How to Sell AI Products [Tips from HubSpot Sales Reps]

Everybody’s speaking about AI and ChatGPT, however regardless of the thrill, promoting AI merchandise presents challenges for salespeople. Potential patrons don’t all the time perceive the panorama, prospects below (or over) estimate AI’s capabilities, and worries that AI might drive people out of their function places enterprise leaders off AI.

On this article, we’ll delve into the challenges and share knowledgeable ideas for promoting your AI merchandise to an apprehensive purchaser or inside a aggressive market.

Free Report: The State of Artificial Intelligence in 2023

Desk of Contents

The Challenges of Promoting AI Merchandise In the present day

The ever-growing curiosity in AI would have anybody imagine that promoting an AI product could be easy. It looks as if everyone seems to be speaking about AI, and it’s logical to imagine that everybody is focused on shopping for and utilizing AI.

Nonetheless, the information means that AI adoption has plateaued, which supplies cause for the challenges and apprehensions that gross sales groups are dealing with.

AI adoption has plateaued

Google Trends data shows a rapid increase in searches for terms related to AI, but even search plateaued in June 2023.

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Interestingly, McKinsey’s Global Survey on AI found that adoption was more prominent between 2017 and 2018, when it more than doubled. Between 2019 and 2022, AI adoption plateaued.

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No doubt, this plateau is a challenge sales must overcome, and perhaps the reason for this plateau is a combination of many challenges.

Trust and Understanding

In HubSpot’s The State of AI in Marketing, results showed that only 27% of marketers are very confident that the information generative AI produces is accurate.

Marie Brunet, global vice president of sales at Uniphore, supports this. Brunet finds that a major challenge in selling AI is trust and understanding. “Many people see AI as a black box absorbing their data with a possibility to provide inaccurate results full of biases and lack of privacy and transparency,” she says.

Unrealistic Expectations

The unrealistic expectations around AI are strong on both sides.

Yogesh Joshi, head of growth at Kommunicate says, “With the launch of LLMs like ChatGPT and Bard, customers today are much more aware of the technology and sometimes have overly high expectations of what can be achieved with it. However, what needs to be understood is that there are still many limitations to this technology.”

Equally, entrepreneurs are showing some reluctance to use AI to its full potential. In her Forbes article, Jodie Cook says, “Some entrepreneurs are afraid of AI. They see it as their competition, and they are worried their margins and USPs are being squeezed by the technology.”

Cook claims that many businesses are not thinking big enough when it comes to adopting AI into their business.

The data hopefully brings some peace for salespeople. The buzz for AI is bigger than the adoption, and selling AI products isn’t as easy as we might believe. However, there’s no doubt that businesses leveraging AI benefit from automated workflows, virtual assistance, and data analysis at scale.

AI isn’t going anywhere, and those who master the art of selling AI in a competitive space will flourish. The trick is understanding the buyer’s apprehensions and challenges and how to overcome them.

How to Sell AI Products in a Competitive Market

Now we know some of the major challenges that you need to overcome, let’s look at how some brands and experts are positioning their AI.

Share the Benefits

AI is here to solve problems and make the lives of those that use it easier. If you want to sell an AI product, you need to share the benefits. It’s a sales tactic that we’re all familiar with, and positioning AI is no different, especially when there are apprehensions about exactly what it can do.

Focus on the benefits to the user. The screenshot below is taken from HubSpot’s artificial intelligence page. Messaging focuses on the ways in which AI helps the user, listing clearly what it can do.

This approach is used across the web. Take a look at Superhuman, an email ai that lists three core benefits to the user.

Emphasize AI ROI

Chad Burmeister, founder and CEO of, recommends taking benefits one step further. He recommends that sales professionals should focus on the outcomes that AI provides instead of the features of AI.

“For example, Reachout delivers 800 connection requests per month, 300 new connections, 40-80 replies, and typically five or more monthly meetings for $250-$500,” he says. “The comparable cost for a traditional BDR would be $7,000 monthly for 8-12 meetings. The outcome: $100 meetings versus $700/meetings.”

Emphasizing AI ROI is more likely to help salespeople close. Brunet says, “Like any new technology, AI implementation must be linked to a concrete business case that’s a priority for the client. In a market where budgets are getting highly scrutinized, AI initiatives must be linked to concrete ROI and measurable success metrics.”

Educate Your Prospects

ChatSpot is a new addition to the HubSpot CRM, available on free plans and up. Like any new AI product, sales must actively educate prospects on exactly what the product is and how it supports business.

Naturally, ChatSpot’s landing page includes all the benefit statements. However, it also shares – with images — four key ways ChatSpot works.

Plus, the page shows how HubSpot is better with the ChatSpot integration. The section “Better with HubSpot” shares four tabs with four desirable reasons for users to integrate ChatSpot.

Consider a Freemium Model

If we’re looking into what makes a successful AI product sale, it makes sense to look at ChatGPT, which gained one million users within five days of launch.

ChatGPT began off free for everybody. It was sufficient for ChatGPT to go viral and construct curiosity. Later, ChatGPT launched ChatGPT Plus, a paid mannequin the place subscribers gained particular advantages like

  • Quicker response instances.
  • Entry to ChatGPT always.
  • New options and enhancements, akin to ChatGPT-4.

A freemium mannequin could assist your gross sales personnel attain a wider viewers, those that don’t fairly have the funds or have to be persuaded by what your instrument can do. Free entry eliminates funds constraints and offers potential customers the liberty to see the advantages for themselves.

