A global sales enablement leader shared with me that their business had 3 different digital transformation initiatives happening at the same time. Each lead by a different C-suite leader. And, there was not any coordination between them.
I spoke with another sales enablement leader who shared a similar story but with 2 different initiatives occurring at the same time. She explained a situation she had not experienced before. A c-suite leader chose a new technology and announced to the team that it was coming and they would need to figure it out, create a training program and start training the team in 60 days.
The Sales Enablement team still doesn’t even know what software it is yet.
Leaders are making decisions out of fear. They are acting differently than ever before because they are looking for fast fixes. I propose that in the past few months 2020 numbers and goals were shared with department leadership and they have leaders nervous.
Marketing budgets are lower in a lot of organizations.
Empty roles need to be filled and leaders are experiencing overworked staff.
Revenue goals are higher which means demand generation has a lot of pressure not just for more leads but higher quality leads that convert.
“How are we going to hit these numbers?”
That is what we hear from CEO’s and their sales and marketing teams privately. If you thought this about your team, you are not alone. What can you do?
I am going to share a very unpopular belief but I believe it is the absolutely right answer based on client successes.
You need to slow down.
It actually means to go slow to move faster. Digital enablement requires strategic planning, training and daily implementation.
Digital Enablement is about people properly using technology to create conversations . Technology alone is not going to solve the problems companies face. There is not an easy button. Many companies have bought into the belief that buying new technology and using the tech will create sales.
Training is about learning how to use the technology, sure.
But, training must also be about training the team how to create conversations and actually sell in a digital environment. The most trite and overused statement lately is the buyer has changed. Yet, it is totally true too.
Unless your team learns how to appeal to how buyers behave, they are not going to win the most deals.
I am leading an executive team through a Social Strategy workshop later today. The goal is not to talk about social media. The goal is to discuss communication and influence needs first. Our challenge is not about ReveOps, Demand Gen, Content Marketing, SEO, PPC or another other category.
It is about enabling your team with the right resources, technology and training to win:
- enable customer success to maintain high quality relationships for increased renewals and additional services
- enable HR to share company stories and enable the entire team to also share them with their personal networks.
- enable C-Suite to lead a social-first growth program that leads to digitally dominating newsfeeds and therefore dominating their competitors.
- conversations with your prospective customers. Plus, it is about using digital enablement to maintain customer relationships for renewals
How can your team influence the entire industry, create conversations with buyers early in their buying process, maintain customer relationships and secure the best talent in your industry? And do so in the most efficient and most cost effective way?
Here is a 3-step approach to building a strong foundation for a Digital Enablement program for internal and external communications across all your departments.
- Social Vision & Strategy Planning
Most leaders are uncertain about the real potential for social as an efficient and cost effective communication tool. Social as a communication tool for every department is the most cost effective communication medium that accelerates conversations, expands influence and increases KPI’s for all departments.
Unfortunately when it comes to social media, business leaders tend to think one of two ways and both of which are wrong ways to think about it. First, they believe social media is a marketing “thing.”
Secondly, they think and often it is the first comment they say which is “we don’t have time for it.” This answer demonstrates a lack of understanding of the potential value of social as a business communication strategy.
Too many companies are not thinking about social this way. We hear from leaders every day that they are looking at ways for the team to make more phone calls and send more emails. They have not yet experienced the value of social as a more efficient tool. Fewer team members can build more influence and produce more of your most important KPI’s more quickly than traditional processes.
Plus, huge bonus, if, please dear Lord don’t let it happen, there is another global shut down due to Covid, your team’s daily activities for business growth will not be affected.
- Digital Audit & Competitive Analysis
The Digital Audit and Competitive Analysis is one of the best, most enlightening exercises a company can do for growth planning. Most leaders see social media as something nice to have. Or, maybe even something that is only for b2c businesses.
The audit, along with the social strategy vision planning, provides a true vision and forecast for opportunities. Here is an example of how to think about your social-based growth opportunity.
Imagine going to an industry conference where all of your ideal customers attend. The conference hosts a cocktail party the night before the booths open up and everyone attends. Come on, we’re are imagining so go ahead and imagine all of your customer and prospective customers are in this room enjoying conversation.
Now, imagine every one of your customers and prospective customers have someone from your team standing next to them and having a friendly, engaging conversation.
Now, imagine your biggest competitor showing up at the entrance and looking in the room and seeing every customer engaged, laughing with and enjoying conversation with one of your team members.
That is called dominance.
A roadmap strategy for digital dominance is the outcome of the digital audit and competitive analysis. We will research your competitors’ digital footprint, your customers’ digital presence and create a plan for digital domination.
- Digital Enablement Implementation
An effective digital enablement program includes a combination of technology and training your team how to engage and build conversations with your customers. Technology alone is not going to solve the revenue challenge because buyers are more savvy and have more opportunities that are more convenient for themselves to research and learn about new solutions.
Let’s break this down into smaller pieces.
- The biggest asset sales professionals have traditionally had is information. That is not the case any longer. Buyers can access information from a wide variety of sources, 24-hours per day.
- When sales are seeking to have conversations with buyers, it is easy for buyers to ignore them. They don’t need sales reps to do their research.
- Most outbound strategies are designed around sending emails or making calls and asking buyers to have a conversation. A conversation that buyers do not need to have for research. This is why Gartner reports buyers do 60% of their research before they choose to speak with a sales professional.
From this breakdown, one can see why outbound prospecting is so challenging. Sales professionals must be information providers and engage buyers in a different manner for buyers to engage with them.
That is where a Digital Enablement program accelerates your revenue growth.
Want to explore a Digital Enablement program for your team? Let’s plan a time and discuss.