Technical sales: What will be most important in the future

Technical sales of tomorrow with AR/VR – how augmented and virtual reality will bring breakthroughs

One of the biggest challenges in sales is to get products closer to the customer. In industry especially, this often fails due to the logistical effort required to move products that are not designed to be mobile. Depending on their size or function, it may not be feasible to present certain products on site and there can also be hazardous properties inherent in the product that preclude transport or presentation to the customer from the outset.
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Which paths lead to more sales success?

To be able to make an effective presentation to potential customers sales, professionals resort to videos, slides, or printed information material to showcase products. However, the more specific the product and the associated requirements, the more unsatisfactory this approach is, as it is difficult to present complexity, contexts, and nuance. Attempting this can easily lead to confusing and overly complex presentations and loss of customer attention. Indeed, this type of approach means that a real experience of the products is not possible. Sales success, therefore, depends to a large extent on the customer’s imagination and ability to visualise. Added to this can be the high production costs of multimedia presentations and the uncertainty, in a crowded media world as to whether brochures will ever be viewed at all. However, a lack of flexibility is no longer acceptable in the modern sales world. Those who cannot take account of customer wishes and specific requests promptly will increasingly fall behind in the race in customer choice.
More sales success
Technical sales of tomorrow with AR and VR

How do you create a great product experience?

Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are the first technical aids that allow products to be experienced and individually configured directly at the customer’s premises. And, if required, even embedded directly into the environment in which the products will later be used. A distinction is made between virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). VR creates a completely computer-generated environment in which viewers can even move around freely to explore the VR world, whereas AR adds digital content to the existing real world.
Examples of augmented reality include the projection of a navigation system onto the windscreen of a car or a program that allows furniture from a furniture store to be virtually placed in one’s own living room before purchase. In addition to a relevant and convincing virtual experience, the technical sales of tomorrow offer the possibility of customising the product for the clients’ specific needs and making product improvements before delivery takes place. We show how the technical possibilities of AR and VR can be used for contemporary sales.
Using virtual reality in technical sales

Using virtual reality in technical sales

technical sales of tomorrow with virtual reality
Whether customer discussions and meetings are held on-site or digitally is not really a decisive factor in sales at the technical level. However, operating under global pandemic conditions has led to serious changes in business processes. Meetings are increasingly being held digitally and depending on the industry, this approach has even proven to be much more efficient and goal oriented. Not only are travel costs and valuable time saved, but also the integration of VR into meetings and presentations on site allows finished products to be experienced in virtual space with great flexibility. Customer-specific CAD data can now be incorporated directly into presentations. If, for example, a new building is being planned or a manufacturing plant is being redesigned, all aspects of the plan or design can be integrated virtually in the early planning stages. In most cases, the equipment for this is already available on site, as the presentation can usually be easily implemented on PCs, laptops, tablets, smartphones and, of course, with VR glasses.
A VR viewer like i4 VIRTUAL REVIEW helps to take data from the customer and integrate it easily. The use of powerful software such as i4 MEETING, on the other hand, makes the virtual integration of entire teams possible, completely independent of their real location, and provides for the active participation of the team members. The VR world is particularly attractive because it is possible to move completely freely in the respective environment if desired. This means that developers and other participants can literally examine the products and projects from all perspectives and adopt new points of view. The advantages for product and project development cannot be emphasised enough. All of this can be implemented in modern sales with the right software solution at almost any desired scale.
Presentation of complex projects with virtual reality

Always stay up to date: technical sales of tomorrow with virtual reality

In order to display the latest status of a project in real-time, the integration of current 3D data is important and in doing so aids productive discussions and meetings. And that’s not all. Companies that present their services at trade fairs make an immense logistical effort to transport machines and products to the event. However, it is often technically not possible to show and demonstrate devices on site because they may be too large, heavy, sensitive, or even dangerous for transport. This is precisely why virtual reality or VR offers the option of presenting even the most complex products and processes to potential customers. It is an interactive process, with customers and business partners actively shaping ideas and products virtually, leading to higher sales and customer retention. Immersion in this reality is only one aspect that distinguishes VR from pure video presentations or printed information material. Instead of convincing customers with lengthy explanations and dry tables, the virtual experience is often sufficient for customers to grasp processes and designs intuitively and quicker. Particularly helpful is the ability to integrate any specific requirements and existing CAD data customers may wish to include.

Presentation of complex projects with virtual reality

At trade fairs, conventions, and similar events, the presentation of new projects is important for marketing and sales. From new airports and train stations to the introduction of everyday products, advance information supplied to potential customers and stakeholders is often crucial for later sales success.

Even in the early stages of product or project development, a wide range of alternatives and solutions can be presented thanks to VR. Customer-specific requirements and changes can be discussed and implemented relatively easily, bringing a dynamic aspect to sales that is not possible when simply watching a video. Interested parties can directly experience the new projects or products from their own perspective via VR making the context relevant and easier for customers to visualise operations and the potential benefits of the product.