Tackle Misconceptions and Differentiate

Oliver Goodwin, CEO and founding father of Synthesys believes that the important thing to promoting AI is differentiation.

He says, “It’s essential to focus on the distinctive options and benefits of your AI answer in comparison with rivals. This may be achieved by in-depth market analysis and understanding buyer ache factors.”

You possibly can exhibit use instances in some ways. A standard strategy is to create use case pages in your web site; see how Synthesys do that for branding movies under.

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One other sensible strategy is video. If potential patrons can see precisely how an AI instrument can assist them each day, they could be extra compelled to purchase.

Model Partnerships is an AI author, and Surfer Search engine marketing helps customers write Search engine marketing-optimized articles. The 2 instruments had a standard purpose with particular person choices. The partnership between Jasper and Surfer elevated the efficacy of every instrument.

Individuals utilizing Jasper might gauge Search engine marketing success by a Surfer integration, and people utilizing Surfer might undertake an AI content material author, Jasper, to make writing simpler and quicker.

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Model partnerships akin to this assist share audiences between two platforms. Customers are more likely to attempt the beneficial instrument, as there’s a simple integration.

The gross sales pipeline is easy. Plus, the difference of the second instrument is predicted to be useful for the reason that consumer is already in circulate with a course of that’s optimized with the introduction of a second instrument. Plus, there’s already belief within the suggestion from the primary instrument.

Every instrument has a web page on its web site devoted to selling the combination and, subsequently, the opposite instrument.

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Use partnerships to share audiences and support your gross sales course of. A partnership clearly defines how the instruments assist and enhance one another.

Display AI With Prospect Information

Jenn Deering Davis, co-founder and head of selling at Gradient Works says, gross sales reps have to be ready to indicate prospects how their specific AI product works with information.

“It’s best to present prospects and show your claims with concrete demos utilizing prospect information. That can show you how to win out over the noise of the magic sparkle AI claims prospects are bombarded with,” Davis says.

Salesforce does a terrific job of this by success tales. Within the screenshot under, you possibly can see their success story hero, headlining Xero’s success with their AI CRM.

The success story leads with the dimensions of their success (transforms service for greater than 2 million prospects). Plus, it attracts out extra information, akin to a 20% improve in common pace to reply. As Davis says, information proves your claims and helps you stand out.

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Greatest Practices from Gross sales Specialists

Lastly, we’ve 4 ideas from gross sales specialists for essentially the most conscientious gross sales groups who share how they’re promoting AI.

1. Set Sensible Expectations

Yogesh Joshi of Kommunicate advises that gross sales groups ought to set practical expectations for potential patrons.

As talked about above, some AI adopters below (or over) estimate the capabilities of AI.

Joshi says prospects want to know that there are nonetheless limitations to this know-how.

“The one method to deal with it’s by educating prospects in regards to the present capabilities and limitations of the know-how and setting practical expectations proper from the start,” Joshi says. “Providing full-access trials and exhibiting by POCs can actually assist right here.”

Professional tip: Don’t overlook to contemplate a freemium mannequin or, as Joshi recommends, supply a full-access trial.

2. Present Options

Joshua Kaiser is the AI, automation know-how knowledgeable, and CEO at Tovie AI. The corporate focuses on creating digital assistants, together with voice and chatbots. Kaiser says the corporate faces a data hole. Prospects know AI is vital however are uncertain of the best way to leverage it successfully.

“That is why we offer not solely merchandise and options but in addition consulting companies that educate enterprises in regards to the fundamentals of conversational AI,” Kaiser says. “We additionally advise them on the best way to implement it successfully into their present processes.”

Professional tip: Your after-sales service is essential to success. When you’ve offered your AI, it’s vital to have some availability for consultancy or strong onboarding in order that your customers get essentially the most out of their new AI instrument.

3. Perceive Buyer Considerations

Kaiser warns that some organizations are nonetheless hesitant to undertake AI due to an rising concern that bots will utterly substitute folks within the office. This makes them reluctant to implement one thing which may result in job loss.

When tackling this problem, Kaiser explains “that conversational AI is extra about growing productiveness within the office, liberating employees from mundane duties to allow them to deal with higher-value actions.”

Professional tip: Any good salesperson understands their purchaser’s core considerations and apprehensions. In case your gross sales course of can soothe considerations, you possibly can anticipate to be extra enticing to your patrons. Work to know purchaser ache factors deeply so you possibly can tackle them as early as doable inside the gross sales course of.

4. Be Clear

Brunet of Uniphore, recommends that gross sales personnel are clear. She says, “Be as clear as doable on the information you acquire, who retains possession, and the way it’s being handled. Companies that supply enterprise-grade safety, have a deal with moral AI, and are clear with their shoppers will come on high.”

Professional tip: Transparency from the start of the gross sales course of is essential. Transparency in AI shouldn’t be solely moral however needed for gross sales. The extra a prospect feels they’ll belief you, the extra possible they’re to interact with the product you’re promoting.

The Way forward for Promoting AI Merchandise

AI adoption could have plateaued, however there’s each cause to see that the way forward for AI is powerful.

The AI merchandise that may stand out in aggressive markets might be clear, solution-orientated, practical with expectations, and deeply know their patrons.

Use the knowledgeable ideas and examples from essentially the most profitable AI merchandise to assist your gross sales system.

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