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  • As if cutting through the clutter of the marketing technology landscape weren’t enough, now sales and marketing management has a new challenge. How to effectively support four distinct generations of sales people. Whether a sales team is made of Silents, Boomers, Gen Xers or Millennials companies need to accommodate the way they work in order to be successful. 

     

    To add to that challenge, sales and marketing professionals also need to be sure the content delivered to customers is also accessible to four distinct generations of people. From print to email to social and more, each generation wants to engage with marketing messaging in the way they want to or they will move on.

     

    With marketing budgets being trimmed and marketing leadership being held accountable for strict marketing campaign ROI, how do companies support omni-channel marketing content delivered through their sales channels who work in very different ways?

     

    Here are five ways you can support all four generations of sales and customers using an omni-channel content delivery strategy.

     

    1. Centralize 100% of marketing assets into a single sales content management solution that is intuitive, uses robust search and is vendor agnostic.


    A successful sales content management solution will manage and deliver print collateral, personalized and co-branded content, digital content, multi-channel campaigns, promotional products, signage, trade show displays, presentations and more. The right platform will consolidate existing vendor portals into a centralized sales content management solution allowing sales people a single access point for all of the sales content they need.


  • Today, B2B sales are becoming more and more complex. Buyers are much savvier about their desired products and services because all the research they want to do is at their fingertips. In fact, research from Google and CEB Marketing Leadership Council shows that most B2B buyers are 57% of the way down the path to a buying decision before they will engage with a company. What does that mean for the B2B sales rep?

     

    I am not of the school that believes the B2B sales rep is irrelevant. In fact, I believe they are more relevant than ever to actually close the deal. But, in order to be relevant to the buyer, the sales rep must present information that matches the buyer at their stage of the sales process. This is why it is so important that B2B sales people have personalized and relevant content to share with their prospects at every sales call.

     

    I know that marketing just gasped at the thought of creating a personalized piece of content for every sales call that will occur across the entire sales channel. However, it is the only effective way to capture a savvy B2B buyer and get them to close. So how can companies possibly scale marketing to support this? By offering a self-service tool that allows sales reps to create their own customizable content delivered through omni-channel methods.

     

    Not only will this help B2B sales rep deliver their messages more effectively to their prospects, easy content customization will also help marketing ensure that their sales content management systems achieve high adoption rates – a win, win.


  • With the rise of marketing technology solutions comes a lot of confusion on what is really needed to help your company grow. Many companies have gotten burned with first generation technologies that were never used by sales. There is a perception that introducing another technology that will have low adoption is too risky as budgets are being cut and marketing is being asked to be a profit center of most companies.

     

    Yet, there is still a huge gap in sales and marketing alignment because marketing isn’t delivering to sales the right content at the right time and in the right format to help move the needle on close ratios. And, according to the CMO Council, only 40% of content produced by marketing gets used by sales. Seems to me, the risk of content not being used is too expensive to ignore.

     

    The reality is that the right channel sales enablement solution that offers six key elements will drive adoption of your new technology while ensuring your content actually gets used by sales. In my last blog post I talked about Key Element #1, the consolidation of all your marketing technology. Just as important is Key Element #2 – search ability.

     

    Even the best sales content resources have little value if they aren’t found by sales reps. Therefore, the second key attribute of an effective sales content management solution is that it enables sales reps to easily and quickly find the content resources they need.


  • Like many types of technology solutions, the value of a through-channel marketing automation solution, (aka channel sales content management solution) is largely a function of user adoption. A sales content management solution has the potential to deliver significant benefits to both companies and individual salespeople, but for those benefits to materialize, the solution must be consistently used by a company’s sales reps.

     

    Convincing salespeople to embrace technology tools can be a challenging undertaking. By temperament, most sales reps are independent-minded, and the real-world demands of the job make them highly protective of their time. Therefore, many salespeople are inherently skeptical of any technology that requires a change in their established and “proven” methods of working.

     

    In order to gain wide-spread adoption, the through-channel marketing automation solution must be easy to use, and it must provide tangible benefits to individual sales reps in order to win salesperson buy-in. We have identified six key elements that help to achieve the balance of these two core attributes of a successful technology implementation. Over the next six blog posts, we will take a look at each one of these in detail.  

     

    Key Element #1 - One-Stop Shop

     

    The first key attribute of a successful through-channel marketing automation solution is that it provides a centralized repository for all sales-related content resources. The last thing a busy sales rep wants to do is rummage through multiple repositories to find the content resource that he or she needs.