A strong Sales Enablement program undeniably empowers businesses, drastically improving sales productivity. It entails several benefits such as an increase in sales efficiency, sales readiness, conversion rates, or an alignment between Marketing and Sales. However, despite all its potential laying out a Sales Enablement strategy comes with a few roadblocks. These obstacles might impact teams, workflows, or the overall strategy and its benefits. The best way to always be a step ahead of these challenges is simply to know what they are and how they can translate to your business.
Here are the top 5 Sales Enablement challenges to keep an eye on:
1. Creating quality & optimized content
Today customers crave content, so businesses are equipped with a wide range of it. This content might include case studies, articles, tutorials, social media posts, business proposals, or white papers to name a few. In this context, sales collateral is crucial as it delivers a message to the customer while conveying the brand’s image. A strong array of relevant content for every stage in the sales cycle is a major asset to better meet the customer’s needs and expectations. On the contrary, if this content is not necessarily relevant, up to date, or easy to access it can harm the Sales pipeline.
2. Achieving Marketing and Sales alignment
If Marketing and Sales are two different departments serving different purposes when it comes to Sales Enablement their alignment is key. Indeed, discrepancies between them can harm several aspects such as conversion or customer experience for example. Yet, the tricky point remains to make these two different departments work together. It might not be easy to achieve, but if left unaddressed this point can render each department’s efforts vain. Both departments should be included while laying out the strategy so their individual needs are voiced, and their processes can be smoothly integrated.
3. Training new hires to be performant long term
Sales onboarding is essential: a new hire represents an investment, and a return on this investment is expected. In other words, the sooner a new sales representative is fully operational the better. This often results in condensed sales onboarding, with a lot of material to comprehend and learn from in a short period of time. Moreover, onboarding programs can also be rigid and fail to engage different types of learning profiles. To truly create an educational environment for recruits, your Sales Enablement strategy should also focus on this aspect. Indeed, building an environment in which sales representatives are immersed in a Sales Enablement logic will focus on skills rather than processes, in adapting their content to the customer rather than the opposite. This learning curve should also be enriched throughout time, as ongoing training ensures that sales representatives are always up to date with the product, the technological tools used as well as the sales enablement strategy.
4. Understanding your customer
To efficiently tackle competition in today’s B2B sales environment, a one-size-fits-all pitch is not enough and customization has become a must. Indeed, each customer expects their specific pain points and priorities to be addressed. In this context, it is crucial for businesses to be responsive to their customers' ever-evolving needs, so sales representatives are constantly on the uptake for new opportunities. A strong Sales enablement strategy should therefore focus on tailoring every step of the sales process to be relevant and adaptable to different types of potential customers.
5. Defining goals & metrics
Once your Sales Enablement strategy is in place, it is essential to measure its success to adjust it accordingly. However, finding the key metrics that will effectively measure this success is not always easy and is often focused on quantity rather than quality. For example, knowing about how many business opportunities were seized to reach the company’s goals is one thing, but what about all the lost opportunities? An effective sales strategy will set these goals involving Marketing, Sales, and IT department and align on short-term as well as long-term goals and relevant metrics to measure success and pinpoint where improvement is needed.
How can a Sales Enablement tool help?
With the right Sales Enablement tools, key stakeholders can tackle all the above-mentioned challenges :
- Content creation: Marketers can focus and adjust their content creation efforts according to actionable data and insights.
- Content access: Making content available Sales representatives can easily find relevant content to best address their prospects and customers.
- Collaboration: Both Sales and Marketing departments can easily collaborate using the same platform.
- Training: Sales enablement platforms can include training modules to ensure a continuous learning curve for sales representatives.
- Customer insights: Some sales enablement platforms can recommend relevant content based on the sales situation.
- KPIs: Sales enablement tools give access to new data and insights to measure the strategy’s effectiveness and identify areas of improvement.