How Sales Enablement Can Drive Revenue Growth in 2021

How did your leadership priorities change in 2020? If you started paying more attention to the sales enablement needs of your organization, you’re not alone.

According to recent HubSpot research, 65% of sales leaders who outperformed revenue targets in 2020 reported having a dedicated person or team working on sales enablement efforts instead of making it an initiative someone works on off the side of their desk.

[New Data] The 2021 Sales Enablement Report

For sales organizations that have been waiting to implement dedicated sales enablement measures — the time is now. With 2021 right around the corner, intentional sales enablement is a must-have for organizations that want to remain competitive in the future.

HubSpot recently sat down with Chris Pope, Director of Sales at Crayon, to discuss how companies can implement sales enablement strategies that can move the needle and drive revenue growth.

“Crayon defines sales enablement as providing our account executives with the resources and content they need to win more deals. Closing deals is more important than ever, especially in today’s competitive market where there are fewer deals to close,” he says.

In 2020, Crayon placed even greater emphasis on sales enablement to support their sales force. “We’ve put even more effort into making sure that our sales teams have the resources they need, simply because every deal matters more than ever,” says Pope.

How to Improve Sales Enablement for Your Team

1. Use data to inform your sales enablement content.

Crayon uses data to inform sales enablement decisions. According to Pope, his team relies on “velocity reports” to determine what areas of the sales process reps need the most support with.

“Velocity reports tell us what our reps conversion rates are at every stage of the sales funnel. How many opportunities are turning into discovery calls? How many discovery calls are turning into demos? How many demos are turning into proposals? And how many proposals do we send out that turn into closed business?” says Pope.

“We leverage that data to inform us where each individual rep needs to spend the most time, and where managers need to spend time training individual contributors.”

From an organizational level, this approach helps sales leaders know how to support sales managers and reps, and provides valuable insight into the type of training and content would be most effective.

Two examples of enablement content Crayon leadership has provided to their sales team include:

Call Recordings

“We love call recordings. We not only have call recordings of what the perfect call sounds like, we also have recordings of ideal discovery calls, effective demos, and successful closing calls. We share these recordings with reps who may need help in those areas, and we share them broadly across the organization so everyone is on the same page,” Pope says.

Battle Cards

Battle cards are a valuable tool for preparing reps to speak to features and objections related to your product. Crayon relies heavily on battle cards to ensure sales reps understand what they’re selling inside and out.

“We use our own product to make sure that our individual contributors have the most up to date messaging on how we position against our competition. This knowledge has been crucial not only for our organization, but for our customers as well,” says Pope.

2. Focus on sales team culture.

Chances are, you’re familiar with the term “company culture” — the idea that a company should have a shared set of beliefs, values, and practices. But when was the last time you assessed the culture of your sales team?

Sales teams are often dynamic organizations with motivated team members whose ability to sell is critical to the health of a company. Building strong rapport among members of the sales team and having a culture of open communication, especially in a remote environment, is an effective way to support sales enablement.

Feeling supported and included while selling remotely can be challenging for reps. For Crayon, sales team cohesion is a high priority.

“We’ve done our best to create a team atmosphere. We have daily calls where the entire sales team is on together, we have a peer program where our more experienced reps are paired with less experienced reps to offer coaching and mentorship, and we’re creating cross-functional opportunities for our pipeline generation team to work closer with our closing team,” says Pope.

These activities build trust across the team, and strengthen communication among sales managers and reps, creating a better environment to tackle sales enablement issues as they arise.

3. Prioritize sales enablement at each level of the organization.

At Crayon, sales enablement is an all-hands-on-deck initiative from the top down.

“Sales enablement is a team effort at Crayon. It starts at the top with our Senior Vice President of Sales, who delivers insight on broad topics and training related to overarching sales themes such as a demo workflow, or how to run a closing call,” says Pope.

“The managers and directors are responsible for individual training tailored to the needs of their reps. This can include listening in on at least a few calls for each individual contributor weekly, and providing regular feedback.”

In addition to the sales enablement work of leadership, Crayon focuses heavily on team selling to get everyone involved.

“If one of our reps is great at positioning our product against a competitor’s or they’re strong at demoing a certain aspect of our platform, we’ll invite their team members to tune into their sales calls so they can learn from them.”

