A decade of tracking the Sales Enablement market and trends

Iris ChanAs my friend & Sales Enablement leader Iris Chan from IBM is announcing 2017’s 1st [and 2nd overall] meeting of the Sydney Australia chapter of the SALES ENABLEMENT SOCIETY @_sesociety for May 2, 2017, I’m reflecting on my journey in this space.

Sales Enablement on Google Trends2017 actually marks the 10 year anniversary of me tracking the Sales Enablement market.

I started to research the market players in 2007 and started to blog here on February 25, 2009.

Paul KrajewskiOver time many vendors merged, changed owners or went out of business and new ones keep on popping up. My count is “between 140 – 160 vendors; depending how you count” (for that post I tried out medium.com).

I published a…

… and even a Sales Enablement market deathwatch.

I actually just added a vendor today:

CantoCanto canto.com @canto Digital Sales Enablement: Digital asset management empowers your sales team by improving efficiency & creating new business opportunities. A DAM system makes your valuable media files available where you need them, any time. Sales reps never need to worry if they’re carrying all the relevant documents & presentations when meeting clients — all important sales collateral are accessible from their mobile device, laptop/tablet with fast, meta data-driven search & preview capabilities. Content is always up-to-date & ready to use. Social DAM features make digital collaboration easier & faster than ever. Build .ppt decks from pre-approved slides that are guaranteed to have the latest version. With Cumulus & DAM you can do that & more. Germany & San Francisco, USA

Despite all this, I’m getting something very similar to the following email every 2 months – like clockwork…

“I came across your blog while researching the Sales Enablement space for a company with a sales enablement tool in beta. Would you be open to a quick chat and explore the opportunity of working together for the short term? I’m sure we could use your expertise to understand the sales enablement market and user needs better. Thanks.”

…and I always respond with something like this:

“An integration with salesforce.com is what you will see at the top of the list. If you target startups, then a Slack integration would be a quick win. There are so many vendors & solutions out there from lightweight to enterprise grade, from freemium to million dollar deployments, etc…

I have seen more than 18 vendors enter this market and shut down already [without being purchased]. Many more had to sell or partner to survive. It is a very crowded market, because so many companies & sales experts used to have no tool for their sales people (or too many), then built one for their own use, and are trying to sell it to external customers now.

At this point, I would really warn anyone who wants to enter this market: You can burn a lot of money & never get profitable: The moment you have a customer, they will ask for so many changes & features that you will keep building something that either already exists (but they don’t want to combine many tools & ask you to build one that can do everything) or you will build something that only works for them and no other customer.

There have been sales enablement solutions that became too sophisticated and you needed to train their users. There have been sales enablement solutions that were really lightweight small widgets shown in PowerPoint to add slides into auto-generated presentations, but still did not successfully compete in this market place.

It is a tricky one with more and more 800-pound gorillas!”

Sales Enablement market deathwatch

Let me know if I got anything wrong in this Sales Enablement market deathwatch from March 29, 2017.

I am more than happy to resurrect you!

