This is the first in a series of guest posts from Brian Groth, Sales Enablement Manager at Xactly Corp. Brian will be sharing sales enablement challenges and solutions on the Seismic blog over the next few weeks!
Every job function has its own particular set of challenges. While the concept of a sales enablement role or department might be new, the challenges surrounding it are not. However, now that many companies have begun putting more focus on the function, it's easier to identify the top challenges of sales enablement.
I've spent many years helping sales teams in one way or another, and many struggle with the task of coordinating and delivering training. But I’d argue that this isn't even in the top 10 of sales enablement challenges. Yes, it takes a good amount of work to create, deliver, and follow up on training, but it's pretty straightforward to implement and results are usually noticeable shortly after. Sales enablement challenges are more complex and take careful, coordinated approaches to overcome.
This series of blog posts will introduce 13 challenges of sales enablement, and how companies can address each of them. The first challenge I will introduce is content creation.
What is Content Creation?
From a sales perspective, content creation is the process of writing, curating and sharing collateral that a sales rep needs for conversations with prospects. This content includes sales presentations, white papers, case studies, reports and so on. But it also includes the internal content a sales rep needs in order to understand all the activities they need to do, such as giving demos and recognizing customer needs.
Why is it a challenge?
Creation of customer-ready materials usually bleeds between marketing, sales and sales enablement roles. Further, the creation of “how-to” internal documentation and guidance usually falls to a variety of teams. For example, IT might explain a how to access or utilize a tool, but someone in sales might explain how to best use the tool from their own perspective, or HR might own the training of a skill. Different perspectives and conflicts over the purpose of content materials can cause tension between teams. Usually if just one team creates it, another will disagree, but content-by-committee can easily create a monster too.
What can you do about it?
First off, it’s important to keep track of all content in some logical manner that makes sense to your team. I create groups of content organized by sales presentations, product details, customer case studies, sales skills, managing pipeline and opportunities, working with partners, and so on. This process and organization strategy will undoubtedly be different for each company and team, but being able to search and consolidate content into specific groups will make life simpler.
Stay tuned for next week’s sales enablement challenge, content management.