Here are recommended best practices from Emissary’s top customers on how to leverage and get the most out of Emissary programs:
#1: Use Emissary as a predictor of seller effectiveness.
Emissary interactions provide unique insight into a seller’s mindset and potential. Did they use a strategic line of questioning? Are they teeing up relationships or tactical actions? Have they invested meaningful effort? Are they focused on business issues or contact names? When you see a seller taking a more transactional approach to the Emissary program, it may be a red flag for long-term success within your organization.
Pro tip: Use Emissary interactions as a litmus test to identify potential within your recent hires. Use early warning signs to trigger coaching.
#2: Declare your program KPIs vs. force fitting metrics.
Don’t feel compelled to measure Emissary with metrics that you use for other Marketing or Sales programs. (e.g. MQLs or # Meetings) Emissary doesn’t necessarily fit into this metric, and you should be the one to decide what your measurement looks like based on your program and objectives. [Text Wrapping Break]
Pro Tip: Work closely with your Emissary Sales Director & Program Manager to decide how to best track measures.
#3: Don’t overcomplicate your ROI analysis.
Once you identify the KPIs that make sense for your program, build a straightforward way to collect them. One client built a business intelligence dashboard to track engagement start dates and saw a 383% uplift in pipeline creation post engagement, as well as deal acceleration / reduction in average days to close. But you don’t need a staff of data scientists. This can be replicated in a SFDC report through a simple “engagement start date” time stamp field and by setting up campaigns for tracking.
Pro Tip: Don’t forget to ask sellers for anecdotal and qualitative ROI as well. The combination of a solid metric, such as pipeline growth, combined with relatable stories from respected sellers goes a long way.
#4: Position Emissary as intelligence for relationships.
It’s important to set (or reset) expectations with your sellers on what Emissary is. Shift the perception from Emissary being “a tool to buy meetings” to “a tool to gain account intelligence.” Your sellers will get more value out of interactions when they go into the conversation looking to gain a holistic view of the account rather than looking to validate a single transaction.
Pro-tip: Saying this once oftentimes isn’t enough. Repeat until it sticks to avoid misalignment down the line. If you use formal opportunity or account planning tools, help sellers see how Emissary intelligence fuels those methodologies.
“What our Emissary told us in just three calls we never could have learned on our own. We better understand our buyer’s business model and what motivates them most. That’s huge.”
– Account Manager, Data Security Company
#5: Establish Emissary as a privilege, not a task.
How you position Emissary to your sales team is crucial. It should be perceived as a privilege to use the program— they’ll need to earn the right to use it by conveying to you what they want to get out of the engagement and by being prepared for the interaction.
Pro Tip: One program manager shared that he has has cut people off before and he’ll do it again! Don’t be afraid to put guidelines into place around how sellers can gain access to Emissary.
#6: Use interactions as coaching opportunities.
Have your sales managers join live interactions, or review their seller’s recordings, as a way to see their sellers in action and provide coaching. Interactions are a safe environment in which to practice presentations, test out messaging and fine tune executive selling skills.
Pro Tip: You can tee up the interaction itself as a role play for an upcoming conversation. Use Emissary Advisors to role play your customer and help prepare sellers for an upcoming sales conversation.
“Emissary helps me play the right card at the right time. It’s like having a coach who knows all the answers.”
– SVP Global Field Operations, Data Management Platform
#7: Use Emissary to bridge Sales & Marketing motions
While the program may have its foundations in sales or marketing within an organization, it is most successful when used by both teams making the connection between pipeline generation and opportunity management and carrying account and contact intelligence through the entire funnel. Providing that level of intelligence to sales teams helps Marketing be seen as a strategic advisor to sales. On the flipside, Sales can use the intelligence to paint a clearer picture for Marketing regarding what content, tools and messaging works for their targets.
Pro Tip: This develops over time. Find ways to formally connect sales enablement and ABM leaders to ensure those motions stay connected.
“The Emissary really helped us identify where to sell within the account, who we should target specifically in each LOB and provided insights into messaging that would land with current internal initiatives.”
– Solutions Advisor, Sales Performance Management
#8: Use advisors to share the ‘voice of customer’
1:1 interactions can be a valuable tool for penetration, deal and expansion strategies. But there are other ways to leverage advisors too. One example is to have advisors participate in SKOs and other enablement sessions, providing sellers with an opportunity to ask candid questions. In addition, sellers can get tremendous value from having an advisor be an active participant in their QBRs (learn more about strategic sessions here). This infuses a buyer point of view into what would otherwise be very internally-focused planning exercises.
Pro Tip: Schedule pipeline bootcamps with sellers and invite an Emissary advisor to participate, craft strategies for moving deals and stress test your assumptions.
“Our Emissary Advisor understood both the people and the politics at a deep level and was able to suggest a strategy to circumvent the issues.”
– Regional Sales Manager, data management platform
Get Inside Insights on Your Most Important Accounts
Emissary is a human intelligence network that connects enterprise sales and marketing professionals directly to a community of over 10,000 talented senior and C-level executives with recent experience at their most important accounts. Leveraging the Emissary network will enable you to shorten your sales cycles, close more deals, and build positive long-lasting relationships with your clients and prospects—because you’ve gathered the tacit knowledge on their challenges and needs.
You’ll learn which voice carries the most weight in technical purchases, what kinds of case studies make an impact, and how to speak your buyers’ language. With Advisors’ intelligence in your toolkit, you’ll execute more successful sales actions and capture a higher share of deals.
Contact us to discuss how Emissary can help you sales and marketing teams.