What is a Demo Center? [Plus 6 High Quality Examples]
When it comes to B2B software, it used to be that prospects had to contact sales in order to book a demo. They would then have to wait for sales to respond, then wait again for the demo to be delivered.
With the rise of product-led growth (PLG), however, a different sales cycle in B2B software has emerged – one that’s self-directed, personalized, and above all, more efficient.
To support this motion, companies started developing product demos that prospects can watch on their own time. But, many realized that one demo was not enough. B2B software often has many features and use cases, which requires multiple demos to highlight.
That’s where a product demo center comes into play.
In this article, we’ll explain what a product demo center is and show six examples of high-quality demo centers currently being used by leading B2B software companies.
What is a demo center?
A product demo center is an online library of self-guided demos and videos that showcase a company’s B2B software. Each demo is focused on a particular buyer persona, use case, product feature or integration. It’s usually available right on the product’s website.
Demo centers don’t replace a sales team, but they are an essential tool in making the B2B software sales cycle more efficient and catered to individual prospect’s needs.
Common uses for demo centers
There are a variety of different reasons why B2B software companies use a product demo library. Here are some of those reasons.
If you sell to multiple audiences or use cases
The primary reason why B2B software companies choose to use a demo center is because they’re trying to sell to multiple audiences or use cases.
When capturing an entire company audience – from employee to CMO – it can be difficult to demonstrate how a product will add value to each user with a single demo video.
A demo center that provides content for each ideal customer profile (ICP) can help reduce the sales cycle by showing prospects not just how the product works, but the value it presents to their unique workflow.
Having a demo center with multiple audiences or use cases also helps your champion sell the product internally, making getting buy-in from decision makers that much easier.
If your product has multiple features or functionalities
For powerful enterprise B2B software, such as Salesforce, having one product demo video is nearly impossible. Workflows get complex – and demos need to showcase that.
A product that has multiple features or functionalities does well with an effective software demo center where a library of demo videos or interactive demos are available for each feature of the product. This way, prospects can zero in on how the product will benefit them, rather than being told about all of the features, many of which may not even apply to them.
This feature is usually handled on websites under product dropdown menus, where prospects can select which feature or functionality best applies to them.
If you want to highlight product integrations
When looking for B2B software to solve their problems, prospects want to know it will integrate seamlessly with their current software. They want to see how the integration will work, what’s involved in setting it up and whether it will meet their needs.
Highlighting these integrations directly through product demos in your demo center helps prospects feel confident when choosing your software.
Product integrations are often an important differentiating factor when prospects are hunting for a new B2B SaaS tool.
5 high quality examples of demo centers
Thinking of developing a demo center for your product? There are different ways to do this depending on your product’s use cases and users. Here are six examples of demo centers to consider.
Use Case: Showcasing product features
Egnyte is a cloud governance and security software solution that has integrations across a number of B2B APIs.
Cloud governance and security is complex, and can include any number of aspects from data controls to file sharing to threat and ransomware detection. Even within one company, there are different subcompartments of security and this requires robust software.
Because of their product model, Egynte has many different use cases. As such, their product demos are targeted towards these different buyer personas and use cases.
This is reflected in their demo center, where each click-through demo also has a checklist so users can easily jump through the different use cases that apply to them, all without leaving the tour.
Egnyte currently has about 20 product tours in their demo center, including tours on topics like:
Use Case: Highlighting integrations
Fivetran is a data centralization B2B software platform that is integratable with a lot of other data management software, including Google Drive, Airtable, and more.
Their product has applications across a lot of industries, including finance, marketing, and sales and support. As such, use cases can vary from integrations to data centralization and efficient analytics.
Because Fivetran’s capabilities span across different use cases, it only makes sense that their demo center focuses on these individual aspects.
Fivetran’s demo center currently has just over half a dozen self-guided tours, including ones like:
As prospects browse through Fivetran’s demo center, a live chat feature pops up. This gives an extra layer of customization in the buyer journey. In order to access these demos, prospects are asked to provide an email for lead generation.
Use Case: Organized by product benefits
Athennian is a B2B software that is targeted towards document management and workflows in legal sectors. They offer several products that help businesses manage equity, org charts, corporate compliance and more.
Because their buyer persona is narrower than some of the other examples, Athennian’s demos are far more focused on feature and functionality.
While Athennian doesn’t have a traditional library of demos, what they’ve done is placed an interactive demo on each of their product pages to fully round out the value of their product.
In order to view these demos, prospects need to provide their name, email address, phone number and company name. By requiring this, Athennian is able to capture more information about each prospect and follow up with personalized sales efforts.
Check out Athennian's demos on these pages:
Use Case: Answering common questions
Zendesk is a customer service-focused software that provides CRM solutions for B2C businesses of all sizes and industries.
The company offers a large collection of on-demand videos in their product demo center. They’ve chosen to target these product demo videos towards their various prospect personas – including Service and Sales – and then by use case. In all cases, their demo videos answer common questions, such as “How do I help my team work efficiently?” or “How do I scale my support with self service?”.
To view most of the videos, they require viewers to complete a lead generation form. Similar to Athennian, by gating this content, Zendesk is creating opportunities to capture user information and tailor their sales followup.
Zendesk currently has almost a dozen videos in their demo center, including on topics like:
- Apps and Integrations
- Mobile Selling
Use Case: Showcasing multiple use cases
Salesforce is one of the most popular (and powerful) CRMs available. It offers an integrated platform, app development capabilities, and a wide variety of apps – all focused on sales data management and analysis.
The complexity of Salesforce means a single product demo video is impossible. Instead, Salesforce offers a wide range of demo content for prospects to engage with.
From their demo center, users are taken to a comprehensive page that explains the feature’s benefits and shows the functionalities relevant to them. For users to watch the demo video, they are required to first enter their information using a lead generation form.
Salesforce currently has 16 videos in their demo center. Some of these include:
Sitecore is a leader in the digital experience software space. The solution is a suite of multiple clouds: Content Cloud, Engagement Cloud, and Commerce Cloud, each designed to help users enrich their customers’ experiences.
Since the platform has a wealth of built-in functionality and multiple modules, the company needed a simple way to teach their prospective buyers all that the tool has to offer.
Use case: Showing off multiple product features and different functionality
In their product tour library, Sitecore has various tours that highlight its main functionality, including:
- Content and page creation
- Multisite management
- Content governance
- Content modeling
Notably, the Sitecore team uses a combination of gated and ungated tours, and inserts a “Request a personalized demo” button at the top of every interactive tour.
In this way, Sitecore is inviting users to engage with their sales team how and when they want to, while still being able to access useful, hands-on content.
Creating a product demo center
There are many reasons why B2B software companies choose to create demo libraries.
But what’s the best format? Some companies (like Zendesk) are choosing to create videos, while others (like Egnyte and Fivetran) are developing interactive product tours.
While there are pros and cons for both options, many companies are moving towards interactive product demos because they are flexible, interactive and can be easily made by a marketing team – without the need for a video production crew or engineering assistance.
Regardless of your choice, a demo center is a powerful way to provide your prospects with the information they need to make an informed decision. This puts control in their hands and offers a personalized experience from day one.
2022 Website Trends: Goal Alignment with Ishaan Shakunt
Ishaan Shakunt - Founder and Head of Marketing Strategy at Spear Growth a performance, marketing, and SEO enablement agency that helps fast-growing B2B SaaS companies.