I would like to take a moment to consider the wisdom of using your CRM software as a presentation solution for your sales tools. Doing so risks the accidental exposure of proprietary information, which could damage the sale.
I believe you would be better served by using your sales tools as a separate application to present data to prevent this type of error in front of a potential buyer.
Here’s the Scenario
Your sales team builds a business case using ROI and TCO tools embedded into your CRM solution. They build a presentation for that business case using the reporting and graphical tools available in those solutions, and set up a meeting with the buyers and stakeholders.
The team shows the presentation to those in the meeting by opening the CRM application and using the integrated tools from there. Everything goes well until an unfortunate slip of the mouse or finger opens a window on the screen in front of your customer that contains pricing data from another sale or potentially embarrassing remarks about the buyers sitting in front of you.
To make things worse, the customer asks to look at other information in the system, such as discounts and other financial information.
How would it look to have a screen suddenly pop up in your presentation to Ms. Smith of Widgets, Inc., with the observation that her grasp of production numbers is weak? Maybe your team accidentally exposes an email about Mr. Brown of Sprockets LLC that says the man has a laugh like a donkey.
It’s possible your team can gloss over the incident. It’s more probable they will be kicked out of the meeting, and the sale will be down the tubes.
After all the work your company has put into convincing these prospective buyers that your solution is the perfect one to fix their problem and relieve their pain, you have lost a sale to a preventable error instead of a competitor.
To add to your pain, your former potential customer lets your mistake be known far and wide because nobody posts to social media faster than an outraged customer. If you have made this mistake in front of a particularly large client, you may not see an enraged Facebook post, but you can be sure other companies will hear about it through the corporate grapevine.
Use Your Tools Wisely
My recommendation is to use your sales and marketing tools as separate applications to avoid the scenario I created above. Instead of opening your CRM to reach the tools while meeting with the customer, tell your sales reps to open only the tool they need at the moment.
You can still integrate the communication of data acquired through the tools into the customer record in the CRM. You don't need to lose the convenience of a central record with all the information you have on your customer. Your sales team can still have access to that data, but in a separate area so that they don't have to open it to use a sales tool.
Generating a qualified lead and nurturing it through the funnel of a complex sale is difficult enough without shooting yourself in the foot with an easily avoidable mistake. Ease the way by mitigating the potential for embarrassment in front of a prospective buyer.
Ultimately, using your sales tools separately from your CRM or overall sales platform keeps the attention on your product instead of your conduct.