If you’re like me, your most productive hours are outside of the office, minus distractions. It could be a coffee shop. A co-working spot. Maybe the airport. Now think to yourself – what kind of devices do you see? Plenty of smart phones, I’m sure. A scattering of tablets. Maybe a Blackberry or two and a few Windows phones.
We definitely have no shortage of options thesedays.
But, what about the people who are truly working? A student finishing her term paper. A graphic designer polishing a brochure. A sales rep, or partner sales rep, managing their pipeline. Or, a group of executives discussing a dashboard.
Long live the laptop.
And that brings me to my point. It’s 2015 and we’ve seen far too many organizations spinning cycles and burning money trying to deliver “innovative” and “trendy” mobile applications that they hoped could improve productivity for their marketing teams or sales reps.
But they didn’t. And they don’t. Which is why many of the largest and most successful sales and marketing platforms on the market are re-thinking their mobile strategies to align more closely with an improved user experience in their tried-and-true web applications.
Let’s not take this lightly. I, for one, believe that there’s a lot to learn from some of the largest and most respected technology innovators on the planet:
- Google is hell-bent on investing heavily on their Android operating system, their lightweight Chrome Books and their Chrome web browser.
- Microsoft realized that the OS that for decades had defined their company and owned the enterprise space was being ripped apart by a fragmented mobile approach and is now on the doorstep of releasing Windows 10, letting the desktop user experience flow-through to their smart phones, tablets and 2-in-1’s.
- Apple has admitted whole-heartedly that while their iPhones, iPads and Watches will continue to dominate their consumer strategies, they will never replace the innovation and performance of the MacBook when it comes to true, purposeful productivity.
And that last statement brings us back, full-circle, to our diligent, driven and caffeinated sales rep. Mobile apps were a cute attempt to make them more productive. But at the end of the day, while you may think that your reps are living in CRM, the truth is that they’re living in their browser windows, bouncing from web-apps and websites to social tools and productivity platforms. And with today’s uber-intelligent prospect owning the sales cycle, your rep’s ability to move a deal is contingent on their confidence and ability to deliver value that is aligned as closely as possible to exactly what is needed (and when).
So, as a channel marketer or partner channel manager, think about these two things:
- How do you consistently foster confidence and knowledge in your sales reps?
- How can you help them deliver maximum value at each stage of the sales cycle?
I’ll give you a hint – IT IS NOT another mobile app. IT IS a browser-based, user-friendly, mobile enabled platform that delivers the knowledge, tools and resources your partner reps need – where and when they need it. And the data, visibility and accountability you need to be continuously improving.
UPDATE: Here’s a great article from Tech Crunch on why more businesses (B2B and B2C) are moving away from native apps and back to the mobile web.