Why Your Competitors Prioritize Sales Enablement (And You Should, Too!)

  • Digno LalussisNovember 22 2017
Systematize Sales Enablement and take your average sales reps and transform them into your absolute best.

Just like you, our company sells stuff.

About 6 months ago, we completed our core product offering.

So now the focus is 100% on closing more deals.

As part of digging-in to find out how to improve our sales strategy, I came across the concept of “Sales Enablement”.

I wondered what it meant.

More importantly, why should I care?

So, I dug up a definition…

“Sales enablement is a strategic, ongoing process that equips all client-facing employees with the ability to consistently and systematically have a valuable conversation with the right set of customer stakeholders at each stage of the customer’s problem-solving life cycle to optimize the return of investment of the selling system.”. ~Forrester

What?

What the hell does that even mean?

Is this just some fancy marketing double-speak designed to help the VP of Sales create more charts and graphs for our meetings?

I keep digging just in case I was wrong.

I focused on an article on Forbes magazine which talked about a Brainshark research paper entitled “The Power of Enablement: Bridging the Sales Productivity Gap“.

One of the observations in that article that immediately hit home for me was:

“For the C-suite, driving sales productivity and closing the divide between top- and lower-performing salespeople are foremost concerns”.

I literally had to dissect that sentence.. but what I ultimately got from it was:

I have some amazing sales reps, and I have some so-so sales reps that probably need my helpThat was my “Ah-ha” moment.

I could turn my mediocre sales reps into superstars?!?

That made me sit up and pay attention.

What Sales Enablement Actually Is

Turns out that Sales Enablement is a system that can help you take your average sales reps and transform them into your absolute top reps.

Sounds like a concept that warrants a deeper investigation.

The problem is, it’s still a brand new concept so there’s still some disagreement about what it means for each company exactly.

For me personally, after a ton of research, I thought that Hubspot summarized the Sales Enablement process the best.

They broke down Sales Enablement into 9 distinct activities:

  • Coaching Members
  • Onboarding Sales Staff
  • Content Creation
  • Finding Cross-Selling Opportunities
  • Creating Materials and Assets
  • Sales training
  • Performing Analysis
  • Strategy Development
  • Systems and Support

The thing I like about breaking down a complex system like this is that you can measure and improve on each and every component.

I also love the infographic that they borrowed from Demand Metric which really made the concept easy for me to digest:

A pretty comprehensive summary of the entire process. The thing I like about the infographic is that it really helps you understand quickly why you need to be building automated system for your sales team.

Let’s be honest, that 25% win rate is where we’d all like to be.

Last point (buckle up, here comes the sales pitch!) is that although I think this is a pretty comprehensive overview of the Sales Enablement process, I think they’ve completely excluded social selling from the picture.

Some of the tools that we’ve found to be indespensible in this proccess are:

  1. Socedo
  2. LeadSift
  3. And of course… shameless self promotion time… Social Horse Power

I plan on covering Socedo and Leadshift in two separate blog articles because both tools are the bomb and we’ve really build an amazing relationship with both companies (couldn’t recommend them highly enough).

As for Social Horse Power, we really sing in a few areas. Most notably, for large, disparate sales teams with compliance issues (think StateFarm, Bank of America) etc. That’s not to say we can’t help smaller sales teams too!

That’s it. That’s the whole enchilada.

I would love to get feedback on your journey through Sales Enablement. Are there any tools that you use? Any tips or tricks I should be aware of?

Feel free to leave your comments below and I’ll be sure to get back to you.

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