3 Key Stakeholders You Need to Influence, Creative Compete Programs

While my American friends are slowly recovering from a Thanksgiving-induced food coma, my fellow Canadians and I already awoke from ours in mid-October. 

Meaning we’re feeling swift and nimble and ready to go for today and the week ahead.

And that’s a good thing because the biggest compete event of the year starts on Tuesday!

Four days of compete content from the biggest brands and names in compete. 

Needless to say, it’s going to be #big. 

ICYMI, head to LinkedIn and check out last week’s edition of Coffee & Compete for an overview of Compete Week programming — and some resources to help get you in the mood. 

For now, please enjoy today’s installment of Coffee & Compete.

See you next week,


Mitch Comstock Lead IQ

Three Stakeholder Groups You Need to Build and Maintain Momentum in your Compete Program

Putting in all that effort to build out a compete program only to have it lose momentum is not something we would wish upon anyone. 

But with budgets tightening across the board, the tech you use and the people you rely on could be on the chopping block. 

LeadIQ’s Sr. Product Marketing Manger Mitch Comstock joined the Competitive Enablement Show to talk about the three most important stakeholder groups you need to work with to avoid losing momentum and how to do it. 

1️⃣ Sales Leadership 1️⃣

“You don’t want to end up in a situation where you’re thinking about compete one way and leadership has a completely different idea.”

Selling your compete program internally and selling B2B software in general have one big thing in common: you need executive buy-in

You should build a stronger case for yourself by proving the value of your program through the kinds of deliverables and KPIs sales leadership cares about. 

And no, we’re not talking about usage data related to a specific battlecard. 

Instead, Mitch says you should focus on KPIs like: 

Different KPIs will appeal more to different execs.

(As Jane App’s Fiona Finn said in her appearance on the Competitive Enablement Show, execs are like the Spice Girls “they each have their different flavour”.) 

That said, win rate, sales confidence and ROI tend to cut across most personality types and job titles — and are good ones to rely on. 

Mitch also urges compete pros to 

Stay on top of leadership changes

If an organizational change affects your key executive sponsor, look to understand the new exec’s current assessment of your compete program and competitive intelligence in general.

This is an opportunity for you to mould their perception to align with yours.

At the same time, connecting with a new sales exec will help you understand where their priorities lie.

And how your compete program can suit their needs and vision for the organization.

2️⃣ Sales Enablement 2️⃣

“It’s important to stay aligned with them. But you can also drive their enablement efforts based on what you’re seeing in compete.”

Striking a balance between influencing stakeholders’ perception of your compete program and aligning it to their vision is a constant push and pull.

This is true with leadership as much as it is with your sales enablement function.

“If sales enablement is driving the entire agenda for that month’s training, you as a product marketer or compete expert, should still have a seat at the table.”

Mitch says you should never be afraid to reach out to sales enablement and make your case.

With help from trends you’re seeing in the data, (i.e. new competitors coming up in deals, new prospect objections), make your recommendations about where sales enablement should focus their efforts.

Your goals are ultimately the same: sales enablement is looking for material to help the sales team win more deals.

Show them that you have those materials, you have a data-backed vision for why they’re important, and that the compete team is a trusted and valuable partner.

3️⃣ Sales Reps 3️⃣

“When I think about compete, sales is always number one on what we’re trying to do and who I’m trying to serve.”

Sales is the first team your compete program should support. Past launch, it should still remain a focal point.

Beyond leadership and enablement, Mitch regularly connects with sales reps to foster a partnership.

Once or twice a quarter, Mitch connects with every sales rep he can for 15 minutes.

In those meetings, he asks the same four questions:

  1. How is our messaging landing?
  2. What are common themes and trends you’re hearing from customers/prospects?
  3. Which competitors are coming up most in your deals?
  4. Where do you need help in terms of content training?

These regular check-ins are supplemented by a larger competitive confidence survey.

While the individual interviews are meant for relationship building and for Mitch’s own needs, results from the broader survey can be shared more readily with the entire organization.

And those results give you a chance to influence all three stakeholder groups.

Watch the full episode here

 Coffee & Compete Community Corner 

Meta as it may be, it stands to reason that a competitive enablement company like Klue would have a competitive enablement manager. 

The work Brandon Bedford does is so incredibly valuable not just for us internally, but for the knowledge and tactics he generously shares on a daily basis. 

Here’s a taste of what you can expect — and why you should connect — with Brandon.

Thanks for reading this week’s edition of Coffee & Compete. As always, please reach out to me and the rest of the team with your thoughts and feedback. 

And If you know someone who isn’t already subscribed to Coffee & Compete, be a good friend and tell them about us.
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