Sales Tech Simplified: Increasing the Value Your Salespeople Bring to Prospects

May 9, 2017 Jennifer Wyne

In this series, we ask tech executives to describe the why and how of their solution. We call it Sales Tech Simplified.

This week I interview Peter Mollins, VP of Sales for KnowledgeTree.

Nancy: Why does the industry need your solution?

Peter: Is every possible prospect already inbounding to you? Is every prospect smoothly moving from interest to close? And is every customer guaranteed to renew and upsell?

Of course not. But how do you improve the odds? You do it by increasing the value your sales people bring to prospects. Let’s talk through a few scenarios:

  • Most prospects aren’t actively searching for your solution. But they likely feel the pain, however subtly. You need to educate them on how they can more effectively run their business. And you need to do it fast, before your competitors take that role.
  • Once in your pipeline, about 58% of deals stall. Why? Competitive pressures, lack of internal buy-in, no business case, and other challenges slow things down. You need to equip your prospects to sell your solution internally.
  • Your existing customers may like the part of your product that they bought. But do they know about your new functionality? Do they know how well the tooling is being adopted internally? Providing the customer with insight into usage and opportunities boosts renewals.

The key here is helping reps deliver value. That’s what we do. KnowledgeTree pushes winning sales and marketing content to reps based on their sales situation.

That means that sales people get instant access to the right collateral, messaging, training material, and other assets. Assets are delivered to reps where they work — in email, the CRM, and a standalone portal — so they have the information they need right in their workflow. That helps reps deliver immediate value to their customers and prospects.

Nancy: Why should it be prioritized above other options?

Peter: KnowledgeTree delivers a big efficiency win — it cuts wasted hours of looking for or recreating content out of a sales person’s week. That’s time that can be dedicated back to core selling activities.

But that’s not the major win. The real value comes from making sales people more valued to their prospects. It comes from equipping sales people with the assets, training, and collateral they need “just in time” to convince and advance their prospects.

When prospects are engaged with insights and content that matter to them, to their business, they’re more likely and able to move a transaction to close.

Nancy: What are the symptoms that indicate an organization would benefit from your solution?

Peter: As a company’s go-to-market gets more complicated, there’s a greater likelihood they’d benefit. Consider a company with multiple products, that focuses on multiple industries, and has multiple stakeholders within prospect accounts. Those situations can be difficult for a sales person to stay on message and be relevant to the buyers.

Now imagine a company with hundreds or thousands of products. Or highly complex, multi-stage solutions. Or one that services dozens of industries across multiple geographies. As complexity increases, it becomes more challenging for a sales person to be an expert and communicate value.

That’s where our sales enablement solution comes in. We’re able to provide sales enablers and marketers with an efficient way to serve up the right content — proven to be effective for each sales situation — to sales people, at the right time.

Nancy: Where does your solution fit in the Hierarchy of Revenue Needs™?

Peter: KnowledgeTree fits into two primary sections of the hierarchy. First, it supports Communicating Value by distributing relevant materials to sales people in their workflow. This allows a sales person to efficiently locate materials that engage prospects and effectively share that content (via email, social media, in-person, web conferencing, etc.).

At the same time, we recognized how important it was for sales people to have easy access to their training and onboarding material. It’s not good enough to have a binder that sits idly on the shelf. Training and related guidance needs to be recommended to reps based on their role in the organization and current sales situation.

Nancy: How mature is a typical organization’s sales stack before adding your technology?

Peter: We see organizations that rely on sales and marketing content prioritizing KnowledgeTree. Organizations that recognize the importance of social selling, content marketing, or sales training are looking for a way to get assets to sales people as efficiently as possible. That need is vital — without sales people who are on-message and effective, you’re going to feel the revenue impacts quickly.

So, we see this function being addressed shortly after CRM and marketing automation are in place.

Nancy: In what ways is your solution complementary to others that might be in someone’s sales stack now or in the future?

Peter: We see a great complement to existing stack technologies in a few key ways:

  • It helps teams get more use of content stored in their existing repositories. Recommended content is automatically pushed to reps, so content consumption triples.
  • It helps teams use their sales training content more effectively by pushing training and learning resources to sales people based on their current context.
  • It allows users of sales emailing tools to incorporate recommended content into their bulk or automated emails.
  • It helps drive usage of the CRM by providing recommendations of content, in part via Salesforce.com.

Nancy: What are some of the challenges your solution solves for Marketing/Sales?

Peter: It helps sales and marketing teams build and use more effective content that helps to advance deals. That includes:

  • Federating content from any repository — your website, YouTube channel, marketing automation, content management system, etc. — and pushing it directly to reps
  • Simplifying the discovery of content by recommending content to reps
  • Suggesting content based on a rep’s sales situation — by industry, product, sales stage, geography, or any sales context
  • Reporting on the performance of content by sales situation — so marketing and sales enablement produce more of the content they need.

Nancy: What are some good resources if someone wanted to learn what questions to ask, what others are doing, or purchase considerations?

Peter: We have a very active blog that considers sales enablement challenges, as well as a rich collection of research and best practices about how content can support sales processes. You can access it at knowledgetree.com/blog

The post Sales Tech Simplified: Increasing the Value Your Salespeople Bring to Prospects appeared first on the Smart Selling Tools Sales Tech Blog.

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