  • 2 comma sales 2commasales.com PlaybookPro: Custom-built web-based application to access, capture, organize & present all necessary product, marketing & sales information that you already have within your enterprise (typically scattered in many different places).
  • AvayaLive™ Engage web conferencing in virtual 3D environments for meetings, training, sales & support. Collaborative web browsing & accessing/presenting marketing material in on-demand, web-based, immersive collaboration environments. I worked on this during my time at Nortel Networks.
  • BizSphere was a suite of Sales Enablement software solutions for global enterprises with a complex portfolio [of products, services, & solutions] and large sales force / channel partners. The team responsible for the user interface & core concepts moved on to MING Labs minglabs.com and I’m preserving some of the content here on this blog under the tag bizsphere.
  • cc Loop (mailing lists with power for search and document discovery behind them) ccloop.com
  • cegeka’s Swiftslide swiftslide.eu Make your sales easier, better & more efficient. Delivers up-to-date content straight from your Marketing department to Sales when & where they need it. Improves communication between these two key departments & optimizes the sales process to prospects. Everything can be done remotely, with improved results, instant feedback & an overview one click away!
  • Compendian compendian.com officially still in business, but their CEO Chuck Carey took a job (at RevenueSphere) and Compendian’s most recent blog post is from 2015.
  • Creative Cafe creativecafehq.com Mix-and-Match Slides for Presentation & Sharing: Creative Cafe develops sets of slide-style modular content units that sales reps can choose from as needed to easily customize documents & presentations to share with prospects in person or across digital channels. A collective of senior-level creatives with a proven track record in B2B content development & design, founded by Leslie A. Hancock, content marketing & sales enablement consultant. “One way to align Marketing & Sales is to ensure that there is content available for every stage of the sales funnel to empower salespeople to convert leads to prospects & prospects to customers. Another way to align Marketing & Sales is to cross-pollinate, with representatives from both departments periodically meeting, sharing strategies, providing real-world updates, etc.” Now B2B Sales Content b2bsalescontent.com MICRO-AGENCY SPECIALIZING IN DEVELOPING CONTENT FOR B2B SALES ENABLEMENT. AUSTIN, Texas
  • Direxxis Marketing dmEDGE™ direxxismarketing.com Distributed Marketing Portal March 3, 2015 Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. acquired Direxxis LLC, a provider of cloud-based marketing solutions & services, to expand its suite of solutions for wealth & asset managers. “Financial advisors are moving from a mass marketing approach to data-driven strategies in which timely content can be tailored & distributed through both traditional & emerging channels,”
  • Immediately immediatelyapp.com cross-platform email tool for salespeople designed to enable closing deals from anywhere, as opportunities happen. Track from your phone & computer when your emails get opened, get reminders to follow up with leads, offer suitable meeting times, and use email templates for sales pitches. “Sales, or closing deals in general, is no longer a 9-to-5 job. You’re always selling, always closing. If you don’t, your competition will. And so having perfectly-timed actionable information, and the right tools to take action, is the winning formula. We give you both, as opportunities happen, immediately.” San Francisco
  • immer-uptodate (German: “immer” means “always”) immer-uptodate.net Enterprise Social Network Software. Create closed groups for [sales] people to exchange knowledge & documents.
  • KiCube apps to drag & drop your marketing content to build an interactive story for the devices used by your sales force. Austin, TX
  • Landslide Technologies landslide.com resource library for easy sharing, retrieval & managing j2 Global, Inc. acquired it. See j2global.com or campaignercrm.com
  • Mobizou mobizou.com
  • Omni-Share omni-share.com cloud-based CMS Sales Enablement & Marketing business tools: Empowers ‘heads’ of sales & marketing teams to quickly create, manage & distribute innovative presentations & content live to their employee’s desktop, tablet & mobile no matter where they are located in the world. Omni-Share is a brand of Clarity International, London, UK
  • SalesKB SalesKB.com
  • Sendside sendside.net Customer Communication Platform & Secure Communication Network. “Goes beyond simple security and takes electronic communication to a new level enabling high-impact, interactive, one-to-one communications between an organization and its clients, customers and/or prospects via the web.” Sendside Deliver: Secure, cloud-based message & document delivery service. Unlike email & other paper-based methods, it helps simplify gathering important documents relating to a transaction and send them to interested parties.
  • Solutions for Sales solutionsforsales.com
  • Stratascope stratascope.com
  • TribalKnowledge.tv Thought Action Group thoughtactiongroup.com was developing as a new organization with a portfolio of sales enablement services. adaptivesalesteam.wordpress.com also shut down.

Job opening – Product Marketing and Sales Enablement Manager – kCura

Product Marketing and Sales Enablement Manager

Job Location US-IL-Chicago

Req. # 2017-SM-SAM-0083

Type Full-Time
Department Marketing
Sub-Department Product Marketing

Overview

kCura is a global company with team members who are driven by our customers to build exceptional software for them to use every day. Our product, called Relativity, handles large volumes of data and helps corporations, law firms, and government agencies solve their own unique data problems.

The way we work together is centered on our core values of collaborating, communicating, pushing to exceed expectations (even our own), being humble, and having fun while we do it. We enjoy ourselves, give back, and work (and play) hard together. If this sounds like the place for you, check out the details of this position below.

As a Product Marketing & Sales Enablement Manager, you will develop the go-to-market strategies and sales enablement plans around major initiatives and product rollouts, act as the voice of the customer, and build and execute on activities and deliverables needed to successfully support the sales team to drive product success in the market through close relationships with sales, marketing, product management, and customer success. The Product Marketing & Sales Enablement Manager provides direction and applies company policies to broader team(s) or sub-department and is the subject matter expert for the communications in which they are involved.

