The Key "Evolutions" of Sales Enablement Happening in 2011

Updated: March 31, 2011

Prospects must be engaged - not sold to. This can be boiled down to "know your customer." In 2011, it is imperative that you put yourself in your prospect's shoes and understand how they think and what they need at different stages of their buying cycle (not YOUR sales cycle) so you can produce the most relevant content, information and messaging to engage them in deeper one-on-one conversations through your sales enablement tools.

Everything must integrate with CRM. Sales personnel are busier than ever these days, so giving them the functionality to use your sales enablement software from within the place they already work is not only helpful, it's required. The less switching they must do between platforms, means the more time they can spend selling.


Everything must integrate with mobile. It seems like more mobile devices are activated on a daily basis than babies being born. This also means sales must be empowered with data, tools, technology and training they need pushed to their wireless devices to stay focused on creating relationships with prospects on-the-go at the most opportune moments.


Brand yourself as a thought leader. Leveraging and showcasing your experitise in your solution set and/or industry is key. Professional branding is happening through thought leadership and participation in online professional networking sites and "watering holes" to gain visibility and credibility with key audiences. This is raising awareness of brands and expertise and creating "social proof" that your solution is the go-to resource. Sales enablement technology platforms are making it easier for sales to share assets and point prospects to online forums where they have offered thought leadership and track which links they've viewed.


Time management and prioritization is a must. Sales enablement technology platforms are making it easier for sales to prioritize prospect follow-up efforts by tracking their behavior, telling them WHAT was viewed WHEN and by WHO. Not to mention, this information is giving sales greater insight into what the prospect is actually interested in and how to best tailor conversations to be most effective.


Sales professionals are not paid to be copywriters. Sales makes the big bucks for closing deals, not writing emails for prospects and creating use-cases or PowerPoints. Lack of writing skills causes undesirable communications, a bad image, and wasted time. Sales enablement software makes it easy to create "grab-and-go" templates, so sales only has to do MINOR personalization and can spend more time doing what they do best - selling!


Merging of sales enablement and marketing automation technologies. It used to be that marketing automation platforms were reserved tools for marketers and sales enablement platforms were just for sales teams, but more and more software players are integrating sales enablement and marketing automation functionality within the same platform such as sales alerts, streamlined activity logs, centralized template libraries, etc.

Content must be pushed to sales. If you are in marketing, being a little pushy when it comes to getting your content used is a must. If you're creating content, collateral and sales tools for use in the sales cycle, making sales aware of new assets and PUSHING the content to them so that it can be used to engage prospects and close more deals is a requirement. Lord knows they're not going to come to just magically find the latest and greatest collateral you produced - you've got to guide them in WHERE and HOW to use the tools AT WHAT POINT in the buy cycle.


Finding the best prospects faster. Sales enablement data platforms are delivering a wealth of information to sales teams to approach more proactive, relevant and targeted prospects from the beginning. In addition, sales enablement activity platforms are giving sales the ability to track the behavior of their prospects, sending alerts with information about WHO viewed WHAT piece of collateral, and at WHAT time for better follow up.


Sales drinking the Kool-Aid. Companies know that sales enablement platforms are all the rage right now, and are shelling out big bucks to have them. That is why sales buy-in and sales adoption are becoming more critical than ever to see the return on your investment in sales enablement. Whether your investment is for data, tools or technology, the bottom line is there's no point in having it if it is not being used by your team and it's not easy to use.

Featured Research
  • Why Q4 is the Perfect Time to Invest in Video Conferencing

    If you’re currently relying on an outdated video conferencing solution - or if you don’t have one at all - you’re in luck. While any time is a good time to invest in video conferencing, Q4 may be the best. One big reason is that Q4 is when you can get the best deals, but there are also other important factors like increased access to seasonal employees. more

  • 8 Ways to Get More From Your VoIP System

    Many businesses adopt VoIP to take advantage of the cost savings without spending enough time reviewing the features and benefits made available by different solutions. If this is true for your business, there’s a good chance you could be getting more from your VoIP system in the form of even lower costs or improved employee productivity. You may even find that your current software offers features that you aren’t taking advantage of! more

  • Best ERP Features and Benefits for Your Business

    Are you considering investing in ERP software for the first time? Or maybe you already have an ERP solution but you’re worried it’s becoming dated. If either of the above apply to you, read our latest guide on the top ERP features and benefits based on the size of your business. You may be surprised at how versatile and cost-effective it is becoming - regardless of if you own a small business or run a large enterprise. more

  • 9 Spooky Signs You Need a Contact Center Upgrade

    When was the last time you evaluated the performance of your current contact center and the software you are using? The results may be frightening! If it’s been awhile since you invested in contact center software, there is a good chance that your needs have changed or that there are better options available now. Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to determine if you need an upgrade or not. more

  • 7 Ways the Wrong Phone System Can Haunt Your Business

    The wrong phone system could be haunting your business - and we’re talking about problems more serious than ghosts and ghouls. From increased costs to issues with scaling, we’ve identified seven important ways that a less than ideal phone system could be holding you back. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference this can make to your bottom line too. more