03 Apr Marketing and Sales Enablement Content
Today’s marketing leaders have a massive impact on sales results. Long gone are the days of generating large volumes of leads, throwing them over the wall to sales, and calling it done. The modern marketer is closely focused on conversion rates throughout the funnel. Right through to closed won deals and even renewal.
That shift has been driven in large part by changing market dynamics. B2B buyers are increasingly educated about products and offers, and demand more from their sales people. Standard sales processes have increasingly become ‘buyer journeys’ with multiple stakeholders and shifting timelines that sales people struggle to navigate. In fact, we’ve now come to the point where 80% of sales people don’t add value to their buyers.
Two major marketing trends have arisen to address this shift. First, marketers have implemented technology like marketing automation to increase control and velocity in the pipeline. But there remains a fundamental problem for marketers: how to support the bottom of the funnel when prospects are primarily governed by your sales team?
Second, at the same time marketers have rolled-out sophisticated content marketing initiatives to support the customer journey. But there’s a similar challenge here too. How do marketers ensure that this content, which is really sales enablement content, is effectively used to guide prospects in the bottom of the funnel?
Leverage Existing Content Assets for Sales
The content that marketing teams produce is exceptionally valuable. It informs, engages, and even entertains prospects. It helps them to find your company in the first place and advance the sales process. Sales people are radically more effective when they use marketing content to educate their buyers.
But the marketing content and sales enablement assets are spread across your wiki, SharePoint site, YouTube channel, marketing automation application, and blog. You can’t expect a sales team to look for content across these multiple locations. In fact up to 70% of marketing content is never actually used by your sales team.
At the same time, you don’t want to have to maintain yet another sales enablement portal outside of where reps work. It’s yet another layer of complexity and something else that sales teams won’t use. Instead, by aggregating content and pushing it to sales teams you can help them to find and use compelling content in their sales engagements.
Push Winning Content to Sales Teams
You have a wealth of content to put at your sales team’s disposal. But which content should they use? If they are simply searching through your catalog, they’re not going to know which case study best matches their sales situation, which presentation is proven to advance opportunities with banks, or which content their top colleagues have used.
A more effective approach is to identify which content is most effective in different sales situations. By linking conversion and win rates to your content you can predict which sales enablement content works best for different sales situations. That lets reps get access to proven content, not just popular content that shows up in a search result.
Total Visibility into Marketing Assets
Marketing automation and content marketing technology have helped marketers understand where their content investments have been effective. But there is a giant visibility cliff when it comes to sales’ use of content. With portals, sales people download content and use the same version over and over again. They’ll often ignore new content, simply using materials that they’re already comfortable with.
A more effective approach is to help sales people use content in a way that lets marketers ensure that current versions are used and allow for tracking of usage and results. Just like marketing automation gives marketers insight into how effective content is at the top of the funnel, marketers need to understand its effectiveness when used one on one with prospects in the bottom of the funnel.