This blog series has discussed a number of challenges that seem daunting for mere humans to take on. Thankfully, technology has provided us with a plethora of tools that help ease many of these challenges, but the hard part is picking the right ones for your team.
Why are sales tools a challenge?
While sales tools inherently make life easier for sales reps, there are so many solutions in the market and new ones coming out every day that it can be overwhelming to decide where to start. It is also important to understand how tools will be received, implemented and adopted by sales teams.
What can you do about it?
Sales enablement teams should take the lead when it comes to looking at the business and deciding which types of solutions are needed, why they’re needed, what they need to do for the business, and the required features. Once these rough parameters are understood, the list of vendors should be manageable and can be evaluated for the value they bring the business. When evaluating sales tools, it’s useful to segment them by their functions and features. These four categories highlight sales responsibilities and give you a good place to start:
1. Who to sell to and why
– Territory Management, Account & Selection Tools
– Account Planning Solutions
– Lead Scoring Solutions
– Lead Management & Contact Information Solutions
– Social Selling (account & lead insights) Solutions
– Customer Intelligence Solutions
2. Managing the sale
– Opportunity & Account Management Solutions
– Pipeline Management, Opportunity Scoring & Forecasting
– Customer Engagement & Activity Tracking Solutions (e-mails, calls, meetings, social, etc.)
3. Training the sales skills, behaviors and tools
– Learning Management Solutions (LMS) (host, assign and track courses)
– Coaching Solutions
– Sales Playbook Solutions
– Sales Training Solutions (trainers, courses and content)
4. Sales content
– Messaging and Positioning Training & Reinforcement Solutions
– Content Management Solutions (CMS) (host, expose, deliver and share content)
– Content Creation Solutions
– Content Usage & Influence Tracking Solutions
This is clearly a very lengthy list of tools, and there are a number of solutions that can make it easier for you to do a number of the operations above.