What is Conversation Intelligence

Conversation Intelligence
What Conversation Intelligence is Not

Let us first begin by quickly agreeing on what Conversation Intelligence is not, does that sound fair? Conversation Intelligence does not define a software category, nor does it describe a particular feature within a software product. Conversation Intelligence is not an outcome or report driven by something that happened in the past either.

Conversation intelligence is something much more, that predates the first words written on parchment paper, it predates you and me, and it predates any technology claiming to be the leader in the Conversation Intelligence space. 

What Conversation Intelligence Is

Now that we have all that out of the way, let us talk a bit about what Conversation Intelligence is. Here at ABSTRAKT, we like to think of it as something buried deep within us that allows us to connect, engage and navigate through the spoken word amongst each other. This applies at a Macro, organizational level and down to a micro, individual level. 

Is Conversation Intelligence Just a Fancy Slogan

Call intelligence, and Revenue Intelligence vendors have done their best to place fancy words and build slogans around their product’s capabilities to analyze and report on phrases, and words said on phone calls and demos. However, none of these tools are helping any of us learn how to navigate the highly complex world of human interaction that takes place in a B2B sales motion. 

The Subjective Success of a Sales Call

Various studies have been conducted that show nearly 9 out of 10 conversations miss their mark. Some of those studies were conducted as humans engaged in face-to-face conversations. Let’s remove body language, facial expressions, mannerisms and we are left in a scenario that the typical Sales Representative finds themselves in every day, all day. What would the SR’s success rate be if all they had were the words being spoken and the tone/inflection of the conversation to understand the subjective success of the call? 

Now, let’s take the various research studies that show 70% to 93% of all communication is non-verbal, and let’s begin to imagine how hard it is to be successful in conversation. That is why it isn’t fair for reactive software products to call themselves Conversation Intelligence. They are not doing anything in the moment, where it matters the most, to make the Sales Representative more effective at communicating. 

The Intelligence is in the Moment, Real-Time, not Post-Call Analytics

So how should we define Call Intelligence or Conversation Intelligence? Well, let’s first begin with the most important aspect of it. The actual conversation taking place. Anything that does not help in the moment is a fancy way of labeling “reporting”. Technology needs to help bridge the gap in the moment by helping in the moment. 

Maybe technology is not advanced enough to be able to (at scale, and an economical price point) read the difference between ecstatic, and someone who is just mildly excited. However, it can help Sales Representatives become more effective communicators by helping them to know which questions to ask or how to respond to that excitement in the moment. As Eminem said, “Would you capture it, or let it slip?” Tools today… unfortunately, they let it slip. 

Bridging the Gap

The goal here is to bridge the gap between what can be changed, and what cannot be changed. Human behavior is messy, unpredictable, emotionally driven, and darn right difficult. It does not even take 9 or 10 people playing a game of telephone to not understand what is being said. All it takes is a Sales Representative wanting to make a sale and a Prospect not wanting to give up their money to mess it up. 

Let’s use the following scenario:

Sales Rep (Jason): Hey Sally, This is Jason with Cymbal.io. How are you doing today?

Prospect (Sally): Hey Jason, I’m good. What can I do for you? 

Sales Rep (Jason): Yeah, the reason for my call is I noticed you are the Sales Enablement leader and was wondering what technology you were using to coach your reps?

Prospect (Sally): Actually Jason, I am currently evaluating coaching tools for my SDRs, but am wanting something more real-time. I have heard Cymbal.io is more on the reactive side?

Sales Rep (Jason): *Feeling excited Sally has heard of Cymbal.io*. Sally, while yes we have an amazing reporting engine as a Sales Leader you can replay the calls with your team to help them become effective in the future. 

Prospect (Sally): So, what you are saying Jason is that what I have heard is accurate and Cymbal.io is nothing more than a post-call analytics tool, is that accurate?” 

Sales Rep (Jason): Sally what we have found is that by using our Deal Engagement technology reps can use the insights from our dashboard to help them on future calls. 

Sales Rep Misses the Cues

As you guess… Jason probably doesn’t get the meeting on the calendar. It is NOT because Cymbal’s solution might be a bad fit, it is because the excitement of brand familiarity got in the way of Jason truly listening to the words and cues being given by Sally. 

Real-Time Sales Coaching

This is what Conversation Intelligence needs to become. It needs to be delivered in the moment, when the conversation is taking place, not after the opportunity has already been lost. It needs to help with the active listening part of the conversation, and be void of emotion and distraction.

Here is how that could’ve played out a bit better if Jason had ABSTRAKT helping in the moment:

Sales Rep (Jason): Hey Sally, This is Jason with Cymbal.io. How are you today?

Prospect (Sally): Hey Jason, I’m good. What can I do for you? 

Sales Rep (Jason): The reason for my call is I noticed you are the Sales Enablement leader and was wondering what technology you were using to coach your reps?

Prospect (Sally): Actually Jason, I am currently evaluating coaching tools for my SDRs, but am wanting something more real-time. I have heard Cymbal.io is more on the reactive side?

Sales Rep (Jason): That’s great you have heard of us, Sally. Is it fair to assume that you also have heard we are constantly innovating and bringing feedback from leaders like yourself to our product team for future improvements?

Prospect (Sally): I have heard that, and know of a couple of scenarios where my peers saw their recommendations make their way into your product. 

 

Spoiler alert, this conversation works out way better for Jason. 

 

Conversation Intelligence Explained

So what is Conversation Intelligence? It is a blend of technology and human interaction that serves to bridge the gap between what is said and what is heard. None of this can happen 30 minutes after the conversation has taken place.

Want to see ABSTRAKT in action? Book a DEMO below.
ABSTRAKT offers Real-Time Conversational Coaching software. Our software provides the right sales information at the right time, live on the sales call or demo presentation.

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