Measuring sales content performance is a crucial step in improving your sales materials and your sales team’s close rates. By understanding what content resonates with your prospects and what falls short, you can identify content blind spots, optimize your sales approach, and drive more revenue.
No longer are the days of blindly sending out sales pitches and hoping for the best. With the rise of data-driven decision-making, measuring the performance of your sales materials has never been easier or more effective.
Yet a lot of sales teams are still stuck in a position where they don’t really know the impact of content. In this article, we'll delve into the importance of measuring sales content performance and explore some of the most effective ways to do so.
What is Sales Content Performance?
Companies that track marketing and sales performance are 1.5x more likely to achieve higher growth rates than their competitors.
Sales content performance measures the effectiveness of your sales-related materials and resources in achieving a desired goal. These goals can be generated leads, closed deals, or an increase in revenue. By measuring sales content performance, you are able to correlate the impact of your content with your overall sales performance.
The most common metrics used to assess content performance are:
- Open rates
- Who viewed your content
- Time spent on content (slides/pages)
- Conversion rates
- Return on investment
This analysis helps organizations evaluate the effectiveness of their sales content and make any necessary improvements to enhance its performance. McKinsey states that companies that track marketing and sales performance are 1.5x more likely to achieve higher growth rates than their competitors. With content being your main currency in B2B sales, implementing the same principle is a no-brainer.
Check out Showell's Sales Content Analytics →
Why Measuring Sales Content Performance is Crucial to Driving Revenue?
Einstein (supposedly) said, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” So why do you keep using the same content when your buyers seem to just ignore it? By measuring the performance of sales content, you can clearly identify what works and what doesn’t. This then empowers you to make well-formed decisions to improve your sales content strategy and tactics where needed.
You can identify the strengths and weaknesses of your content and make changes accordingly
Gain critical knowledge and improve outreach even with the basic metrics
By analyzing even just basic metrics such as open rates, who viewed your offer, content usage, and share rates, you can identify the strengths and weaknesses of your content and make changes accordingly. These metrics provide critical information about the prospect’s interests, who the decision-makers involved are, and any possible barriers to sales.
Sales teams can use this information to adjust and improve their outreach, and even reach out to buyers in advance. You ultimately create a better buyer experience and increase engagement when you understand what resonates and what does not.
From tracking the engagement of your emails to analyzing the open rates and usage of your presentations, there are numerous metrics, tools, and data points out there. These can help you gain valuable insights into the effectiveness of your sales content.
How to Utilize Sales Content Analytics to Develop Your Collateral?
Resonant and relevant sales content is critical to sales success. And improving it doesn’t have to be complicated. Regular assessment and improvement of sales content performance will help you close more deals and stay ahead of the competition.
Here are 3 ways to leverage insights from sales content analytics:
1) Segment your buyers to better target your content
Segmenting your audience is about grouping your target audience into smaller groups based on their shared characteristics or behaviors.
One size doesn’t fit all and the same is true for your content. Your buyers may have similar needs, but they are interested in different product and service offerings. These are reflected in what aspects appeal to different buyers. Some prioritize a clear implementation plan, ROI and effort estimations, transparent pricing, or customer references, just to name a few.
Segmentation is key to creating and sharing content that resonates
Segmenting your buyers takes a conscious understanding of their shared intentions, pain points, or behaviors. This way, you can tailor your messaging to each specific segment and really hit the mark when it comes to your content resonating with your audience.
Metrics such as open rates, share rates, and even page views allow you to divide your buyers based on interest and what they’re looking for.
By measuring sales content performance, you are able to see where their needs and priorities may lie. Metrics such as open rates, share rates, and even page views allow you to divide your buyers based on interest and what they’re looking for. You can even segment them based on how they interact with your brand, such as how often they engage or the type of content they like.
When you have your buyers segmented and content bases set, you can evaluate the actual behaviors of these segments and improve with these metrics. This may mean doing content comparisons, adding more visual elements, or simply improving the tone of your content.
2) Enable your team’s ability to create targeted content for better buyer engagement
Now that you have segmented your buyers, it’s time for you to evaluate your content. Your collateral is one of your most important sales assets. It helps you communicate your company's offerings and value to your buyers in order to help them make informed purchasing decisions. But content can be ineffective if it fails to address your buyers' requirements.
See how buyers react to content you share with them
Just like you can’t be everything to everyone, your content can’t be the same for all your buyers. Your buyers may have similar needs, but effective content has to address the specific buyer in a specific situation. By measuring sales content performance, you are able to keep a closer eye on how your buyers consume and interact with your content. An open rate, a page view, or a share rate from document interactions can be reliable indicators of what catches their attention the most and what draws their attention the least.
Your content can be tailored to meet their [buyers] needs and to match what will most capture their interests at a given point in time based on these insights.
