August might be slow season in some industries. But lately, it’s the time of year when my inbox overflows with invitations to sales enablement conferences.
Sales Enablement has been a burgeoning field since the concept was first introduced around a decade ago.
As a product marketer, my discipline is responsible for supporting sales with tools & messages directly appropriate to the target buyers’ pain. So I typically refer to the 2009 definition, but there are others who claim different versions:
What is Sales Enablement?
Putting the right information into the hands of the right sales professional at the right time, in the right place, and in the right format to move a specific sales opportunity forward. – Thomas Barrieau & Lee Levitt, IDC 2009
The reason I bring up the background and the timeline is simple. It has evolved so much since 2009 that it has ignited this crazy-huge field of technology platforms, selling methodologies, learning practitioners and systems, operational best practices. And, yes, sales enablement conferences.
And what comes with that territory is that Sales Enablement now means something different to everyone involved in sales. So, when I list these conferences, it’s with the understanding that each conference may lean toward one of those specific areas. And there may be so many others that don’t land in my in-box.
Note: Official descriptions may vary from this B2B marketer’s perspectives. But here it is — my unofficial list of Sales Enablement Conferences.
Sales Enablement Conferences
ATD SELL Conference – focused on the learning aspect of sales enablement (as ATD is a talent development organization, think sales skills training), and geared toward internal sales enablement professionals.
SES Annual Conference – this is the annual multi-day gathering of members of the Sales Enablement Society (SES) with tracks around topics like “Enabling Customer Experience.”
SiriusDecisions Summit – A very well-known annual event, I think in it’s 12th year. SiriusDecisions in general and the Summit specifically have a sharp B2B marketing focus, and full tracks dedicated to sales enablement.
Forrester’s B2B Marketing & Sales – comprehensively acknowledges marketing’s involvement in enablement, which is why this one and the next are higher on my radar any remaining sales, operations, or learning conferences that I haven’t listed.
Gartner Sales & Marketing Conference – from the technology analysts Gartner (who acquired CEB, a sales best-practices methodology company).
The bottom line is that whichever your function and relationship to Sales at work (or as a vendor or consultant; as the learning professional, sales leadership, ops, marketing, or tech), there are most certainly a variety of sales enablement conferences for you.