Around our Indianapolis office, we’re firmly in the gray, frigid doldrums of winter—and you better believe we’re daydreaming of brighter days around here.
Those brighter days? They’re coming. It may not always feel like it, but the days will get longer, the temperatures will be more tolerable, and the sweet sounds of spring will be here before we know it.
Now is the time to make big moves when it comes to your sales enablement training goals. In this quiet, calm-before-the-storm season, there’s a lot you can do to set yourself up for success. Here are a few best practices to get you started.
Establish a sales enablement vision.
Enablement is often used as an umbrella term to describe all things onboarding, training, coaching, content management, social selling, and more. Start thinking about your sales enablement strategy without pigeonholing yourself into distinct categories. As a budding sales enablement pro, you can think of this activity as your “Pinterest board” of sorts.
Here are a few thought-provoking questions to fuel your daydreaming session:
- Imagine the most frustrating problem your team faces today. What could they do if it magically disappeared overnight?
- Imagine you have an extra hour every day. How do you use it?
- What takes your team the most time for the smallest reward?
- I wish my team was better at _______________.
- When you look back on it this time next year, what improvements would you like your team to have made?
Figure out what makes your ideal customer sales-ready.
So, you’ve daydreamed about the big things your team could do with a sales enablement certification under their belts. Now, it’s time to dream about what your customers and prospects would experience.
One of the beautiful things about a new or renewed focus on sales enablement training is that it’s no longer sales enablement vs. marketing, it’s sales + marketing. Your sales enablement software will help you identify what converts and what doesn’t, but it’s never too early to start thinking about that ideal customer and the journey they’ll take with your team. Give some consideration to the telltale signs of a soon-to-be closed-won deal.
Here are some examples of what you might look for:
- Email engagement—what email nurture campaigns are working well? Are there cadences that drive deals to close faster than before?
- Website interactions—are there specific forms submitted that almost-guarantee a great conversion rate?
- Content that converts—which white papers, ebooks, and one-pagers lead to the highest quality leads?
- Social media engagement—are your most effective team members killing it in the comments section, selling on social, or posting regularly to drive product awareness?
Make it official with an internal sales certification program.
We all love a sparkly little badge sometimes. If you’re rolling out a brand-new sales enablement program, consider creating a certification program that will get all of your people on board and in one place. Certifications ensure that your crew has truly done the work to make the most of the training you’re asking them to invest in this season.
Of course, there are a variety of ways to unite all of the stakeholders and contributors you’ll need. If certifications aren’t the right way forward for you, consider a recurring “smarketing” meeting where your sales department and marketing department debrief on progress—a little cross-departmental collaboration can go a long way. You might even stop hearing the question “what is sales enablement training anyway?” sometime in the near future.
Replace your dusty old product knowledge documents with a searchable, update-ready alternative.
How many times have you peeked at your employee handbook, training manual, or product knowledge materials only to notice they are far from current? Cringe. This wintery season is a great time to rethink your training delivery methods.
One of the benefits of a sales enablement training program is that you can update it to meet your team’s current needs. If you use sales enablement software, updates are as easy as writing an email. Pricing updates? No need to reprint every product manual under the sun! Major market shift? There’s a comparison chart for that. New product launch? Here’s everything you need to know, all at the click of a button. With enablement software, you meet your team where they are, whenever they have a spare moment to devote to training.