Ah, finances. Honestly, I couldn’t be happier that I’m not working in a sector that has recently released updated regulations containing more than 1.4 million paragraphs of rules. And while I won’t pretend to understand what the new Markets in Financial Instruments Directive – or Mifid II – means in the grand scheme of things, I do know that it brings with it a greater pressure to ensure your sales presentations are Compliant.
How Mifid II impacts sales presentations
Under Mifid II, any presentation to a client is classed as a financial promotion, and all financial promotions are subject to strict regulation in three specific ways, as detailed by ACA Compliance:
- Risk warnings: Always providing a fair and prominent indication of relevant risks when referencing any benefits of a service or financial instrument – previously the requirement to provide an indication of risks was only required where potential benefits were emphasised;
- Formatting: Ensuring both the layout and font size of risk warnings give them equal prominence to the remainder of the communication;
- Forward-looking statements: Including details on future performance based on relevant scenarios in both positive and negative market conditions.
Effectively, all marketing materials including sales collateral are going to need the approval of your company’s compliance team and that’s going to require both forward planning and, for reassurance’s sake, evidence to prove what was discussed during the presentation.
The end of last-minute content development
Protocols like this spell the end for last-minute content development. There’s no longer scope to call marketing the day before a meeting and request new presentation material; ticking all the right boxes will take time. If this is the kind of practice you got away with before, the chances are you’ve already noticed a difference since Mifid II came into force in January and hopefully by now you’re getting into the swing of a new content strategy that includes a pre-approved bank of sales collateral. This requires input by both sales and marketing to ensure the resources provided are relevant and on-message, and once it’s prepared you need to be sure that your salespeople know where to find it. If these are things you’ve been struggling with, it might be a sign that it’s time to invest in a Sales Enablement solution.
How a Sales Enablement solution can help with compliance
A Sales Enablement Platform with an app for your mobile device might be exactly the tool you need to ensure you’re delivering on your content-related Mifid II obligations. Here’s three ways it can solve all (or, ok, some) of your problems.1. A resource bank that is compliant and accessible
First and foremost, a Sales Enablement Platform facilitates the storage of sales collateral in a place where salespeople can easily access it, wherever and whenever they need to. Marketing uploads resources to the platform and users are automatically updated whenever new material is added. Because marketing is in control of distributing the content to the salespeople, they ensure that only compliance-tested, on-brand, up-to-date resources are available. There’s no danger of salespeople presenting anything the compliance team would be unhappy with. Moreover, there’s no longer any question of ‘where can I find…?’ because it’s all right there in the app.2. A virtual paper trail
A good Sales Enablement Platform includes reporting features that provide data on which collateral has been shown to clients, in what order and for how long. This gives compliance teams the necessary reassurance that salespeople are showing the correct slides to the right people, and taking the appropriate amount of time to run through whatever risks or terms need to be fully disclosed. Sometimes it is also important that slides are shown in a particular order, and this information is included in the reports. Anyone with access to the Sales Enablement Platform can download this information in easy Excel work sheets or whatever graphic format suits you best.3. Easy customer records
With iPresent, there is also the option to record ‘sessions’. By simply starting a recording session as you enter the meeting and ending it at the meeting’s close, you get a complete record of every resource that was shown during the meeting in real-time. This can be synced with your CRM so that every customer record is completely transparent and up-to-date. It takes the hassle out of reporting meeting notes to your colleagues, not to mention the time-suck that is manually filling in the CRM data. Plus, salespeople aren’t under any pressure to remember what was shown during the meeting – the evidence is safely stored should compliance ever come knocking.
Proof is no longer a burden
With over a million paragraphs of rules to deal with, it seems like the financial markets have plenty on their plate without worrying about the compliance of their sales presentations. Investing in a Sales Enablement Tool takes some of the load off, so that you can concentrate on selling and marketing.