This post shares insight from our new report: “Sales Enablement 2.0 — The Solution for Solving Revenue Growth Challenges.” Download now.
Is your sales team on target to meet your revenue goals — this year, this quarter, this month? Are your salespeople pulling the right levers throughout your customers’ buying journey? Are they supported with critical tools, like data and analytics, right-stage marketing, and a robust playbook?
Or is your sales team struggling every period to hit their targets? Have you tried everything, and sales is still consistently missing the mark?
You likely have a vision of a sales team that operates like a revenue-generation machine — with a team of reps who have pumped up their sales muscles. It’s a great vision. But what is your strategy to make it a reality?
Sales Enablement Strategy Upgraded – Meet Sales Enablement 2.0
An innovative new approach to sales enablement strategy is helping private equity-owned companies overcome their most brutal sales challenges. It’s turning portfolio companies’ sales organizations into the revenue generators of their dreams. It’s helping them achieve more profitable growth faster.
We provide insight into this ideal level of sales success in our new report, “Sales Enablement 2.0 — The Solution for Solving Revenue Growth Challenges.” The report provides an overview of the sales challenges that many portfolio companies are facing and how the tools within Sales Enablement 2.0 overcome them.
The focus of Sales Enablement 2.0 is on helping your sales organization consistently deliver profitable revenue growth. Here is an overview of the 12-step process for up-leveling your sales team to achieve that goal.
Stages in Sales Enablement Strategy 2.0
The first three stages of Sales Enablement 2.0 are all about understanding how your company ticks. All sales enablement projects begin with analyzing your ideal customer profiles, the buyer’s journey process, and the critical moments of every journey.
1. Identify your ideal customer profile (ICP): To become powerful salespeople, your sellers need to deeply understand your customers. This is the first step to giving them a competitive advantage. When they know a buyer’s unique characteristics, objections, pain points, and decision-making processes, salespeople can tailor their approach and messaging during every sales call.
2. Identify your buyer’s journey process: Every company’s buyers travel a different journey. When you know the terrain of your customers’ buying journey, you gain a considerable advantage. Your sales reps can anticipate their next move and be prepared for it. What’s more, this gives your sales rep an incredible level of confidence, which is a priceless quality in sales.
3. Identify the critical moments in your buyer’s journey: Along every buyer’s journey, there are critical moments. Those times when potential customers can easily bow out of the sales process or speed ahead. Giving sales reps insight into these moments and the tools to both overcome challenges and leverage the opportunities that will help them optimize every critical moment.
The second three stages of the Sales Enablement 2.0 process are about aligning all the elements of a robust sales process — including the buyer’s journey, sales reps’ skills, and your training tools.
4. Align the buyer’s journey: Once you’ve mapped your company’s buyers’ journey, your sales reps must be given the skills to proactively guide buyers throughout the journey. This includes understanding the key inflection points and milestones that each buyer needs to overcome before they move toward their destination — a sale.
5. Sales skills: Identify the skills your salespeople need to remove friction from the sales process. This requires interviewing your sellers to gather all the best practices along the buyer’s journey. Then you need to break down the skills you want your sales reps to learn into short, logical lessons.
6. Training tools: To help salespeople reach super-seller status, your sales training tools need to be customized for your company. The key to successful training tools is two-fold: gather all your company’s best sales practices and create a series of short, meaningful training modules.
The next three stages of the Sales Enablement 2.0 process address the training process. This is a multi-step approach that goes far beyond any traditional sales training program, starting with training your sales directors first.
7. Train Sales Directors: The secret sauce of Sales Enablement 2.0 is our focus on frontline sales managers. They will be your company’s leaders in sales enablement. This means that before you train your salespeople, you train your sales managers. Then they train and coach the salespeople. This approach offers several advantages, including ensuring every member of the sales organization is operating on the same page.
8. Train Sales Reps: This step is a lot like traditional sales training. Sales reps are educated on the sales skills by their managers to consistently reach their sales numbers. The difference is the strategy behind the training, including detailed planning, infusing lessons with best practices, and breaking lessons into small bite-size chunks.
9. Deliver Ongoing Coaching: What’s missing from many sales enablement programs is real-life application and feedback. Humans learn new skills by immediately applying what they’ve learned in the real world and getting feedback on their performance. The goal is to continue coaching and reinforcing the salespeople until they have internalized your best-practice-based sales skills. In other words, train them until they have developed powerful muscle memory.
In parallel to sales coaching, you need to give your salespeople the right support, including technology, marketing materials, and a playbook.
10. Marketing Support: Along with the right technologies, salespeople also need to be supported with the right stage-appropriate marketing materials throughout the buyer’s journey. Without the right marketing materials for each stage of the journey, you’ll handicap your salespeople. Organizations that clearly map out their buyer’s journey and provide the right stage-appropriate marketing tools will be setting up their salespeople for greater sales success.
11. Technology Support: This step requires supplying your sales reps with the right technology tools, including a sophisticated CRM. For example, when you embed your sales process into your CRM, not only does this help your salespeople consistently follow your best practices, but also it provides them with the data-driven insights they need to identify where there are new sales opportunities and where there are gaps. As a result, they are not flying blind.
12. Robust Playbook: This is a vital component of a successful sales enablement program. It provides a standardized framework that documents a repeatable process to guide the entire sales team. It helps ensure that every salesperson is working with the same sales approach and methodology.
How Can Sales Enablement Tools Bring You to Consistent Revenue Growth?
Your salespeople want to be successful. They don’t want to struggle to meet their sales targets and your company’s revenue goals every month, quarter, or year. As a sales leader, it’s your job to ensure your reps have what they need to continuously achieve the best outcomes.
Launching a comprehensive and customized sales enablement strategy ensures they have the skills, tools, and support they need to consistently pull all the right levers throughout the sales process.
Sales enablement should be viewed as the science of making the right moves at every step of the sales process. When we do that, we know what’s working and what’s not working. Then we know the best path forward to close-win deals versus closed-lost deals. We are the industry’s thought leaders in the realm of sales enablement content, and we aim to keep you on the cutting edge of what’s possible for your sales team.
Learn more about Sales Enablement 2.0 in our new report: “Sales Enablement 2.0 — The Solution for Solving Revenue Growth Challenges.” The report includes insight from our sales enablement strategy experts and a portfolio company’s Sales Enablement 2.0 success story.