Note; if you haven’t read our previous post on CLM, take a look at it first by clicking here: “Improve Sales Effectiveness by Closing the Loop“.
An effective CLM strategy needs the right CLM tool. There are some great CLM tools out there which let you create engaging content, have detailed analytics on content use, and let you integrate CRM.
While all of these things are important (as you saw in our previous post), one pivotal element is often forgotten. This one element distinguishes a successful closed loop marketing strategy from one that’s a burden to implement and stick with.
This element is the ability to ‘do it yourself’, meaning the tool is easy to use right away. Marketers need to be able to work directly with the tool, without having to learn new skills like programming, or having to hire an expensive agency to create or update content. Most of the tools available on the market are absolutely not ‘do it yourself’.
Why is Ease of Use so Important?
CLM is Based on Continuous Improvement
For a closed loop marketing strategy to work effectively, you must be able to continuously improve your materials based on how they are being used. You need to learn from analytics, to be able to see what works and what doesn’t.
You learn by performing A/B testing, testing different messaging, or different meeting flows. Once you find an approach works well on a certain target group, you want to quickly implement what you learnt to improve your materials and targeting. Based on customer insights, you can adapt your approach to specific customer profiles. This lets you remain focused on your message, but flexible in how you approach each customer.
Adoption by the Sales Team
We learned from our clients that in over 50% of meetings, marketing collateral is not used. Using marketing material and visuals however, is one of the most crucial factors for success by the sales team.
What makes a tool stick for the sales team?
You need to be open to learning from mistakes, and remain flexible. If some flow is not working, or some wording isn’t comfortable, you need to act quickly to change it. To empower sales reps, you need to provide them with ‘’news’’ every time they visit a customer. Again, when you find out which elements are successfully adopted, you want to extend upon them.
The Market Environment Demands Flexibility
Propositions change, requirements change, competitors change their approach and new content ideas arrive. If you want to keep up with the market, you need to be flexible in executing new ideas. You need to be able to meet a constantly changing market environment, along with events such as new regulations or new competitors forming.
Learning by Doing
For a successful closed loop marketing implementation, both marketing and sales need to embrace the new way of working that CLM offers. To do that, marketers need to be able to use the software themselves. They need to be slicing and dicing in statistics, experimenting with market surveys and meeting flows. Why? Executing successful CLM works in this order; thinking and getting ideas > doing > learning > improving. Learn from what you do. That’s why the best way to implement CLM is by doing it yourself. The tool you use needs to be easy to use without training.
Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
Businesses spend more and more on sales because they are such an important driver for sales. For hard to use CLM tools, the ‘hidden cost’ of hiring an agency to create materials for it, implement simple changes, are extensive. These hidden costs end up costing the business far more money than the tool itself.
Not only is the cost of ownership higher, the process is less flexible. Since you don’t want to pay for every single improvement to your materials, you won’t hire the agency every single time. This means the materials are less optimized, less up-to-date, and less effective.
Yes, agencies have real value, as they can offer a fresh take on your material and approach. But, agencies are usually no content specialist in your area of expertise. They are not always aware of your specific needs. A lot of time and quality of materials gets lost between the marketing team and the external agency when creating the actual marketing materials.
‘Easy to Use’ is not always Do it Yourself
Many tools say they are easy to use. This is very different from being able to ‘Do It Yourself’.
For example, some CLM system certified designers told us they would need between 5 and 8 hours to create a single presentation. In a DIY tool like Shaman, you are able to do this yourself, in 30 minutes tops. Performing an update only takes a few minutes.
To hire an agency can cost up to $5,000 per presentation. For organizations that work with an inflexible CLM tool, and one of these agencies, the CLM system is not continuously improved, and it’s not flexible enough. It also gets very expensive.
On the other side, using a DIY tool like Shaman can be sustainable for every organization.
- A truly DIY tool lets you continuously and rapidly improve your sales materials, without having to call, wait, and pay for an outside agency.
- Your sales team will find it easier to adapt to a DIY tool. They don’t need to learn any new skills, or receive any training.
- You can adapt to shifting market conditions immediately.
- By being able to use the software themselves, marketers will be able to fully embrace your CLM strategy.
- Total cost of ownership is much lower. You don’t need to hire expensive outside agencies. You can stay flexible by using a DIY tool.
Ready to adapt a CLM strategy using a truly DIY tool?
See pricing for Shaman here, and save yourself the time and cost of hiring outside agencies, and the opportunity cost of missing out on sales because of outdated meeting collateral.