sales and marketing relationship

Free ebook: How Predictive Content Strengthens the Sales & Marketing Relationship

Think about your sales and marketing organization’s relationship with content. Is it leading the charge towards optimal customer engagement and won deals? Or is it a necessary evil—the weak adhesive barely connecting your sales and marketing teams? Now, fast forward to how sales and marketing teams should be utilizing content. Predictive content employs content usage analytics—data that analyzes when and how often specific pieces of content are used by members of the sales organization—and suggests the ideal content for reps to use in certain sales conversations based on past successes. This guide discusses the challenges that your team encounters throughout the content lifecycle and how shifting to a predictive content strategy is the answer.

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Guide How Predictive Content Strengthens the Sales & Marketing Relationship Introduction Think about your sales and marketing organization’s relationship with content. Is it leading the charge towards optimal customer engagement and won deals? Or is it a necessary evil—the weak adhesive barely connecting your sales and marketing teams? For the amount of blood, sweat and tears that go into content creation on marketing’s end, you would think that the dissemination and usage of that content would be important, especially as marketing organizations are being held more and more accountable for their contribution to revenue. After all, companies that gave marketing strong visibility into sales content utilization saw an 8.3% increase in total revenue year over year, according to the Aberdeen Group. But for most marketing organizations, tracking content usage is just now becoming a priority. This is a problem for a number of reasons. First, once content is delivered from marketing to sales, it drops off a cliff, never to be seen again. Marketing has no way of knowing how or when it is used by sales reps, or whether content is contributing to won deals. This inhibits the marketing organization from creating and delivering the most relevant content, which according to SiriusDecisions costs enterprise organizations $2.3 million on average every year. Second, finding the most contextually-relevant content for every sales interaction is a major challenge for sales organizations. SiriusDecisions reports that 2/3 of a company’s content goes unused by sales because of poor findability and usability—meaning that it is either difficult to locate or is irrelevant and outdated. But most organizations are unable to determine what the cause of unused content actually is, leaving marketing and sales organizations drowning in all of the wrong content. But what if you were able to not only track the usage of content and recommend the right sales materials for specific selling situations, but predict future sales outcomes simply with content? Predictive content is the newest member of the predictive analytics family, and is changing the way sales and marketing organizations use content to strengthen customer relationships, shorten sales cycles and win more deals. The major goal of predictive content is to put all of a company’s sales collateral in one place—CRM—and track how and when it is used in favorable sales interactions that lead to won deals. Then, using past won deals and content usage analytics, winning content is suggested to sales reps in similar selling situations to increase the probability of winning a deal. This guide discusses the challenges that sales and marketing teams encounter throughout the content life-cycle and how predictive content can exonerate those challenges and transform a company’s sales enablement strategy. Content challenges 1. Content Distribution Traditional ways of storing and distributing content and other information typically involve disjointed, static file repositories with duplicate and outdated materials. These siloed repositories don’t track the usage of content, and make it difficult to manage version control. Further, content isn’t available from the applications and devices that salespeople spend the majority of their days—reps are forced to leave the CRM and email tools to manually find the content they need. Marketers are constantly performing random acts of sales support because sales reps are unable to find exactly what they need for sales interactions on their own. According to IDC, 81% of business leaders report that problems like these arise because of different internal systems and solutions that don’t “talk” to each other. Solution - Predictive content only works if content usage can be tracked from the company’s CRM solution, so the content distribution process is improved by employing predictive content. Predictive content allows CRM and the other siloed programs sales and marketing teams use every day to “talk to each other” to resolve content distribution problems and deliver content to reps where they spend their time. Serving up content in the CRM makes it possible to see how individual pieces of content are used in specific selling situations by certain reps. These content analytics offer a holistic view of how reps are using content and what content is effectively used in won deals. As more data is collected through content usage analytics, predictive content learns more about each salesperson and their prospects and content that is served up becomes more specific and precise.