Everybody within the organization plays a role in our sales enablement.

In 2020, sales managers at Crayon took a hands-on approach to coaching reps who had opportunities for improvement.

“We’ve really made it a focus to make sure managers are involved in more calls. Managers are putting time aside to give individual contributors and feedback that they need after calls, and benchmarking performance after every stage of the sales cycle,” says Pope.

According to Pope, if a rep is struggling with a specific part of the sales process, Crayon’s team will “focus our training on the specific aspect of the process they’re struggling with to help them improve and get their overall win rate up.”

4. Don’t wait to give feedback.

When sales managers and seasoned team members are coaching reps, the Crayon team makes it a point to provide feedback quickly.

For example, if Pope were to listen in to a rep’s sales call with a prospect, he would schedule 15 minutes with the rep right after the call to deliver feedback on how it went.

“When you let time pass, the call is not as fresh in the rep’s mind, and your feedback is not going to be as direct as it would be if you delivered it right away.”

5. Make sure sales managers feel supported.

Sales managers often have a lot on their plate. They are responsible for coaching and leading their reps to success, and are accountable for their team’s performance to leadership. For growing companies, relieving pressure from sales managers is crucial for a healthy organization.

“As you continue to scale your teams you don’t want your managers to feel overwhelmed. You want to make sure they have enough time in the day to give every individual contributor the attention that they need to to perform their best.” says Pope.

Pope says Crayon focuses on conscious staffing and resourcing to avoid sales manager burnout:

“If we know we’re going to hire a new group of sales reps, we make sure we already have enough managers in place who have the bandwidth to lead.

So when those people start we don’t have a new manager meeting new reps, we have experienced managers working with new reps, and we make sure that team members have the data they need to understand what their path to success will be as an individual contributor.”

Improving Team Morale in 2021

Per HubSpot’s 2021 Sales Enablement Report, 40% of sales leaders expected to miss their revenue targets this year. That means sales enablement efforts are not only necessary for growth — they are critical for survival.

In a competitive landscape where sales teams are working with volatile markets and buyer uncertainty, keeping morale high is more challenging than ever. Pope shares why communication is Crayon’s greatest tool for keeping employees engaged.

“Morale has been all over the map for different members of the team. At Crayon, we never go a day without checking in on our reps,” he says. “I try to at least have two times a day where I’m asking them how their days are going, what they’ve been working on, what calls have gone well, what calls haven’t gone well, and asking how can I continue to support them.”

This approach to communication happens at the organizational level as well.

“Crayon has done a really great job of communicating, being honest about when we might go back into the office, and making sure we’re meeting with folks who are concerned about not having an office atmosphere to make sure that they’re comfortable with their remote work setup,” says Pope.

If you’re looking for more advice on boosting sales rep productivity and morale, check out this post for advice from an Aircall sales leader on navigating employee fatigue.

By: Lestraundra Alfred @writerlest

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HubSpot

Learn more about Sales Enablement: Why You Need Sales Enablement: https://clickhubspot.com/Sales-Enable… The Sales Enablement Certification will teach you how to develop a marketing-driven sales enablement strategy. This course was designed with marketing managers in mind, but other marketers, as well as sales leaders, can benefit from learning the principles involved in this approach to sales enablement.

This course is made up of 12 classes and a 60-question exam. Completing this course will help you: 1. Align your marketing and sales teams around business-level goals 2. Define your target customer using buyer personas and Jobs to Be Done 3. Implement marketing processes that will provide your sales team with a steady flow of qualified leads 📔 Grow Your Career and Business with HubSpot Academy: https://clickhubspot.com/Popular-Courses 📔 Favorite Free Certification Courses: • Social Media Marketing Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Social-Media… • SEO Training Course: https://clickhubspot.com/SEO-Training… • Inbound Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Inbound-Cert… • Inbound Marketing Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Inbound-Mark… • Email Marketing Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Email-Market… • Inbound Sales Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Inbound-Sale… • Taking your Business Online Course: https://clickhubspot.com/Business-Online

The No. 1 Reason You’re Not Experiencing Consistent Revenue in Your Business

Spend any amount of time in entrepreneurial social media groups and you’ll get a glimpse into the things that are happening in entrepreneurship.

