It's Time To Ask The Question: "What Does 'Sales' Really Mean to Us?"

As you can imagine, we talk about “sales enablement” at different levels of the organization (Executive management, CMOs, VPs of sales, and individuals who are responsible for piece parts).

In all cases the view of what needs to happen to produce results is very different at each level, which is one of the core problems we have in our industry with building an effective sales and marketing systems.

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A Story Of Empathy — The Lost Art Of Selling?

Posted by Scott Santucci

 

In 1992, with my Marketing Management degree in hand, I went out in the market to find a sales job. At the time, I believed (and I still do) that you can’t really be the best B2B marketer unless you know how to sell first. One of the jobs I interviewed for was with a local dealer to sell fax machines (yes, it’s true . . . FAX machines). The VP of Sales interviewing me asked a simple question — what are the most important things to being a sales person?

 

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Are You Giving Your Sales Force A Knife For A Gunfight?

Untouchables-cast_1137616950-000

In the movie “The Untouchables” Sean Connery’s character, Jim Malone, is targeted for a hit by Al Capone. The hitman breaks into his house and threatens Malone, pulling out a revolver, says, “Isn’t that just like a (derogatory term for an Italian) . . . brings a knife to a gun fight.”

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The Big Question: Enable Sales To Do What?

 

Today, Forrester takes the incubation tag off our sales enablement research agenda and is launching a new coverage area called “Technology Sales Enablement” targeted for sales and marketing professionals involved in improving the performance of the sales organization. When you put “sales” and “enablement” together, you get a lot of different points of view.

So, what’s Forrester's view on this subject? What perspective do we have to offer?

 

 

 

 

Complexity view shaggy

 

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What Do Your Salespeople Sound Like To Customers?

NOTE:  SALES ENABLEMENT HAS ITS OWN BLOG NOW

 

I love the saying “you get delegated to the people you sound like” - especially when it comes to selling.

 

At the end of the day, all of the work that goes on to build and support a product comes down to the discrete conversations your sales people have with customers.

 

 

This parody video is both incredibly funny (especially if you’ve ever carried a bag before, or work in a company dominated by engineers) and drives home an outstanding point – “you-centric”, jargon filled presentations more or less all sound ike this one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sales Enablement Roundtable - West Coast Style

Door_to_door_salesman_1950NOTE:  SALES ENABLEMENT HAS A NEW BLOG 

 

On November 7th, I facilitated Forrester’s second sales enablement roundtable – this time in Foster City,California.  Joining us were sales and marketing executives from:  Intel, NetApp, Borland, Informatica, Sun, Interwoven, Microchip, Renesas, Juniper Networks, Trend Micro, and Thoughtworks. 

 

 

Overall, we had an extremely high energy session, even though I lost my voice the previous week.  It’s hard to summarize a whole day of intense discussion into a blog post, but I’ll give it a try.

 

 

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Patton's Patterns - Execution Lessons for Driving Sales

Pattonmovieposterlarge General George Patton’s unparalleled ability to execute in WWII sometimes gets overshadowed by his colorful (and stupid) public relations.  Because of his quick strike abilities, the Axis leaders feared him more than any other Allied general.  What made him truly unique, and someone still studied in military academies throughout the world today, was his formula for success.  Patton had a voracious appetite for history and believed that humanity already had a master inventory of all of the strategies and tactics for winning a battle.

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Upcoming Webinar - Sales Enablement In An Economic Downturn - November 6th

Join Brad Holmes and I for a look at what can be done to drive sales results in a down economy.  Forrester views "Sales Enablement" as a cross-functional disipline requiring product, marketing, and sales teams to work together to optimize results.

When:  November 6th, 2pm ET

Register:  Register now for this complimentary Webinar.

We will explore:

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What Do You Say When the CEO Asks "What Do I Get For My Investment in Sales Enablement?"

Sales_crystal_ball When your CEO asks, "Why haven't we realized the sales performance boosts we expected when we (insert investment of your choice)

...implemented our SFA system?
...trained our sales organization?
...launched our sales portal?"

How will you respond?

If you (and the CEO) thought that investment was "the answer" to improving sales performance, we have some bad news. There is no such thing as a sales effectiveness silver bullet.

While, there are many different types of organizations that claim they can help you improve your sales productivity, few of these solutions can offer measurable gains in productivity on their own. For example:

•CRM vendors argue that implementing their software will help you drive more business by providing better structure to the sales process and improving the accuracy of your forecasting.
•Sales training firms suggest that you can improve your sales fundamentals by teaching a common sales methodology and best practices.
•Market intelligence firms claim that better and more up-to-date information about market trends and your competitors' actions will do the trick.

However, companies that have implemented these solutions report that they are not realizing the desired impact of these investments.

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It's the Conversation, Stupid!

Timely_relevent_in_context_cube Why are sales and marketing professionals working harder and longer than ever before? Why are they seemingly in a constant firefighting mode, moving from one fire drill to the next, one meeting to another?

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