Why sales enablement is much more than just another buzzword

It’s no secret that buzzwords are rife in the world of B2B technology. New buzzwords are constantly appearing and finding their way into industry vocabulary, much to the delight of some and the annoyance of others.

But what about sales enablement? Is it just one more buzzword used by businesses to try and sell another piece of software that doesn’t actually help salespeople? The short answer is a resounding no. Sales enablement is much more than a buzzword – and it’s here to stay.

The only complication is that it can mean different things to different people, and its definition has changed significantly over the years. Before technology reigned supreme, sales enablement could be defined as anything that helps teams sell better. For example, a comfortable pair of shoes that allows sales teams to move faster and for longer than their competitors. Today, things are rather different.

In the modern world, sales enablement is all about using content and resources in the most effective and efficient way possible, with the goal of helping sales teams complete more sales faster by shortening the buyer journey.

Content that connects

Sales enablement helps to solve many of the key problems that B2B sellers suffer from – namely the fact that there is too much content, and at the same time, rarely the right content when it’s actually needed.

Why is this an issue? Well, today’s buyers show up at your virtual door much more educated than they’ve ever been before. They’ve researched your brand online and they know the key product details before they engage with you in a conversation. This puts sellers on the back foot, as they know less about the buyers than the buyers know about them.

Enter sales enablement. It arms sellers with more data, insights and tools to help them put the right content in front of customers, that speaks to their situation. Being able to share content that addresses a buyer’s specific needs significantly increases relevancy and competitiveness, thereby increasing the chance of that customer making a purchase.

This is particularly important when trying to reach C-suite decision-makers. The challenge is that it’s becoming harder and harder to grab (and hold) the attention of C-suite customers. They are being bombarded with more content than ever before, which means sellers have to find ways to cut through the noise. Every interaction must be even more meaningful to drive results.

The only way to truly be noticed is to show that you understand your buyer’s specific situation and business needs, which is where sales enablement can make all the difference. Content only exists for the story it tells, so it must resonate and connect with that specific person. The goal for sellers is to build connections with a story that is compelling and relevant, and sales enablement is the secret weapon that can empower sales teams to use content that truly makes an impact with those C-suite customers.

Powering business transformation

Sales enablement also offers some key internal benefits that can help businesses operate faster and more efficiently. For example, it can transform the onboarding process for new reps so that they are able to get selling quicker. Any established salesperson will know that it takes time for new hires to discover and understand the content available to them. They lack the ‘tribal knowledge’ of their more experienced peers, which equates to less effective selling.

As such, there is a need to more effectively curate digital content libraries in a way that helps junior sellers easily discover the right content for the right context. For example, sales enablement systems can suggest the types of content and training/playbooks that they’re probably going to need for a certain industry or business, saving new salespeople time and making their lives significantly easier when they’re learning the ropes.

It can also align sales and marketing departments. Internal silos and barriers often get in the way – particularly in large enterprises – highlighting the importance of helping sales and marketing teams work together more effectively to increase productivity and ultimately drive sales.

By extending and simplifying existing digital processes through sales enablement tools and platforms, marketers are able to manage content more efficiently and get sellers the materials they need, when they need them. This directly enables sales teams to activate holistic storytelling at scale and focus on selling rather than spending their time preparing yet another presentation. 

This all clearly shows that sales enablement is much more than just a buzzword. From curating content that supports the stories that matter, to aligning sales and marketing teams and driving sales by elevating the buyer experience, sales enablement is transforming the sales process – and it’s very much here to stay.

B2B Marketing Sales Enablement Report 2020

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