Sales enablement refers to all of the technology, processes, and content that support sales productivity. The goal of any sales enablement strategy is to provide the sales and business development team with access to the right information at the right time. This may sound easy but supporting sales is harder than it looks.
Your sales team needs information on prospective customers, your products and services, your company, and your competitors available at their fingertips. When a sales representative is on a call and a prospective client asks the question, "how do you compare to your competitors?" your rep needs to be prepared with a response that clearly differentiates you from your competition.
A successful sales enablement strategy includes:
Sales enablement supports increased productivity for your sales team which translates into increased revenue. Investing in the resources necessary to support your sales team has a direct impact on your ability to grow your business.
Building a sales enablement function is a multi-step process that requires buy-in from key stakeholders across your organization. There are 3 steps you need to take to develop and maintain a successful sales enablement function:
Step 1: Identify and coordinate with key stakeholders - Information that supports your sales team comes from all across your company. You will need input from department heads as well as representatives in the field to develop the most accurate insights for your sales team to leverage. This is where your intelligence quarterback comes into play. Your quarterback works to bring the team together, assign responsibilities, and drive the team forward towards a common objective.
Step 2: Build your resources to support sales - Once you have your team of stakeholders all set and your intelligence quarterback identified, you will need to create some resources for your sales team to use. These can include competitor overviews, kill sheets, battlecards, comparison charts, and anything else they may need to support a sale. Storing these resources in a central location that is easy to navigate will be key to ensuring that your sales team actually uses them. If these resources are outdated or hard to find, your sales team will revert back to building their own resources and the benefits of a collaborative sales enablement process will be lost.
Step 3: Develop an easy and repeatable process - Sales enablement is an ongoing process that continuously collects and organizes information, builds and maintains resources for your sales team, and tracks requests for new resources. You will need to develop a process for sharing insights and breaking news to keep everyone informed of the latest information. Ideally, your team will be able to easily "pull" information from your knowledge repository rather than relying on someone to push that information out to them.
When developing your sales enablement process, follow the 3 clicks rule. If it takes more than 3 clicks for your sales rep to access information, they will move on from that resource without digging deeper. In the sales process, time is money and spending too much time looking for information takes away from time better spent building relationships with prospective clients to drive new business opportunities.
One way to decrease the amount of time your sales team spends collecting, organizing, and searching for information is by implementing a software solution to do the heavy lifting. A benefit to this approach is that you and your team can rely on the software to automatically aggregate and filter information to get you to key details faster without having to review and assess every piece of information.
A software solution like Knowledge360® brings all of your collective knowledge and insights into a single location where your team can collaborate to close information gaps and develop insights. On a company dashboard, Knowledge360® aggregates and organizes information about a competitor your prospects may ask about, including the most recent news, social media, financial, and hiring updates for that company. Your internal insights and analysis, such as kill sheets and "need to know" information, are also stored on your company dashboard which acts as the one-stop-shop for all of the competitive intelligence your team needs to sell smarter.
Following a sales engagement, Knowledge360® is where you would track details about what helped you win (or why you lost) an opportunity to your competitor. Over time, these insights can show trends that help you improve your overall business strategy.
A successful sales enablement strategy combines insights from your team and key stakeholders with automation tools to support increased productivity and keep your sales force well-informed. When you take the time and invest in the resources your team needs to support sales, everyone wins.
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