Sales enablement is all about helping salespeople help buyers make a decision by providing the right content at the right time — throughout the buying journey. Content is key!
Today, content marketing is more prominent than ever and we’re seeing almost every brand — regardless of what they offer and who they target, investing in content. So, why do salespeople often struggle to find relevant content when every company has a team to create it?
There are two reasons:
One, salespeople find it hard to spend time researching and learning — to identify the essential content needed for sales enablement to address buyer’s pain points and concerns.
Two, relevancy. Not every content the brand creates is relevant for sales enablement. Most of the content marketing teams are focused on creating top-of-the-funnel content — aimed at attracting leads. In other words, there’s a need to create specific ‘sales enablement content’.
So, in this piece, we’ll help you identify the right type of content you need for sales enablement and how to create them by collaborating with various teams. Shall we begin?
First things first. So, what is sales enablement content?
Sales enablement content is the content that sales reps use throughout the selling process — to assist buyers whenever they need it. Salespeople need to send the right content to the buyers at the right time based on their buying journey so that they can close the sale successfully.
So naturally, sales enablement content addresses the prospects' concerns, product-related questions, and helps them realize your product is better suited than the competitors.
“58% of pipelines stall because sales reps are unable to add value to buyers.” - Salesforce.
Sales teams have to work closely with marketing and content teams to create the necessary content needed to answer the most pressing questions from customers.
Jason Bay from Blissful Prospecting compares sales reps to course creators when it comes to creating enablement content.
Note that you don’t have to just rely on the marketing team to come up with sales enablement content. Later, we’ll see how to create such content by collaborating with different teams including product and customer success. But before that, we have to identify the content for sales enablement.
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to deciding the right type of content you need to sell better. So, let’s work together to identify sales enablement content for your business needs.
Sounds obvious? But many sales teams don’t spend time identifying the content types that are effective in helping buyers make the decision. Certain sales content management platforms indeed offer analytics to help you see how each sales asset is performing. But they can’t predict if you’re missing any essential piece of content.
So, try running a simple survey among your buyers to identify the content that would enable sales.
Here’s an example from marketingcharts.com:
No one can understand the content needed to close deals better than the salespeople talking to customers — day in and day out. So, try to analyze the sales calls, especially lost deals, to identify what content would’ve turned the story around and helped you close the deal.
It’s not easy to go through hours & hours of recordings, pin down the questions, and identify the exact content that’s needed. All too often this means no one ends up doing it.
There's a better way: Use Grain to capture and share the questions and content ideas from your customer call with the right team via Slack or a preferred work tool.
For instance, we have created separate Slack channels like #voice-of-the-user, #feedback, #sales, etc. to just drop the Grain highlights as soon as the customer-facing team captures them. Here’s an example:
Put yourself in customers’ shoes and try to come up with all the possible questions and objections while going through the buying journey. Now, audit your existing content to see if you’re missing any important piece of content that could prevent buyers from completing the journey.
Based on your ICPs (ideal customer personas) and pricing plans, you can come up with multiple buyer journey maps. It’s important to have different journey maps as the questions and sales content requirements can vary. For instance, sales assets and documentation needed to land an enterprise client will look completely different from the assets you need to close a mid-sized business.
We hope at this point, you’ve discovered and prioritized the content your sales team needs for running an effective sales enablement program. Let’s get to the creation part now.
Sales enablement content should talk to only one person — your buyer. So, you rely on customers to capture the questions and objections and identify content that could enable sales.
As we briefly discussed, your sales calls could be a great place to gather insights and figure out the gaps in your sales content. We have seen sales reps running customer lunch-and-learn programs — where you casually hang out with a customer over a Zoom call to get a peek into their worldview.
To ensure you can leverage the most out of your sales calls, you need to learn how to capture the important moment and repurpose the conversations into useful assets. Let us explain a bit more and show how you can do this. Because you may or may not have detailed product documentation in your company but you’ll always have tons and tons of sales calls.
Step 1 — Sign up for Grain. It’s free to get started and very affordable to upgrade when you are ready to create multiple sales enablement content from your customer conversations.
Step 2 — Upload your existing recorded conversations or directly import from Zoom.
