Highspot Blog

Why Forced Learning is Ineffective for Sales

sales training

If you’re a sales professional or support a sales team, you live with a common challenge every day: The pace of change is relentless. New and changing products, updated processes, management directives, competitive intel, pricing changes — the list goes on.

For those of us in the supporting cast, this means there is a constant stream of opportunities to share knowledge and improve the skills of our front-line teams. Anyone in sales enablement or sales readiness knows there will never be a shortage of learning to develop and deliver. The challenge is that we too often choose the wrong methods to effectively enable our teams to leverage new skills or knowledge. We’re all guilty of forcing mandatory, one-size-fits-all training because it’s “more efficient” (pronounced “easy”). Let’s take a look at some common scenarios.

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Six Tips to Tune-Up Your Sales Team’s Productivity

sales productivity

In today’s competitive market, buyer behavior is constantly changing in response to new technologies and buying processes, and smart sellers must evolve to keep up. Even the highest performing sales teams have to stay alert and on the lookout for new ways to boost sales productivity to keep their competitive edge — or risk falling behind. According to our 2018 State of Sales Enablement report, nearly 70% of respondents reported that their company’s sales process was becoming more complex, and 55% reported that the increasing level of sales process complexity impacted their sales performance. With these new sales process challenges, it’s more important than ever to regularly take time to focus on optimizing sales productivity. After all, productivity means profit. When a business improves its salesforce’s effectiveness and productivity, it makes it easier for sellers to close deals that drive revenue.

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The Framework for a Solid Sales Playbook

sales playbook framework

In the old days, a sales playbook may have been nothing more than a fat 3-ring binder with some tabs in it. While talking on the phone to a prospective buyer, a salesperson could tuck the receiver under his ear, grab the playbook off the shelf, and flip through the tabbed sections in it to find the play he was looking for. Then, as now, the sales playbook was a source of cumulative knowledge from the sales team and guidance from sales management, gathered together into a single resource. It spelled out best practices and diagrammed the required steps to lead the prospect through the sales cycle to the desired finish: the sale.

The sales landscape has transformed drastically since then, and yesterday’s playbook won’t cut it anymore. Sales has become more complex than ever. In fact, a majority (70%) of sales reps report that they are experiencing more complex sales processes. This is up from 64.5% last year. The buyer’s journey has taken the place of a more rigid sales cycle so that sellers need to be able to react as the process unfolds and provide personalized responses to prospective buyers at a moment’s notice. In the age of the modern buyer, they come to the sales interaction better prepared and better informed than ever, with expectations for a fully digitized and seamless experience.

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Winning Over the Modern Buyer

sales strategy to engage the modern buyer

The expectations of today’s buyers have undergone a drastic transformation. Consumer-oriented companies such as Amazon and Airbnb have created great user and customer experiences that have set the bar high for more informed and frictionless buying experiences. These expectations have quickly carried over into the world of B2B buying and changed how marketers engage and influence buyers along their purchasing journey.

In our eBook, which is now available for download, you’ll learn that the modern buyer is more informed, more independent, and more demanding than ever before. But are your sellers equipped to win them over? Continue reading article ›

Sales Enablement: Just What the Doctor Ordered for Medical Device Reps

medical device sales

As a medical device sales rep, you work to change lives for the better every day — but who is helping change yours?

When your long hours are filled with scheduling appointments, device demonstrations, and navigating the field, daily life can cause aches and pains. Our current life sciences customers including ERT, IQVIA, and Phenomenex have provided insight into the challenges that medical devices sales reps regularly encounter. The good news is that as the industry’s most trusted sales enablement platform, Highspot has the solution.  

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Successful Sales Communication Strategy in 6 Steps

sales communication strategy

ABC: The motivational sales shorthand for “Always Be Closing” might as well also stand for “Always Be Communicating,” because sales runs on communication. From opening pitch to closing deal, effective communication supports every step in the buyer’s journey and provides a critical link between sellers and internal teams such as marketing.

But sales communication can be a double-edged sword. While its importance in providing sales with critical connections is undeniable, it has the potential to overwhelm or distract sellers from their goals if there is no strategy guiding it. Quality, not quantity, is the key for sales leaders looking to create effective sales communication strategies for their teams. After all, sending more email updates won’t make your sales team any more informed if they aren’t finding the content relevant, valuable, or easily accessible. The guiding goal of any successful sales communication strategy should be to provide salespeople with the right information, in the right place, and at the right time.

Read on for the who, what, when, where, how, and why of developing a sales communication strategy. With these best practices, you’ll have a framework for communicating with your sales team that will keep them informed, prepared, and focused on the goals that matter.

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Digital Sales Transformation: 3 Key Areas for Success

Digital transformation — two words anyone who has so much as dabbled in the tech space has heard time and time again. Dubbed by SiriusDecisions as the “buzziest buzzword in B2B,” digital transformation means different things to different organizations. One of the areas where digital transformation is becoming increasingly relevant is in how sellers relate to their customers.

The results of SiriusDecisions’ 2018 Digital Transformation Survey showed that 55 percent of respondents believed that the goal of digital transformation should be on changing engagement with buyers and customers. In other words, how we relate to our customers is rapidly changing. Your buyer needs to be reached quicker with exactly the information they’re looking for, and now more than ever it’s important to invest in digitizing your sales force. Continue reading article ›

Customer Success Is a Sales Priority

customer success

Everyone knows that a company’s success depends on customers — and specifically, customers’ experience. However, sustaining customer interest can be difficult. Companies must compete for customer attention in a world where consumers have more options then they have ever had before. In the last ten years, customer experience has become increasingly more important in this new world where customers want to have more of a say in how corporations portray themselves.

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True Sales Readiness Brings Together Learning and Content

Readiness means sales training and content

Thanks to technology, sales is now a new game. Buyers have already researched your product (and the competition) and are much further down their purchasing process before they even meet your sales rep. In fact, 64.5% of sales reps have reported experiencing more complex sales processes. This means that your reps need sales readiness and training to be ready for more complex and advanced conversations in their meetings and demos.Continue reading article ›