Highspot Blog

Customer Reviews Make or Break Your B2B Brand

Hi, my name is Shawnna. And I am a shopoholic.

OK, maybe it just feels that extreme. Although, my husband and his battle against my ever-growing wardrobe of shoes may disagree.

But as an avid online shopper, one thing that has become a must in any purchasing decision are customer reviews. Hearing from actual customers that have not only purchased that same pair of shoes, but have also tried to walk a mile in them is invaluable.Continue reading article ›

Five “Must Haves” to Ensure Your Sales Enablement Platform Gets Adopted

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Sales enablement technology is continuing to take hold as an important investment for organizations of all sizes. In fact, sixty-eight percent of sales executives plan to invest in sales enablement technology to improve sales process and productivity.

While that’s an impressive stat and shows the importance of a measurable, structured approach to sales enablement, without a plan to drive adoption amongst sales reps, technology can only do so much. According to a study from CSO Insights, just over half of all organizations lack a formal sales enablement vision.

The fact is, in order to maximize the value of a sales enablement platform, you need both the right technology and the right plan to drive and maintain adoption. Here are five critical components you should consider when searching for a sales enablement platform to improve adoption.Continue reading article ›

Empower Your Field with Customizable Sales Content

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As a marketer, I’d like to think that the content I produce for sales is always 100% spot-on and customer-ready… that every word on the page or graphic in the PowerPoint presentation is perfect as-is. After all, marketing knows the customer, knows the product and knows what is best for sales, right? Therefore, sales will take what my team provides and use it verbatim, right?

Wrong.

First of all, we don’t always get it right. But regardless of “right or wrong,” any sales rep who wants to meet their numbers is going to take the standard sales presentation and enhance it to customize for their customer. Continue reading article ›

Five Selling Trends in 2016 That Can Be Improved with Sales Enablement

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Recently, our friends over at CEB posted a great blog highlighting five trends that will help sales execs this year.

This post is spot on, and as I read it, I couldn’t help but think about the ways that Sales Enablement is critical to all of the trends. So, I thought I’d take a moment to highlight some areas where your organization can use Sales Enablement to help your sales organization succeed. Continue reading article ›

Why Context Is So Important In Sales Enablement

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Sales and marketing operations have progressed to a point where we can readily access the contact information of those who we are trying to target with our sales pitch or offer.  In best-in-class scenarios, there is an active mapping of buyer personas to the buying journey so an intelligent mapping of who is going to be involved is any decision process is understood.

We even have the ability to “score” these leads based on implied interest like web site visits, email campaign activity like opens or clicks, and downloading of collateral pieces.  There are even advanced scenarios where predictive analytics can be used to intelligently lead score prospects based on their potential interest and match to your target customer.  This is all done in an effort to improve targeting – who should be contacted first, who has the greatest probability of converting into an opportunity and ultimately becoming a customer.

This is fantastic technology for getting the customer to engage and become a sales opportunity.  The signals, activities and demographics that these technologies leverage are great pieces of information to be maintained as the lead is passed to sales.

How can we better leverage this information in the sales and sales enablement processes to help close deals?Continue reading article ›

How To Structure Your Sales Enablement Team

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Making the decision to invest in sales enablement is a huge step towards truly accelerating your customer acquisition efforts but how do you structure this organization?  What are their core objectives and responsibilities?

Sales enablement is different than sales operations.  According to SiriusDecisions, the difference is as follows:

Generally, sales enablement focuses on onboarding and certification, sales asset management, sales communications, and coaching and training skills. Sales operations, on the other hand, handles planning, territory optimization, compensation, sales analytics and technology.

With this in mind, the following three core areas of responsibility lay the foundation for how to structure and staff your sales enablement group.  The roles and responsibilities will vary based on the size of company, sales and distribution model, and markets served but these three areas will remain constant.Continue reading article ›

The Four Pillars of the Sales Technology Stack

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Companies have made significant investments to date in tools and technologies to enable their marketing and sales processes.  Usually the core of this investment is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system deployed with high expectations of streamlined selling and new insights.  Unfortunately, CRM systems are rarely fully utilized and often fall short of these expectations. Shouldn’t sales technology actually help salespeople sell?

Rather than become a chore to update and merely a means to provide activity and pipeline reports to management, why not make an investment in something that actually drives and optimizes sales activity?

Companies need to embrace the sales technology stack to truly take advantage of technology-enabled selling.

The concept of a sales stack has been around for a while with sales expert Jim Keenan sharing a great post on “The Sales Stack” back in 2012 on his A Sales Guy blog.  His seven layers include both enabling technology as well as rewards, recognition, and compensation programs.  Max Altschuler published a more recent take on it on the Sales Hacker blog titled “Welcome to the Era of the Sales Stack.”  He maps the stack to each stage of the sales lifecycle and highlights some great tools to enable the various pieces of it.

Continue reading article ›

Five Keys to a Great Sales Pitch

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Building a great sales pitch is both an art and science.  Sales and marketing professionals work very hard to get to the right person with the right message and have them agree to take time out of their increasingly busy day to hear what they have to say.

With all that effort and such a small window of opportunity, delivering a great sales pitch is essential.

So many times sales calls are bad experiences for both the sales professional and the prospect.  Proper qualification long before getting to a person-to-person discussion goes a long way to avoid mismatched expectations or the dreaded “not the right person” realization.  Using poor communication tools or slide sharing systems only exacerbates the problem and takes precious time out of the agreed upon amount for the meeting.  Salespeople must not just focus on having meetings and delivering sales pitches to show they are doing their jobs but be laser focused on the quality of the interactions and the results produced.Continue reading article ›

Why is every sales pitch deck different at your company?

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The “pitch deck” is the essential tool in the salesperson’s toolbox.  It defines the problem, showcases the deep knowledge possessed by the company and how the product or service they sell not only solves that problem, but does it in a way that no other competitor can touch. Marketing departments spend countless hours drafting, refining, and improving this perfect pitch deck and deliver it to the sales team with pride.  Then what happens?

Continue reading article ›

Engage More Effectively With Your Customers

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Engagement is the lifeblood of the sales conversation – an indifferent customer is a deal waiting to fail. And in our hyper-informed age, you can’t deeply engage your customer without content. Every interaction with customers involves content and more content – pitch decks, white papers, case studies and on and on. To meet the insatiable need, marketing teams are churning out a sea of material. Sales teams are overwhelmed by it all and feel like they are drowning .. but still don’t have exactly what they need.

Everyone knows their content isn’t moving the sales process forward as effectively as it should, but nobody is sure exactly why or how. We have met with many, many customers to understand how they use content to drive sales. Virtually all of them complain about three problems that constantly hold them back from closing more deals.Continue reading article ›