The toughest job in the world is at the receiving end every time. While a successful customer win is duly credited to the marketing, product developers and the sales, any failure is arrowed at the sales reps entirely. A lot has been talked about the real time challenges and the solutions ranged from better communication skills, to code of conduct and the knack to sell.
However, smarter brains have already asked their content teams to deliver innovative strategies that could help sales team perform better.
The following content marketing ideas are proven to have fueled the sales rep with better ideas for field discussions.
Pitch your Sales rep / team as Solution Advisors
The common buyer is well versed with marketing tactics spinned by a sales rep to close deals. This has deteriorated the reputation of a usual sales rep as evident from a recent study conducted by LinkedIn. It states more than 90% of prospects won’t engage with you because they know what the sales is coming up with and that it’s a waste of time. Also, they don’t expect the sales rep to clarify their technical queries about the product.
Encourage your sales team to share content about your product and the industry across their social channels. They should emerge as professional thinkers with an opinion of their own and not just ‘sales rep’. Let them have their take on what’s the next topic should be blogged about.
This will boost confidence at both ends – the sales rep and the buyer. Better leads are guaranteed!
Let everyone in the sales team have access to analytical reports
‘I’ll connect you with our technical team’ is the most usual and frustrating line expected out of a sales rep. Before the prospect puts forward his budget constraints, it is imperative for your sales rep to have last moment touch points. These should be actual facts hinting at your previous client’s experience, your plans to expand and many more. The prospect has to be convinced that his competitor is up for it and that the business should waste no time.
To fuel thoughts for such extempore minutes, share the analytics data with not just the sales head / managers but the rep at the bottom most level. They should be handy with impressive facts to counter the prospect that budget is actually not the constraint.
Make the access to such reports and studies instantly available to the teams.
Let the sales rep personalize the content with own experiences
Too much of marketing content restricts the scope of discussion to the product features. Your product may or may not be fulfilling the buyer’s expectation. To counter this, the sales rep should promote the product as a flexible tool that would customize as and when asked for.
To support this, he needs great content! Something beyond usual product features, testimonials, guides etc. Let the sales guy add own significant points. He could include actual pain points raised by previous customers and that how he assisted them with relevant solution. There’s a lot sales guys bring in from their prior encounters.
Of course, the additions can always be fine tuned by the content team before making it final.
Create innovative templates for sales rep’s email communications
Firstly, the rep will develop more interest towards what new the content team is doing. Secondly, beautiful yet informative templates will encourage a positive conversation with the prospect. Let them have the choice to add or delete what they want to. It resonates well with the personalization point discussed earlier.
Add links to case studies, white papers and even your website’s landing page. Without hovering away from the actual point of discussion, the marketing message could smartly carry the brand essence.
Believe it or not! It does leave an impact!
Let the sales rep know the prospect, in & out
Forrester has it that more than 75% of prospects don’t get convinced because the sales rep had no idea of the problem they faced. This is perhaps the most important take away from this post – ‘knowing your prospect more than he does’. Qualified leads do get botched up when the sales guy fails to address extempore questions.
The content team could fix this. They are always researching the market and are handy with sufficient data about what problems were faced by different businesses and how exactly their vendors resolved them. The sales team could use this knowledge base in understanding their prospects better.
Equip your sales team with content filtered by industries and business scales. If there isn’t much available about the prospect’s past, content about a business from similar industry could cover up the communication gap at the discussion time.
Content is the king because it drives the thought process for various verticals of your business and sales wing is no different.
You don’t have to create more content but create it differently.