The Power of AI in Sales Enablement: How It Works + 7 Tools To Close More Deals
Artificial intelligence, AI for short, has completely revolutionized modern society. But we've gotten so used to having AI in our lives, we barely even notice it anymore.
Case in point: when was the last time you thought about the automated customer service agent at the other end of the phone? Or the shows Netflix recommends? Been a while, right?
The truth is, we only pay attention to AI when it does something incredible, like when one of Elon's Teslas uses it to drive through traffic—without crashing! Or outrageous, like when Bing AI, Microsoft's ChatGPT alternative, compared an AP reporter to Adolf Hitler. Rude!
The average person might take AI for granted, but salespeople definitely shouldn't.
Once you add AI solutions to your company's tech stack—and learn to harness them—you'll become much more productive, close more deals, and drive more revenue.
This is especially true when it comes to sales enablement. Keep reading to learn how AI can improve your sales enablement processes and specific tools you can use to make it happen.
AI in Sales Enablement: How It Works (And Why You Should Care)
AI is a specific technology that allows machines to simulate human intelligence.
AI can be broken down into multiple disciplines: cognitive computing, computer vision, machine learning, neural networks, deep learning, and natural language processing (NLP).
Once equipped with AI tech, a machine can perform tasks that typically require human input. For sales reps, said tasks include CRM data entry and sales forecasting. Many email marketing tools and automated chatbots also use AI algorithms to boost performance.
Sales enablement, on the other hand, is the process of helping a sales team sell better. Sales managers usually handle it, though large organizations often have distinct sales enablement teams, who create content and build workflows for their sellers.
Both AI and sales enablement are important in their own right. But what happens when these two fields collide like a couple of heavyweight boxers?
Answer: really good things.
For example, AI can determine which pieces of content a sales rep should share—and when. It can also be used to analyze sales data, coach reps, and otherwise develop a data-driven approach to sales that makes closing deals way easier.
4 Ways AI Can Boost Your Sales Enablement Process
With the right AI technology, you'll be able to streamline a variety of sales enablement tasks for your company. Let's take a quick look at a few specific use cases.
1. Analyze Sales Calls with Conversational Intelligence
Your sales reps talk to prospects every day. How do you help them have more productive discussions that generate revenue? Simple: use conversation intelligence software.
AI sales apps like Chorus.ai (mentioned below) will help you and your team record, transcribe, and analyze sales calls. These apps can input data into your CRM system of choice, too, and uncover critical insights that your reps can use to close more deals in less time.
2. Build Better Coaching Strategies
AI-powered sales tools can analyze a variety of sales activities, not just phone conversations.
Even better, said tools can suggest areas of improvement and/or next steps in your company's sales process. For example, how can Rep ABC improve their close rate? And which piece of content should Rep XYZ send to their prospect? Let the robots decide.
To be clear, AI will never replace a dedicated sales manager. You'll still need to spend a significant amount of time on sales coaching activities. But AI can assist you in this endeavor, uncovering insights you might have missed and making you much more productive. Win!
3. Create Sales Playbooks and Guidance for Your Reps
According to Seismic, a sales enablement company, AI-guided selling, "combines human intelligence and machine learning to create more intelligent buyer engagements."
You can then use this information to streamline rep onboarding processes and create proven playbooks—based on real-world data—for them to follow, which will produce better results.
4. Surface the Right Sales Content at the Right Time
We've touched on AI's ability to suggest specific pieces of content at specific times. But this is such an important part of the sales enablement process, it deserves a closer look.
At which stage of the sales cycle should your reps share that one case study? How about that one webinar? You know, the one your company's marketing team hosted last year?
There's no "right" answer to these questions because every prospect's decision-making process is different. Some prospects will want the case study first. Others would rather watch the webinar and forget the case study even exists. Every situation is unique.
AI can help your reps surface the right content at the right times, based on customer behavior. When this happens, your sales team will almost certainly close more deals.
