The technology landscape is increasingly crowded and there’s no escaping it, regardless of industry. With new technologies emerging left and right, and each department needing different platforms that are essential for their job performance, identifying and selecting which technologies are best can be challenging.
For the healthcare industry, sales cycles can be long and sellers need a specific set of technologies that will give long-term insights throughout the buyer journey. Buyers often have several touch points—whether that be sales meetings, events, or digital campaigns—and organizations need platforms that, together, stack up to let Marketing and Sales do inbound and outbound marketing, sales enablement, and eventually, to understand attribution.
Here are the top platforms that are needed as part of the technology stack for the precision era:
Marketing Automation Platform (MAP)
When an individual encounters a company’s website, whether it’s through email, social, or web search, the MAP, like HubSpot or Marketo, helps to collect that individual’s information and track the activities that follow. Most organizations will use a lead scoring model to assign a value to the different activities an individual performs, such as clicking links, submitting forms, and attending web events. Once this score reaches a certain threshold, the individual’s data is passed over to Sales, and in cadence, the CRM.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
The CRM tool, like Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics, takes the data from the MAP and assigns the individual—and all the information collected throughout its journey—to a Sales team member based on his or her territory, vertical, or industry. This integration allows Sales to perform the appropriate follow-up actions to engage with a prospect or customer and log these actions within the CRM. Tracking these interactions and using MAP information helps Sales tailor future interactions, but it is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to providing a contextually relevant, personalized interaction for the individual.
When the MAP passes a lead over to Sales in the CRM, sales enablement provides relevant content based on the individual’s characteristics, such as their role, buyer persona, industry, size of company, and more. This allows Sales to access and share the right content, at the right time, in the application where they are spending most of their time (CRM).
Typically, enablement tools can act as an overlay “filter” within the CRM opportunity, automatically serving up the right content based on MAP and CRM data. This helps to track which content is used, and when, so Marketing knows which content is most effective. Furthermore, sales and marketing enablement encourages, and increases, usage within a CRM. Since all activity is captured by an enablement platform regardless if Sales is using a mobile device, email application, CRM, etc., there is no manual data entry and data flows freely between all connected systems.
With many Sales teams utilizing both mobile devices and email to communicate with their customers, it makes sense that Email applications such as Outlook should be integrated into a technology stack. By utilizing a sales and marketing enablement platform, Sales will be able to use individual or opportunity information to suggest content that will help move a deal forward. All Sales must do is type the individual’s name into the “to” field in Outlook. All email activity will then be captured within the CRM, and subsequently, the sales and marketing enablement platform.
Similar to a CRM, many Marketing and Sales teams spend the majority of their time utilizing Microsoft Office products like Word or PowerPoint to create collateral and Sales presentations. With a siloed system and the mechanics of saving and uploading to different repositories, mistakes are bound to happen. But by integrating with a sales and marketing enablement platform, documents can be edited, synced, and delivered within the system.
Given the complex makeup of healthcare organizations, utilizing compliant technical applications is a high priority. Systems such as Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) and SAP not only help healthcare companies adhere to strict FDA requirements, but also serve as a single source of truth for their products. The same can be said for a sales and marketing enablement platform. Some healthcare organizations utilize SAP as their CRM. Pair that with a sales and marketing enablement platform, organizations can create more efficient processes for all business activities and provide more detailed insights for a complete, data-backed picture of an organization’s well-being.
Platforms such as Google Analytics only unlock a certain level of insights about individual activities. Even with an MAP and CRM capturing data, it’s still not enough to receive a complete, holistic view of an organization’s customers. By utilizing sales and marketing enablement as part of a Big Data stack, healthcare organizations will not only better understand their customers, but they’ll be able to further refine and create more effective strategies that will ultimately result in increased revenue.
Think about it this way for a healthcare organization looking to implement new technologies: There is no right or wrong way when it comes to choosing the technologies that are right for your business.
Perhaps your organization only needs to get started with a CRM right now, or even pair it with a Marketing Automation system. Or, maybe you have the CRM and Marketing Automation systems in place, but you want to scale and better measure your efforts with a sales enablement tool.
The most important takeaway is to start somewhere. Don’t delay. Waiting on the perfect plan, budget, and team can do more harm than good. If you’re waiting and doing more of the same, you’re inevitably leaving it up to your competitors to define your relevance.