Howard Kleinert, Canon U.S.A., Inc. and Raj Rao, Inference Corporation
The selling of sophisticated equipment is very different from the sale of simple products and requires a considerable amount of strategizing to achieve success. In clear recognition of this fact, Canon has a sales strategy training program that uses SPIN selling methodology to train major account sales representatives. However, this training gets quickly lost in the multitude of daily tasks that a representative (rep) is usually required to perform. Moreover, Canon is entering new and complex markets where the equipment changes rapidly as do the customer’s needs. This increasingly demands a sales representative to strategize about the accounts while also necessitating that the selling expertise be shared between the sales representatives, managers and support specialists. To meet these challenges, Canon U.S.A., along with Inference Corp., has developed a computerized Strategic Account Management System. SAMS is currently being used on a daily basis by reps and managers and the result is a higher level of effectiveness and efficiency in the sales process.