Market Share Tip: Using Mapping Software in Sales

August 26th, 2009 by

By Pat Hinds

I have been working on a project to help a company attain greater market share in a vertical that has a large distributed workforce. The distributed workforce’s responsibility is field service maintenance of assets located over a large geographic area. In order for this company to capture more market share they need the field organizations to adopt the product that they are selling. The target vertical field organizations uses a single vendor for the product we are targeting; the competitor has a greater than 70% market share giving it a monopoly status. The company that I am working with has captured some market share in the head office, but the broad perception is the company is not in a position to service the field organization.

The sales team that I am working with has not targeted the field organizations; as a result the sales team has limited knowledge of the location, operation and personnel of the field operation. To capture the market share that the company has targeted, they need to implement sales tools that will provide the sales teams with information on the field organizations. Companies can use a sales force automation tool to help build the foundation of knowledge; allowing the sales teams to focus on the relationship building required to increase confidence with the customer inorder to change perception.

Most sales force automation tools allow for the integration of Google maps and Google Earth directly into the customer records. The following is an example of some of the Google tools that I have used to help focus on aquiring market share from field organizations.

Google Earth: Google Earth displays satellite images of varying resolution of the Earth’s surface, allowing users to visually see things like cities and houses looking perpendicularly down or at an oblique angle, with perspective (see also bird’s eye view). The degree of resolution available is based somewhat on the points of interest and popularity, but most land (except for some islands) is covered in at least 15 meters of resolution.[6] Melbourne, Victoria; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Cambridge, Cambridgeshire include examples of the highest resolution, at 15 cm (6 inches). Google Earth allows users to search for addresses for some countries, enter coordinates, or simply use the mouse to browse to a location. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Earth

Google Maps: is a web mapping service application and technology provided by Google, free (for non-commercial use), that powers many map-based services, including the Google Maps website, Google Ride Finder, Google Transit,[1] and maps embedded on third-party websites via the Google Maps API.[2] It offers street maps, a route planner for traveling by foot, car, or public transport and an urban business locator for numerous countries around the world. According to one of its creators (Lars Rasmussen), Google Maps is “a way of organizing the world’s information geographically”.[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Map

Earth Point: Is a company who specializes in displaying large ESRI shape files and large data sets on Google Earth. They have built some online tools that are very handy when mapping locations. http://www.earthpoint.us/Default.aspx

Excel To KML: Display Excel files on Google Earth. Export a spreadsheet of lat/long coordinates to Google Earth. Pop-up balloons, icons, and paths are easily created from the spreadsheet data.

Web Based GeoCoder: Take any kind of street address list, for example copied from Excel, and geocode the addresses to get latitude and longitude coordinates using the tool below. The data can then be mapped in your browser, downloaded into Google Earth, saved to a web page, or transferred back into your spreadsheet. You can also use this tool to calculate distances to multiple addresses from a single point, or get quick driving directions to multiple destinations. Mapping multiple locations with your own custom data takes seconds, just follow the 6 steps below to plot your own data on a fully interactive multi-point map. It’s fast, easy, and – free to use! http://www.batchgeocode.com/

Map Builder: MapBuilder.net is an Web2.0 service or rapid mashup development tool to build custom Google and Yahoo maps without any knowledge of the Google/Yahoo Maps APIand JavaScript. MapBuilder provides a decent visual interface for the map building process with geocoding and import features. Also MapBuilder lets users tag locations on their maps, and then publish the map either on MapBuilder.net or their own website. http://www.mapbuilder.net/index.php

Topics: Sales Consulting