material by documenting what works — and what doesn’t.
Implementing conversational intelligence technology offers an infinite source of critical information without taking up the time that could be better spent selling.