At SiriusDecisions Summit in Austin, we heard James Mathewson and Phyllis Davidson give a great presentation on content strategy and operations with a keen focus on the ownership of content taxonomy within the enterprise.
Here are a few of the key takeaways:
- Organizations struggle to manage and govern taxonomies, leading to fragmentation and poor performance
- Content is only found, used, engaged with and measured appropriately to the extent that it is adequately tagged
- A taxonomy guild can help content organizations remove silos and foster community collaboration and common governance
Once upon a time, sales couldn’t find content …
The conversation around sales enablement has been focused on making sales reps more efficient and effective by empowering them to find the information they need, when they need it. In alignment with this effort, we saw sales enablement solutions drive towards making it easier for marketing teams to manage and update this information through technology. But what we haven’t seen, or what seems to be missing, is technology that enables marketing to align more closely with the buyers journey and better support the efforts made to enable sales reps.
And marketing couldn’t keep up…
In other words, available today are technologies such as “Update 1, update many” and “Dynamic Data” documents (methods of automating the manual process of updating thousands of presentations every quarter.) But what is less available are solutions that empower marketing to understand what their buyer’s journey looks like and equip content strategists’ in the creation, taxonomy and organization of content.
But the real problem was they were implementing “solutions” without any real insight.
Traditionally speaking, it has been up to marketing to comb through content usage data (when its available), make assumptions about their buyer’s journey, then do their best to tag and organize this content effectively. This manual process, in combination with the lack of visibility that usually persists, makes it very hard to scale the organization’s content strategy. Subjectivity can wreak havoc when it’s completely up to the marketer. People have differing opinions about how content should be organized and how it should be delivered by the sales team.
Then technology advanced and visibility became possible…
By showing marketers what their buyers journey looks like today (as indicated by patterns in sales activities in the sales cycle), they can affect change more efficiently and at a greater scale. In other words, to understand how to change something, you first need to understand the state that exists in today. Then, you can formulate a strategy that considers this current state and introduce strategic, incremental changes that will eventually result in the transformation that many teams are looking to achieve.
But unfortunately, many providers couldn’t offer visibility when it was most critical.
Unfortunately, the moment in which these teams need insight most, during the implementation of a new sales enablement solution – or in other words – the point at which they have the least amount of it.
Insight prior to the implementation and content strategy formation enables marketers to remove the guess work and subsequently the subjectivity. This then allows the team to scale this approach—creating a shared sense of consciousness throughout the organization around content.
When everyone is looking at the single source of truth that is content analytics, it creates alignment across these teams. Then, at scale, these teams can deliver a solution to the sales team that acknowledges their world today.
By aligning to the current state in sales, Marketing and Enablement teams have a better chance of “hooking” their sales users on the new solution. Once they have created a good first impression and garnered stronger user adoption because of it, they can introduce incremental changes, and continuously evolve their sales teams into the ideal state.
Sales Enablement needed a hero. Who will be that hero?
So, how do we get such insight prior to the solution’s implementation?
Check out this blog on Accent’s retrospective content analysis.