How much does content and marketing help the sales team? [New Research]

These days, we hear a lot of information about “sales facilitating”. Despite various definitions, sales support boils down to helping your sales team be as successful as possible.

How do marketers develop sales content within the company?Is content Is it useful to the salesperson who developed it? Where is it stored and managed so that sales staff can access it?how is it Tested?

These are just some of the questions that CMI will answer in our latest survey. Create sales support content. All interviewees stated that they were involved in creating content for their company’s sales team in some way. We mainly listened to the opinions of content marketing/content strategy leaders (39%), marketing leaders (28%) and content creators (24%).

Survey definition:

  • smallBeer enable The process of providing the sales team with the content, information and tools needed for effective sales.
  • Alliance As a collaborative working relationship that can bring positive business results,

The report is made by Vidyard, Refers to aligned with Non-aligned group.This aligned Respondents rated the consistency between the company’s marketing and sales as “very good, very good, or good.”This Non-aligned Respondents rated their consensus as fair or unsatisfactory.

Big picture

Most of the findings of this study indicate the need for:

  • Better communication and collaboration
  • Better analysis and success indicators
  • Make better use of marketing techniques

The reasons are as follows:

  • 68% agree that their content team creates content for a specific stage of the buyer’s journey; however, only 39% of salespeople agree that their sales team uses the right content at the right stage of the buyer’s journey.

68% of people created #content for the buyer’s travel; @LisaBeets via @CMIContent @vidyard said that only 39% of the sales team said they used it at the right stage. #the study Click to tweet

  • 60% agree that their marketing and sales teams tell the same brand story; however, almost a quarter disagree.
  • 54% agreed that marketing and sales shared access to data about customers and prospects; however, nearly one-third disagreed.
  • Although most people (65%) agree that salespeople can easily find sales content in their company, 42% said they lack the ability to quickly generate personalized sales content.

Alignment plays an important role here. The unified team performed better in these areas. But they are not far ahead when it comes to sharing and accessing data about customers and potential customers. This is an area where most companies can improve.Both aligned and non-aligned groups show that they lack productive capacity Quickly personalize sales content.

Need more cooperation

Respondents said that their marketing and sales teams collaborate most on “content topics.” However, there will be less collaboration on the “content type” (38% of people said they rarely or never collaborate on this topic). However, if there is no cooperation, dollars may be wasted to create the wrong content.

One interviewee pointed out: “Getting effective feedback on the type of content is a problem.” “It is usually required to “make a page” on a product or service, but there is no goal-or they tell us what they think is in such a short content Put the most valuable things in their Customer interaction. “

To complicate the issue, 57% said that marketing and sales teams have rarely or never collaborated on how to evaluate content effectiveness.This points to Measure content effectiveness with Return on investment, This is a problem we found in other CMI research.

@LisaBeets said through @CMIContent @vidyard #Research that 57% of respondents said that #marketing and #sales teams have rarely or never cooperated on how to measure the effectiveness of their #content. Click to tweet

Regardless of the overall situation, it is a pain point for all interviewees to collaborate on how to evaluate the effectiveness of content. Only 19% of the united people often or often cooperate in this area, while 44% said they have rarely or never cooperated. It’s even worse for non-aligned people (74% of people report that they rarely or never cooperate in content validity assessments).

Use buyer personas to create content

Digging deeper into content creation, we found:

  • Most marketing and sales teams (51%) have access to a set of shared Buyer role.
  • 67% of respondents said they interviewed customers and used other types of research to develop roles, while 59% said they also interviewed salespeople.

Allied teams are more likely to have roles than non-aligned teams (63% vs 36%). Compared with corporate customers (54%), non-aligned people are more likely to conduct interviews than corporate customers (65%), indicating that non-aligned people are more likely to rely on the words of their salesperson. Although we did not delve into the reasons for this happening, the open comments mentioned factors such as lack of response. Buy in At the higher levels of the company, there is a lack of contact with customers and a lack of bandwidth.

Most content created for sales is “promotional”

Nearly two-thirds of the respondents said that most of the content their company creates for sales is promotion (61%), followed by education (31%). This is true for everyone, which shows that it is difficult to convince salespeople that other types of content are valuable.

“We explained that not everything has to be super promotional, and that education and The content of thought leadership It is also valuable,” one interviewee wrote.

