Blog Archives

Five Trends Changing Sales Enablement

In their recent book Bold, Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler overview five technologies driving change and providing the basis for entrepreneurial opportunity. Four of the five are driving change for B2B sales, including rep practices, sales management, and even the sales-marketing interface. Here are the four that matter for today’s B2B sales: Networks and sensors – Infinite computing – Artificial intelligence – Robotics – Today, sales enablement is utilizing the technology in each of these areas, even if it’s in early development. Networks and sensors, for example, are limited to data input in a CRM or tracking behavior on an iPad. Infinite computing and artificial intelligence are combining to improve ad targeting and appointment setting over the internet. Robotics are represented in the ubiquitous robocall. Each of these capabilities is

Posted in Digital Sales Enablement, Sales Process

Digital Field Sales Management

One of the huge blind-spots for sales management has been the ability to see what reps are really doing as they perform their jobs. Reps perform in customer offices, at entertainment venues, in off-the-cuff conversations, and nearly always out of the view of their managers. This leaves the managers reduced to ride-alongs, self-reports, and CRM data and KPIs as their primary management tools. And it leaves nothing to say for the marketing director trying to successfully launch a new product through the sales team. Tablet-based sales enablement tools are changing all that. These tools create a rep-based mobile platform for presentations, access to collateral and training, and feedback sent to the main office. Because they’re on mobile devices, they can digitally go into meetings with the reps and engage with

Posted in Digital Sales Enablement, Sales Process

Digital Sales Enablement for B2B Reps

A friend and I were talking about the trend toward digitizing our world, and he argued that there are at least three things that can’t be digitalized— “food, sex, and the salesman.” I had to concede he was probably right about the first two, but the sales professional, in many ways, is increasingly digitalized. And for most who make that transition, they are better, more effective, and far more productive. But what does it mean for sales enablement to be digitalized? To me, digital sales enablement means using technology to improve the sales function in a business—and that means everything from filling the pipeline to leveraging relationships, effective presentations, and closing deals. Here are some of the ways that entire process is affected by digitalization today: Artificial intelligence (AI) is

Posted in Digital Sales Enablement, Sales Process

Supercomputing Analytics for Sales Enablement

When you have the privilege to work with elite supercomputing companies like we do, the experience opens new ideas and opportunities in unexpected ways. Supercomputers are the foundation of the new big data infrastructure. In a recent client project, we learned all about the underlying technology for big data analytics and applications in science, but that piqued my curiosity—how is it actually being deployed by business? I found one very compelling answer so far—relationship analytics. Medium- to large-sized organizations often have complex relationships. Multiple people in each organization have relationships with the other companies, and often those relationships are invisible, deeper than anticipated, and impossible to leverage. And yet, the nature of those relationships is reflected in the digital data connections between the two organizations—in emails, Salesforce.com, LinkedIn, Facebook, and

Posted in Digital Sales Enablement, Sales Process

The Artificially Intelligent Digital Appointment Setter

Although closing a big sale still requires an actual handshake, getting an appointment with the right person at the right time does not—it can be automated, and it can be executed digitally. And often, digital appointments produce better results. A human sales person prospects in a manner similar to this: Start with a profile of the target Find people who fit the profile Share the value proposition with the prospects See how they react Adjust target’s profile based on reactions Find more people to fit the new profile Repeat It is amazing, but artificial intelligence can now learn the same way people do using the same feedback loops. But AI can add data and functions, and turn the process much, much faster than people ever could. The result is a

Posted in Demand Generation, Digital Sales Enablement Tagged with: , , , , ,