How Do You Know if You Need a Sales Enablement Platform?
Marketing has no visibility on how resources are being used
A key inefficiency for marketing departments is the lack of insight as to how the content they create is being utilized. Statistics suggest that the majority of marketing-produced content goes unused by salespeople. This is depressing, but not massively helpful as the statistics don't provide any insight as to which material goes ignored, which small minority is used and – crucially – WHY.
We know the complaints from salespeople. They say that the material marketing provides isn’t relevant for the customer or their stage in the buying journey, or that they don’t know what content is available or where they can access it. But are these complaints being heard by the marketing department? How much feedback does marketing ask for? How much does sales provide? Is there any insight as to when or where the salespeople are using the content they have been given, or in what combinations?
Without this visibility, marketing can do very little to improve on the service it is providing to salespeople, and that means the continuation of a system that isn’t really working for anyone.
A good Sales Enablement Platform will provide the level of visibility marketing needs in order to create content that salespeople use. Reports can tell marketing which content is being accessed, by who, for how long, in which order, etc. and there’s the opportunity for salespeople to leave feedback on files so that marketing knows what works and what doesn’t.
Resource sharing isn’t working
Let’s take one of the biggest complaints that salespeople have about marketing materials: they don’t know where to find it. Whether they are missing emails directing them to new content, or that message is being communicated ineffectively, this is a major problem with a relatively minor cause and a fairly simple solution: Put all the materials in one place and grant everyone access. Making marketing the gatekeeper of all content will leave them with very little time to do their actual jobs and very little patience to properly engage with sales.
The advantage of a Sales Enablement Platform with an app for your mobile device is that all the materials can be stored together, arranged in a tailored system that suits both sales and marketing, and accessible by as many people as you wish. The fact that there is no need to transfer the files from one place to another in order to use them is another advantage for those field salespeople who run from one meeting to the next and need to pitch on the fly. Never again will any of your salespeople be able to complain ‘I don’t know where it is’. Everything is right there in the app.
Salespeople are creating their own content, or asking marketing to originate new collateral just for them
When salespeople can’t find what they’re looking for, they either make something up themselves or they call marketing and say something like ‘I need some slides about X for a meeting with Y tomorrow’.
The problem we have here is that sales-generated content may not fall within marketing-approved frameworks. The branding may be off, or the information may be out of date. It doesn’t have to be earth-shatteringly wrong to create a bad impression with the customer, and one bad impression is really all you need to lose a sale.
From marketing’s perspective, originating content at the drop of a hat is both irritating and, sometimes, impossible. I bet ‘leave everything to the last minute’ didn't feature on your list of ‘ways to be more organized in 2019’. Apart from the fact that it’s taking marketing people away from their actual work, it’s unnecessary additional labor given that they are already creating content that is going unused. A far better use of time would be to work with salespeople from the outset to decide on the kinds of content that will be most useful, so that when one of the team calls asking for something specific for a meeting the next day, you already have content sets stored within the Sales Enablement Platform that will do the job.
Want to make life easier and more organized? There’s an app for that
A Sales Enablement Platform creates more opportunity for dialogue between the sales and marketing departments, so that sales can inform marketing which material works and which doesn’t, while marketing can keep sales updated as new collateral is added, or existing content is amended. Because everything is stored in one place, there is no question of salespeople being unable to find the material they need. Everyone has access, all the time.
Author: Josh Dhaliwal, Head of Sales at iPresent