Sales Enablement: 3 Keys to Success
by Orrin Broberg, on May, 11, 2015
Sales enablement has become an important topic in business and sales. Although you may have a general understanding of what it is, sometimes these frequently-used terms can get lost in translation. So, what exactly is sales enablement? According to IDC, the core of it is “getting the right information into the hands of the right sellers at the right time and place, and in the right format, to move a sales opportunity forward.”
The concept goes much deeper than implementing a new technology or optimizing sales content. Sales enablement is an organization-wide understanding of how people and processes function together. It’s helping people in sales to do their job more effectively. Once this is understood, strategies and supporting objectives and tactics can be built out.
So, where do you begin your journey to sales enablement? There’s no one-size-fits-all process for every organization, but the following three tips are best practices to help you empower your organization for sales enablement success.
Hire the Right People
The first place to start sales enablement is in the hiring process. Technology has made information easily accessible to consumers, which has drastically changed the buying process. The power now lies in the hands of the informed consumer, altering the role of the sales person. Now, more than ever, a sales professional must be extremely informed about the products and services he or she is selling and the buyer’s decision-making process in order to stay relevant.
In addition, sales individuals must be more team-oriented than decades past. Organizations have realized the importance of consistent brand messaging and well-designed communication plans based on data, rather than relying on individual selling strategies. Hiring a team of individuals who are excited to work as part of a team will ensure your business can reach its full potential.
Align Marketing and Sales
Marketing and sales alignment is something that we are extremely passionate about here at Modus because of the benefits an organization can experience as a result. According to Marketo, when sales and marketing are aligned, a business is 67% better at closing leads. Sales enablement requires that marketing and sales work together toward common goals in order to achieve success. The departments must agree on common performance targets and metrics by which to measure results in order to function properly.
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On top of that, the two teams must also coordinate the necessary content and materials when it comes to sales presentations in order to optimize a lead’s experience. Representatives from each department need to communicate to determine which materials are necessary for certain presentations. Then, you can ensure all necessary materials are available to the teams that need them through your sales platform or content repository.
It’s important to note that the alignment of sales and marketing is not something that is achieved in a month or two-- it is a continuous objective that must consistently be measured and improved.
Coordinate Content and Tools With the Buying Cycle
The wealth of information available to consumers has also changed the nature of the sales funnel. Salespeople at times must navigate a much longer and more complex sales cycle as leads tend to weigh their options after performing research of their own. This means there is potential for more consumer touch points and a need to develop a relationship in order to stay top-of-mind. Thankfully, technology can help facilitate this process. Using data acquired from sales platforms, CRMs, and marketing automation platforms, organizations can create seamless and effective communication plans to convert more leads than ever before.
Although these tools are extremely helpful, the implementation of new processes requires continued support for your salespeople, as they will likely have questions and feedback. It also requires frequent analysis of data and the ability to change directions to be successful.
How is your organization creating an environment of sales enablement? Are your reps mobile sales enabled? We would love to hear your thoughts and ideas. Comment below or tweet us @modusengagement!