Best Practice Toolkits
Sales enablement is a growing area of interest for today’s marketers. Marketers focused on sales enablement allow sales teams to sell more effectively by providing them with key insights into their territories, accounts and buyers.
Sales enablement becomes important to marketers when they move beyond just providing a steady flow of qualified sales leads to their sales team. There are many areas in which a marketing team today can help their sales team to better understand their buying audience, but the three key areas are: providing insight into buyers, maintaining top-of-mind awareness, and developing trusted relationships.
Marketers today can provide deep insights into buyer motivations and behaviors. By allowing their sales teams to see and understand the Digital Body Language of buyers, they can give them the knowledge they need to understand what an individual is interested in and what conversation topics would be of interest, who within an organization is actively engaged in a buying process, and which organizations within a sales person’s territory are showing buying interest.
Individual Insight: By displaying for the sales team, in an interactive, graphical manner, the activity of each individual who might be a potential buyer, marketing enables sales to understand which conversations would most be of interest to them. By including insights such as the social media discussions that first caught that individual’s interest, and the communications that they displayed the most response to, marketing enables sales to guide their discussions along a path that is most of interest to the buyer.
Company Insight: Marketers can also provide their sales teams with enabling insights into the companies they are selling to. By displaying for them who within each company is actively engaged, not engaged at all, or displaying negative actions such as searching on objection-related topics, marketing allows sales to understand how best to navigate the buying organizations they are dealing with.
Territory Insight: Similarly, by looking at the companies in a salesperson’s territory, and highlighting those who are displaying overall signs of buying activity, marketing enables sales to better focus their efforts on companies who are actively engaged in a buying process.
Equally critical to enabling sales is marketing’s efforts to ensure that your solutions are kept top-of-mind with buying audiences. This is done through continual lead nurturing that provides insights and value to each buyer, while keeping your company top-of-mind for them. Over time, as buying events take place, this will lead to that prospective buyer displaying buying signals as they begin to do more active research on your products and solutions.
Marketing can enable sales to engage with their prospects this way by providing them with quick access to nurture campaigns into which prospects who are not currently ready to purchase can be dropped. These marketing automation processes, if done well, can keep your solutions top of mind until a buying event develops.
Much as your solutions need to remain top of mind, so to do your sales professionals. When a buying process begins, a salesperson whose name is recognized and familiar to the buyer will be in a significantly better selling situation than one whose name is not. Marketing can enable sales to sell better by ensuring that all communications come from the sales person assigned to the account – automatically on their behalf – so that a trusted relationship and salesperson familiarity is grown over time.
Marketers who focus not just on a flow of qualified leads, but on truly enabling their sales teams to sell better are able to drive significantly more revenue for the businesses they serve. By providing insights into buyers, the companies they are part of, and the territories they are in, marketers enable sales to better understand their audience and better prioritize their efforts. By using nurture campaigns and send-on-behalf-of personalization, marketers enable sales to work with buyers who are already familiar with who they are and the solutions they represent. Together, these techniques help significantly improve sales effectiveness.
A short, readable guide about the tools available to help sales execs to find qualified sales leads and close deals.
Eloqua offers a suite of B2B lead management software for the sales team that enables them to close more deals, faster. Find out more!
What is lead scoring? Explore the strategic value of sales lead scoring and prioritization in this Aberdeen Group white paper provided by Eloqua.
Every business student at one point learns the Four P’s of the marketing mix: product, price, place, promotion. But according to Sirius Decisions analyst Marisa Kopec, there’s room for another P.
Marketing automation has amazing potential as a way to improve sales effectiveness, make the selling process more efficient, and help buyers get the content they need. The field is working hard at discovering all aspects of the buying process and how to influence it. With that in mind, I’d like to add my 2 cents.
On a scale from one to geek, I’m somewhere around propellerhead. So I’m REALLY excited about attending Dreamforce ’10 this year! I can’t wait to check out all the cool new sales enablement tools I can roll out to the field within the Salesforce.com platform in order to make them wildly successful.
The headline in a recent Forrester Research report says it all: “Executives don’t believe salespeople are well prepared to engage with them.” The Forrester study reported that only 15% of executives say that their meetings with sales people met their expectations. Yuk!