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Inside Sales (Jun 10th, 2019)

Hello Inside Sales subscribers,

Welcome to the new Monday edition of Inside Sales, where each week we'll spotlight a hot list of tools, trends, terms and more from the sales world. This is designed to start your week off right with some good insights and perhaps some inspiration. 

This week we have my picks for the top 10 sales enablement tools. These are the tools that provide content, information and technology to engage buyers throughout the entire sales funnel. The top 10 list below is in no particular order, but they do represent what we see at Inside Sales as some of the best tools of the trade. 

If you have an idea for this newsletter or want to add to the list -- please do! Just hit reply to this email and tell us: What are your top 10 tools for sales enablement?

-William

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1. DiscoverOrg

What: DiscoverOrg is a provider of contact and account data for B2B sales designed to get a sales rep the right info to move a sale down the funnel. The company used data collection, visualization, and analytics tools to help the sales team with up-to-date information on phone numbers, email addresses, leadership changes, and other details about prospective companies. 

Why: This is a great tool for the business development team as it takes a lot of the guesswork out of cold calling/prospecting and saves the reps time when navigating an organization and when figuring out who is the best person to call. For the account executive (AE) team, the tool helps get a direct connection to the all-important decision-makers and lends valuable insights to nail your pitch once you have their attention. 

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2. SalesLoft 

What: SalesLoft is a sales automation platform that helps sales reps connect to their customers and prospects by delivering the right content and messaging at the right moment to get the most out of each interaction. It also helps sales leaders by giving insight into the sales team's tasks and lets them know which activities work best and which do not.

Why: SalesLoft helps automate a lot of the day-to-day tasks like emailing, calling and content posting. It helps personalize the sales process, ensuring the rep’s message resonates with their target audience as the deal moves through the whole sales process. The platform also has an excellent bi-directional Salesforce integration that allows you to work straight out of your CRM while Salesloft works in the background. 

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3. Outreach

What: Outreach automates and prioritizes customer touch points throughout the sales process. The platform places actionable data intelligence at the fingertips of sales reps through a single view of all prospect-related information -- title, contact info, history of sales touches. It also helps by automatically orchestrating email, voice, and social messaging to get the prospect's attention when interest is at its highest. 

Why: It makes the sales rep's life easier by tracking daily activity, simplifying prospecting and bringing together all sales tasks into a single view. It also removes the human element using by AI to automate follow-ups, log phone calls and set meetings. It is especially effective when chasing a big book of business or trying to navigate large, complicated sales.

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4. Brainshark

What: Brainshark calls itself a "sales readiness" platform that helps sales teams with training and materials needed to make a positive impression on the buyer. It helps keep the team sharp, especially out in the field, by streamlining onboarding, providing on-going coaching and by supplying needed sales content that is accessible anywhere, anytime. 

Why: Brainshark really helps teams that work remotely or that are out in the field by allowing them to create presentations and easily upload them and edit them for future use. It also helps sales leaders by giving them an opportunity to have on-going training and one-on-one coaching in a central, easy-to-access place to drive performance. 

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5. Gong.io 

What: Gong.io is a conversation intelligence platform for sales that automatically records, transcribes and analyzes all of the sales team's calls using an AI. The software captures all of the sales team's conversations and presentations - phone calls, web conferences, emails and demos -- to ascertain which interactions close the most deals.

Why: Knowing which words and conversations work best are powerful insights to help sales reps position their product, counter objections, and close deals. It is also an excellent teaching tool for sales leaders to hone their sales team's messaging and to help with onboarding new reps. 

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6. Showpad

What: Showpad is an all-in-one platform that empowers sales and marketing teams by integrating training and coaching and content management solutions. 

Why: The platform is easy to use, intuitive and gives reps the ability to have access to the right content at the right time and provides real-time reporting for sales leaders. 

7. Acquire 

What: Acquire is a customer communication platform that offers a multi-channel messaging designed to bridge the gap between customers and sales reps through video, voice calling and live chat. 

Why: Acquire allows the sales team to have a direct connection via chat or video to prospects who are looking for info on a product or who perhaps are ready to buy immediately. 

8. Dialpad

What: Dialpad is a VOIP phone system that keeps organizations connected through HD voice calling, video, messaging and meetings across all devices.

Why: Dialpad's ability to send texts, see who's answered each call,  transfer calls seamlessly and enable chat features are great phone tools for a sales rep -- especially one who's on the go (as they all should be, really).

9. Mediafly

What: Mediafly’s platform provides apps and tools to create and deliver sales interactions, automate data entries, share in-depth analytics and monitor content consumption. 

Why: Mediafly gives sales reps a range of accessible content at their fingertips so as they uncover pain points, they can immediately get out content in real-time that is most pertinent to move the sale along. 

10. Highspot

What: Highspot uses AI to analyze various sales and marketing tools like data sheets, case studies, presentations and white papers. 

Why: Giving the salesperson analytics for their sales content gives them a distinct advantage for closing sales when dealing with role types, different verticals and buying processes. 

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William Wallace is a sales veteran and journalist with years of experience in such diverse realms as High-Performance Computing, Big Data, education software and SaaS products. When not hunting for the next sales/business opportunity, he is a self-professed foodie and published writer with an abiding passion for all forms of expression.

Editing team: Kim Lyons (Pittsburgh-based journalist and managing editor at Inside), David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology), and Bobby Cherry (senior editor at Inside, who’s always on social media).

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