How often do we come across a situation when all the material that marketers create for enablement and roll out of sales strategies remains unused? There is no denying the fact that the sales team will do their work and deliver, but it is the cognizance with the marketing team that is lacking.
So what happens when quarter after quarter the same situation arises? There comes a time when the marketers hesitate to create any enabling material for the sales force. This is not a happy situation for an organization. For the best result, the sales and marketing teams need to work in tandem in order to derive maximum synergies. For instance, the job of the marketing team is to create material that is practically useful for the sales team to help them in their sales cycle, and not material that is merely theoretical and concept based. Data sheets, case studies, e-books ad whitepapers are not what the sales guys are looking for. While these may be good-to-read and value adding to the sales person on a personal level, these do not help in getting the business done in any way.
TeleTech has done a survey titled 'Pop the Bubble Surrounding Your Sales Team' that has revealed that only 55% of the respondents actually had a documented sales strategy. All the others were only verbally placed instructions. The survey also revealed that only one third of the managers and the salespeople actually knew their sales strategy and could describe it. This is shocking indeed, as this makes the department disconnect so apparent. Hence, there is an urgent need to create a documented sales enablement strategy that not only makes its purpose clear, but also bridges this gap between the sales and the marketing department. A written document is the only way in which the existence if this strategy will get reinforced and will be put to use on a daily basis.
To stay ahead of competitors, this is vital aspect that cannot be ignored. You could begin by jotting down the questions that need to be answered through this document. Some of these are:
- What are the organizational goals for this year?
- Have you determined the metrics to check the efficacy of your sales enablement strategy?
- What are the positive aspects of both, your sales and marketing teams?
- What are the common links of your sales and marketing teams that can bind them together?
- What are the barriers that are hindering the sales enablement process?
Once you have these answered, you could look for examples of those around you who have achieved this balance. Your marketing team can not only look for ways to enable the sales team to enter new markets, but also help them with lost sales. Analyzing lost sales is extremely important to understand where things have gone wrong. Rectifying these will not just bring back lost prospects, but also open avenues for new ones.
Here are some key points to consider when devising a sales enablement strategy, in order to increase its efficacy:
1.Data Management Plan
Leveraging data for understanding the need of your target audience will act as the foundation of a good sales enablement strategy. Segmentation of customer groups and specific targeting as per their needs will also help the sales agents communicate better. This in turn will lead to better results, and possibly, a shorter sales cycle.
2.Strategy for the Content
Content is what is most important for creating a good strategy. The sales team will certainly use the content if it is relevant and specific to the industry. At the same time, it should be simple and easy to communicate to the end customer. Only then will the sales agents approach the content positively and internalize it. If there is a disconnect between the content that is required and what is actually prepared, then each team will end up talking about their version of your sales strategy and there will be a lack of uniformity, thus hampering the progress and leading to unnecessary wastage of time and resources.
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