7 Sales Enablement Platforms That Offer AI Features
There are a bunch of sales enablement tools out there. In this section, we'll focus on the ones that include AI features, which you can use to supercharge your department's sales process.
Best for: Evaluating sales reps
Price: Contact Convin for pricing
Convin helps users "create breakthrough customer experiences with AI." How does it do this, you ask? By reviewing every customer-facing conversation your sales and support teams have, analyzing behavior, scoring employee performance, and offering advice. The tool can record and transcribe conversations, too, so that sales leaders can analyze them as well.
One more thing: if you're a Close customer, you'll be happy to know that Convin integrates seamlessly with your CRM, which means you'll never lose transcripts, notes, or action items.
Best for: Managing follow-up messages
Price: $0 to $70 per user/month
Rafiki combines conversation and revenue intelligence features with smart follow-up functionality to help sales reps close deals. Replay sales calls and review AI-powered insights. Then use the information you glean to send personalized follow-up messages to prospects. Rafiki will even send you real-time alerts when it detects issues, such as ghosted accounts, missed follow-ups, and/or poor sales behaviors that affect company revenue.
Guess what—Rafiki integrates with Close, too. Connect the two apps to help you onboard, ramp, and coach sales reps, while streamlining your team's follow-up procedures.
Best for: Improving Zoom meetings
Just about every inside sales organization uses Zoom to connect with and sell to prospects. Fathom will make these sales calls way more productive. Fire up the free app, then click a button, and Fathom will use AI to summarize specific portions of your Zoom call for you. When the call ends, you'll have immediate access to the full recording and transcription, too. And because Fathom integrates with Salesforce, HubSpot, and Close, the summaries and notes the app takes for you will automatically appear in your company's CRM.
Best for: Detailed sales insights
Price: Contact Gong for pricing
Gong is a popular conversation intelligence app. Like, really popular. The sales enablement tool has over 200k followers on LinkedIn alone. Use this tool to track sales interactions, better understand your target market, and learn how you can improve your company's approach to sales to drive more revenue. From deal execution to sales coaching to forecasting, Gong will elevate your sales department.
Best for: Content analytics and distribution
Price: Contact Seismic for pricing
Want to attract quality leads to your business? Develop an effective content marketing strategy. Want to close more deals than ever before? Teach your sales reps to use the content at their disposal to nudge prospects further into your sales funnel. Seismic was designed to help you with this second task. Easily distribute sales training materials to your reps. Then allow them to distribute sales-related content to potential customers. Seismic will help you determine when to distribute content, too, and even how to improve it, using AI. Sales content optimization has never been this easy, which is why Seismic made this list.
Want to take your content marketing to new heights? Dive into our AI article.
Best for: Top-of-the-line conversation intelligence
Price: Contact Chorus for pricing
Want to close more deals? Use Chorus to analyze your sales team's customer calls, meetings, and emails. That way, you can learn what they're doing right and where they need to improve. You can then use this information to adjust your team's sales processes—as well as the training materials you create for them. Sign up for Chorus and to access call recording, pipeline management, and market intel features in addition to the conversation intelligence functionality already mentioned. There's a lot to love about this app!
Best for: Boosting team productivity
Price: Contact Highspot for pricing
Last up, Highspot is a sales enablement tool that aims to boost your team's productivity levels to new and exciting heights. Easily store, manage, and distribute sales content. Then learn which pieces have the biggest impact on your company's bottom line. Highspot can also be used to train new recruits, coach experienced reps, and otherwise teach your sales team to engage prospects in effective ways. The result? More deals, more revenue, more awesome.
Lead Your Sales Team Into the Future
Don't worry; the robots aren't here to steal your sales job. Sales will always require a human touch. But AI solutions can help your team close more deals if you deploy them correctly.
With that in mind, consider investing in one of the apps outlined above. Just make sure that the one you choose syncs with your customer relationship management (CRM) software. That way, you can squeeze the most juice out of each platform.
Not sure which CRM is right for your sales team? I've got you. Read Close's free CRM buying guide to learn everything you need to know about this mission-critical sales tool.