From leadership and admin to client service and design, I worked with every member of our team (up to 65 people at its highest) to each put together a piece a least once a month.
Running a successful content marketing program is no small feat. It requires a full investment and support not only by marketing, but by your entire company.
One team that is of particular importance in your content marketing effort is sales.
Now, I know what many of you are thinking — "Sales needs to focus on selling" — and I won't lie to you; getting our sales team to contribute content was probably one of the hardest because of this belief.
It lets you offer valuable information and education; to answer the questions keeping them up at night and be seen as a helpful guide.
Nobody knows this information better than your sales team.
They speak to your prospects every single day. They have detailed insights into what potential customers need to know and hear to feel comfortable making a purchase no one else does.
This is the first-hand information that will set your content apart from your competition and truly resonate with your audience.
But how do you get your sales team invested and excited about creating content for your company?
How to get sales teams excited about creating content
Here are six lessons I’ve learned about getting sales to lean in.
1. Lead with the sales process
Great marketing content can be a salesperson’s best friend.
It’s like having an assistant that works 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to educate and qualify your prospects and never needs a raise or vacation.
This "on-demand" nature can be of particular value to folks in sales.
That said, to get your sales team excited about creating content, lead with how they can use content when reaching out to prospects.
Explain how offering something of value to cold prospects (like a blog article addressing a problem they're facing) is a more friendly and effective way to grab their attention than simply asking them to set up a call.
Furthermore, talk about how sales reps can use content in the sales process (a practice we call assignment selling) to address questions or combat objections buyers might have as or even before they come.
Doing this helps both prospects and sales reps save time on sales calls discussing common questions and more time diving into a prospect's specific needs and goals.
Better educated, qualified leads means more efficient and effective sales conversations.
Nothing will kill your sales team’s enthusiasm more quickly than having them create content they’ll never see the value in. If they don’t see the clear benefit of how a topic will help them close deals, it will be like pulling teeth every time.
So how do you avoid this trap?
Ask them what questions they get most frequently in the sales process. What questions do they wish they had a resource to share when prospects asked them?
Okay, so you’ve been reading so far, thinking, “this all makes sense, but my VP/CEO/COO will never in a million years sign off on my salespeople spending the requisite time to write a blog post." Or maybe it's, "my salespeople aren't writers!"
If your sales team doesn’t like to write, have them record videos answering common questions. You can then publish this to social media, use it as is in the sales process or on your website, or even transcribe it into article in the future.
Where there is a will, there is a way. Be flexible and work with people's strengths.
5. Show them the impact
I can't say it enough: Sales wants to see that what they're contributing their time and effort to improves the bottom line.
That's why the best way to get sales excited about creating content is by showing them how content has contributed to closed deals.
Share reports of how content was consumed throughout a customer's journey to close.
For example, you can analyze how many pages or articles a customer viewed before becoming a lead or the page that brought them onto the website for the first time.