October 17, 2019
Updated: December 19, 2020

Sales Enablement CRM: A Guide

Sales enablement is about ensuring Sales reps have the resources and tools necessary to connect with leads, prospects, and customers in a way that prompts further engagement. While a Sales enablement strategy is key to supporting your process, it can only get you so far without customer relationship management (CRM). Many organizations may think the two are one and the same, but they in fact have several key differences, but integrated into one strategy can drive the Sales cycle. Read more to discover how Marketing and Sales can collaborate and work better together using Sales enablement software and CRM.

Sales Enablement Versus CRM

So, how do Sales enablement and CRM differ? A customer relationship management platform serves as a repository of customer information, including:

  • Company industry
  • Company size
  • Competitors
  • Seller interactions
  • Stage in the Sales cycle

This database allows reps to better understand the prospects they are calling, emailing, and meeting with for more personal communication.

Sales enablement software, on the other hand, combines a variety of tools that allow Sales and Marketing to work more efficiently together for their customers, such as:

  • Onboarding, training, and coaching materials
  • Marketing content
  • Customer engagement data

With that in mind, CRM should be a huge part of your Sales enablement strategy, working with your Sales enablement technology to provide an onslaught of critical industry, buyer, and product information in order to address their needs. Customer relationship management programs automate and track seller activities, so Sales managers can analyze performance and note anyone who’s falling behind, then deliver those reps additional training and Sales enablement tools to give them a boost.

Importance of Sales Enablement Tools and CRM

Sales enablement technology has the capabilities needed to support your overall Sales process. Such platforms are a place to store, manage, update, and deliver both internal and customer-facing content for improved Sales performance.

The thought behind CRM in Sales operations is that it helps reps create a better experience for the buyers they are talking to every day. With insights into a buyer’s history, salespeople can better relate to them and offer more compelling correspondence, whether in person, on the phone, through an email, or via product collateral. 

More efficient, organized, and effective sellers mean better overall Sales engagement, and in turn, alignment with the Marketing team who works to create the Sales enablement content needed to draw buyers in and push them toward conversion. Smarter selling and growth in revenue means overall business success.

Using CRM to Unlock Sales Enablement Benefits

Your CRM serves as a catalyst for the rest of your Sales operations and Sales enablement. It starts with using the database of customer data and insights, which Sales and Marketing can study to determine what selling point will address their unique needs and pain points. Using that knowledge, Marketing is then able to create personalized, relevant content like case studies, product sheets, and presentation decks.

With Marketing putting together customer-facing selling materials, your Sales team can focus their energy and effort into actual selling activities. This pertinent content also allows reps to relate to the buyers they interact with, creating a direct link between that buyer’s needs and your product or solution.

Why Sales Enablement is More than Just CRM

Customer relationship management tools are a necessary element for your Sales enablement solution, but you have to use your CRM to improve the Sales process if you want it to succeed. Additionally, you’ll need more than just a CRM to make a real difference in Sales operations. Other tools you should look for include:

  • Enablement software
  • Marketing automation
  • Content management
  • Training and coaching
  • Reporting and analytics

All of these play a key role in your enablement program. Setting up your Sales enablement process requires a step-by-step approach to establish key players; the program’s mission, objectives, and KPIs; the scope of work; planned collaboration between Sales and Marketing teams; and more. With a formal Sales enablement strategy, you can boost quota attainment across your team. CSO Insights found that organizations with an enablement program improved quota attainment by over 22 percent. 

Showpad is your all-in-one Sales enablement platform, designed for Sales and Marketing teams to work together toward better buyer experiences. Contact us to learn more or get a demo of our solution.