Predictive Sales AI


Predictive Sales AI

Artificial Intelligence isn’t just the stuff of science fiction or futuristic TV shows – it’s here and impacting our every day lives even if you don’t realize it.  

This is particularly true in business, where AI has had a major impact on how sales teams sell products and services. The days of cold calling random leads are essentially over as today’s cutting edge sales pros are using predictive Artificial Intelligence to help find more qualified customers, close deals faster, and improve the bottom line.

Want to learn more about predictive sales AI and how it can help your sales team reach new heights? Then you’ve come to the right place.

What are Artificial Intelligence and Predictive Analytics?

Before we get to the details of how AI and predictive analytics can change your business for the better, let’s do a quick breakdown of what each thing is so we’re all on the same page.

So, what is Artificial Intelligence? Demis Hassabis, CEO of Deep Mind, gives us a very simple but accurate definition:

“AI is the science of making machines smart.”

For something as complex as Artificial Intelligence there are a lot of things that go into achieving that goal.

There have been huge advances in AI over the past few decades and certainly more will come in the very near future. And while the idea that Artificial Intelligence will one day function like a living, breathing human being still remains in the realm of science fiction, machines are learning to “think” like people. This is great news for business – particularly sales.

Predictive analytics, meanwhile, is defined like this:

Predictive analytics is a methodology that examines huge amounts of data in order to predict trends and patterns.

Software utilizes complex Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, and algorithms to break down mountains of information in order to help us better predict outcomes in a wide variety of situations.

Predictive analytics has many, many uses – but it’s particularly valuable in the sales world, where it can help teams better prioritize opportunities, convert more leads into customers, and understand why deals sometimes fail despite our best efforts.

Predictive analytics rely on Artificial Intelligence to provide insights into the sales process. The AI helps the machine learn, which in turn allows it to make better predictions.

Now that we’ve cleared all of that up, let’s talk about how all of this works and can benefit your business.

How is AI Improving Predictive Analytics?

Odds are you’ve heard the phrase “big data” kicked around a lot in business conversations over the past few years.

Thanks to advances in technology, we can now gather and analyze more data than at any other time in human history. Of course, there’s so much data to analyze these days that there’s no way even a team of humans could do it effectively and efficiently.

This is where Artificial Intelligence comes in.

Thanks to things like algorithms, machine learning, and other technological advances, computers are now able to do the heavy lifting for us when it comes to crunching huge amounts of information.

The upsides of this are numerous. For starters, it means we can gather mountains of data on even the tiniest details and actually parse them in meaningful ways that allow us to find correlations we might have otherwise missed.

Beyond that, it also means that our predictive analytics tools become more accurate – because as we gather more and more data and refine it based on previous outcomes, the machine becomes better at determining the probability of specific outcomes.

This is a goldmine for your business, because it can not only eliminate guesswork on your part, but it can help your sales team choose tactics with the highest probability of success.

Think of it this way – what if you had a customer stuck in the buying process? In a traditional sales situation, your sales person would have to figure out what might help the customer move to the next phase of the buyer’s journey. That might be a demo, showing them a piece of content, or any number of other things

However, with AI and predictive analytics the software will understand what’s worked in the past in these situations. It can then suggest the path with the best chance of success – giving your sales person the best shot at closing a deal.

As the data sets get bigger and take more and more data points into consideration, AI allows the software to become more adept at learning. And that benefits you in the long run. Smarter predictions mean more sales in less time, with less guesswork and wasted effort.

How Does Artificial Intelligence Impact Predictive Analytics?

Taking this all a step further, Artificial Intelligence has a major impact on the quality of the predictions offered up by your sales management AI software.

It achieves this by taking all the gathered data, filtering it, comparing it to previous data, and arriving at new conclusions when necessary.

When humans are making predictions, we tend to do it based more on gut feeling and less on logic. Machines are the opposite. Artificial Intelligence continues to evolve, and as it improves it’s become very good at synthesizing how humans react emotionally with logic.

The result is a predictive analytics system that continues to learn how humans think and feel and then applies logic and probability to those emotions.

Beyond that, Artificial Intelligence is really good at looking at data and finding connections and correlations between data points that humans would either completely miss or require a greater amount of time to find.

AI can recognize that people who buy diapers also buy baby wipes, but it might notice that a decent percentage of those same people also buy a third unrelated product.

Because of that, it can predict that a percentage of your customer base is interested in that third product. Then it can suggest that you offer that product to other customers who’ve bought diapers and baby wipes.

