Been enjoying working with a fella called Mike Turner, who sounds like a bit of a guru on the evolution of sales support. He likes to draw joined up sales intel thinking as a pawnbroker’s logo, namely three circles in a triangle configuration.
The first two are fairly commonplace, being a marketing support system meant to uncover opportunities and feed leads in to salesguys (a combination of in-house Business Intelligence and SAS software) linked to their activity tracker and forecast generator (customised Goldmine kit).
Then the third is all about how to share the multitude of anacdotel messages, intimate success stories and abundant tactical best-practices that occur in barely-reported isolation. With the challenge to ensure this is presented in such a way that it becomes an integral part of each sales person’s routine.
They toyed with the idea of running a blog that anyone can input experiences into, then realising sales people might not input (!) considered utilising marketing resource to ‘manage’ the flow. This option was similarly discounted due to inevitable role-erosion in the light of alternative task creep.
The solution will involve doing all of the donkey-work of intelligence capture for the sales people, and linking the three ‘systems’ in such a way that they become inter-dependent so that every week you’ll want to produce something or interact with each one to ensure a deal progresses your way.
It’s a cracking idea and one I’m looking forward to reporting success on at a later date.