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June 23, 2017

Microlearning for Sales Effectiveness in the Mobile Era

Knowledge is a salesperson’s currency. Successful customer conversations depend on persuasive arguments for picking your solution over the rest. But in the age of the enlightened buyer, a prerequisite for persuasiveness is knowledgeability. Using microlearning for sales training reinforcement is an effective way to bootstrap knowledge retention and get your reps internalizing the things you train them on.

“Well, um… ah…”

Skipping out on sales training reinforcement is like buying a Maserati and cheaping out on oil changes. If you’re investing in your sales force’s success it’s crazy to neglect seeing it through. To be fair, we talk to sales leaders and trainers all the time and appreciate how difficult reinforcement learning for sales can be. But without it, sales reps miss opportunities to convincingly articulate value because they’re too focused on remembering their training.

Unprecedented access to information means 60% of the buying process has already happened by the time a customer engages a rep. A difficult question from an enlightened buyer is the perfect opportunity for a salesperson to establish trust and add value. Reps equipped with the knowledge to deliver a great answer in those moments can tip the scales in favor of your organization.

Painless Mastery with Microlearning

Mobile devices give trainers and managers recourse when the forgetting curve inevitably rears its ugly head. Reps can practice in short bursts wherever they happen to be when a few minutes of free time arises. Using microlearning works because presenting information in small chunks like this reduces cognitive load and eases the perceived burden of learning. Giving reps the option to review information on their own schedule (and in accordance with their own attention span!) makes it easier for them to engage throughout a busy week.

More practice spaced over time spells better retention. A technique called spaced repetition builds on this principle to reinforce new learning. We get hit with all kinds of stimuli throughout the day and the brain would overload trying to keep track of it all. Instead, it evolved to judge how important particular information is based on how often it encounters that information. So the more we revisit a given fact or concept, the more we strengthen our memory of it. Microlearning gives busy people a way to actually take advantage of this in the real world.

Most sales training is delivered in intense yet infrequent bursts so reinforcement strategies are key. Salespeople battle tight schedules and constant travel, so learning content needs to be accessible on-demand wherever they’re located. Microlearning is a commonsense approach to making sure your reps don’t forget the best answers when a deal is on the line.

For more techniques to reinforce new learning download this white paper.  For a deeper dive into microlearning, browse eLearning Industry’s catalog of microlearning articles.

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