Let me put it out there. Deal reviews suck, so do QBRs and pipeline reviews. The reps hate the busy work and management struggles to get the insight they need to forecast accurately.
In between all this, sales enablement runs its programs in hopes of transforming its sales team to be more buyer-centric. They also train the sales team on internal processes to streamline sales execution, deal reviews, and forecasting processes.
But when the rubber hits the road, ie. ongoing opportunity management - many of these lessons are forgotten and we are back to doing the usual things - pipeline reviews that are focussed on getting seller interpretation on commit deal status, deal reviews focussed on understanding next steps, and QBRs to get commit numbers. All of this hopes the seller knows how to execute and is translating the enablement investment into buyer experience.
Buyer enablement refers to the process of equipping and empowering potential buyers with the necessary information, tools, and resources to make informed purchasing decisions. It involves creating a personalized and engaging experience for the buyer, helping them understand their needs and providing them with relevant information at every stage of the buying process.
Buyer enablement focuses on building a strong relationship between the buyer and the seller. By providing buyers with the information they need to make informed decisions, sellers can build trust and credibility, which can ultimately lead to increased sales and customer loyalty.
Buyer enablement matters because it helps businesses create a positive buying experience for their potential customers, which can lead to several benefits, including:
A big part of the sales cycle happens without your seller. As per research by Gartner, 83% of the buying journey happens without any interaction with the supplier and 33% of buyers prefer a seller-free buying experience.
This changes everything - how forecasting works, sales process, sales methodology, and ultimately the current go-to-market strategy and plan.
Buyer Enablement as a phrase has been around for the last few years. Gartner probably has the most impeccable description of buyer enablement -
“Buyer enablement is the provisioning of information that supports the completion of critical activities necessary to make a purchase. Just as sales enablement helps sellers sell, buyer enablement helps buyers buy by providing them with prescriptive advice and practical support to make the buying process easier to navigate and complete - Gartner”.
Buyer Enablement is about practicing extreme empathy to buyer preferences. Be it about how your buyers learn about your products, or how they engage with your sellers, or how they want to realize value from your products.
So what can you do to implement buyer enablement:
A lot of how sales systems are set up today has the seller as the gatekeeper of information. Be it access to demos, FAQs, content, or other tools your buyers need to evaluate your offering. But research suggests that buyers spend a lot of time researching your solutions online both during the sales cycle and before they speak with your sales team.
The big transformation is to provide every single buyer with open and transparent access to critical information needed for evaluation, deployment, and value realization. The role of your seller evolves from being the supplier of information to the one who understands the buyer engagement to deliver even more personalized experiences when they meet.
Enabling self-service buyer enablement is one of the key offerings of BuyerAssist.io
Most sales methodologies do a great job of helping sellers with a framework to discover customer pain points and put a $ value on them. The problem is that there is no systematic way to follow through the promise through the evaluation, deployment, and value realization. Invariably, there is context loss during sales to customer success handoff leading to longer than expected time to value.
The big transformation is how sales, pre-sales, and customer success teams work together as one integrated unit. The role of the seller evolves to be the orchestra conductor that ensures all stakeholders on both sides have a shared understanding of the value creation and where they are in the journey.
Powering value discovery, proof and delivery using mutual success plans is one of the key offerings of BuyerAssist.io
The last 5 years have been transformative for sales. There are many new tools to help you understand the buyer like never before. Of all the tool categories, conversational intelligence has probably been the most transformative. Companies like gong.io and chorus.ai have fundamentally changed how we understand sales execution and buyer engagement. The problem is that most of what we know relies on a rearview mirror perspective in your opportunities. Modern buyers are obsessed with measurable value realization as a central piece to their digital transformation investments.
The big transformation is how sellers collaborate with their buyers in qualified opportunities to co-create a mutual success plan to help the buyer identify the path to value. Any sales team doing this consistently across all their sales opportunities is going to have structured data on buying behavior and preferences.
Helping sellers chart influencer and relationship maps along with buyer journey templates are key offerings from BuyerAssist.io
If your sales enablement programs are designed to give you x% uplift in revenue productivity, buyer enablement when done right can give you 10 times that.
The key to winning today’s (and tomorrows’) buyers is by demonstrating extreme empathy to their preferences. And buyer enablement is key.
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