What a Top Notch Sales Enablement Program Looks Like in 2019

March 7, 2019

“Can you please hire someone in sales ops to do that? I need to focus on the coaching and content side of things.” How many times have you had to say that this month? Very few, we hope.

Hope is great, but reality can be like stepping into a puddle and wetting your shoes on a cold, winter morning. CSO insights reports that 59% companies have a sales enablement function and yet 70% enablement efforts do not meet satisfaction.

In this article, we’ll go deeper into what a world-class sales enablement function looks like.

But, first…

8 Sales Enablement Trends You Have To Know

  • 59% companies have a sales enablement function - CSO Insights
  • 37% companies say sales enablement is a top priority - Hubspot
  • There is a 28% increase in Quota Attainment when companies have an enablement charter, but only 9% have a formal charter - CSO Insights
  • 70% enablement efforts do not meet satisfaction - CSO Insights
  • 57% reps do not hit quota - Salesforce
  • 80% learnings lost by sales reps within 3 months of an enablement session - Harvard Business Review
  • 41% reps still need more than 5 months to be fully ramped - The Bridge Group
  • 47% managers spend <30 mins each week coaching reps - CSO Insights

What does a successful sales enablement team do differently?

Like top sales managers and top reps, successful sales enablement managers spend more time listening to sales conversations than their peers.

By as much as 40%!


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They spend more time listening to actual call recordings

The top sales enablement managers spend as much as 18 hours a month or almost an hour a day listening to actual sales calls.

They do so to discover problem areas that are team-specific or individual-related, so they can inform their enablement calendar and charter. They also look for what prospects say, how they object and what content they ask for. And often after a big sales enablement session, they’re looking for how reps are adopting talk tracks or how prospects are responding to it.

They Focus on Their Team’s Win Rate

Sales enablement is expected to be able to impact deal stage conversions, win rates, and sales cycle time. No one knows this better than the top enablement managers. They quickly realize that call reviews lead to a more accurate understanding of problem areas that can benefit from coaching. The top sales enablement managers increased their call review rates by 3x increase and the resulting improvement in win rates was 50%!

Sales Rep Onboarding is a Top Priority

This is especially true for high growth companies who are always hiring and ramping up new reps. The top sales enablement managers spend as much as 40% of their call review time on new rep content like calls to add to an onboarding playlist or early prospecting / first calls that new reps take on their own.

The Next Top Priority is Sales Coaching

The next big area that top sales enablement managers tackle is coaching and enablement calendars for the entire team. They spend 33% time on identifying coaching topics, talk tracks, and tracking adoption rates across the existing team.

They Are Laser Focused on Early Stages

High growth companies expect their sales enablement managers to focus on conversion rates and sales performance in the top of the funnel or early stages of the sales cycle. They spend about 80% of their time reviewing how reps ask qualification and discovery questions, show product demos, what prospects ask for, or handle early objections.

Their Top Concerns Include Competitors, Pricing, and Value

The top enablement managers spend most time looking for moments where reps talking about:

  1. How their product or service is different from or better than a competitor
  2. Pricing and discounts that the prospect can avail
  3. The value that prospects can get out of the product and how to determine ROI

How do I leverage conversation intelligence for my sales enablement program?

The top ways in which conversation intelligence can be leveraged for sales enablement include:

1. Determining Coaching Needs to Build Your Enablement Calendar

You can jump into your conversation intelligence platform to search for keywords, listen to specific moments across reps’ meetings, and identify problems areas that need to be addressed e.g. how rep talk about pricing.

You can also test hypothesis and validate things that reps or their managers bring up as a problem area e.g. when they say “we really need training on...”

Chorus shows you a correlation between the mentions of specific keywords and win / loss rates so you can identify where you actually have a problem and need to prioritize a coaching topic for the next enablement session.

2. Review and build playlists for self-coaching or for enablement sessions

A coaching culture involves multiple coaching / enablement methods and channels. Sales Enablement can set up Chorus’ AI-based Smart Playlists that automatically scan conversations for what’s important for you.

Once you’ve heard some of the new calls or moments that Chorus highlighted for you, you can choose to build them into your own custom playlists and publish them to reps for self-coaching.

Alternately you can also play them during team meetings to demonstrate the right and wrong behaviors or talk tracks.

3. Comment on Calls to Send Feedback in Real Time

With the entire sales conversation transcribed and timestamped, you can go in and comment on specific moments and tag the rep or their manager so they get notifications.

Also when a rep uses a talk track in the way you trained them and the prospect responds well, you can share that moment with the entire team or tag them so they can learn by listening to the moment.

4. Use the Voice of the Customer to Work with Product Marketing on Content

Sales enablement managers can easily use recordings of the voice of the customer -- pain points, value props, collateral requests -- to work with product marketing on creating sales content that helps advance and close deals.

Sharing the voice of the customer internally ensures that marketing can write copy based on a language that really resonates with prospects.

5. Analyze How Reps are Adopting Talk Tracks you Trained Them on

Once you’ve trained the team on talk tracks, you also want to ensure you are tracking the impact. By setting up trackers for the things you trained the team on, you can clearly see how adoption is picking up with time. Or who are the ones who need a little more prodding to get them started.

Also you can see the impact on deals and listen to specific moments where prospects react to your new talk tracks. Doing this tells you if your content / talk tracks are having the intended impact. If not you can course correct.

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