You’ll see entrepreneurs posting screenshots of five- and six-figure months. You’ll see leaders talking about experiencing their highest-revenue months. You’ll see experts left and right offering advice. You’ll even see a few entrepreneurs posting about their struggles. 

While looking successful on social media can feel good for a while, it’s not the path to building a business that creates financial security and options for an entrepreneur. One-hit wonder months aren’t sustainable and will have an entrepreneur frustrated by the lack of return for the effort they’re putting into building their business. 

While entrepreneurship isn’t the same as having a traditional job, there are strategies an entrepreneur can use to create consistent revenue. 

Related: 4 Expert Tips for Creating a More Repeatable Sales Process for Your Startup

We live in the Digital Information Age. With more than 4.5 billion daily Internet users, the opportunity for an entrepreneur to reach their target clients has never been better. Creating consistent revenue is possible with a plan and an understanding of modern business development principles. 

Lead generation and pipeline 

The number one reason entrepreneurs aren’t experiencing consistent revenue months is that they don’t have a plan for lead generation that fills their pipeline with potential customers who want what their business offers.

Randomly posting on social media is not lead generation. Even consistently posting on social media is only one part of a solid lead generation strategy.

The issue is that you don’t own social media platforms. If any social media platforms decide to make a change that affects the reach of your content, it will have an impact on sales. That’s why social media is just one piece of a bigger lead generation pie. 

Messaging people on messenger, sending prospects on social media to a funnel, or adding the names of people that didn’t give you consent to your email list is not lead generation. 

Ways to create a lead generation system 

Businesses thrive or close based on the systems they create for growth. Winging it only works in the movies and often leads to inconsistency. Clarity is one of the most under-utilized strategies to know what actions to take and how it all fits together.

Here are some ways to create a system that generates leads consistently and fills your pipeline with clients who help you grow your business and that you enjoy working with.

1. Use content to convince 

There’s a lot of noise online. There is no shortage of entrepreneurs who post consistently trying to convince consumers of their expertise. What separates the noise from the real is seeing an entrepreneur demonstrate expertise through content. 

Your content speaks before you ever do. If you’re publishing content on your topic on social media, your blog, newsletter or other mediums, your ideal target client can consume that content, get value and want to know more. 

Content that hits on the pain points of your target demographic tends to get shared and engages online consumers of content. It builds your email list and those who want to follow what else you do. 

It adds people to your pipeline because the consumer wants more. It’s a way to nurture prospects and turn followers into customers. It’s one of the strongest parts of any lead generation system.

Related: Why Sales Copywriting Is Crucial for Your Business

2. Leverage other audiences

In the digital age, the ability to be present has increased. While you can add value through content to your own audience, you can also be an expert on other outlets. 

Podcasts are one of the premier audio means to deliver content today. They’re so powerful, entrepreneur Joe Rogan signed a reported $100 million dollar deal with Spotify because of the podcast he’s built. Imagine what being on Rogan’s podcast would do for your business? While you may not have the opportunity to be a guest on his podcast, there are many others you could be a guest on. 

You can also host joint webinars, train in Facebook groups, get on TV and leverage other media opportunities. One of the best ways to generate leads is by showing cold consumers who you are, what you know and how what you offer can help solve their pain points. 

3. Demonstrate expertise

One under-utilized way to use social media platforms — and to those who causally follow you — is by offering the chance to win training with you, then doing that training live. 

It creates engagement because consumers want to win the session and more engagement because people want to see live training. It’s an incredible way to demonstrate the expertise of what you do and starts the “buying” process in your consumer’s mind. Consumers buy from someone they know, like and trust. They buy from entrepreneurs and businesses that have demonstrated an ability and a knowledge base of the topic your business is built around.

You can also upload the recording training session to your website. It creates an additional piece of content on your online real estate. Tell your social media audience they can get the reply on your website, which brings them to an opportunity to sign up for your email list. It increases website traffic dramatically because your consumer wants to see how your cookies are made, for example. 

Showcasing your expertise in a variety of ways helps you generate leads and fill your pipeline because you’re visually demonstrating you know what you’re talking about and can offer practical value for the consumer. 

