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Built from the Customer Up: Our Candid Interview with Showpad Co-CEO Louis Jonckheere

  • Blakely Thomas-Aguilar By

Alas, just as 2015 draws to a close, here is the final mobile app feature in our Appy Holidays business mobility series. But this interview with the co-founder of Showpad AirWatch Appy Holidays logoprovides the perfect ending, thanks to a question every modern business is asking: how can technology help us align sales and marketing?

As a member of the App Configuration for Enterprise (ACE) community, Showpad co-founder and co-CEO Louis Jonckheere answers five of our top questions in our final Appy Holidays Q&A.

Q: What is Showpad’s story?

Louis: Showpad started out as a mobile app development agency. Clients came to us for specific apps that typically just worked for one small need. One day a client came to ask for an app for an upcoming trade show. To be honest, we never thought that an app could work in that environment, but we built it for that customer. A few weeks later, a second customer came and asked for an app that they could give to their salespeople on a trade show floor. A couple weeks after that, a third client asked for the same thing.

So we looked at this as more than coincidence, and decided to create an app using what we had learned and started to investigate the broader problem of sales and marketing alignment.

Then we created the Showpad company around that app and evolved it into a full sales enablement platform.

[Related: Appy Holidays! Celebrating a December of Business Mobility Apps]

Q: Who needs Showpad, and why?

Louis: Sales has become much more complex lately. We’re now dealing with very informed buyers that often find 60 to 70% of the information they need online. This means that sales has become more consultative than ever before, and that salespeople need to have the right information at their fingertips in order to move the customer along the sales cycle. Showpad does that for salespeople. It gives them access to the latest and most relevant information, in an easy-to-find and easy-to-use format.

Q: What is the one thing people don’t know about Showpad?

Louis: Showpad is a sales enablement platform, not just an iPad app. It works as a full software platform across multiple devices, including iPads, Android devices, laptops, and desktop computers. It includes email integration, desktop integration (which makes it much easier for marketing to share new content), and the capability to be a remote selling solution. And since some people feel more comfortable with different hardware devices, Showpad makes sure they can all have the same experience on any device.

Q: What is the biggest misconception you see for businesses deploying mobile apps to workers?

Louis: A lot of companies think that mobile apps are exclusively mobile, but that’s no longer enough. Everybody works on more than one platform today; companies need solutions that work across all platforms and devices.  Unfortunately, a lot of buyers go exclusively mobile, and only then do they realize that’s a mistake.

The other big misconception about mobile is that it requires more than just providing sales materials on mobile devices. To truly adopt a mobile strategy it means that you have to change the sales and service process as well. It’s not enough to just drop in an app, because everything is linked. You want to think through how people will use the app, what else they need, and how you can speed up the sales cycle by changing the way you sell.

[Related: 4 Ways Apple Volume Purchase Plan (VPP) Impacted Business Mobility in 2015]

Q: What is your favorite customer story from this past year?

Louis: Wyndham Hotels Group uses Showpad to deliver sales training to 3,600 sales people worldwide. Instead of handing out binders full of information, they now have all of their training materials on Showpad. In the first year they saved $125k in printing alone. They also calculate that they have saved more than $2.5 million by improving retention among their salespeople.

This is a tremendous ROI story for Wyndham and a great example of another way to use the Showpad platform.

[Related: 5 Amazing Customer Stories We’re Thankful For in 2015]

To learn more about Showpad, visit their website at showpad.com. Or to join the growing ACE community, visit appconfigforenterprise.org.

Want to be a part of the conversation? Join now on Twitter using #AppyHolidays #AppStandards.

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Louis Jonckheere ShowpadAbout Louis Jonckheere, Co-CEO & Co-founder of Showpad

Showpad is the second company Louis has founded. He and his co-founder, Pieterjan, founded the mobile development agency In the Pocket in 2010, where Louis still serves on the board. Prior to In the Pocket, Louis was a Strategic Partnership Manager at Netlog, where he first met Pieterjan. Louis holds master’s degrees in both Law and Business.

Blakely Thomas-Aguilar

Blakely Thomas-Aguilar

Blakely is a brand journalist for VMware AirWatch by day, sci-fi/fantasy book-aholic (and mom of 3!) by night.

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