Continue reading “Job opening – Product Marketing and Sales Enablement Manager – kCura”

Another market landscape – the content part of the Sales Ops space

Sydney Australia

Obviously the Sales Enablement space is a very crowded one (with my own list counting 151 vendors). When I re-posted the Sales Enablement section from the Marketing Technology landscape, someone literally felt like it hurt their eyes…

eyes hurt
…and on March 23, 2016 William Wagner (@WilliamWagner3) called it out as…

Impossible to read. Sales Enablement on the Marketing Technology Landscape March 2016 https://t.co/ZKLw68r6Tt #salesenablement

impossible to read

Therefore, it was good to see a more reduced approach to a market landscape map by Scale Venture Partners.

Here what they call the “Content” part of the “Sales Ops” space, but for me it is the part of Sales Enablement that my blog is all about:

Sales Ops content

Here the entire landscape – Courtesy of Scale Venture Partners:

screen-shot-2017-01-11-at-5-10-43-pm

I hope this additional 3rd party view helps to identify which of the 151 vendors matter; aside from my geographic classification, which obviously means less and less in a connected world and global economy. My Australian list just got extended to also include MING Labs @minglabs as they’re opening a Sydney Australia office.

List of Australian Sales Enablement companies – vendors in Australia

Interest in sales enablement around the world visitors visits views by countryInterest in sales enablement around the world visitors visits views by country countriesGiven that Australia has always been in the top 6 countries in terms of visits to this blog and given that Sales Enablement leader Iris Chan from IBM activated the Sydney Australia chapter of the SALES ENABLEMENT SOCIETY @_sesociety, I would like to add a list of Australian Sales Enablement companies in addition to my global list. See below.

Starting in 2007, I actually worked together with Iris on Sales Enablement for Nortel‘s more than 4,000 sales people and saw her grow into a leader in this space.

The SALES ENABLEMENT SOCIETY sesociety.org is a global volunteer group of practitioners – lead by Scott Santucci – dedicated to the elevation of Sales Enablement as a profession & strategic function.

Join them on LinkedIn: linkedin.com/groups/8465729/profile

Sales Enablement Society

List of Australian Sales Enablement companies – last updated January 18, 2017:

Logenta –LinkedInThey work with with leaders across enterprise sales, advice, marketing, & compliance to optimise & automate data-driven client engagement, massively increase sales productivity, & provide invaluable sales intelligence. They are currently focussed on a digital platform called SalesPreso that is being used in Telstra, REA Group, MYOB & Australia Post to integrate with their CRM & other systems to dramatically improve productivity for their sales teams, relevance for their customers, & insights for their management teams. Logenta is a premier partner & investor in SalesPreso salespreso.com which integrates with CRM & other data sources to automate the delivery of highly interactive digital presentations. Customer-insights are delivered through an elegant story-telling experience; the story is managed & consistent; the story is automatically relevant; the story is tracked & measured. Cremorne VIC 3121, Australia

MING Labs minglabs.com @minglabs User Experience Design company: Design & Development for mobile responsive websites or mobile apps. Also Portfolio & Marketing Consulting. The team was behind the user interface of BizSphere & Combionic’s slide library. Full disclosure: I’ve worked here. Berlin, Munich, NYC, Toronto, Singapore & Shanghai based, as well as having one of their design leaders starting a Sydney Australia office.

Peter Strohkorb Consulting peterstrohkorbconsulting.com @pstrohkorb International, Sales & Marketing Collaboration, Customer Centricity & Experience, Sales Enablement, Author, Speaker, Mentor

ShineCX Pty. Ltd. Sales & marketing enablement + automation. Bringing a Sales Enablement software platform to market (some focus on APAC). SHINE CX PTY LTD was incorporated on 2015-05-07. Brisbane, Australia. At least for Australia they seem to be partnering with RISEcx. [Together?] developed a platform that leverages the convergence of education, sales & marketing. Currently connecting to Salesforce Healthcloud to be Healthcloud’s first integration partner as they enter the field of Patient Engagement. RISEcx used to be SpinRiot spinriot.com founded in 2012, Portland, Oregon now branded as RISEcx risecx.com A scalable way to deliver adaptive content strategies to support unique customer experiences. Cloud based collaboration platform, easy to deploy, easy to learn, easy to use. Your brand powered by data driven marketing so you can see what’s working. Seamless interactive presentation created from your existing assets (video, PDF, PowerPoint, images, YouTube).

