Sellers no longer can expect to win business simply by asking buyers to tell them about their business. With plentiful information available online, buyers expect more from sellers than ever before and expect them to know about their business prior to engaging them.
Sellers instead need to fuel their conversations with perspective—a masterful combination of mindset, insight and experience—tailored to the buyer’s path. Sales organizations must reinforce using perspective with sellers by implementing the three key pillars of sales enablement: content, coaching and training.
Here’s how these three critical elements of a sales effectiveness framework help sellers learn how to deliver perspective to customers.
1. Provide Sellers Access to Effective Content, Aligned to the Buyer’s Journey
Sales enablement content is essential to helping sellers share perspective with buyers. When sellers tailor this content to each step of the buyer’s path and each buying influence, they deliver relevant messages and valuable insights at the right time to the right person—differentiating themselves from the competition. Aligning sales enablement content to the customer’s path also ensures that buyers receive consistent messages from an organization on all fronts, whether they’re coming from sales, service or the company’s website and social media.
Keeping the customer’s path central to sales enablement pays dividends. The CSO Insights 2019 Sales Enablement Study found organizations that aligned their internal selling processes to the customer’s path dynamically saw 17.9% higher win rates and 11.8% higher quota attainment than those who didn’t.
To ensure that content aligns at all levels, organizations need to assess their overarching content strategy and map each piece of content to the customer’s path.
2. Effectively Coach Salespeople to Higher Levels of Performance
Sales coaching represents a huge opportunity for organizations. Too many businesses narrowly interpret what sales coaching is, merely considering it a funnel review or a discussion of opportunities. Meanwhile, too few organizations develop their sales managers’ coaching skills. Of the organizations with sales coaching processes, almost 60% use random or informal processes instead of more effective defined processes (formal sales coaching) or processes aligned with the sales enablement framework (dynamic sales coaching).
When coaching is done right—a defined process that sales managers must follow to conduct structured conversations with their sellers—it’s one of the most effective sales enablement strategies. Win rates make or break a company’s fiscal year, and formal and dynamic sales coaching processes have been shown to lead to double-digit improvements in win rates.
Organizations just starting out with sales coaching should focus on reinforcing initial sales enablement services, such as a value messaging program or a sales playbook. Run a pilot project to test the effectiveness of your approach: this way, you’ll ensure that your efforts are on target and make a stronger business case for obtaining additional resources and financial support for future coaching initiatives.
3. Offer Impactful Training through a Seller’s Career
The vast majority of sales organizations (87%) invest less than $2,500 a year in developing each salesperson and sales manager. Most of that training happens up front, when sellers are new. While onboarding is important to get sellers up to speed and to reduce employee turnover, effective training isn’t a one-and-done initiative. It’s part of a culture focused on continuous development.
An ongoing sales training program should cover products as well as selling skills, sales methodologies, sales technology and various sales processes. It should take place in different formats, both in the classroom and online, to ensure that it reaches every sales professional. And it should give employees the opportunity to continue developing themselves, with an eye toward advancement in both the near-and long-term. Tools like Scout can help organizations assess their salespeople’s training needs by analyzing data in their CRM.
Sales Content, Coaching, and Training: The Sales Enablement Trifecta
Delivering perspective isn’t an easy skill. It takes time to master, and it must be supported by the three pillars of effective sales enablement—content, coaching and training—as part of a holistic sales effectiveness framework.
Take the Sales Conversation Metric to discover your organization’s opportunities to improve sellers’ conversations with buyers, strengthen customer relationships and move ahead of the competition.