Job Aids Improve Sales And Marketing Processes
Every organization has specific marketing and sales processes that must be followed. Marketing and sales teams are typically trained to follow these processes as part of the overall marketing and sales strategy. The challenge that this presents is that these processes are often very rigid. Your customers and prospects are not all the same, after all. Different customers and prospects have different needs, goals, questions, and concerns — and they may not all fit neatly into their buyer persona.
So a one-size-fits-all approach will be both inefficient and ineffective. In order to make your marketing and sales processes more flexible so that you can better address the needs of prospects and customers, consider creating and implementing sales and marketing job aids.
What Is A Sales Or Marketing Job Aid?
Sales job aids are tools that help improve sales enablement. Meaning, sales personnel can use these job aids when engaging with prospects or customers to engage them and address their needs more effectively. These sales job aids can help sales reps to solve a unique problem, remember the steps they need to take (or how to do a specific thing), and to learn how to adapt to a new change that has occurred. Marketing job aids are similar to sales job aids in that they help your marketing team do their job better by providing guidance for their marketing efforts, such as aiding in their content creation or social media engagement.
What Value Do Sales And Marketing Job Aids Have?
In the simplest terms, job aids help both your marketing and sales personnel to do their job more effectively by streamlining processes or the intake of information. However, there are a number of more specific ways in which the use of job aids can improve your marketing and sales results. If your marketing and sales reps have job aids that they can turn to and rely on at any point, they will:
Sales reps with access to job aids are less likely to make mistakes when engaging with prospects and customers, especially if they’re suddenly faced with having to make a decision without clear instructions. Job aids can help guide a rep to follow a process but act as a crutch to fall back on while going through their process.
Job aids not only help prevent mistakes, they streamline efforts, which means that you can shorten the sales cycle through the use of both marketing and sales job aids. Additionally, you’ll find that your marketing and sales reps will grow more confident knowing that they have job aids that they can rely on, which will make them more engaged and more productive.
All marketing and sales personnel should be thoroughly trained as part of their onboarding process. Additional training is required when implementing major changes to marketing and sales processes. However, it’s not always feasible (or very efficient) to continually train your reps every time a minor change is made to your marketing or sales processes. Simply providing the relevant job aids will help them adapt to such changes on the fly.
The fear of making mistakes or not knowing what to do can greatly impact both marketing and sales reps, causing a significant amount of stress that can hurt their productivity and cause them to make more mistakes.
Examples Of Sales And Marketing Job Aids
Job aids can go a long way towards improving your marketing and sales results. It helps to know what kinds of job aids you can create to enhance the performance of your marketing and sales teams. To give you a better idea of what sales and marketing job aids are, these are some common job aids that can be incredibly useful:
Creating buyer personas and providing buyer persona templates to your marketing team will allow them to tailor their efforts to a more specific audience. For example, your marketing team will be able to use your buyer persona templates to guide their content creation, ensuring that they are attracting and nurturing the right prospects.
A sales call plan can help provide sales reps with guidance when engaging a potential customer. It can come in the form of a step-by-step guide or a checklist. It can cover what the sales rep should do to prepare for the sales call and what points they should be sure to address while on the phone with the prospect. A good sales call plan can help ensure that the rep not only interacts with the prospect successfully but that they collect the information needed to identify their pain points and qualify them, as well as to present the relevant benefits of a solution in order to close the sale.
A job aid that references common objections and how to address them can help sales reps keep prospects engaged and interested in whatever solution you’re offering. Some of the common objections tend to focus on pricing, competition, and fit. A job aid in such a situation can also help your sales reps avoid making mistakes, such as providing inaccurate information when attempting to handle the objection.
How To Create A Sales And Marketing Job Aid
There are many different types of job aids that you can implement to help guide and instruct marketing and sales personnel, so you will want to know how to go about creating them. Guessing or assuming what your marketing and sales teams need is an inefficient way to go about it. The last thing you want is to implement a job aid that’s not helpful. A poorly created job aid may go unused because it’s unhelpful or confusing, and can even cause poor results. Keeping this in mind, the following is the general process required to create an effective job aid:
Creating a job aid that doesn’t fulfill a need is a waste of time and resources. The first thing you need to do is identify the need for a job aid. You can use analytics to identify inefficiencies throughout the marketing and sales processes that can be addressed by job aids. For example, evaluating the sales funnel to identify where deals tend to stall. Job aids can help address the symptoms of what might be causing this problem. You can also simply speak with team leads and with the marketing and sales reps themselves to determine what their biggest challenges are and whether job aids can help address those challenges.
Job aids can come in several different forms. For example, a job aid can be a checklist, it can be a step-by-step guide, or it can be a reference aid. Once you identify the need for a job aid, it should become apparent what type of job aid will best address that need. You will also want to pick a format. For example, a checklist could work as a laminated paper that your sales personnel can tack up next to their phones or it could be an interactive app that allows your reps to actually check off boxes as they use it.
Job aids should be easy to read and understand or it will defeat the purpose. Information needs to be presented in a way that’s easy to scan, so avoid big blocks of text. A five-page paper filled with walls of text won’t aid anyone’s job, it will only make things more frustrating and confusing. Break up your text using bullets, numbers, headers, and even visuals. Make sure that all of your job aids have a consistent look in terms of fonts and colors. This way, it’s easy for everyone to switch from job aid to job aid without having to adjust how they look at it.
Before implementing the finished job aid across a department or throughout your whole organization, make sure that it works. Give your job aid to a few of your sales reps to see how much they help. Take notes during this process and request feedback from the reps who used the aids. Use this information to revise the job aid if needed. You may not be able to test all of your job aids. Sales job aids tend to be easier to test than marketing job aids. Some job aids may have to be implemented for a duration of time to analyze their impact.
Once you’ve tested your job aids and you’re happy with them, it’s time to implement them. Provide the job aids to the appropriate personnel along with directions on how to use them. Be sure to encourage them to use the job aids as well since some employees may dismiss them with the belief that they don’t need them. If you have a CRM, then implement your job aids there (even if you’ve printed out job aids, you should have digital versions available) so that your reps can easily access them.
Job Aids Integrate Sales And Marketing More Effectively
Improving marketing and sales isn’t just about the processes and strategies that you implement. It’s also about putting your marketing and sales teams in the best possible position to succeed, which is why job aids are such an effective tool. Job aids not only provide your marketing and sales reps with instruction and guidance whenever they need it, but they can help to unify and streamline your marketing and sales efforts to a more targeted approach.