The Evolution of Sales Enablement
Hello everyone, I’m John Golden, your host for this podcast, and today we have a special guest, Paul Butterfield, the Executive Board President of the Revenue Enablement Society. Our conversation today revolves around the transition from the Sales Enablement Society to the Revenue Enablement Society, and the importance of focusing on the customer journey.
The Journey from Sales Enablement to Revenue Enablement
Paul’s journey into enablement began 11 years ago when he was tasked with scaling his own sales enablement strategies for his entire organization. He quickly noticed a disconnect between sales and other teams like customer success. This led him to ponder how to enable these teams in the customer journey.
Interestingly, Paul’s realization was not unique. It was a growing trend in the field, which eventually led to the rebranding of the society. The shift from Sales Enablement Society to Revenue Enablement Society signifies the importance of focusing on the customer journey rather than individual silos within the organization.
The Misalignment Between Sales and Marketing
Paul shared an example of the misalignment between sales and marketing when it comes to training sellers. The focus often leans towards business-focused conversations versus feature-based messaging. This misalignment emphasizes the need for collaboration and executive sponsorship to drive the necessary mindset change within the organization.
Paul suggests bringing together key stakeholders from different departments to define the customer experience and work together to achieve it. It’s about optimizing every stage of the customer journey to avoid any weak links that could negatively impact the overall experience.
The Importance of Customer Success
Paul stresses the importance of customer success and the need for continuity throughout the sales process. Sales teams need to uncover specific success metrics and transfer that knowledge to the customer success team. This ensures that customers are getting maximum usage out of what they’ve paid for and can proactively address any issues.
I added that it is crucial to agree on healthy metrics for customers post-sales. Simply assuming that everything is fine without actively communicating with the customer can lead to problems down the line. Building a relationship with customers is more critical than ever, especially in an age where customers may feel that providers are easily swappable.
Differentiating the Buying Experience
Paul suggests that by offering a different buying experience focused on business needs and helping customers look like heroes internally, sales teams can differentiate themselves. He also highlights the importance of building effective business cases with customers to make the deal stickier from the beginning.
We both agree that creating the best customer experience requires constant monitoring and tweaking of the sales process. It’s also important to base sales stages on customer inputs rather than internal indicators, driving the salesperson’s opinion out of the process.
The Power of Active Listening and Curiosity
In a distracted world, active listening and curiosity are becoming rarer, but they present an opportunity for understanding the business outcomes of customers. These essential skills can help sales teams better understand and meet the needs of their customers, ultimately leading to a more successful and satisfying customer journey.
In conclusion, the transition from Sales Enablement Society to Revenue Enablement Society is not just a name change. Instead of shift in focus from individual silos to the entire customer journey. Collaboration, customer success, differentiating the buying experience, and constant monitoring and tweaking of the sales process. It’s about active listening and curiosity. And most importantly, it’s about creating the best customer experience possible.
John is the Amazon-bestselling author of Winning the Battle for Sales: Lessons on Closing Every Deal from the World’s Greatest Military Victories and Social Upheaval: How to Win at Social Selling. A globally acknowledged Sales & Marketing thought leader, speaker, and strategist. He is CSMO at Pipeliner CRM. In his spare time, John is an avid Martial Artist.