Another interviewee pointed out: “Convincing them to believe in customer-centric content rather than our own content is a challenge.” They want to print collateral with bullets and feature dumps. It is difficult for us to ask them to help us identify customer pain points. “

@CMIContent @vidyard #Research marketers say that it is a challenge to convince #sales to be customer-centric content rather than brand-centric content. Click to tweet

Cookie-cutter content

Only 12% of respondents said that their sales content is extreme or very different from that of competitors. Here, even alliances face challenges, with only 13% reporting that their content is extreme or very different.

When we asked how it was different, the answers included:

  • “We exert more thought leadership and have stronger Email marketing plan. “
  • “Our content focuses on thought leadership, while focusing on products.”
  • “It’s more creative, visually effective, interactive, And has educational significance. “
  • “We create content from our content Subject matter expert Positioning our thought leaders. Our top priority is to be regarded as a thought leader, which will help us enter the sales channel. “

Respondents confirmed that they are creating a variety of content types.They say speeches/presentations and Case study The most valuable to their sales staff. Visual story Through presentations, webinars, videos, and infographics, it is expected that the importance will increase with the widespread shift to virtual sales.

Marketers face the challenge of getting them to use more and different types of content. As one respondent said: “We try to use more top-of-channel or mid-channel content in sales, not just brand or product-based BOFU (bottom of channel) content to train sales staff.” On site , It looks like salespeople share blogs, videos, information chart – As the relationship develops, anything that is valuable to potential customers.

Most people agree that the content is easy to access

As mentioned earlier, 64% of people think that salespeople can easily achieve Positioning The sales content of their company. The majority (60%) said that the content is located on the company’s intranet, Wiki or microsite.Respondents from large companies (more than 1,000 employees) are more likely to report using Digital asset management (DAM) system (36%) and sales support platform (30%).

Respondents are not so sure how often Their sales content has been reviewed (39% of people said they are not sure), even the same people. This makes us wonder, who will be responsible for the content audit work of most companies? Is there a process? (See this CMI Blog post For guidance. )

The value of CRM technology

We also asked respondents which technologies are most important to support the company’s sales support efforts. The top answers are CRM systems (67%), analytics (64%) and email marketing software (54%). Compared with all respondents, respondents from large companies (more than 1,000 employees) are more likely to indicate that they use sales support platforms (39% and 28%, respectively) and DAM systems (33% and 25%, respectively) ).

Marketing Automation System (MAS) and Account-based management (ABM) seems to be more important for non-aligned groups than non-aligned groups:

  • A comparison of 40% indicates that MAS is important, and a comparison of 25% indicates that MAS is important.
  • 32% of people who are aligned said that ABM is important, while 21% of people who are not aligned said that.

Need to share metrics

Sixty-three percent said their company’s marketing team has shared the goal And goals.Only 28% said they shared Key Performance Indicators (KPI).

Agreeing on goals and objectives (76% vs. 46%) and shared KPIs (33% vs. 21%) are more likely than those who did not agree.

As mentioned earlier, 57% of people said that marketing and sales have little or never collaborated on how to evaluate content effects. Therefore, it makes sense that the subjective input of salespeople is the highest indicator they use to evaluate content sales performance. In other words, in many cases, marketing will use this as a slogan.

Although the same is true for the aligned group (65%), the aligned and unaligned groups differ in two significant ways:

  • Use audience engagement as an indicator (63% and 33%)
  • Use revenue growth as an indicator (50% vs. 40%)

Sales support as a business function is growing

We see room for improvement and hope to establish better collaboration or connection between marketing and sales.

While reviewing these results, we checked the Sales Enablement PRO’s Sales Status Report (2020). In the survey, 62% of people have sales support personnel, plans or functions. This is an increase of seven points over the previous year. This is positive because sales support has made content more and more attention, especially in the world of virtual sales.

But this is not enough. Robert Rose, CMI’s chief strategy consultant, said: “True coordination requires more than understanding each other’s strategies.” “True consistency requires integration into a cohesive customer journey-driven by extraordinary digital content-by An informed sales team distributes and delivers in a useful way. Real collaboration between teams is essential.”

@Robert_Rose said via @CMIContent @vidyard that a true fit between #sales and #marketing requires more than understanding each other’s strategies. #the study Click to tweet

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Cover image: Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Academy


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