December 16, 2016
Written by Dana Youngren
Thinking about new ways to boost sales speed and efficiency in 2017? Well, here’s something to ponder when you book a ride to the airport over the holidays: The fastest driver in the world won’t get you there in time just speeding from traffic jam to traffic jam – but a fast driver who also knows the best routes will.
The same is true for sales reps. They need to be able to work both quickly and efficiently – to close deals fast and with the least amount of effort. That’s where sales enablement can make a big difference. According to recent research, 75% of respondents said that an effective sales enablement platform had made their sales forces more successful. And with a sales enablement platform that incorporates a well-designed knowledge base and effective knowledge sharing, sales reps can get the answers they need fast and apply them efficiently to get the results they want.
Step 1: Get answers fast.
From the moment sales reps walk in the door, knowledge sharing can make a difference, by providing easy access to training materials, coaching and best practices so they can ramp up fast. Then once they know how to do the job, sales enablement provides tools to keep on learning.
Content such as data sheets, case studies, customer intelligence and industry research help sales rep move beyond quoting product specs and into a conversation about providing value. It also helps them offer prospects the information to build a strong case for using your company’s products or services within their own organizations. But for that exchange to happen, a sales rep first has to know those marketing materials are available, and where to look for them. If resources are organized within a well-indexed knowledge base, retrieving them becomes as easy as a simple search.
You can speed sales access to information by choosing a sales enablement platform that makes it easy to upload information – and to access it at any time and on any device.
Step 2: Get better results.
Once sales reps have a way to get information fast, be sure they’re getting the most helpful information and making the most of it. One way to do this is to use your knowledge base to connect them with other experienced employees who can explain best practices and talk about what works. These interactions can go a long way toward taking the guesswork out of both sales and marketing.
For instance, a veteran sales rep can write up her experiences about landing a big deal, or an employee who’s moving on can download his thoughts about a longstanding relationship with an important customer. And if a sales rep can’t find the right information, he or she can post a question and crowdsource the answer from the entire company.
Sales enablement also builds efficiency by helping sales and marketing see how content is performing – a critical service, given that just 30% of marketers defined themselves as effective in the Content Marketing Institute’s 2016 benchmark study. Tools that track customer engagement and measure conversion rates give sales teams the ability to assess the content they’ve already created, and change course as necessary to really engage their intended audience. It may turn out that prospects strongly prefer mobile-friendly content, for instance. Or you may learn that, despite all the buzz about video and audio, your target industry really wants to see things in writing. Either way, sales teams will have content they need to get better results.
If you’re looking to drive more sales, a well-designed knowledge base can hand reps the keys to real success – by offering them fast access to information and research and the right content to engage customers.
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