Content Sales Strategy: The Crucial Solution For Your Sales Process
What do content marketing and the sales process have in common? For most B2B companies, nothing. They’re on opposite ends of the spectrum: working independently to try to close sales. Why is this an issue? Because without a hyper-personalized content sales strategy – a sales strategy that peppers leads with strategically segmented, targeted and valuable content throughout their entire decision-making process – your sales process simply can’t win.
- The first problem: Sales teams, on average, aren’t even using 78% of the content that marketing creates. Why? Sales reps think the content is irrelevant to their prospective buyers. Which brings us to…
- The second problem: Sales and marketing aren’t working together.
For most B2B companies, this is how it works: Marketing creates content and digs up leads. Marketing then hands off these leads and content to sales. And this all goes down with little-to-no communication, collaboration and, most importantly, sales enablement.
Sirius Decisions reports that the number-one barrier to achieving sales quotas is the inability to communicate value messages.
Sales and marketing must align to form one revenue team (i.e., “the revenue department”) that proactively and collaboratively drives sales enablement. When sales and marketing capitalize on each other’s strengths – marketing knows how to create enticing content; sales knows your targets best – your marketing content is actually relevant to your buyers and effectively guides them along the sales process.
The content sales strategy: the secret weapon for your sales process.
Your marketing department works with sales to understand what they need. This way, it’s possible to create relevant material that’s easy for sales to personalize, segment and target.
1. What do your buyers need?
Your sales reps (or, more appropriately, sales guides) need to guide buyers along the sales process with content that solves their pain points. So if marketing isn’t creating the content that meets buyers’ needs, your sales reps aren’t going to use it.
2. What do they need… that they don’t know they need?
Today’s buyers want information that answers their questions, but they also want information that goes beyond the pains and problems they already know they have. To create value, your content sales strategy has to provide novel insights and new ideas that buyers aren’t already thinking about.
3. How can you challenge them?
A content sales strategy doesn’t mean creating content just to create content. Pushing out material just to get your company’s name out there only results in bland, useless content that sends buyers to your more enticing competitors. Offer them insights that challenge their perspectives and get them thinking differently about their business.
A “safe” content strategy may get you a few sporadic sales here and there, but it’s the game-changing content sales strategy – the one that takes content to the next level, that opens eyes and blows minds – that wins every time.
4. How can you sell without selling?
Let’s be realistic: The goal here is sales enablement. But today’s buyers turn blind eyes and deaf ears to companies that simply self promote: fast-forwarding through commercials, signing up for do-not-call lists and investing in highly effective spam filters to keep promotional emails out of sight and out of mind.
So how do you keep your company out there without being intrusive and obnoxious about it? While your content shouldn’t be about your company, it should be about your differentiators: what sets you apart, gets you heard above the drone of your competitors and makes your company’s solutions not only valuable, but indispensible to your buyers.
The International Data Group estimates that when marketing content is not relevant to potential buyers, this disconnect reduces the vendor’s chance of closing a sale by 45%. So don’t think that a simple content marketing strategy is going to get you success. To win, you need a content sales strategy that leverages the respective strengths of both your marketing and sales teams.
Need help stepping up your sales process with a game-changing content sales strategy? Fill out the form below to get the sales enablement conversation started with a member of the Accent Technologies team.