Effective AR-Sales Partnership programs focus on providing education, support, and tools to enable the sales organization to leverage analyst influence in the sales cycle, especially for strategic sales opportunities. Building a bridge between AR and Sales can only be productive if the AR program has already achieved success in gaining the attention of the analyst community and your company is receiving coverage, at a minimum in Signature Research publications such as Gartner's Magic Quadrant, Gartner's MarketScope, Forrester's Wave, or Forrester's TechRadar. Supporting Sales is an advanced AR function.

Note: Programs not yet ready to implement an AR-Sales Partnership program can leverage ASG's Advisory program to learn about providing baseline support for Sales and laying the foundation for subsequent implementation of an AR-Sales Partnership program.) An AR-Sales Partnership plan must address:
  • Sponsorship from within the Sales organization and support from AR and Marketing to ensure that both Sales and Marketing executives understand what is at stake and what is required to make the program successful
  • Training must be provided to educate the sales force with both general training regarding the analyst community and specific training regarding effective strategies for discovering and leveraging analyst influence within the sales cycle
  • Sales Support Tools including direct support via AR participation on 'strike' teams pursuing strategic opportunities, on-demand support to assist sales with specific analyst concerns, and 'push' support, such as ASG's Sales Silver Bullets
  • Measurement to assess program success, such as ASG's Sales Team Audit

Implementing an AR-Sales Partnership program must be undertaken as a phased approach. In many instances, pilot programs are used to build credibility with Sales management and a group of volunteer sales representatives. Ideally, upon completion of a successful pilot program, responsibility passes to Sales Operations while AR assumes a training, advisory, and support role moving forward.

The overall objective is to get the Sales organization to recognize the impact analysts have on sales opportunities, and then provide timely tools and education to leverage positive analyst opinions to close more business, or mitigate the damage caused by negative coverage.

Key Deliverables

  • Sales Support Overview Session(s) kicks off the program with a detailed review and discussion of current goals, objectives, resources, and existing sales support efforts
  • Best Practice Materials document initiatives other AR programs have implemented that have proven successful
  • AR-Sales Partnership Plan Development Sessions a series of 3-4 one-hour conference calls designed to review best practices and strategies within the context of YOUR organization, and ensure alignment of alternatives with your company's culture and resources
  • AR-Sales Partnership Plan provides a detailed plan that includes:
    • Program goals and objectives
    • Sales, AR, and Marketing sponsorship plan
    • Training plan
    • Support plan for strategic initiatives
    • On-demand support plan
    • Sales support tools and distribution plan
    • Program measurement plan
    • Budget/resource requirements

Why Outsource to ASG

  • ASG has proven expertise in helping organizations develop simple and effective sales support programs, including appropriate structuring of pilot programs
  • ASG's extensive library of best practice tools and frameworks accelerate plan development
  • ASG's experience in developing and providing sales support tools (e.g., ASG's Sales Silver Bullets)
  • ASG provides the tools, expertise, and resources to help develop YOUR customized plan, while you concentrate on more strategic activities

Contact ASG for more information