Then as it learns more, it can refine the way you make that offer. Maybe you offer a coupon and people make a purchase. Maybe offering a coupon has no effect. The key takeaway is that the AI finds the connections in the mountains of data you’ve amassed, then figures out how to help you sell things by predicting what buyers will do. As it learns, it gets even better at predicting behavior.

This is the biggest impact AI has had on predictive analytics. It doesn’t just make a guess – it makes a prediction and then refines it based on results.

What Can Predictive Sales AI Mean for Your Business?

Now that we’ve talked about how AI and predictive analytics work and work together, let’s discuss what this means in practical terms for your business.

Better Performance Metrics

We’ve talked a lot about how predictive analytics can help you sell more product, but we can also pull a 180 here and use it to gauge how your sales staff is performing.

Sales management AI software not only predicts customer behavior, it can help you prioritize all the leads in your sales pipeline. This means you can focus on your best leads as determined by the software and see how your sales team does in terms of handling them.

You won’t have to guess about the quality of a lead each sales member is working – they’re ranked, which allows you to better help your team when they come up short.

These improved metrics are also helpful when it comes to sales forecasting, creating quotas, and judging the overall health of your sales pipeline. The more data you have, the more informed your decisions become.

A Better Understanding of Your Customers

All of this data can not only give you a better idea of how to sell to your customers and how your reps are performing, it can better help you understand who your customers are.

Good sales management AI software can help you create better customer avatars so you can pair the right sales people with customers who they mesh with in terms of personality. This increases the likelihood of making more sales.

Beyond that, Artificial Intelligence is also great at looking at the decisions your customers have made and understanding not only the logic of the process, but also the emotion that drives us to buy or not to buy. Understanding this means you’re better able to help customers get past sticking points and make better pitches to them based not only on data but feelings too.

More Money, More Happiness

You may remember Biggie Smalls’ “Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems”, but predictive AI can remix that track for your business as more money, less problems.

All of this data and the predictive insight it provides will help your sales team close more deals. And more deals means more money. And more money means happier sales people. And…you see where we’re going with this.

Your sales team wants to sell – but too often we don’t give them all the tools and information they need to truly succeed. With predictive sales AI tools, we can not only give them valuable insight into the quality of their leads, we can help them make all the right moves at each stage of the process. It’s like a sales playbook – on steroids, because it’s constantly updating and re-evaluating data to make even better suggestions.

Predictive sales AI technology can help your sales people be better at their job, which will have a ripple effect on the rest of your business.

Final Thoughts

Predictive Sales AI is still in its early stages of development as far as technology is concerned – yet even now, companies that are using predictive analytics are seeing dramatic results in how their pipelines function, sales velocity, reduced sales cycles, and the amount of money earned per win.

What’s really amazing is thinking how many quantum leaps forward Artificial Intelligence is going to make in the coming years. Whether you realize it or not, you’re already interacting with complex predictive AI every day. Every time Amazon suggests a product or Netflix recommends a show, that’s done by an algorithm predicting what you’d like based on data from you and other users like you.

As we move forward, the technology will improve – and as the machines get better at learning and accrue more data, they’ll get better at understanding us and what makes us tick. And that’s when things are going to get really exciting from a sales perspective.

Now is a great time to get in one the action. Predictive sales AI is the way of the future. More companies will adopt it in the coming years – but getting in early means you can get ahead of your competition and start reaping the benefits now while everyone else is behind the curve.

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Accent Technologies is the first and only SaaS company to bring together Sales AI and Content Management in a true Revenue Enablement Platform. We provide both sales and marketing with better visibility into the performance of their teams. This drives revenue through intelligent recommendations for complex sales scenarios and provides the data for rich analytics that power better coaching, forecasting, and long-term customer support. Learn more about our solutions or request a live demo to see it in action.

By Accent Technologies

7th October 2020

Predictive Sales AI the Accent Way

It’s hard to be successful in B2B sales without the competitive leverage of predictive analytics. Yet, most teams don’t have the healthy, clean customer data they need to get started. Even sales enablement platforms with perfect adoption can only offer about 15% of the buyer/seller activity you need. Why? Because they only track what happens in their specific system.

Accent’s AI-driven solutions go beyond traditional sales enablement by providing insight into buyer/seller activities taking place outside the sales enablement platform (or inside the black box).

By backfilling the historical data you’re missing, you can confidently get started with predictive analytics immediately. No more months of rigorous data entry exercises to ensure you get data you can trust.