Help Sales Reps How and Where They Work

by Orrin Broberg, on Apr, 20, 2016

In an effort to improve sales, many organizations have invested in customer relationship management (CRM) and other tools. In spite of all this, user adoption and feedback remain low as most so called solutions require sales reps to change their workflow habits.


HubSpot reports that a primary reason preventing salespeople from adopting CRM is that they don’t understand what’s in it for them and are part of the “unhappy quadrant,” a group that views CRM more as a disruption to current practices than a benefit.

It’s normal to expect pushback when a selected CMS, CRM or other tool fails to meet the actual needs of sales reps. That's why it's important to look back at how and where reps work and then provide tools that complement their current workflows and speed up processes.

Sales teams don't want to waste valuable time learning a system that slows down their current practices. It's costly for organizations and counter-productive on the sales front. Instead, think like a sales rep first and then develop a strategy to make their lives easier.

How Sales Wins with Mobile

Sales teams do use technology, and high-performers are rushing to take advantage of mobile. Why? According to Salesforce’s 2015 State of Sales Report, high performers sell more with mobile. Almost 60% of high-performing sales teams currently use or plan to use a mobile sales app. It's also worth noting that high-performers are twice as likely as underperformers to have a solution in place.

After seeing what sales leaders are doing, it is imperative for moderate and underperformers to address their lagging mobile adoption. Also, marketing needs to provide a user-friendly solution that is convenient to use with or without WiFi across multiple devices and is updated with the latest collateral, lead capture, and follow-up features to enhance the sales experience.

Mobile app use is forecasted to rise in the future. When sales leaders were surveyed, they found that mobile app use for salespeople is expected to more than double during the next two years. With such a surge in growth, organizations that do not enable sales teams with effective mobile solutions are likely to fall behind the competition.

[Tweet "Orgs that don't enable sales with effective mobile solutions likely to fall behind"]

Companies and their sales teams are also using customer-facing apps to accelerate sales and provide post-sale support (like what Burlodge is doing). This focus on the customer experience gives aligned sales and marketing teams the ability to accelerate sales and grow existing accounts.

How Marketing Can Improve Content and Tailor to Workflow

New tools that only burden sales teams will be at best ignored. Marketing needs to provide content and workflows that meet the real needs of the sales force while streamlining current practices. Keep in mind:

  • The importance of mapping content to specific sales tasks and organizing around those needs. Equip salespeople with the right tools for any situation.
  • Avoid forcing reps to change habits or do extra tasks. Fit content into their natural workflow.

As marketers turn to content mapping, communication is essential. Become the proverbial fly on the wall. Listen in on sales calls, speak to sales teams and each individual, and anticipate the content and materials most useful to sales reps and the order in which it should be delivered. Sales people talk and communicate with other departments and prospects. Allow them to focus on what they do best- conversation. Offer tools that act as a natural extension of their conversations. Use the sales workflow as a basis from which everything else grows.

Consider the questions that prospects will have at different stages in their customer journey. Do you have the content needed to answer questions and concerns that they will ask of your sales reps? Maybe you have the content, but can your reps find and access it in the right place at the right time? Use all of the sources for feedback at your disposal to generate valuable, relevant content for sales, prospects and customers. Gain insights into how content is being used and what next steps should be performed to drive conversion for sales.

How to Leverage Sales Enablement

Focus on the relationship. Buyers prioritize relationships over product and price. With all of the discussion on products, features and customer needs, helping sales forge strong customer relationships should be a top priority for marketers. Consistent, accurate communication and fast response to customer-prompted sales questions are two ways that marketers help sales generate trust with a prospect or returning customer. Marketers can provide sales with:

  • Timely response to sales queries
  • Info on how a feature meets the specific need of a client
  • Insight on a prospects activities and engagement with the company
  • Ways to free up time and offer additional resources to help reps grow relationships with customers

Position sales as an expert in the customer’s niche. B2B customers consistently buy from sales reps that understand the inherent operations within their business. Work together with sales to uncover client and channel needs, then offer solutions. Yusuf Tayob, Global Lead for Accenture, said,

“Research by CSO Insights clearly shows that many teams need to get better at selling solutions, outcomes, and business value.”

Conversations and people skills complement the data provided from technology. However, technology doesn't supersede the importance of the human connection. People buy from people they like. People also buy from individuals that are responsive and care about addressing their solution correctly, not just making the sale.

How to Get the Big Picture of Prospect Activity

Integrate. Combine the latest customer data from mobile sales, CRM, and marketing automation to get the real picture on actual engagement. Modus’s mobile sales enablement platform can tie these together to provide marketers with end-to-end data prior to the sales call, during the meeting and even what happens with the prospect after sales wraps up the meeting.

Organizations need technologies that work together. Marketers can amplify their current services with Modus to tap into the mobile solution that high-performers use to hit their numbers and address the needs of their customers.

Understanding how sales reps do what they do refines current practices, making mobile adoption and marketing strategy implementation more effective. Helping reps how and where they work is not about reinventing the wheel, but creating a smoother path for sales communications with prospects. Zig Ziglar said it best with,

“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.”

Now it's your turn. Share your sales support challenges and insights below in the comments or tweet us @modusengagement.

New Call-to-action
Topics:Sales & Marketing