The number one priority for businesses large and small is meeting their sales targets. For many of those companies, the problem is a disconnect between marketing and sales teams, one driven by competing goals. For marketing departments, the goal is often to produce a high volume of low-cost leads which are then fed to the company’s sales representatives. Far too often, however, those leads are not sufficiently qualified for sales reps to meet their goal of closed sales.
Hubspot provides a description of a problem which afflicts far too many businesses:
“…there’s a disconnect between Marketing and Sales around the quality of leads. According to this year’s report, ‘59% of marketers say they provide salespeople with their best quality leads, while salespeople rank marketing leads last’. In fact, marketing-sourced leads are ranked behind referrals and sales-sourced leads by all sales levels from the C-suite to individual contributors.”
What Is “Sales Enablement“?
To be successful in meeting their key business objectives, companies must provide their sales team with all of the tools they need to close sales—from qualified leads to accurate reports and custom content. In combination, those tools and strategies constitute sales enablement. Hubspot defines “sales enablement” as follows:
“Sales enablement is the technology, processes, and content that empower sales teams to sell efficiently at a higher velocity.”
But what do sales enablement tools actually do to fully empower salespeople? Here are 4 of the ways successful sales enablement systems help members of the sales team succeed:
1. They Provide Accurate, Standardized Reports
Sales reports summarize the information sales reps need to maximize their efficiency, but sales reps often lack the technical skills to create those reports. Sales enablement tools bridge this gap by providing the most up-to-date and accurate reports possible in an agreed-upon, standardized format. Among the most important reports salespeople need are those which show the ratio between leads generated and closed sales, activities logged by salespeople and number of successful and unsuccessful sales calls.
2. They Allow Management to Assess and Improve the Sales Process
When salespeople aren’t meeting their sales quotas, sales enablement software can be used to assess where the disconnect between marketing and sales is occurring. For example, when sales reps are not closing sales based on product demos, management may consider the possibility that the demo is the problem and needs to be improved. In some cases, management will need to complete a comprehensive sales process audit to identify any and all problems – which software can help them do.
3. They Qualify Leads
Marketing and sales don’t always agree on what constitutes a quality lead. The solution for sales enablement is to create an effective methodology for lead scoring:
“Lead scoring is a methodology used to rank prospects against a scale that represents the perceived value each ‘lead’ represents to the organization. Job position, number of social media followers, or company size may be information valuable to your business about a lead.”
Based upon an analysis of the criteria which are most predictive of a lead converting into a buying customer, the software assigns a lead score to each prospect. Armed with this information and using robust CRM software, sales reps can pursue only those leads with the highest likelihood of making a purchase.
4. They Provide Custom Content
Before the advent of content marketing, salespeople had an edge over consumers, who didn’t have the ability to find content on their own by simply surfing the internet. More recently, as consumers have become more content-savvy, sales enablement tools need to keep sales reps one step ahead of consumers by providing them with customized content, especially authoritative white papers and case studies. Sales enablement systems also organize this content (for example, through their CRM), to make it easily accessible to their sales team.
Sales enablement is a powerful strategy to help your sales team achieve its goals. But it’s one strategy among many, and all of them need to be grounded in powerful software solutions. To be successful in business these days, you need more than top talent, great products and stellar services—you also need great technology. That means leveraging software which is perfectly aligned with your business and its key objectives.
The days are over when “customized software” was adequate to meet your needs, primarily because most of your competitors have the same “customized software.” To learn more about the ways Unstoppable Software can provide your business with software designed specifically for your business, and which you own – contact us today.