* Ensure you’re using Grain to record your upcoming sales calls so that you can capture important moments while you’re on the call. And, there’ll be no need to upload manually once the call’s over. Grain automatically uploads your Zoom calls and you can access it anytime.
Step 3 — Create sales enablement content.
There are several types of content you can create via Grain.
a. Product Walk-throughs:
You can turn your demos into a product walk-through Story (a reel of Grain highlights) and send it to your prospects and customers. It saves you a ton of time and makes it easy for your prospects to share internally.
Here's an example Grain Story.
Sales calls can last anywhere from 30-mins to an hour. So, the important insights you have shared and answers to your prospects’ questions are typically spread throughout the call. Create a follow-up Story with a reel of important moments (captured as Grain highlights) that could help your prospects to take away the essential info.
They don’t need to watch an hour-long recording, just a Story that lasts a few minutes.
c. Video Testimonials:
You can capture video testimonials while on the Sales call that could be shared/embedded on the marketing landing page. Here’s an example from one of our sales calls:
d. Training Material:
Create a feedback Slack channel where sales reps can capture and share the best moments from calls to help each other out. It could serve as training material for newly onboarded reps or existing reps can collaborate to better their responses.
Managers can also offer clear feedback and help their teams handle customer objections better.
From your customer conversations, you can create:
Product documentation often has bottom-of-the-funnel content including product specification docs, product comparison charts, and under-the-hood technical details. While they aren’t meant to be shared externally, with some help from the product team, you can repurpose them into sales assets to level up your product knowledge and equip yourself to handle technical questions from savvy prospects.
You can share the content with interested prospects as well. So, search and find your product documentation and look for ways to use it to better your sales enablement process.
From product documentation, you can create:
Truth be told. Your customers didn’t just rely on the content from your end to swipe the credit card. Many would’ve evaluated different products in the market, their pros & cons, and then made the call.
And, that’s a good thing. Why? One, your customers trust that your product is best suited for their needs. Two, they can help you understand what stood out in your product that eventually made them take the deal.
Some of our customers shared their research and evaluation sheets that helped them to upgrade their plans and pay for a year upfront.
So, you can create highly relevant assets by learning the evaluation process of your existing customers. Even If they aren’t willing to share the research documents, they’d love to openly share their feedback and why they become a customer. The best part is, it’s 100% authentic and prospects couldn’t ask for a better asset as it’s from someone who was in their shoes.
With the help of your existing customers, you can create:
Customer success teams have the chance to talk to some of your best customers and learn what worked for them and how they used your product for different use cases. In other words, the customer success team can get you written customer recommendations, detailed case studies, new use cases, and more.
They often create and maintain content to enable new customers to become familiar with the product and leverage it to its full potential. So, you have the opportunity to source content that suits late-stage prospects.
Again, it’s important to ensure you’re repurposing and adapting to make it a winning sales asset. Don’t just re-use the existing content.
From your customer team, you can create:
Though content marketing and sales enablement have different goals, there’s an overlap in content. Some of existing content marketing content can be used for sales enablement — with slight modifications.
For instance, a blog post can serve as educational content to help buyers get an overview of the problem that your product addresses and why it’s important to act now. But to make things coherent, you can convert it into a pdf (one-pager) and then share the link. This way it looks like a dedicated sales asset than a random blog post and becomes more accessible.
Analyze your content marketing data to identify the top-performing content that fits your needs. For instance, you might be looking for a whitepaper that explains your product in-depth and the content marketing team could help you pick the best one based on data.
From your marketing content, you can source:
This is pretty self-explanatory. Every company tends to have an up-to-date knowledge base to help new employees learn more about the company, its vision, products, policies, and more.
You can rely on a knowledge base to create sales enablement content as well. While it depends on the company, you’ll be able to gather company profile, ICP documentation, templates, and a lot more.
From your knowledge base, you can create:
If you think it’s a lot of work — to collaborate and repurpose the content sourced from different teams and documentation, start with the most impactful assets. For example, we showed you how to use your customer conversations to create a handful of sales enablement content. It’s already available and you can use a tool like Grain to spin out content in minutes.
Another option is to hire a sales content manager. If you’re part of the sales enablement team, you know companies have started hiring a dedicated content person for the sales team to continually create enablement content by collaborating with different stakeholders and teams.
So how do you create sales enablement content at the moment? Let us know via @GrainHQ.
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