what is sales enablement

What is Sales Enablement?

You might have seen a new job title pop up over the last few years: Sales Enablement Manager. But what is sales enablement? A glorified BDR? A sales assistant? How do you enable a sales team, don’t we enable ourselves? Let me explain. 

Sales professionals are extremely busy. 

Prospecting new potential buyers, researching said prospects, crafting the perfect emails to send out. Deploying drip campaigns, cold-calling 100+ people a day, following up on those calls, following up on last week’s email that went out. Booking meetings, attending said meetings, drafting up the proposal after the meeting. Putting your notes in SalesForce, following up after the meeting, following up after the 4th meeting. Negotiating the contract, signing the contract, conducting the on-board call with the Client Success team…. Sales professionals are extremely busy. 

Read More: Objection Handling: How to Overcome the 3 Most Common Sales Objections

But salespeople need resources to nurture their deals. They need new material, new one-pagers and ebooks to reference on the phone, or resources to mid-level prospects. They need webinars to invite prospects to, and they need business case studies to show real life proof of how effective what they sell is. What they need is a direct link to Marketing. Intro: sales enablement.

What is sales enablement?

Sales enablement is about getting the right information to the right people, in order to facilitate more sales. It’s about arming sales teams with the right tools, information, and content to sell more efficiently. 

Think of the backstage crew at a Broadway show. They’re not what you’re there to see, but they are the ones who make it all possible behind the scenes. Sales enablement is the backstage crew of sales. They provide salespeople with the tools, training, and requisite materials to do their job most effectively and close the most deals.

Here’s a great infographic borrowed from Highspot to help you visualize what the sales enablement function does: 

what is sales enablement

Digital Content Management

One component of sales enablement is effectively managing and storing all of your content material. When done correctly, a salesperson should be able to find the exact piece of content he needs in order to nudge his deal along, specific to his unique situation. 

This requires not only properly categorizing and storing these contents, but actually requesting and ensuring those contents exist. The role of the Sales Enablement Manager is to have a strong understanding of the entire sales cycle, of the buyer’s objections, and be able to identify where there are gaps today. 

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Ideally, the goal is to have a complete sales resource library that any rep can access on the fly to nurture their active pipeline. This can include case studies, one-pagers, sales decks, eBooks, articles, contracts, legal documents, and email templates.

Marketing and Sales Alignment

The second function of the Sales Enablement Manager is to act as a liaison between sales and marketing. The key is to keep an open line of communication between what marketing is working on, and the needs of sales out in the field. Since they often share two individual strategies and objectives, it’s extremely important to keep the two functions aligned so that the overall goal can be achieved. 

Training

Finally, the sales enablement function helps sales reps stay sharp in the field, and this means ensuring they have all the skills they need. (Read more: The 4 Sales Skills Shared by Top Performers). The sales enablement manager will assess what sales trainings are needed and regularly provide the team with opportunities for career development. 

This also includes constantly updating and facilitating internal sales trainings on a regular basis, to reflect feedback from the field. 

Interested in more resources for developing an awesome sales enablement function + sales training?

Check out how 360Learning can help you deploy a Sales Enablement Platform that will help you fast track new hires: 100% Quota attainment & -15% Ramp-up time.

Or check out these recent blog posts!

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