The following post was written by Meg Guarente, Product Marketing Manager at Seismic, the leading B2B marketing enablement and sales enablement software solution. Meg has over 7 years of experience working in strategic product marketing and management roles. She has worked at TechTarget, Dataxu, and now at Seismic Software. At Seismic she leads the product marketing function for the SMB and mid-market space.
Product marketers have a complex job working cross-functionally to support many crucial areas of the business. Creating and distributing buyer-facing content, updating sellers on the industry and competitive landscape, and understanding how content is performing are just some of the challenges product marketers face daily.
As a product marketer myself, I can attest to these problems firsthand. Throughout my product marketing journey, I haven’t always been able to say with 100% confidence which content repository I was supposed to use to create new or update existing content for sales. When I asked my fellow marketers, they all had different answers as well. I also haven’t always had insight into what was working and what wasn’t.
Sound familiar? I’m sure a lot of product marketers (and marketers alike) can relate, so I wanted to share some tips and tricks I’ve found along the way to help combat these challenges.
Challenge #1: Sales Can’t Find The Most Up-To-Date Content
Time and time again, I’ve heard sellers say things like “we have a ton of material, but there are 25 different decks, and not all of it is up to date” or “it takes me days to pull a presentation together for a client meeting, which pulls me away from doing other activities for my other accounts.” This is a common pain point for many companies who are constantly churning out new content.
When sellers are unsure of where to find content, it has significant impacts on the business. In fact, SiriusDecisions reports that about two-thirds of the collateral marketing creates goes unused by sales reps. Also, when sales reps spend time endlessly searching for content, that’s time taken away from selling. According to a recent study, only ⅓ of reps’ time is spent selling.
One way to ensure that sellers can find the most up-to-date content is to consolidate all resources into a single content repository. Move content from various locations into one place and only make updates in that central repository. This may take time and buy-in across various stakeholders but is worth it for the increase in content usage and the decrease in time spent looking for resources by your sales team.
Conduct a content audit to ensure all the most up-to-date materials are available. Conducting a content audit will allow you to analyze what resources are available and determine if gaps or overlaps exist.
Invest in a sales enablement solution. Sales enablement solutions provide product marketers with many ways to update their teams about industry happenings, product changes, and internal updates. They also allow marketers to ensure only the most up-to-date and compliant materials are available to sellers for external use.
Challenge #2: Sellers Don’t Fully Understand Their Competitive Landscape
Every market is a crowded and noisy market. I talk to sellers daily who are coming up against competitors and don’t have the right materials or resources to accurately provide their prospects with the full picture. In my role, I want to enable sellers to feel equipped to speak to product strengths and weaknesses in comparison to competitors.
Build a competitive toolkit. A competitive toolkit can include things like industry information, battlecards, and competitor feature comparisons. Building a toolkit of resources that equip sellers to speak intelligently about your product vs. the competitors will help set up your sales teams for success and ultimately drive more revenue.
Implement a competitive intelligence (CI) solution. To help you best provide your sales teams with relevant and timely competitive information, investing in a CI solution is crucial. A CI solution allows you to capture, analyze, and act on data and market insights, ultimately helping your sales team close more deals.
Utilize free resources to source competitive intelligence. There is an abundance of resources available, like discussion threads or forums, to help you and your team keep a pulse on the competition.
Challenge #3: Marketing Has No Insight Into What Content is Being Used by Sales
Marketers – you’re probably all too familiar with this one. How often do we create what we think is awesome content only to wonder how often it was being used and how it was received by prospects? Creating content with no analytics or understanding of its impact can be frustrating, to say the least. It’s essential that product marketers and marketers can track and analyze tangible content results and metrics.
Sales enablement solutions provide marketers with access to data like content usage statistics, content engagement analytics, and content value and ROI data. With this data, marketing can make informed decisions about what new content to create, what content to update, and what content to remove.
To learn more about how to overcome product marketing challenges and drive more revenue with sales enablement and competitive intelligence, watch the on-demand webinar.