Aren’t Sales Readiness and Sales Enablement the Same Thing?
The answer to this question is no. Sales enablement is not the same as sales readiness.
Sales readiness is a crucial first step in the sales process. The ability to provide an answer or solution quickly when needed, whether it be through messaging or content, can make all of the difference for your company and its customers.
However, Sales Enablement goes beyond this by organizing departments like sales and marketing so they can fully take advantage of these tactics across the board. Sales enablement helps teams work closely with departments throughout an organization on strategy development as well as training programs so everyone knows how best to use their tools at any given time
These are two very important pillars of success which will help you reach top-level performance day after day. A recent study showed that the average salesperson is only about 20% prepared for their day. With millions of dollars being lost every year to a lack of readiness, companies are looking to increase employee’s ability and knowledge in order to ensure success rates go up.
Defining Sales Readiness and Sales Enablement
What is Sales Enablement?
People have a flawed image of what the sales profession entails. They think that all it takes is for one person to be able to sell just about anything, but they are wrong. You can’t sell something to someone who isn’t interested. Agents may waste a lot of time trying to sell something to everyone even with the knowledge that they have of their service offerings and products. A part of Sales enablement focuses on granting agents with easy access tools such as:
- Sales Content Management
- Video Coaching and Practice
The tools and content of a sales enablement program allow reps to effectively communicate with customers throughout the buyer journey.
- CRM systems provide ways for them to interact with prospects.
- Alignment between marketing and sales materials allows reps to have content ready so they can close more deals.
- Streamlined access ensures that teams from across all departments of an organization can work together more efficiently.
What is Sales Readiness?
In a sense, sales readiness is the realization of sales enablement. Enablement provides reps with everything they need to go out into the field and sell; however, it’s not enough for them to just have this equipment at their disposal – there needs to be something more than that. Readiness is about making sure they’re prepared for real-world interactions by using digital tools such as:
Practice sessions in order achieve maximum effectiveness on behalf of your company. This reduces potential risks associated with having an unprepared team member enter buyer territory without all the necessary knowledge required.
Examples of Sales Enablement and Sales Readiness
- The marketing team has identified a new potential customer segment for an existing product or service, sales enablement tools will ensure that sellers can easily find this demographic and any digital content created specifically with them in mind.
- It could also mean working closely together with your designated marketing partner as they create anything from blog posts about their latest products, brochures on industry trends relevant to your target audience’s needs – even social media campaigns designed just for you!
- Selling a new product or service is much more than just the sales presentation. The seller needs to be well-informed and prepared to handle all kinds of challenges.
- Sales readiness may entail cross-departmental collaboration, like mock meetings conducted within the sales department to practice how best to approach these customers;
- For example, objections from customers who are not interested in what you’re selling because they don’t see how it will help them with their problems.
How Sales Enablement and Sales Readiness Work Together
With two different goals in mind, sales enablement and sales readiness are both important. While the former leads into the latter on a path to successful interactions, it is also true that they share many common objectives as well.
Benefits of a Sales Readiness Program
- Increases revenue
- Improves productivity
- Increases close rates
- Allows reps to identify opportunities for cross selling and upselling
Benefits of a Sales Enablement Program
- Alignment of marketing and sales
- Empowers sales managers
- Intelligent buyer interactions
- Cross selling and upselling
The Next Generation of Sales Readiness Requires Artificial Intelligence and Smart Sales Enablement
Businesses that choose not to explore artificial intelligence will soon be left behind. Artificial Intelligence is the future and it’s time for organizations of all sizes to start exploring ways in which they can implement AI solutions within their organization, even if only on a small scale at first.
A recent McKinsey survey published in November 2020 reveals that 50% of respondents said their business had incorporated artificial intelligence into at least one department. For sales enablement and sales readiness, AI can mean the difference between agents instantly finding quality content that can help convert prospects to customers on the one hand or sifting through an expansive digital database with no end in sight on the other.