Interactive possibilities of AR in sales
How does augmented reality help in technical sales?
How strong an effect VR has depends on the depth of the immersive experience. The greatest depth of immersion, i.e., the actual immersion in virtual reality, is realised using VR glasses. In this way, construction projects, for example, can be experienced comprehensively on the greenfield site even before the ground-breaking ceremony has taken place. Live presentations of large projects, the simulation of complex plants, virtual tours, the demonstration of complicated products, or the interaction of several machines, is easily possible with i4 VIRTUAL REVIEW. Apart from this, a lower level of immersion is of course also possible via tablets and computer screens. Although not fully immersive in the sense of a virtual experience, such a VR environment offers extensive options for project analysis and the implementation of changes or new ideas. Annotations and notes can be entered directly into the VR environment as desired, so that teams, project management, and customers are involved in the final design and sales process.
“AR is one of the most important technical sales trends 2022”

How does augmented reality help in technical sales?

In addition to VR, augmented reality or AR is rapidly gaining importance. The combination of the real world and digital information is already making life and work easier for countless people in many applications. The best-known example of AR is probably the game Pokémon Go, in which players hunt for virtual monsters in the real world using their smartphones. However, many useful applications can be derived from this technology.
For industry and commerce, AR offers the possibility of projecting three-dimensional models of products into a real environment. Thanks to smartphones and cameras, this can be implemented almost anywhere with very simple technical means. For individual technical sales, such solutions must be applicable to different products without needing significant resources. Powerful AR software such as i4 AUGMENTED REVIEW allows any 3D model to be placed on the camera display of tablets and smartphones. In this way, sales experts will be able to present individual models directly at the customer’s premises, and exactly where the products will later be used. The biggest advantage for customers is that they can get a very precise idea of the final product in situ. Will the selected model really fit into the desired environment? What unforeseen problems might arise that would only become apparent much later without AR? Trying things out without wasting real resources is a core competence of a technical sales solution based on augmented reality.

Interactive possibilities of AR in sales

Augmented reality (AR) offers much more than just the combination of the optical representation of 3D models and real environments. Entire presentations or instructions can be designed for customers or specialist personnel via the use of VR or AR glasses. Museums, for example, use tours with supplementary information and 3D-based animations that enhance the experience for visitors. The application possibilities are enormous across industries and can be scaled to almost any size according to specific requirements. In the future, information material such as brochures, datasheets, problem solutions, or offers can be designed from scratch. Images in a catalogue can be easily supplemented with 3D models using the powerful AR solution i4 AUGMENTED CATALOG. With the help of the AR app, the models then simply appear above the respective product image. In concrete terms, it enables a customer to closely examine and place the desired product in their own premises before deciding on the purchase. Additional sales information such as options, prices, or special features of a product can be displayed at any time via the integration of images and can, of course, be flexibly changed if required.

AR is one of the most important technical sales trend 2022

Those who want to present particularly complex technical models can fall back on an online service. The use of this cloud-based solution allows the worldwide retrieval and display of large models on end devices without having to worry about local IT performance problems. The logistics for important international trade fairs and events at which products are to be presented can be considerably streamlined thanks to augmented reality. Since AR viewers allow the visual integration of digital content in the desired real environment, each presentation becomes individually and instantly configurable. Showing oversized machines and products thus becomes possible and the sales experience stretches way beyond the two-dimensional experience of videos and printed brochures.
But that’s not all! In the future, thanks to AR integration, it will no longer be necessary to limit the customer to a specific product selection, because all possible variants and versions can be presented to interested customers in an AR environment. This means that in the future, employees in the technical sales department will never again be embarrassed by having to defer a customer. The entire product range and all current developments can be presented in full, at any location via the integration of augmented reality. If you don’t want to miss out on trends in technical sales, you should be on board with the flexible application of AR.

Conclusion: high-quality AR and VR solutions are indispensable for technical sales

In the future, the success of technical sales will depend much more on the ability to be flexible. Customer requirements must be able to be implemented quickly in order to be presented convincingly. Existing customer models or environmental conditions should be presentable within the shortest possible time so that problems and change requests can be taken into account at an early stage. The presentation of projects or products in a real or virtual environment is very helpful at trade fairs and similar events. Products and machines that cannot be shown to customers at the trade fair for logistical reasons (or only with disproportionate effort) can now be experienced digitally. Furthermore, networking in the globalized world leads to both new challenges and more opportunities for those that can act flexibly and swiftly. In many cases, virtual meetings can do a better job of persuasion than on-site conversations that can only rely on videos or printed information. Implementing rich 3D models in VR and AR environments does an unparalleled job of sales persuasion. The cost of AR and VR implementation is ultimately not that high, given the savings in logistics and traditional sales tools (such as printed brochures). In fact, the relatively low investment needed in powerful software for AR and VR solutions pays for itself through their continued usability. Flexibility and future-proofing are a given with high-quality software products. Individual, scalable solutions made to measure outshine any rigid video or print presentation. The most important plus point of VR and AR in everyday technical sales, however, is probably the outstanding persuasive power that comes with the direct customer experience and individual involvement in places and products.
“The most important plus point of VR and AR in everyday technical sales, however, is probably the outstanding persuasive power that comes with the direct customer experience and individual involvement in places and products.”
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