Enablement communications throughout the customer journey

A global enablement communications manager sits at the epicenter of an enablement team and is typically responsible for designing and executing a communication strategy to address various programs, product launches, change management, operations, and other pieces of critical information.

While enablement teams will naturally have their own structure, the comms manager may also be involved in executive messaging, intranet content management, onboarding, training, and event-specific communications.

It's the perfect role for a split-brain thinker - they’re half writer/creator, half project manager, equal parts creative and logistical.

In short, the role is responsible for making and executing a plan any time anyone in the company needs to communicate with the broader go-to-market (GTM) team.

Yet many enablement teams are still hesitant to invest in communication. Let’s explore why every enablement team needs a communication manager.

This article will outline how an enablement communications manager will:

Align comms to business objectives - from sales to customer success

How can we be sure everything we put in front of our reps is time-sensitive and a top priority? Adding this position to your enablement team will inspire conversations around strategic alignment throughout enablement and the broader ecosystem.

Who will the comms manager work with from product and marketing to build alignment? When subject matter experts inevitably come directly to the comms manager asking for airtime, how will they know whether to indulge that request?

One of the first things that people typically prioritize when stepping into an enablement comms role is building a cross-functional prioritization framework. Having a communication framework drives operational efficiency and effectiveness.

Enablement comms will partner with enablement leaders and additional cross-functional groups to deliver programs and projects that help the broader organization operate as a cohesive, integrated team.

A versatile enablement comms manager will quickly grasp business needs and boil them down to the core elements that the GTM team needs to do their job successfully.

To do that effectively, it’s vital to have enablement comms in sync with business objectives. They’re chartered with delivering the right information at the right time, and in the right format. Thus, reducing noise and driving strategic action.

Increasing employee engagement across the go-to-market organization

Consider all the personalization that sales reps do as they target prospects. Personalization increases both read rates and reply rates. The same should be done internally!

Catching the attention of a busy internal audience is a big ask, and requires creativity and thinking outside the box

The enablement comms manager is communicating with multiple internal audiences, which is an added challenge. The GTM organization isn’t just made up of sales reps. Each GTM team has it’s unique needs and therefore should receive unique internal communications. In order to maximize engagement, the enablement comms manager must proactively invest away from a one-size-fits-all comms strategy.

The customer success team should receive a different weekly newsletter than the account executives do. The same goes with renewals, sales engineers, and every other team that makes up the GTM engine.

GTM teams have varied KPIs, success criteria, business objectives, and each team has their own style. The communication strategy should reflect and celebrate that variety.

The enablement comms manager should research new tools, as well as propose that the organization invest in platforms that will help increase employee engagement.

Even after building out a comms calendar and email scheduler, if you’re sending plain text emails with no built-in metrics, how can you be sure you’re adequately engaging your audience? There are so many worthy tools that offer metrics, consistent branding and formatting, and have built in NPS reactions and other methods of engaging.

There’s no better person to deploy and own these tools than the enablement comms manager.

Cross-functional collaboration

The role inevitably touches so many areas within an organization that enablement comms managers are collaborative by nature. It’s a job that is impossible to do in silo.

They may not know off-hand which new product update is the biggest deal, but they will know how to coordinate with other stakeholders to find that out. They’ll be tasked with developing a communication strategy for each update by audience.

It’s a highly collaborative role, and maintaining focus on business outcomes will help remove barriers towards action. Ideally, the enablement comms manager is involved in new programs from the outset to enable understanding and effective use of change.

This will drive successful employee adoption, increase engagement, and help to achieve business goals.

Looking beyond the email

Hopefully you haven’t made it this far into this article thinking this is all referring to an email strategy. A modern enablement comms strategy is multifaceted.

It includes GTM leadership messaging that clearly defines what’s most important for their teams, engaging video content that demonstrates best practices in entertaining and creative ways, win story interviews so reps can learn best practices (as well as cheer each other on). It also includes event communications for sales kick offs so attendee expectations are managed and exceeded.

As it evolves, the enablement comms strategy becomes a core element of building GTM team culture, and an effective method of reinforcing key takeaways.

An innovative enablement comms strategy is multi-channel, collaborative, and targets a specific internal audience.

Time to hire

If your enablement team still doesn’t have a Communications Manager, consider this. Aside from:

  1. Aligning all internal GTM comms to business objectives
  2. Increasing employee engagement through a hyper-personalized internal comms strategy
  3. Working cross-functionally to foster collaboration
  4. Producing creative, multi-channel comms meant for a variety of channels

The enablement comms manager is also directly increasing revenue for the company and its customers.

Imagine what happens to your team’s revenue and your customer’s revenue if everyone in your broader GTM organization has an accurate sense of what’s most important to them at any given moment.

Communication is foundational for all that we do professionally, but it’s a role on enablement teams that can be overlooked. If your team doesn’t have a designated communications role, it’s time to build one!

Vibrant, curious, and creative - Whitney is a passionate communicator currently mastering Revenue Enablement Communications at Zscaler. Whitney lives by the sea in California, USA.

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