Get your sales team to reclaim the purchasing game

Get your sales team to reclaim the purchasing game

Are your sales reps ready to take back the wheel?

Flashback to just a few years ago: Sales representatives had all the power. And by power, we mean information. Times were good: This information asymmetry meant that the B2B buyer depended on your sales team to “solve their problems” with “solutions.”

Flash-forward to today: The B2B buyer has officially seized the throne. He’s got loads of information and an abundance of choices at his expedient convenience – not only from the information-saturated internet, but also from professional B2B buying consultants who are well-armed with their own research. Times are tough: The buyer bypasses your sales team because he’s got his finger on the pulse of information at all times.

Take back the wheel.

The days of “solution selling” are over, when sales reps drove decisions with their wand of informed purchasing power. But with the buyer now swimming in a sea of information, he is now navigating that course. The buyer’s at the helm and your reps are in dangerous waters.

If you want to take back the wheel in the sales process, your sales team can’t afford to “sell solutions.” Instead of being problem solvers, they should aim to be problem finders. This is how they reclaim the purchasing game: by anticipating their buyers’ pains and knowing exactly what type of content is most relevant and effective to lighten the buyer’s pain load… and, most importantly, keep that buyer coming back for more.

Content isn’t just for marketing.
DistributeIconTHE BAD:

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.

PrepareIconTHE REAL:

Both Forrester Research and SiriusDecisions have reported that the number-one barrier to achieving sales quotas is the inability to communicate value messages.

EngageIconTHE GOOD:

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.

What kind of content are we talking about here?

  • Responsive
  • Helpful Insight
  • Challenging Insight
  • Differentiating
1. Be RESPONSIVE.

Today’s B2B buyers expect quick, relevant responses to their requests, no matter where they are in the buying process. Your sales reps must have all your information “on speed dial.” There’s no place for time-intensive search ventures through vaults of mismanaged information, and certainly no room for a hit-and-miss methodology when it comes to relevancy, so make sure all your sales content is both readily available and easily searchable.

2. Be HELPFUL.

Your sales reps must take on a new role: sales guides that efficiently and respectfully escort buyers through the buying process with content that solves their pain points. Once again, that marketing-sales alignment proves its potency: If marketing isn’t creating the content that meets buyers’ needs – that truly helps them – your sales team isn’t going to use it.

3. Be CHALLENGING.

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.

Once again, it’s about being paradigm-shifting problem finders, not perspective-preserving problem solvers. 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.

  • A cogent 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 your buyers insights that challenge their perspectives and get them thinking differently about their business.
4. Be DIFFERENT.

Let’s be realistic: The goal here is sales enablement. However, 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 offerings 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 in today’s information-saturated market, you need a content sales strategy that leverages the respective strengths of both your marketing department and sales team.

Need help stepping up your sales process with a game-changing content sales strategy?

Fill out this contact form or call 800.771.6011 to take back the wheel for your sales team and get them steering toward sales enablement.
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