Last week, former BIA/Kelsey CEO and President Neal Polachek presented a very impressive sales tool developed by the vSplash team. The tablet tool (currently for iPad and web-version) named “BuzzBoard” is designed to drive to efficiency and effectiveness for local media sales representatives.
First a bit of background on vSplash. Via its managed services business, vSplash currently delivers thousands of high quality digital media executions to its array of local media partners around the world. This includes producing traditional and mobile websites, display ads and mobile apps in multiple languages across multiple time zones. vSplash operates out of its New Jersey and Hyderabad, India offices.
As Neal tells the story, the launch of the BuzzBoard tool is a natural outgrowth of vSplash’s value-added services to large local media companies. The idea for BuzzBoard was germinated by vSplash CEO and founder Umesh Tibrewal as he witnessed first hand the sales challenges his clients were facing in the marketplace as it related to digital media products. One of vSplash’s clients began sending the vSplash analytical team merchant websites for evaluation. These websites were be analyzed by the team and a report was sent back to the sales representative. The sales representative was then able to meet with the merchant and offer a more precise and empirical assessment of the merchant’s digital presence. The empirical assessment enabled the sales representative to feel more confident during the sales call and often led to better conversion and higher revenue generation. As Umesh and team witnessed this, vSplash began building a platform to automate the website assessment process.
BuzzBoard is the manifestation of this learning process. There are some key elements of the BuzzBoard tool that Neal took our team through during the call last week. First, at the core of BuzzBoard is the audit of the merchant’s website. This audit focuses on the presence and performance of the website. Presence is defined as where and how consumers can find a merchant’s website. The audit therefore determines if the website is being properly indexed in the search engines, on the key directory sites and whether or not the site can be access and viewed via a mobile device. In terms of performance, BuzzBoard analyzes the functional aspects of the merchants’ website. This includes key technical aspects and assesses the site in terms of search engine optimization.
The second key aspect of the BuzzBoard tool is the automated proposal generator. The tool takes the website assessment and automatically creates a proposal for fixing and improving the presence and performance of merchant’s website. The tool offers the sales representative three options for generating a proposal – an automated proposal, a proposal based on one-time and ongoing investment and a menu based option. Neal showed us some other important features of the tool that we’ll describe in forthcoming post.
It seems clear that BuzzBoard has some great potential to transform the sales experience for the sales representative and the merchant. Early evidence suggests the tool can greatly reduce the time spent by sales representatives preparing for a sales call while enabling the sales representative to have a more effective presentation and merchant interaction and engagement. Just imagine if BuzzBoard could enable outside sales representatives to see one more merchant a day and improve overall revenue conversion by say 10-20% – then BuzzBoard could be a real game changer.