Including sales in the development of B2B messaging is crucial to its success.
Sellers are on the front lines every day having personal interactions with prospective buyers. They are listening to buyer needs, pain points, common objections, and more. All the while, they are learning which phrases and messages resonate best, and which do not.
These types of insights are invaluable to the creation of effective B2B sales enablement assets. They help marketers to create content that speaks in the voice of the customer (VOC), addresses primary concerns, and includes use cases that buyers actually care about.
Here’s how marketing leaders can synergize with sales teams to help make that happen.
4 Ways Marketers Can Leverage Sellers to Create Great B2B Sales Messaging
Creating effective B2B sales messaging requires close collaboration between sellers and marketers. Here are four ways they can work together to achieve this.
Step 1: Set the Foundation with Research-Backed Buyer Personas
Buyer personas are foundational to sales and marketing success. Before creating any external-facing sales messaging, organizations must first gain alignment on their positioning and communication with different target personas.
Buyer personas help both sales and marketing teams to understand their customers’ concerns, preferences, pain points, and more. These details form the foundation for B2B sales messaging that deeply resonates with them.
Organizations that don’t have clear alignment on how they should be positioning to their audience will not be able to develop targeted, personalized, and focused messaging. Once buyer personas are established, however, sales and marketing teams are able to come together to deliver a compelling core message. Messaging can remain consistent across all customer touchpoints – including sales interactions, marketing materials, website content, and more.
Cascade Client Example
A client of ours recently commissioned a project to learn more about their buyer personas, including what their target personas’ buyer journey looked like. Up until that point, their messaging strategy had more of a feature-led focus that emphasized capabilities – but not customer needs, jobs-to-be-done (JTBD), goals, and use cases. Because they lacked an understanding of their customers, they didn’t know how to market and sell the platform in a meaningful way.
During our stakeholder interviews across their company, it also became clear that there was a huge disconnect in how their sales and marketing teams thought about and communicated their platform offering. They didn’t have a consistent, compelling brand story to tell customers. This made it impossible for them to produce effective and cohesive sales messaging.
Developing a more comprehensive set of buyer personas was an essential first step. We focused a lot on uncovering their buyers’ priorities and needs as they progressed through the purchasing process. Once we established that foundation, we could finally then develop compelling, unified, and research-backed sales messaging.
Step 2: Utilize B2B Sellers as Your Best Qualitative Researchers
Sales teams have a unique opportunity consistently test out new messages with customers and collect real-time feedback on how those messages resonate. They will inherently experiment with different phrases and messaging, and will take notice of the positive or negative impact those terms have on buyers. Marketers should capitalize on this.
Let’s say marketing has some ideas for a new message that they would like to try. Or, they’re curious to see how well a certain point or sentiment might resonate. Testing them out by leveraging their own sales team is a valuable, but often underutilized, resource.
Marketers can then use that information to refine their messaging to address those specific challenges and opportunities. The subsequent assets they build, such as blogs, whitepapers, website copy, decks, proposals, etc., should accurately represent the insights gained from sales team interactions with customers.
Cascade Client Example
During a recent messaging workshop that we conducted for a client, marketers began to start using the term “digital transformation”. An individual on our client’s sales team immediately jumped in and said, “If I had a swear jar for every time a marketer used the phrase digital transformation the jar would be overflowing.”
The marketers on the call seemed a little taken aback to be called out for using a phrase that, at one point, was popular with their audience. Because from a marketer’s perspective, they identified key value propositions, used compelling language, tested the messaging with their audience, refined it, and ultimately used it to create some stellar pieces of content.
Had the sellers not shared their experience of the term “digital transformation” losing its effectiveness with buyers, it may have continued to show up in their materials and repelled potential customers for years to come.
Step 3: Share Marketing Metrics with Sales
Just as it’s important for sales to share with marketing the qualitative data that they gather from their interactions, it’s also important for marketers to share the quantitive data that they gain from their campaigns with sellers.
Metrics that reveal the performance of various messages in digital marketing campaigns are especially valuable for sellers. By understanding which types of messages perform best in written content, sellers can adapt their verbal communication accordingly to maximize impact.
For example, marketers frequently conduct A/B testing on email subject lines or Google Ads titles and descriptions. If significant differences in campaign effectiveness are observed based on these messages, marketers should share these insights with sellers.
Sellers can then avoid certain phrases during direct interactions with buyers and focus more on messaging that yields superior results. By fostering this data-driven communication, both sales and marketing teams can align their efforts to achieve optimal outcomes.
Cascade Client Example
We recently created email outreach content for a client that showed a particular subject line resonated better with a specific target persona than others. According to the metrics from the email platform, the subject line incorporating a specific statistic significantly outperformed the others in terms of open rates.
By identifying that this message resonated well with a specific persona, our client’s sales team was then able to integrate it into their other outreach efforts. It gave them the data-backed confidence that they needed to include the message in sales calls, presentations, and other interactions.
Step 4: Cultivate Constant Communication With Sales
For effective collaboration, sellers and marketers should establish open lines of communication and maintain a consistent cadence of interaction. This can be achieved through regular meetings, informal check-ins, workshops, and other forms of communication.
By fostering this continuous exchange of information, both sellers and marketers can consistently share their experiences and insights with each other. This valuable feedback loop enables each of them to continuously improve and refine their messaging. Ultimately, it allows them to deliver content that resonates best with customers based on real-world experiences.
Cascade Client Example
One way that we encourage these open lines of communication is by regularly asking both marketing and sales stakeholders to attend any workshops or meetings we conduct. This is because we oftentimes see sales teams being excluded from these calls, which we believe to be a mistake.
By consistently involving sales teams in these forums, we observe marked improvement in the quality of messaging we create. Marketing leaders who nurture such an environment are ultimately able to produce more effective assets as well.
B2B Messaging Test: How Involved Is Your Sales Team?
Integrating sales expertise is essential for effective B2B messaging. Sellers are at the forefront of buyer interactions, wielding them the power to share insights that help marketers to create highly effective assets.
To test the effectiveness of your own sales enablement assets, try this. Ask yourself: How involved was the sales team in its creation? Is it representative of what sellers are actually hearing during their calls? Is it still up-to-date and relevant based on what buyers are communicating?
If you find a disconnect between what your sales team is saying and what your assets are conveying, then give us a call. We have the expertise to equip both your sales teams with aligned B2B sales messaging to drive business success.
Cascade Insights is a hybrid market research and marketing firm that specializes in the B2B tech sector. Want to learn more about successful sales messaging? Our B2B Sales Messaging Services can help.
Get in touch
"*" indicates required fields