In 1899, Charles H. Duell, Commissioner of the US Patent Office, stated that "everything that can be invented has been invented." It can be argued whether are not this was a serious comment or a joke, but nevertheless, it has been proven wrong many times.
Today's technology continues to reach beyond what we could have ever imagined. Some dynamic advances are currently taking place in the world of sales and marketing alignment and technology. Every day new apps, business processes and practices, and software are changing the way we market and reach our customers. To be an industry leader you must stay on top of the trends otherwise you will be left in the dust as your competitors adopt and implement these new systems. How do you take your Marketing Strategy to the next level? By implementing a Sales Enablement strategy.
Research by Aberdeen reveals that sales enablement leads to 62% higher team quota attainment, 205% more revenue growth, and 23% increase in lead conversion rate in organizations with structured sales enablement programs versus organizations without it. I will take you through the benefits of sales enablement and demonstrate how adding it to your Marketing Strategy will increase overall productivity and revenue growth.
What Is Sales Enablement?
With a need for better alignment between sales operations and marketing, sales enablement is being implemented more and more into companies. It encompasses many key responsibilities, including, providing the right tools, systems, processes, training, coaching, and development that enables sales, and marketing, to be more effective and efficient.
An effective sales enablement team will integrate marketing and sales through CRM and marketing systems along with creating initiatives that can be managed and tracked, all the while providing guidelines and best practices for your marketing team. Most importantly, it's their responsibility stay on top of industry trends and new system integrations. They will implement the training and coaching for your marketing team which will lead to an increase in productivity and increase in revenue.
As new sales tools continue to get developed, new resources reach the market, and the complexity of selling continues to change, sales enablement continues to evolve. You can't implement it one time and expect to see results. It requires continual commitment towards improving processes and training.
3 Ways Sales Enablement will Improve Your Overall Marketing Strategy
1) Integration of Systems
One of the many key responsibilities of an effective sales enablement team is the integration of your CRM platform with your marketing system. Integrating your CRM and marketing automation processes will properly align your sales and marketing teams, create better communication, and result in better reporting processes. This will remove any duplicate, or time-consuming work, such as manually entering prospect contact information into Excel spreadsheets.
New connections between marketing systems are being created constantly and it will be sales enablement's role to be proactive in researching and testing what connections and integrations will work best for you.
2) Training & Coaching
After the integration of your CRM and marketing systems it is imperative to include an element of training in any strategy you plan to deploy so your sales and marketing teams will know how to effectively use them. Sales enablement should create a training program that can be adopted by existing team members, and new hires alike. Training and development is an ongoing process and needs to be done effectively. Additional training provided include product training, sales, tools & technology, and marketing.
Another strategic focus that should be considered in regards to training is revamping your onboarding process. You can make onboarding new hires more efficient through training's set up through sales enablement. Revenue River, along with other successful companies such as IBM, have created an in-depth process that includes learning about company culture, online training, receiving certifications that correlate to the new hire's role, meeting with colleagues in different departments, and in field training where they can put their skills to practical use.
Lastly, it is essential that you train on the systems that you use! Lack of training can result in reporting on bad or inaccurate data, high turnover, and low employee productivity.
3) Increase Overall Productivity
In any industry, system integration and improvement in employee training will lead to an increase in overall productivity. Through the integration of sales enablement practices your processes will be more streamlined, guidelines will be set, and there will be continual coaching and training for your teams.
Even more, sales enablement teams focus on content management by creating and optimizing templates for your marketing and sales teams, saving them time from having to create their own content, or from doing repetitive work. Generating and storing content that teams can use in their sales cycles will lead to making decisions quicker and improving your KPIs.
All of this leads to increased productivity which, in turn, will lead to increased revenue.
How to implement Sales Enablement into your Marketing Strategy
With a better understanding of some of the key roles that a sales enablement team can play in your marketing strategy let's touch on a few things to keep in mind when implementing. These three following things should be considered: put together the right team, align your marketing and sales initiatives, and choose the right tools.
- Team - Your team should be comprised of employees who are intuitive, think objectively, and are process oriented. They will have an in-depth understanding of systems and will create step by step processes.
- Alignment - Alignment between marketing and sales is imperative to any company's success. Sales enablement should create Service Level Agreement templates to be utilized by both teams to ensure open communication and accountability for reaching goals.
- Tools - Your team should be proactive in finding and utilizing the right tools to solve for solutions before they even become a real problem. The strategic implementation of tools will allow you to stand out, be more dynamic, spend more time selling, and create workflows to improve accuracy and overall quality. Adopting these tools should be mandatory by all team members in order to achieve success.
Through the implementation of a sales enablement strategy tied to your marketing efforts, streamlining integrations and processes should result in an increase in productivity and reporting on team success should become easier.
If you're not sure where to get started, give us a call and we can give you some ideas!