5 Important Steps to Creating a Buyer-centric Sales Enablement Strategy
Drive Sustainable Organizational Growth with These Sales Enablement Strategy Tips
When it comes to sales enablement strategy, many organizations immediately think about initiatives as a whole. To truly arm your sales professionals with what they need, though, switch your mentality to think deeply about the sales reps themselves and the hardships and challenges they face on a daily basis in today’s selling landscape.
When you approach sales enablement with this level of empathy, you can more easily provide the concrete value that will allow them to be more effective, efficient, and productive. To achieve this, follow these five steps:
5-Point Plan to Enable Your Sales Reps and to Drive Sustainable Growth
- Step #1: Remove Organizational Siloes
When an organization operates in discrete, disconnected groups, communication suffers. When communication suffers, it’s unclear who is responsible for what tasks. If an organization doesn’t know what their sales reps do, how can they be expected to arm them with the tools and resources they need to succeed and to thrive?
In many organizations, sales reps are creating their own materials and collateral or even handling legal contractual details with clients. In short, they’re doing a lot of things…many of which are not directly related to selling. This is a direct by-product of organizational siloes.
A crucial step in enabling your sales reps is assembling a team that works closely together as a whole and specifically with your sales reps to ensure they have what they need to successfully generate revenue. This could include your sales enablement organization, marketing, product marketing, customer success, or all of the above.
- Step #2: Learn from Your Top Sales Reps
The greatest resource you need to successfully and sustainably enable your sales reps is already in your organization. What is this magic tool? It’s your top-performing sales reps. The processes, systems, and approaches they use are working with your audience, and you should take the time and energy to learn from them. Why are they having so much success? How can that translate to your sales professionals as a whole?
The top 20 percent of reps consistently generate about 80 percent of your revenue. (This is a statistical phenomenon that applies to customers as well.) Successful organizations listen carefully to these top producers and make discernible changes based on their insight and guidance.
If you can even marginally increase the success of all your sales reps based on what you learn from top performers, that can translate to a tremendous financial upside.
Build your team in a way that facilitates and encourages collaboration with these standout sales reps.
- Step #3: Consistently Evolve Your Processes, Systems, and Approach
Best business practices are never “done.” They’re always evolving and changing, and with the nature of the selling landscape today, sales is only becoming more and more complex and changing at a greater and greater rate.
What does that mean for organizational success? Nothing is a one-off. Collaboration can’t be understood as one meeting or one iteration of a sales strategy. It needs to be an ongoing process and a constant feedback loop that engenders concrete and valuable changes for your sales reps.
As part of your sales approach, integrate in processes for interviewing your sales reps. Take the time to collaborate with them and to understand what they really need in the current market—understanding that this can change dramatically and quickly. (Not convinced? Just look at how 2020 turned the sales world on its head.) Work continually and collaboratively toward common goals.
- Step #4: Get Your Messaging, Story Lines, and Processes Right
In today’s landscape, potential customers are burned out, exhausted, and unresponsive to sales pitches. They demand genuine insight and real value. Anything short of that will be lost in a sea of white noise. Given that, arm your reps with content, messaging, and an underlying story created around this value concept.
Don’t give your sales reps generic messaging to use with any prospect, at any organizational level, at any point in the sales cycle and expect results. Instead, tailor your messaging based on the individual prospect, the position within that organization, the type of organization (start-up, midmarket, enterprise), and how far along the prospect is within the buying journey.
- Step #5: Focus on Organizational Interconnectivity and a Systems-Level View
Creating an overarching system that truly enables your sales reps requires you to create a sales enablement strategy that implements the right processes to support your sales reps and builds a program that provides value to your customer, which, in turn, provides value to your sales reps. This is a multilayered and complex process. Here are just a few high-level things to keep in mind as you work toward this goal:
- Sales reps should be freed from administrative work as much as possible. Sales technology automation can help here.
- Think deeply and empathetically about the challenges your sales reps face and the fires they have to put out every single day. This will help you understand the importance and impact of your systems-level changes.
- When selecting sales technology solutions, make sure it’s easy for sales reps to use and to integrate with other solutions. Make sure their voices are heard in the sales technology selection process. (This is the auditing stage of a successful sales technology ecosystem.)
- Aim to align and to integrate your people, processes, sales technology, and information (content).
- Understand what your sales reps need by looking through the lens of what your customers need.
- Don’t just think about sales in terms of the initial win. Consider the tools, processes, and systems your sales reps need for successful upselling and cross-selling.
Interested in learning more from a panel of experts about how to develop and implement a Buyer-Centric Sales Enablement Strategy?
Join our free webinar! Listen as industry experts – Mike Kunkle, Tamara Schenk, Cory Bray, and Beverlie Heyman discuss today’s best practices. Learn what sales professionals need to resonate with buyers in this shifting market. Start developing your sales enablement strategy today!