RealTime IT News

Dell Offers Small Businesses a Virtual Account Executive

Dell Computer Corp. in Austin, TX said it is now offering two new programs for small businesses, Virtual Account Executive and Breakfast With Dell.

Virtual Account Executive brings the benefits of an on-site sales visit directly to its high-volume small business customers via the Internet, the company said. Customers will be briefed on Dell's latest products and shown demonstrations to highlight their features and functionality as well as be offered an online factory tour.

Breakfast With Dell is an online educational seminar series created to help small businesses learn how to use technology to grow and manage their business.

Small business accounts for a significant portion of Dell's almost $6 million a day in online sales, the company said. Sales to small businesses increased 65% to more than $1 billion during the fiscal year ending Jan. 31, 1998.

"Many of Dell's largest corporate customers travel to Texas for executive briefings. Most small businesses don't have the time or money to travel to Dell for an on-site visit," said Paul Bell, vice president and general manager of Dell's home and small business group. "We are extending our direct business model by bringing valuable information directly to small businesses free of charge."

Co-developed with USWeb Corp., the Virtual Account Executive program enables Dell sales representatives to customize sales presentations for its high- volume small business customers. A sales representative determines a customer's needs, customizes the information to address the customer's issues and walks them through an interactive presentation.

Last week, about 2,000 businesses attended the first online breakfast seminar to learn about networking their business. Dell said it is partnering with Microsoft and Iomega Corp. to arm small businesses with the technology information they need to make informed computing decisions. Virtual seminars will be held every other month.