PowerPoint and Presenting Stuff

Brainshark Sales Enablement Portal: Conversation with Andy Zimmerman

Andy Zimmerman is chief marketing officer for Brainshark, Inc., a leading provider of sales enablement solutions. Brainshark’s offerings include Brainshark On-Demand — for turning PowerPoint documents into online and mobile video presentations — and SlideShark, the award-winning app for showing PowerPoints on the iPad and iPhone. Thousands of companies use Brainshark to improve the reach and results of their business communications, while dramatically reducing costs.

In this conversation, Andy discusses the Brainshark Sales Enablement Portal, which Brainshark is launching today.

Geetesh: Tell us about the new Brainshark Sales Enablement Portal, and who is this intended for?

Andy: The Brainshark Sales Enablement Portal is a new content management portal — designed for sales professionals and other audiences, including marketing teams and channel partners. The portal provides intuitive and central access to all the Brainshark video presentations and other content that these groups need.

As you know, Brainshark video presentations combine PowerPoint slides, voice narration, video clips, quizzes/interactivity, attachments and more. They can be viewed anytime, on-demand, from computers, smartphones or tablets. They’re trackable too, so when sales reps send a presentation out, they can see who viewed it, when and for how long — a major help when following up.

In addition to providing a repository of Brainshark presentations, the Sales Enablement Portal also houses content in other popular business formats, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and .PDF documents. As a result, users can quickly access all their important sales, marketing and training assets from a single, secure, searchable and mobile-optimized location.

This offering, part of our new Sales Enablement Suite, comes at a time when sales enablement — that is, helping companies prepare for customer interactions, engage with key audiences and advance sales opportunities — is becoming even more of a strategic priority among the C-suite. Analyst firm IDC reports that salespeople squander 7 hours or more each week (nearly a full workday!), looking for information to prepare for sales calls — and usually without success. In addition, only 10 percent of that information is made available in a useful format.

Geetesh: What can a user do with their presentation content, and any other content that’s already on the portal — can you share some scenarios?

Andy: Sure. In addition to serving as a content repository, the Sales Enablement Portal has a lot of other useful features. The portal provides permission-based access, meaning that you only see the content you’re intended to see. So, for example, if you’re accessing the portal as a sales rep, your view won’t be cluttered by irrelevant or sensitive materials intended for other audiences, like channel partners or executives.

Administrators can designate featured content to ensure maximum visibility and usage. The portal also provides powerful search capabilities and lets you filter results based on folder, topic, tags, and author. You can also sort by date, title, and content popularity.

Each individual accessing the portal can customize their experience, through the personal organization and “favorites” capabilities. So again, if you’re a sales rep, you might decide to organize content into your own easily accessible lists — designating content related to particular customers, verticals, products, sales stages and more. Lists can be changed or eliminated as your needs change, and you could tag sales presentations you access frequently as “favorites” for quick, anytime access.

Each piece of content you access is displayed within its own landing page, providing an easy glimpse at related presentations and other content. If permitted, you can share presentation links via email and social media, and comment on and rate materials too.

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