Have you been playing a game of telephone with your sales and marketing teams about your company goals? Are the strategies and processes you have in place not quite hitting the target?
The strategies and processes you have in place determine how your sales teams perform. If your target audience is broad, and your team isn't striving for the same goal - then you won't get the sales revenue you were hoping for. Here are four sales enablement tools you and your team can take to bring your sales goals and performance to the next level.
1. Align Your Sales Team
In any business or department, it's essential that everyone is on the same page. This ensures the entire team understands how their role and efforts will affect the company's comprehensive goals - the essence of sales enablement. What is sales enablement? It's providing all the essential tools salespeople need to engage the buyer throughout their entire purchasing journey. Once every person on your sales team knows what their responsibilities are and how their actions will contribute to the team's sales enablement, it's time to bring in the rest of the company.
Alignment happens when everyone is aware of the goals that are set and where they are at individually and as a team in terms of reaching their goal. For example, does your sales team know when it's their responsibility to contact a lead? What about your marketing team - do they know when to hand off their leads to the sales team?Aligning everyone in your company around the same strategy and process will ensure that your leads are properly nurtured in a way that will help them become loyal customers. Including regular updates for all departments also ensures they are working together.
2. Laser in on Your Target Market
Millennials. Business owners. Marketing specialists. They're all audiences - but they aren't specific enough. You can't simply target millennial Facebook users, because you will end up targeting 70 percent of the Facebook population. Instead, ask questions that help define your specific audience. Where do these millennials live? What do they like to do for fun? Do they spend more time on Facebook than YouTube? Defining your audience means digging deep to get a better understanding of who you are targeting and why they are the way they are. Here are a few questions to ask when defining your target audience:
What are their demographics (i.e. age, gender, relationship status, income, etc.)?
What are their psychographics (i.e. interests, attitudes, culture, etc.)?
What is their job title and responsibilities?
Where do they find new information (i.e. blogs, websites, magazines, etc.)?
What are their biggest professional and personal challenges?
This target audience (AKA buyer persona) is who your marketing and sales team will craft content and calls-to-action for. The goal is to get a member from this audience to become a lead, then customer, by nurturing them through their buyer's journey. When everyone in the company is targeting the same audience, their efforts align to become one big powerhouse.
3. Create Content
So how do you attract your buyer persona after you've created one? Sales enablement doesn't start with the first call you make to a lead, it starts by targeting your buyer persona with the right content. This content should fit their needs, wants, and problems.
We eat, sleep, and breathe content at Leighton Interactive. Our inbound leads find topics our buyer personas are interested in, have questions about, or need more information on. Next, our writers eloquently craft a blog post or eBook that brings the topic our persona identifies with to life. If it's an eBook or eNewsletter, our designers or developers take the content and bring it to life with graphics and website imagery that is presented in a way that persona might enjoy. Should it be simple and organized, or trendy with bold colors? These are the questions they ask to put themselves in the personas' mindset. Last but not least, our social crew sends the content out to social platforms, online groups, and thought leaders to ensure it's getting to the places our persona goes to for information.
It's clear to see creating and distributing content is a team effort. We wouldn't be able to generate leads from content that wasn't created, designed, and distributed around the persona. Each person on our team is vital to getting the right content out to the right audience. We work together under the same strategy, so we can hand off qualified and ready-to-purchase leads to our sales team.
4. Set Expectations
Getting your team on the same page, targeting the right people, and creating content won't matter unless there are specific goals and expectations your team is striving to achieve. Once those expectations are met, how can your sales team make sure leads are being converted into customers? Closed loop practices. HubSpot says “closing the loop just means that sales teams report to Marketing about what happened to the leads that they received, which helps Marketing understand their best and worst lead sources." Once those leads get handed off to the sales team, it's their responsibility to convert those leads into customers or send them back to marketing for more nurturing. Here are some tips from Entrepreneurial author Tony Parinello on three ways you can close your sale:
Close all the opportunities that are "ripe"
Go out and qualify each new opportunity
Move each qualified opportunity into the final stages of your sales pipeline
Remember, sales enablement doesn't have to be difficult.Align your team so everyone is clear on their responsibilities, goals, and what is expected out of them so the rest of your sales strategy can run smoothly. Start by researching a buyer's persona and then create targeted content that answers all of your potential customer's questions and concerns. This will help your persona trust your company as the expert before your sales team makes that first call.
Dan believes that marketing has one purpose: to generate sales leads. He is certain the best marketing tactics and sales people are decision-making facilitators, not yes getters and being customer-centric is the only way to be successful in the long run. Dan started Leighton Interactive in 2009 with a vision to help high-growth companies attract and close more ideal customers.
A perpetual student of sales and marketing, Dan focuses on two things: finding clients with problems Leighton Interactive solves and talent with the expertise to solve them.