Sales enablement. Is it a buzzword or just a misunderstood word?
DEFINITION OF SALES ENABLEMENT: Sales Enablement encompasses the technology, strategy, processes, and content that empower sales teams to sell smarter and faster. It’s about providing salespeople with what they need in order to successfully and strategically engage the buyer throughout the buying process. Why wouldn't you want it?
A Real-World Scenario of How You Might Use Sales Enablement:
Let’s say you’re a sales rep on the phone with a prospect. The conversation is at the point where you are sharing information about your team approach, and how when a company does business with you; they get more than an AE. They also have an account manager and a media strategist to support them and help them get results. The prospect shows interest and asks you to send an overview of how you work with your clients and what the process would look like if you worked together.
As the sales rep, you're elated to have an interested prospect! You assure them you'll put together an email, even include some additional information, and they'll receive it in the next 24 hours. Now you must find time to write this email and find the stuff you want to send over. You may even need to create something to send if there isn’t already something available.
In real life, this happens all the time. The seller has to scramble, cobble some material or PDF's together, and send something that isn't their best quality work. This can take hours!
In This Scenario, What is Sales Enablement?
Sales enablement is both the content and the technology that supports and empowers the seller.
Image if you had an email template already written for this exact scenario, and all you had to do was customize it?
What if you had a :30-second explainer video, an infographic, or a 2-3 page Powerpoint deck that explained what it's like to do business with you and share how your process is different and the benefits of working with you?
That's sales enablement content. The content that allows you to speed up the sales process and makes it a lot better.
What if in your email (Outlook, Gmail, etc.), you had a button readily available where you click and download all of your templates? You could choose the template you want, and you do slight customization. And, you could have another button to simply attach the documents you want (the content just discussed in the paragraph above), and they would attach as a link, and then send that to your prospect. You could get that content to the prospect very quick, and it would be better quality.
Additionally, sales enablement technology allows you to read their digital body language because you would know when they opened the email, if they shared the email with someone, how long they spent viewing your PowerPoint deck, if they viewed the entire explainer video, and more.
If all of this existed inside your Outlook or Gmail, it would all take less than a minute. Think about how much better the quality would be, how much more responsive you could be with prospects (remember, slow kills deals), and how much time you would save.
No need to imagine, this is sales enablement. It uses both content and technology to allow salespeople to speed up sales, improve quality, and free up more time to sell.*Editor's Note: This post was originally written October 2019, and has since been updated.