Related: Online Content Monetization 101: How to Make Money From Content

A better way

Inconsistent months don’t have to be common in your business. Use content more strategically, leverage other audiences that are filled with your ideal prospects, and demonstrate your expertise by doing more than talk about it.

You can create the kind of lead generation that keeps your pipeline full and leads to increased sales. Don’t rely on old school tactics that don’t translate to a digital world. 

By: Scot Chrisman / Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor

Revenue streams or sales refer to how you generate cash from your clients. Without sales a business can’t function, so this is the most important aspects of any business. 7 most used revenue types include: 1- Asset sales refers to cases where you sell a product to a client who then becomes the owner of that product. 2- Usage fee refers to when a client uses your product or service but its ownership remains with you. 3- Subscription fee refers to when your clients subscribe on a monthly or weekly basis and can use your infrastructure. Examples of this include software as a service, gym memberships, etc.. 4- Leasing or renting or lending refer to allowing clients to use your assets for a period of time as if it is theirs 5- Licensing revenue is earned when you give clients a permission to use your intellectual property. 6- Brokerage fees are earned when you take commission from facilitating a business transaction between two parties 7- Advertising results from fees for advertising a particular product or service or brand. Empower Yourself with more Practical Business Education to Reach your Potential by visiting our site: https://www.potential.com/ Subscribe to our YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/subscription_c… Follow us on our social media channels: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PotentialCom LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/pote… Twitter: https://twitter.com/potentialcom Goolge+: https://plus.google.com/+PotentialCom… Video Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bH0eT.

Financial Strategies for Keeping Your Business Afloat Amid COVID-19

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For the past month or so, normal life in the U.S. has ground to a halt as states and cities work to slow the spread of COVID-19. These steps, which include collective stay-at-home and physical distancing orders, are necessary to save lives. But they come with an economic cost.

The scale of the fallout is unprecedented, and small businesses are particularly hard hit. From restaurants to construction companies, the vast majority “require human interaction of some sort,” says Rob Einstein, a regional sales manager at U.S. Bank. “They are all being impacted by this.”

Despite the continued uncertainty, there are steps business owners can take to alleviate at least some of the hardship and worry. Below, Einstein breaks down how businesses can strategically prepare for the future.

Understand your expense structure.

If you haven’t already, Einstein recommends conducting a detailed analysis of your finances. Knowing exactly how each dollar is earned and where it’s spent is always a good idea, but “it’s more important in hard times,” he says. “Right now, it’s more important than ever.”

This includes doing a deep dive into all your revenue sources. Once you understand how money is coming in, you can plan for various scenarios in which individual channels are reduced or dry up altogether. Just as important is having a comprehensive understanding of your expense structure, including costs that are fixed versus those that are variable.

Run a stress test.

Once you have a solid grasp on your financials, Einstein recommends going on the offense by conducting a stress test. If you typically do a certain amount in sales, measure how your business will be impacted if that figure drops by 10 percent, 20 percent, and even 50 percent. How does the reduction impact your cash flow? And are there steps you can take to continue to operate even if revenue declines significantly?

Make contingency plans.

Given how quickly the economic climate is changing, Einstein advises that business owners plan for a number of different scenarios—an exercise that should include a clear-eyed understanding of how long your company could survive in each situation. Having a number of contingency plans outlined in advance allows “you to act versus react,” making quick decisions that could ultimately save your business. For example, is there a way you can adapt to serve clients virtually if stay-at-home orders persist? Many businesses that rely on in-person interactions have found that some of their services can be conducted remotely, if imperfectly.

Talk to your banker.

He or she will be able to help you navigate the continuously evolving relief landscape and advise you on a financial path that works best for your business. If you have a pre-existing relationship with someone at your bank, be it a relations manager or a business banking specialist, lean on them as a resource.

If you don’t, Einstein recommends reaching out to a branch manager at the bank where you do either your personal or small business banking. “They should be able help guide you in the right direction,” he says.

U.S. Bank and its representatives do not provide tax or legal advice. Your tax and financial situation is unique. You should consult your tax and/or legal advisor for advice and information concerning your particular situation.

Credit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Equal Housing Lender. Deposit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC.

By: Entrepreneur Partner Studio Staff

financecurrent3

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