The result of Frugalnomics has been a marked slowdown in the pipeline, and longer than ever sales cycles.
According to Andrew Gaffney in his article Marketers Shifting Focus To Sales Enablement To Accelerate Slow Pipelines , “Deals expected to close in the current quarter are often getting clogged and pushed out later in the year. Given this reality, many marketing organizations are investing in sales enablement tools and processes to accelerate deal flow and maximize the productivity of their sales teams.”
So how is the sales enablement role evolving within b2b vendors? According to IDC’s 2009 Tech Marketing Benchmarks, large enterprises have gotten the message that sales enablement is required to drive sales effectiveness, with more than 80% of enterprises with $5 billion plus in revenue now have a sales enablement role in their organization.
However, that number drops steadily in surveys of smaller firms, to:
- just under 80% for organizations with $1 billion to $5 billion in revenue;
- 60% for companies between $500 million to $1 billion in revenue and;
- sellers are ill prepared for meetings;
- do not understand their business and needs, and;
- are not adding value to engagements.
The sales enablement group can help arm sales professionals with the right tools and content at the right time and right place to engage with ever more frugal and skeptical buyers. Without sales enablement best practices, sales cycles will continue to extend and deals will languish. Providing the fuel to sales professionals can overcome the issues, mitigate pipeline obstructions, and reduce sales cycles.