How Axway transformed its sales enablement practices for success during its greatest season of sweeping change.
The upfront challenges of shifting from a product-based to a subscription-based provider — in a formalized, cross-organizational, and profitably sustainable manner — was a catalyst for sweeping change at Axway.
Axway, a €300.0 million publicly-traded information technology organization with dual headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona, and Paris, France, embraced transformation before the company switched to a subscription-based solution. Leadership roles were disrupted. The solution packaging was shifting. The entire culture was ripe for positive change. Mereo helped Axway hone-in on a number of roadblocks it would face as it raced toward its goals, including its sales enablement strategies and practices. Through the action plan grounded in tighter partnership with each client, Axway revamped its go-to-market strategy, as well as aligned as an organization across geographies for immediate results that have only created momentum for future success.
Here is their sales enablement story.
Challenges in Time of Change
Axway knew that in its transformation to a subscription-based solution, it would need to revolutionize how it launched products, educated sales teams and spoke with its customers. Yet, the organization was struggling from common pitfalls that would impede the implementation of these changes:
- The organization was fragmented by geography and departments, resulting in disparate messaging and go-to-market disconnect.
- Current salespeople lacked formal skills and conversation training. They were accustomed to pitching products and rarely looked to engage buyers to understand their needs first before communicating a compelling value proposition.
- The go-to-market strategy lacked alignment between product, sales and marketing teams.
Mereo saw ample opportunity to overcome Axway’s current challenges through sales enablement activities. Led by the global head of marketing, Axway first set out to create playbooks that would (1) bring together and align leadership across functions for input and development and (2) support the upcoming sales kickoff with effective messaging tools for salespeople — while also (3) building-up formalized and aligned content that marketing could use for campaigns.
This initiative was unprecedented at Axway. More than 60 people within the organization came together across three, two-day workshops in the United States and a two-day workshop in Paris. Axway even brought in three executives from the Mereo Decision Maker Network™, who provided real-time buyer input and validation to the value messaging framework being created.
Next, Axway embedded sales enablement into their sales kickoff, a gathering that had historically been more of a festive celebration of the global sales team. To maximize the value of the session, Axway’s leadership asked salespeople to bring a real opportunity that was directly developed during the sales enablement session with new techniques. During a subsequent sales kickoff, marketing was given even more agenda to educate and train sales on relevant differentiated value messaging.
Over the last two years, Axway has provided additional in-field enablement sessions around new solution offerings and how to sell with the compelling messaging the marketing team had prepared. This cadence of sales enablement has afforded Axway the platform to expand on these efforts from the sales kickoffs and reinforce what was learned.
“Marketing had been generating a lot of leads that hadn’t been going anywhere. And sales is accountable for 70% of the pipeline, so marketing’s impact is higher by focusing on this alignment and support rather than staying silo-ed in the marketing department. With Mereo’s help, we were able to make a bigger impact with my team and its capabilities through sales enablement,” said Josh Hardy, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing at Axway.