Sales playbooks form a key part of any corporate sales training programme, from sales enabling sales reps at product launch through to being a critical day to day resource for supporting customers conversations. So let’s take a look at how a corporate sales playbook could help your organization.
Corporate Sales Playbooks Form The Basis For Product Launches
Sales playbooks are critical for successful product launches: they often are the ‘bible’ for a new product, containing all the information that marketing, sales and product teams will need to have at hand when discussing a new product with customers.
From how to deliver an elevator pitch about the new product through to how to effectively manage customer objections, the process of creating a sales playbook often throws up really important questions that otherwise would have gone unanswered about your product, but are nevertheless really key information points to get across to customers.
For example, have you thought about defining why a customer should choose a new product to solve their challenge, rather than simply doing nothing? This is a question we often ask clients to help them to get across to their customers the importance of acting (as often, the main stumbling block to buying a product is getting over changing from the status quo of doing things the way they are already done today).
The sales playbook creation process often forces some of these unusual questions that might not be typically thought of when preparing marketing and sales collateral for a new product launch.
What to do:
- For new product launches, look through the questions you would have to answer to create a sales playbook (you can access a comprehensive list of playbook questions in our Sales Playbook Template Pack), and see if there are any areas you might have missed out from your usual marketing and sales materials.
- If you don’t have time to create an entire Sales Playbook, then create just a few key sections to support your sales reps and account managers in customer conversations, such as a section for how to overcome common objections, or upsell opportunities for other products or services.
Don’t Reinvent The Wheel: Use Sales Playbooks As The Foundation For Your Sales Training Material
Very often, organisations create a Sales Playbook, and then embark on a separate project to build their sales training program. Corporate Sales Playbooks cover most, if not all, of the content you would need for any comprehensive sales training program, from pitching clients through to managing objections and queries effectively.
And, the closer you can align your sales playbook to other sales training material, the more consistent your overall sales messaging will be.
What to do:
- Create your sales playbook at the same time as your sales training materials to ensure everything happens in parallel and that messaging is consistent. Or, create your sales playbook, and use the content as the foundation for your training activities. Many people use the Sales Playbook PowerPoint Template as their sales training presentation to reps and account teams, while using the Word/PDF version from our Sales Playbook Template Pack as the downloadable or printable formal playbook.
- Gather insights from your sales teams about products to inform your sales training program. For example, using their experience from selling similar products or services, what are common customer objections? What is the customer market that the product is being sold into and what is that industry facing at the moment in terms of challenges and business initiatives?
Don’t Forget To Include Sales Enablement Collateral For Reseller and Channel Sales Teams
When launching a new product or embarking on new training initiatives, have you thought about how to sales enable and train your reseller and channel teams? Sometimes, a sales playbook designed for your own sales teams only needs a few tweaks to make it a channel-ready document.
It also ensures that your channel teams are getting the same, consistent messaging that your own sales teams receive – so that you can be confidently training your resellers to the same high standards of your own sales teams.
What to do:
- Design a sales enablement program for your channel sales teams to support your new product launch or training push, including vital elements such as:
- Cheat sheets and sales battlecards
- Product overviews
- Customer sales scenarios and role play examples
- Dual-branded sales collateral and customer presentations
- Tweak internal sales playbooks and product training to be ready for your channel audience.
- Focus on consistent messaging and training activities, instead of one program for your own sales teams and another for the reseller sales teams.
- ‘Level up’ the type of training and sales enablement you offer to your reseller teams by providing them with leading-edge sales enablement tools and collateral. Look to some of the leading partner-focused companies such as IBM and EMC for ideas on how to offer state of the art reseller training.
If you want some guidance in creating your Sales Playbook, then take a look at our Sales Playbook Template Pack which is specially created for B2B sales teams. It has everything you need to create your sales playbook quickly and concisely; drawing on our years of experience creating sales playbooks for starts and corporates in the B2B space.