Supporting Long-Term Revenue Strategy Through Enablement
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Ultimately, every business shares one common goal: to earn more revenue, more quickly. However, building out long-term revenue streams and enabling revenue-facing teams across all facets of the business can be challenging. For example, companies can struggle to effectively leverage both presale and post-sale opportunities as vehicles to grow revenue, focusing instead on one over the other or letting teams operate in silos.
It is important for sales enablement practitioners to provide teams across the revenue engine with a clear and consistent understanding of how they contribute to business objectives, laying a foundation for streamlined efforts and enhanced collaboration in pursuit of revenue impact. Being well-informed and armed with best practices ultimately helps reps to work together toward fulfilling revenue goals.
Beyond sales teams, it is imperative for all revenue teams to have a structured backbone for their revenue strategy, providing them with a foundation to begin meeting relevant benchmarks. Here are six tips sales enablement practitioners can utilize to begin building their long-term revenue strategy and streams to empower revenue growth in the year ahead.
Keep Processes Simple
Simplifying sales processes reduces the risk of reps becoming too overwhelmed by a vast influx of content and a wide range of data points. It is crucial for practitioners to effectively leverage their tech stack to ensure information can be stored appropriately and found easily across all relevant teams. Having centralized locations to find specific materials or information helps increase the efficiency and productivity of reps, enabling their ability to engage with buyers successfully at all points in their journey.
“We need to be strategic about the formats we choose,” said Renée Osgood, head of customer success enablement Ceros. “How do we distill complex messages down into more bite-sized, easily consumable content, and then how do we deliver it? That can really have a big impact on someone’s ability to quickly learn, retain, and then put into practice.”
In addition to easily digestible and navigable information, it is also helpful for enablement professionals to be specific with the metrics they’re evaluating as it relates to overarching business goals. By emphasizing two to three revenue-related metrics that reps can rally behind, practitioners can help teams across the business remain focused and contribute to collective success for the organization as a whole.
With the ongoing acceleration of digital communication and engagement tools due to the rapid shift to virtual work, reps today are required to be more flexible with their approaches. Encouraging reps to engage in change positively by emphasizing the benefits and transparently communicating the challenges can help them embrace an adaptive mentality. For example, while meeting with customers virtually may mean less face-to-face interaction, it can also allow for executives to attend more customer meetings due to less travel and scheduling constraints.
Customer-facing teams have to also be more adaptive to be able to engage with their customers based on new circumstances, ensuring that they’re communicating in ways that individuals want to be engaged with. Since customers are now far more knowledgeable and informed about a company’s products and services than ever before, communicating effectively to ensure that key influencers and decision-makers are not excluded from the conversation is critical.
“As the constraints of how we work and how the consumer is engaging with businesses and goods are altering, we need to be very steadfast and anchored in why we’re doing what we’re doing and how we’re going to approach it,” said Myisha Procter, director of sales enablement at Custom Ink.
Looking at what has worked well in previous interactions to apply the most effective practices through things like call recordings and peer-to-peer discussions helps to set tangible milestones while continuing to build an agile and nimble mindset.
Put the Customer First
When customers are the biggest inspiration and motivation for a company’s strategies, organizations can improve customer satisfaction and thereby increase revenue, as happy customers buy more over time.
Even as companies experience growth or change, prioritizing the customer experience helps drive engagement and build long-term relationships. This manifests in multiple forms across revenue teams, such as ensuring that communication is frequent, that the quality of conversations and materials is of the highest caliber, and that there is a solution best fit for individual customer needs.
“Everything starts by making sure we represent ourselves and our business in a way that’s interesting and exciting to the customer, and that shows them we value them and their experience,” said Josh Isner, chief revenue officer at Axon.
Additionally, it is helpful to track sales engagement metrics to gain insight on how well customers are connecting with content and whether or not it is resonating with them. Through this, practitioners can see which content is meaningful, and continue providing their reps with the most impactful tools to engage customers. This helps enablement ensure that they are constantly curating material from the point of view of the customer, assessing their reactions and responses to the company’s actions.
Share Inspiring Stories
Enablement can inspire loyalty, drive growth, and create passionate advocates among revenue-facing teams through storytelling. Sharing stories of wins both big and small induces excitement among reps, making them more invigorated to engage and reinforcing that their work matters.
When teams are reminded of their importance in customer satisfaction and retention, they become empowered to succeed in their respective roles, and interactions with prospects become more compelling and powerful as a result.
“References and stories are important because if you establish the success you’re having with customers and you create a kind of story that shows how they got to where they got, then sales organizations and marketing organizations can use that to drive new sales,” said Peter Armaly, senior director of customer success enablement at Oracle.
Understand the Market Inside and Out
A well-rounded understanding of a company’s market is critical in creating a more surgical go-to-market approach, emphasizing meticulousness and carefully highlighting the dos and don’ts in the journey toward success. Adequate knowledge about the market serves as growth indicators, helping revenue teams navigate the current market while continuously assessing opportunities to innovate in order to expand to other markets.
“It’s important to focus on how the new investments you’re making are translating into early success in the market,” said Isner. “We want to make sure that those leading indicators are pointed in the right direction across new products and new markets.”
Partnering with research and development teams can be a helpful resource for enablement to become more proactive and intentional, helping practitioners to further understand how new products and services are performing or anticipate the needs of customers.
Segmentation as a means of understanding the market can be helpful as well, as it highlights how well the team is equipped to achieve revenue targets across different types of customers and prospects. Enablement can partner with sales leadership to help ensure that teams are divided accurately by product or service, territory, or vertical, and that there are still a reasonable number of accounts per rep. This can contribute to a smoother synergy and flow among revenue teams in order to help them achieve shared goals.
Focus on the Journey, Not Just the Destination
Selling is not only about purchasing decisions but also the overall thought process behind those decisions. The inputs that went into making the decision are important in driving adoption, as the entire experience of success stems from deployments and usage of tools and assets.
All resources that are chosen correctly facilitate the entire process, and investing time into learning how to utilize the resources helps to expedite smoother selling transitions. Reps need to be equipped with tools that encourage their interactions with customers and help to facilitate them.
Additionally, taking the time to relearn new forms of normality due to shifts like the pandemic is helpful in reassessing organizational structures and tools, adapting with them, and then using them to a seller’s advantage. The end goal is to sell more, faster, and having practices in place to do so ultimately contributes to long-term revenue strategies and streams.
Effective revenue strategies are an integral aspect of an organization’s drive toward profitability and success. With a uniform, dependable revenue strategy, teams can be empowered to take actionable steps to accomplish desired goals and reach new heights.