A field representative’s job is never easy.
As a liaison between a company and its customers, they act as a buffer, ensuring brand consistency and maximizing sales for all parties involved.
These days, field reps have to be multi-faceted—able to do everything from finding new customers to repairing fixtures and displays.
If they’re not in the car going to their next location, they’re on their feet combing through aisles and collecting data. That means everything they need to get their job done—from planograms and spreadsheets to cameras and communication tools—has to be mobile.
But for today’s field reps, that’s not always the case: paper products and bulky company computers still rule the roost, making it hard for field reps to streamline their workflow and be efficient with their data collection. Significant gaps between data capture and analysis are a common occurrence, and a lack of real-time communication tools and insights makes it difficult for brands to reach total compliance as fast as they could.
Thankfully, advances in technology are making it easier than ever for today’s field reps to do their jobs accurately, consistently, and on time.
Here Are Four Ways Field Marketing Software Can Improve Everyday In-Store Activities
1. Field Marketing Software Can Help Automate and Speed Up Surveys and Audits
When a field marketer or rep goes to a store to conduct an audit, often they do so with endless spreadsheets and emails, answering pre-designed questionnaires that collect information about store compliance, brand presentation, and competition.
Field marketing software makes conducting audits and surveys a breeze. Questionnaires are easily customizable and can be automated for multiple store visits by the team at HQ, and real-time, top-down communication between reps and managers makes it easy to take photos of displays, send information to the cloud, get approval, and adjust merchandising and marketing tactics accordingly.
2. Merchandising and Training
By giving reps smartphones enabled with field marketing software, reference materials like shelving guidelines, promotions, and pricing are instantly available, making it easy to conduct store audits and verify if each product is being presented properly and at the right price.
Field marketing software is also great for training other field reps to avoid common mistakes. Managers at HQ can connect with field reps to share training documents and best practices, and reps can connect and collaborate with one another via group channels and one-on-one messaging to share tips and ask for advice.
3. Field Marketing Software Lets You Better Collect and Analyze Data from Stores
Field reps will tell you: collecting data by filling out binders is a pain, and you won’t get many actionable insights if all your stats are sitting statically on multiple pages.
Advanced field marketing software allows field reps to collect data so HQ can monitor, track and analyze information in real time, speeding up decision-making and the store execution process when it matters most. It’s easy to implement for IT teams, and because it can be downloaded to any mobile device, brands don’t have to worry about buying new hardware for each of their reps—they can load it directly onto their phones.
4. Increasing Sales
Whether it’s stocking new products or ensuring prime placement of products, field reps carry a lot of power when it comes to influencing store managers.
With field marketing software, reps can use the information on their devices—such as sales collateral and new product descriptions—to convince store managers to continue fostering a healthy working relationship with their brand.
Field marketing software is also beneficial to store associates and other sales representatives, who can gain access to specific pieces of information—collected on the platform, and shared via an outbound link—to help them better engage with customers on the sales floor.
When field reps need to use spreadsheets, emails, and phone calls to get even the simplest tasks done, it can breed chaos and confusion, especially when the results of their audits can take months, if not weeks, to get back to headquarters. But, with the right field marketing software, ensuring brand consistency and proper in-store execution doesn’t have to be hard.