By Andy Champion, VP and General Manager, EMEA at Highspot
A sales enablement plan’s fundamental purpose is to provide salespeople with the tools they need to successfully engage customers throughout the buying process.
It is a relatively new concept, but one that should be a standard business practice, given the significant revenue, sales productivity and customer experience gains. In short, a robust and well-executed sales enablement strategy is a cheat code to drive growth and land your company’s overall strategy.
A robust sales enablement strategy is not dependent on technology, however a sales enablement platform will allow you to execute at pace, get real-time feedback on what is working and also where there are gaps in the operational execution of your strategy.
Sales enablement platforms empower sales teams with the right tools, knowledge, and processes to successfully engage with leads and customers at scale. It’s the secret sauce that reduces new rep ramp time by a quarter and gets one fifth more of your salespeople to hit their annual quota*.
Why ‘traditional marketing tactics’ are dying out
All too often, we hear that marketers are producing content without knowing how it’s used, when it’s used, or if it’s even used at all by the sales team. This lack of communication, data and insight on the ROI of different content is a common issue in the majority of businesses, and is a leading contributor to ‘content chaos‘ whereby marketing teams are asked to produce one-off specials for Sales to use in ‘must win’ deals.
Typically, marketers have very limited insight into how their content is performing. Here too, a sales enablement platform can help by ensuring that marketers and sales people alike have one single source of truth for all content and materials. And by leveraging AI and data analytics, everyone can immediately see what content is resonating with buyers, which is driving revenue and which is simply left on the shelf gathering dust.
Finding the perfect ‘sales recipe’
If you buy into the concept of ‘if you give people a recipe, they’ll know what to do’, then the first step is where do you go to build your recipe. Experience suggests, just like in a commercial kitchen, that we should go to our top performers. To those people in the team that have already figured out what ingredients to mix in which quantities to bake the perfect loaf. In the business world, that means looking at our top sales performers to understand what they’re doing well, to understand what they’re saying and doing to win the hearts and minds of customers, and capturing how they are positioning value in a way that creates compulsion to act and clear blue water versus the competition.
The important message here is that data leads to insight. And that this insight is fundamental to the messaging and experiences that we need to take to our customers which will ultimately result in a purchase. Being able to analyse content and messaging throughout every stage of the buyer’s journey allows you to see what good looks like, and therefore create ‘the winning sales recipe’.
Using sales enablement as a solution
For each persona, sales enablement provides a different benefit.
For the salesperson, they will have one place to go for all the information and content they need, wherever and whenever they need it. Further, they can be wholly confident that once found, the content is up to date and has been proven at scale by other people in the business.
Using a sales enablement solution, a salesperson can also access ‘just in time training’ related to the content they plan to use that will allow them to land it effectively. For example, via an audio or video clip showcasing perfect execution from a top performer or a subject matter expert.
For Marketers, they gain absolute control over their content with deep insight on adoption and engagement that allows them to make it more impactful over time. A sales enablement platform achieves this by tracking what content is being adopted by Sales, which content is resonating with customers and conversely a view of content that is neither used nor effective in influencing revenue.
So, what does this mean?
It’s time for businesses to pay attention to the enormous potential of marketing insights and implement a sales enablement platform as a cornerstone of their strategy in order to drive ROI.
High growth businesses are already using software aimed toward contextual assistance, for training and customer engagement with end-to-end analytics and AI.
This will provide your sales team with seamless access to content, training, and ultimately serve as the single source of truth.
Using sales enablement tools to streamline the sales process and maximise sales performance is fast becoming the industry norm for CMOs and CROs alike to stay ahead of the curve.