Spotlight

Why Technology Alone Doesn't Increase Sales Effectiveness and What To Do About It

Some sales organizations invest much money in CRM solutions that promise to solve all their problems and make life easier for sales reps. Still, data shows that sales effectiveness doesn't increase accordingly.

B2B sales have become a difficult endeavor, and mastering the game demands a complex approach. A sales enablement strategy empowers sales teams to close more deals with a combination of different elements, and the use of technology is just one piece of the puzzle. You might even have all the pieces, but if they don't fit together, the result will be disappointing. The main reason why technology alone doesn't increase sales effectiveness is the lack of a holistic approach.

sales strategy 

Here's what to do about it.

1. Start with Strategy

Companies that already have an older CRM system in place sometimes try to adapt the sales strategy around it. This approach usually results in sales teams not entering their data consistently into the system, and, when they do, data tends to be messy because nobody uses the same language or qualifying criteria. The consequence is that neither the organization nor the salespeople get any real value from the CRM system. In order to avoid this, it is better to start with a strategy and then choose technology to support it.

2. Integrate Processes and Methodologies

Initially, CRM systems were designed as a database to keep track of customer's data and nothing more. That is why traditional CRM systems are not process-oriented. Very few CRMs solutions have managed to close that loop and integrate processes into the CRM system without going fist through an expensive and difficult project. However, some tools include capabilities that allow organizations to easily build sales processes and methodologies directly into the salesperson's workflow. A process-driven CRM enables salespeople to keep track of each step of the sales cycle so that anyone can take over the deal if necessary.

3. Use Technology to Reinforce Training and Coaching

Without reinforcement, lessons learned on training and coaching initiatives won't stick. As a result, it's difficult for sales organizations to introduce lasting changes in the way sales teams operate. Very few existing technologies provide adequate tools for reinforcing what salespeople learned during training. A holistic CRM solution should include embedded customized training and coaching material into the salesperson's workflow. The system should reinforce everything from language to behaviors and skills with on-demand training assets to guide salespeople through every step.

4. Establish Analytics

Once you have your sales team consistently entering data into the CRM system and using the same language and qualifying criteria, the only thing that is missing to produce accurate forecasts is an analytics engine. With the right technology integrated into the CRM system, organizations can use this data to compare trendlines, watch KPIs, see where individuals are struggling to move their pipelines forward, and catch red flags before they become problems.

″A truly process-driven and coaching-focused Sales Enablement CRM, like Membrain, allows consultants to guide salespeople and help ensure success.″

George Brontén, Founder & CEO, Membrain

A holistic approach delivers better results from strategic, training, and technology investments. Together with our partner Membrain, we now make this possible and even simple. Membrain is a process-driven and coaching-focused Sales Enablement CRM. It reinforces strategy, process, and training. With our embedded services, we support organizations in building an informative and milestone-based process to guide salespeople and help ensure success. Get in touch with Benedikt Kramer for more information.

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