’Tis the season for turkey, pumpkin pie and quality time spent with friends and family. Above all, however, it’s the season for expressing gratitude for the many things we count as blessings in our lives. You may be thankful for your financial security, for example, or for your continued health and happiness.
Your company works tirelessly to attract and retain new customers. Your editorial team, for instance, may churn out new gated assets (i.e. eBooks, whitepapers) every quarter in order to promote brand awareness. Your marketing division may collaborate on targeted new campaigns in order to keep existing customers engaged based on where they are in the customer journey.
Among the many challenges that sales managers face today, one of the biggest involves equipping their teams with the necessary tools to easily communicate and collaborate with one another. Chances are your sales team is lagging—or at the very least not performing at peak capacity—without the right collaboration tools. For example, in conducting some research of our own we found that:
Sales processes nowadays look nothing like they used to. Whereas in the past salespeople leaned on the old pencil-and-paper model and used rolodexes to store contact information, today’s top performers boast an arsenal of applications and strategies driven by cloud computing and UC for collaborating on proposals, connecting with prospects, training sales reps and closing deals.
A new era of sales is definitely here, and it’s being driven by innovative real-time communications and collaboration technology. As such, sales teams must have the right tools to get the job done. Esna knows this, which is why we’re so thrilled to have recently become a member of the Cloud Collective, an exciting coalition of the industry’s strongest Salesforce partners that work to arm sales teams with the very best cloud tools. Our leading embedded real-time communication and collaboration solutions, like Officelinx for Salesforce CRM, make Esna a perfect fit for this strong cloud ecosystem of key market players.
Every sales professional goes through the ups and down of the job. The ups and downs are caused by so many factors including communication challenges, technology hiccups, access to in-house expertise or the ability to find your legal team or manager at the right time. Thus, any minor tweak that gives you an advantage is worth a look.
Meet James Cloud. James used to be his company's top performing sales rep, then the competition got tough and he lost his mojo. He's got one more shot to redeem himself, but he needs your help.
Get acquainted with Cloud and find out what he needs to do to get back on top in the first episode of Mission Possible, then join Team Cloud. By joining team Cloud you join many others who want to see James Cloud defeat his arch nemesis Derek Dial in the battle to win the big deal! Team Cloud includes; M his boss, Q his tech genius and Cloud himself.
What do Arrowpointe, Bizible, Bracket Labs, Cirruspath, LevelEleven, RingLead, Spanning and UberConference have in common with Esna? We're all joining forces to create a new Salesforce ecosystem called the Cloud Collective that will transform the way people connect with customers, partners and employees to thrive in the today’s connected world.
Our mission at the Cloud Collective is to strengthen the cloud ecosystem and heighten awareness of the importance of third-party business applications available to Salesforce users. As a member, we strive to increase productivity and improve the usability of Salesforce through our embedded communication solutions.
The best thing about enterprise collaboration is that it truly has no limits. Collaboration tools and strategies can be integrated into virtually any business department to yield very real results—from HR to finance to sales.
In regard to the sales team, this department stands to significantly benefit from collaboration—particularly, social media. There are more opportunities than ever for sales to get on board with social collaboration tools and technology if only sales managers would capitalize on the huge potential lying right underneath their nose.
As a sales manager, we know that you have a lot on your mind. With the end of the year right around the corner and numbers that need to be still made, it may feel like you’re closer to a dead end than a shining success. You may have also heard about the advantages that collaboration technology brings to the table for streamlining sales processes and closing more deals, but at the same time, you don’t know enough to determine if investing is the right decision for you. To help make murky waters a bit clearer, we stole some time with our very own Davide Petramala, EVP at Esna, to flesh out everything you need to know to make the most informed choice.
In Part 1 of this article, we covered the technology that solves problems for small businesses.
Despite the vast differences between the small and large business, these two specially-sized organizations do have one very important thing in common: their sales teams. The need for superior sales technology transcends any and all differences faced by companies of any size. At the end of the day, a sales team is a sales team, and the team’s primary responsibility remains the same: keeping companies’ revenue smoothly flowing.
The difference, however, comes in the technology used by each company to augment revenue, as driven by the unique challenges faced by the size of each organization.
The Small Business
The art of selling has gone through a few rounds of improvements, and it continues to evolve today. This continuous change is jointly attributed to the similarly evolving customer lifecycle as well as the maturation of sales team technology. As many already know, collaboration technology has revolutionized sales strategies, processes and initiatives – from lead generation to product knowledge to training sales representatives. But, it wasn’t always like that.
Recently, we stumbled across a great infographic by sales automation and lead management software provider Velocify that spells this all out for us. In an effort to explore how sales team collaboration became what it is today, we delve a bit deeper to see what the process used to look like, as well as what it might look like in the future.
The Past: From the “Mad Men” Era to the 21st Century
If you go on Twitter right now and search the hashtag #GetThingsDone, you’ll see a slew ofTwitter users talking about how they love getting things done more quickly. From ditching the snooze button to working on weekends to avoid drowning in a sea of work Monday morning to creating more thorough “to-do” lists, it seems individuals everywhere understand that getting things done faster adds more value.
Meeting with a sales guy lasted less than 10 mins - I asked him exactly what we needed to see if they can deliver. #GetThingsDone— yuyudin (@yuyudin) September 23, 2011
These tweets reflect the personal standards and expectations of consumers. And with your sales team selling to people embracing this behavior, this needs to remain top of mind. After all, if your consumers are constantly working to accelerate their schedules and get more done in less than time, then they are going to expect the same from your company.
As a sales manager, you’re trying to get your team from point A to point B as rapidly as humanly possible. But, between prospecting, problem-solving and administrative tasks, time that should be spent actively selling begins to dwindle. The tides need to turn. So, how can you #GetThingsDone faster?
Collaborate With Your Marketing Team
The toughest part of sales for many is not reaching a prospect, but getting in touch with the decision maker—or the person who can affect change—of the company. This is where
establishing better alignment between your sales and marketing team can lead to time management magic.
Aligning your sales team with the marketing department can lead to an average of 20 percent more in annual revenue growth, according to according to HubSpot. Even more, 25 percent of marketers who adopt mature lead management processes report that sales teams contact prospects within one day; meanwhile, only 10 percent of marketers report the same follow-up time without mature lead management processes.
In the previous article, Best Practices for Using CRM Software for Sales – Part 1, we covered three ways a CRM system can provide tools to maximize your team’s sales potential. But a CRM system's potential to drive sales productivity is limited to your team's use of these tools.
As a sales manager, your job revolves around being information-centric and time-sensitive. The two essentially go hand-in-hand since your sales team is striving to collect pertinent customer information to generate as many quality leads in as little time as possible. We know you’re feeling the pressure to accelerate your team’s sales cycle; however, before you can get started, you need to first identify what could be holding your team back.
An average company loses between 10 to 30 percent of its customers every year. Meanwhile, a five percent reduction in your customer defection rate can increase your profit from 25 to 80 percent