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.
CEB’s “5 Trends That Will Affect All Sales Execs in 2016”
- Firms will make it easier for their sellers to “just sell”. CEB mentioned that more and more firms are likely to rethink the entire scope of the seller job to allow sellers to “just sell,” rather than spend time finding the right customer or working on customized collateral. The right Sales Enablement platform does exactly this. It lets sellers “just sell” because it takes away endless hours searching for the right content, enables real-time tracking of what works and what doesn’t—eliminating the guesswork out of the next pitch—and works with the organization’s CRM system to recommend content, provide best practice playbooks and make available real-time training.
- Early-stage qualification will become even more important. CEB data shows that the best sellers— “Challengers”—shape demand by whittling down their leads to only the best ones. And we know that a key component of effective Challenger selling is process discipline. The Sales Enablement platform enables a big portion of the required discipline. It plays a strong role in finding the right stakeholder in the customer’s organization, helps engage them with disruptive insights, and equips them to effectively challenge their own organization.
- Suppliers must provide a better purchase path, or overwhelmed customers will punish them. CEB explained really well why more and more sales teams will have to learn a way to help customers progress through the buying process—it’s a confusing time to be a buyer, so the onus is on the seller to prove the worth of what they’re selling. A good Sales Enablement platform helps map content to the buyers journey, provides guided selling and measures best practices. Through guided selling, organizations can ensure all buyers are presented a consistent and most efficient path through the buying process.
- Talent strategy will change to attract, engage, and retain millennial sales talent. Millennials are changing the way everything works in the workforce. They don’t know any other way. To me, this is one perhaps surprising area that Sales Enablement platforms will continue to shine because Millennials demand technology to help them do their jobs. They don’t have patience for “the way it’s always been done,” because they’ve grown up understanding how to leverage the newest technology to their advantage.
- Content strategies will change to improve lead generation. We talk about this one a lot at Highspot. Content has been king since Bill Gates predicted it would be 20 years ago. Today, content creation for marketing comprises 28% of the B2B marketing budget, but it’s a bit of a one-way process in a lot of organizations. Publishing a sales presentation, white paper, or data sheet to the sales team’s SharePoint site should not be the end of the road.. In order to continually improve content quality and effectiveness, marketing must be able to measure the performance of the content it produces. Only through a closed-loop process whereby marketing can measure the impact of content on customer engagement and conversion rates will organizations break the one-way process of publishing content into a black hole. To create this closed-loop process, a Sales Enablement platform must include content management, customer engagement (online presentation and email) and content performance analytics. And, it’s a game changer. Comprehensive and accurate performance analytics is the key to driving more effective sales engagements, leading to greater revenue growth.
Now that you’ve read how a Sales Enablement platform can help with all of CEB’s sales trends for 2016, now what?
Well, if you’re ready to learn more about how the right platform can help your organization, check out our Definitive Guide to Sales Enablement. It’ll set you on the path to better Sales Enablement in 2016 with a clear action plan for success.