Guide to Sales Enablement, From a Sales Rep Tegan Arnold Your sales team needs to be enabled if they’re going to do their best, and the marketing department is integral to making that happen. There are four imperatives to successful sales enablement: training, strategy, metrics and resources. And it’s in regards to that last imperative that marketing can really make a difference. Sales rely on content and resources from marketing to assist them in their conversations with leads and, hopefully, guide them to purchase. Marketing-driven sales resources provide customers with a cohesive message and an improved buyer experience, and they’re a great way to personalize the customer journey. I figured I’d give you a first-hand account as a sales rep to know exactly what marketing teams could be doing to create content that supports the enablement of their sales team. Here are my four most crucial tips. 1. Bring Sales and Marketing Together Think of sales and marketing like the peanut butter and jelly of your brand — highly capable on their own, magical when they come together. Aligning sales and marketing doesn’t have to be rocket science. Schedule a monthly meeting where both teams can discuss the various needs and objectives of the content and sales material created by the marketing. Go over the content topics that need to be covered, the objections being encountered in sales conversations, and the materials that the sales team could benefit from having. Also, cover any upcoming opportunities that sales might benefit from attending, such as conferences or webinars. Keeping the lines of communication open means that both teams get more of the information they need to do their jobs well. If you’ve got more work to do in bringing the teams together, opt for weekly meetings instead of monthly until you get where you want to be. 2. Centralize Your Content Create a channel where the marketing team can easily share up-to-date sales material as it’s produced. This can be a Slack channel, a Google doc, a resource library or knowledge base, or anything else that works for you. Salespeople are always on the move, and they need to be able to access the right tools at the right time. When you centralize your content and make it easy for sales to find what they need, you benefit both the rep and the customer, removing the informational hurdles that can stand in the way of a productive conversation. Just be sure to keep your content channel updated, since out of date material is almost as bad as no material at all. 3. Send Content Roundups Lots of what the marketing team writes can be beneficial to sales in some way. Send regular content roundups so that the sales team (and other teams within the company) are aware of what content is available to them, and help prevent different departments from getting so siloed they don’t realize what additional resources are out there. In these roundups, share the blog posts that have been published and give some ideas for how other teams, and especially sales, might be able to use them to their advantage. For example, a blurb like, “This blog post is great for answering questions around how our software enables email marketing capabilities…” is short yet offers just the right about of description. If you want, share content performance metrics too. This will allow sales to see how well certain posts are resonating with readers, which may be useful to them as they determine what topics, needs, and pain points to prioritize with leads. 4. Coordinate on Travel Schedules It’s a good idea to have marketing be in the know regarding any meetings, marketing conferences, or speaking engagements your sales reps have on the horizon. This way, you can help them prepare materials in advance that they can bring with and use to make stronger connections. Marketing is in charge of a brand’s image, but not necessarily all of the ways that image is disseminated. By taking on a more active role in shaping the message that your sales team conveys to leads, you’re able to keep that image consistent, which is highly beneficial for both departments. Instead of thinking of sales and marketing like two wholly separate departments, start looking for all of the ways that you can collaborate and help each other grow. Not only will it be good for your company’s sales enablement initiative, but it will also provide your marketing team with an even fuller picture of who your most qualified leads are and what they’re looking for. So, here’s to teaming up and achieving more — it’s better for sales, it’s better for marketing, and it’s better for your prospects.