If you want to go beyond seeing how your buyers reacts to your content, see how their behavior and preferences impact your sales performance. Read more about The Impact of Buyer Behavior and Cognitive Biases on Sales Performance →
Tailor your sales presentations based on prospects' interest
For instance, the data shows that your prospect has opened your sales presentation and spent time on content about your existing customers. This content showcases how certain product functionalities have improved their process, then it’s likely that your prospect will find that relevant to their needs. You can use this to your advantage and tailor your sales presentation to center around that use case.
Your content can be tailored to meet their needs and to match what will most capture their interests at a given point in time based on these insights.
This also works vice versa if you find yourself with unopened or unengaged sales materials. Based on sales content performance, you can see any patterns of behavior and understand which use cases are irrelevant.
Reveal blind spots, see behind the curtain
With these insights, you can also spot any content blind spots based on which content or specific pages are viewed the most. This is like your buyer’s way of saying “This is exactly what I’m looking for!” By having the advantage of seeing what happens behind the scenes, you can better personalize content and ultimately, increase engagement.
3) Improve content use rate within your sales team
According to G2, up to 90% of B2B sellers don’t use sales materials because they are irrelevant or outdated. By tracking content use rates, marketers can gain feedback and dig deeper into why their content is not being used. With these insights, marketers can see which particular content is most valuable to sales teams and can stop wasting their time and effort on content that nobody cares about.
Marketers can focus their efforts on optimizing content that the sales team uses frequently
Focus marketing efforts and resources to support sales better
By tracking your sales’ content use rate, you are able to understand when and how sales leverage your content during meetings and presentations. This way, marketers can focus their efforts on optimizing content that the sales team uses frequently. Marketers are then more effective at supporting sales by continuously providing up-to-date information and most importantly, relevant content.
Identify stakeholders who are involved in decision making
Data on share and download rates are also particularly beneficial in identifying which stakeholders are involved and who are the decision-makers in the sales process. As the account moves through the sales journey, its requirements may evolve along with it. By having the advantage of seeing how they consume your materials, you are able to anticipate their needs better.
You are able to inform each stakeholder’s particular needs without interruptions/circling back in the sales process as you adapt your content. You’re not only providing them with the right information at the right time but also potentially shortening your sales cycle.
Common Issues Affecting Sales Content Performance
It is worth mentioning that despite the advantages of measuring sales content performance, it is not a magic bullet for problems with your content. There may be other factors that are affecting your sales content performance. These factors include content accessibility or how easily your sellers can find content, unclear messaging and value propositions, lack of personalization, and poor content formatting. It’s worth considering addressing these issues first.
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The synergy between sales and marketing can lead to improved sales performance, enhanced customer satisfaction, and increased revenue.
Align sales and marketing to generate more revenue
However, sales content analytics help build a stronger bridge between your sales and marketing teams. It’s crucial to the success of any organization. The synergy between these two departments can lead to improved sales performance, enhanced customer satisfaction, and increased revenue.
But there are also a few things to keep in mind. First, content quality is crucial. In order to create content that resonates, it must be thoroughly structured, researched, and communicate the key value propositions of your product. Not only that, content visuals and formatting also play a key role in improving the overall quality of your content.
Sales representatives who are on the front line have a unique perspective on what customers need and what messaging resonates with them.
Create a process for continuous improvement
This is where the feedback loop plays an instrumental role. Sales representatives are on the front line, interacting with customers and prospects on a daily basis. They have a unique perspective on what customers need and what messaging resonates with them. Marketing must incorporate this feedback into their content creation process to ensure that the content is relevant and effective.
Close the gap between sales and marketing
Finally, the role of analytics is to bridge the knowledge gap between marketing and sales. By analyzing customer data, organizations can gain insights into customer preferences, buying behaviors, and sales trends. This information can then be used to refine marketing and sales strategies, optimize content, and improve overall performance.
Asendia's Success with Sales Content Performance
Asendia is an international logistics company delivering parcels and mail worldwide, and they implemented Showell to help sales teams to best use their sales collateral.
Not only did Showell ease their problem of disorganized and scattered content, but it also benefitted from measuring its sales content performance. For the first time ever, salespeople can track customer engagement through email, LinkedIn, or even WhatsApp. No matter what platform they are prospecting on, the insights gathered from sales content performance help them refine their sales strategy. This kind of versatility helps salespeople make the most of their pitching efforts.
“We're not providing a service; we provide solutions. So, we customize solutions for our customers. Being able to go into Showell and pick and choose what they need in the presentation to customize the offer, has definitely put us in a position to make us more competitive.”
- Sharvon P. Hales, Sales Support & Marketing, Asendia USA
This has also helped them create a stronger alliance between their sales and marketing teams. By removing the hassle of scattered content, their salespeople are able to address buyer objections and inquiries at any time, with just the click of a button. Content is much more focused and resonates with their buyers.
In a nutshell, using sales content performance to develop your content is a total game-changer. By keeping tabs on engagement metrics, finding the common threads in what resonates with your audience, and customizing your messaging for each group, you can make sure your content is always hitting the mark. By putting sales content performance at the forefront of your content strategy, you're setting yourself up for some serious wins.