Q2 2016 Sales Enablement News – bots for sales reps?

Paul Krajewski

I was honored to be included on this list of ‘Top 6 Movers and Shakers in Sales Enablement’ by Conor Gilligan from April 20, 2016.

My own list of Sales Enablement vendors grew to 151.

Recent additions are

Bsharp bsharpcorp.com @bsharpcorp,

ContexTip contextip.com @contextip,

Nolinio nolinio.com @nolinio,

Promatum promatum.com @PromatumEE

and this addition to my list of Canada based Sales Enablement companies:

Vidyard vidyard.com @vidyard video solution to help you close even the toughest of deals more quickly & easily. Tools & data you need to maximize audience engagement, convert prospects through the sales funnel, & measure the true impact of video. Access all your video content from mobile or desktop; Hand-pick the ones that are perfect for the specific lead; Create a custom video playlist; Record a friendly, personalized video greeting if you wish; Create & send an email using well-designed layouts; Track who is watching what to gain insights on leads & close them more quickly & easily. Kitchener/Waterloo, ON, Canada

On January 26, 2016 Vidyard announced it closed a $35m series C round led by Battery Ventures, with existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Salesforce Ventures, OMERS Ventures, iNovia Capital, & SoftTech VC.

The future, according to Vidyard, “is about ignoring vanity metrics. Instead, businesses that move toward creating original video content to support every stage of the buying cycle need to focus on the metrics that help to explain customer behavior.” “View counts don’t do much to help you identify which buyers are the most interested in your products or services,”

On April 21, 2016 Paul Alex Gray spoke at #BotTO (event in Toronto on chatbots, AI, messaging, etc) outlining the transition from web to mobile to bots.

“Messaging: powers two-way interactions.

Bots: enable you to personalize experiences at scale.”

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 1.28.39 PM

Photo above by Ian Gerald King slide by Paul Alex Gray

bots for Sales Enablement

I’m not posting this as a statement that b2b sales reps are going away, but could see nice applications (bots) that automate [personalize at scale] the enablement of the sales rep with marketing/training content for her/his sales situation.

Slack bot

Slack bots

follow up – Sales Enablement market size and growth rate

sales enablement on the marketing technology landscape march 2016This is a follow-up to my post ‘What is the Sales Enablement market size and how hot is it?’ triggered by seeing that Sales Enablement grew on the Marketing Technology Landscape by Scott Brinker; becoming part of its largest category (by number of solutions included) “Sales Automation, Enablement & Intelligence” (with 220 solutions).

Obviously my own count of Sales Enablement vendors/solutions grew too.

Screen Shot 2016-03-31 at 5.06.22 PM

The interest in ‘Sales Enablement’ has continued to increase and left ‘Sales 2.0’ in the dust as Google Trends shows.

Visits & views to this very blog have also been up, but that is obviously not the best reference point for growth in the Sales Enablement market:

Screen Shot 2016-03-31 at 5.01.51 PM

As promised in my post ‘What is the Sales Enablement market size and how hot is it?’ I have been tracking the number of LinkedIn users with Sales Enablement in their current job title. As of December 22, 2016, LinkedIn has 4,185 users like that globally.

Here my own graph tracking this:

LinkedIn users with Sales Enablement in job title

Here a snapshot of what the Google Adwords tools can tell us about people using Google to search for Sales Enablement portal/solutions/tools and related phrases:

  • Mar 2015 – Feb 2016
  • worldwide
  • across all languages
  • Google and search partners

Screen Shot 2016-03-31 at 5.22.45 PM

You could obviously take many approaches to use these data points and the number of vendors (with their revenues or simply employee numbers from LinkedIn for example) to calculate the size of the Sales Enablement market.

However, it is obvious: Things are going up and to the right (including the cost of acquiring a customer; see bids for Google AdWords above).

In Forrester’s ‘Vendor Landscape: Sales Enablement Automation Solutions’ [from March 21, 2016] the average annual growth for 18 of the vendors surveyed was 38%.