Effortless Competitive Battle Cards for Sales Leaders [7-Step Playbook]

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TL;DR

This article offers a quick yet effective framework to create your sales battle cards swiftly and enable your sales team to do what truly matters: selling with confidence armed with the latest competitor insights. 💼

🔍 Sales battle cards are strategic tools empowering sales teams with a competitive edge during sales engagements. They dive deep into essential competitor information, enabling reps to counter objections, highlight key benefits, and stand out in the market.

🛠️ In the 7-step playbook to create your competitive sales battle card, learn how to strategically analyze key competitors with in-depth insights on company size, positioning, product features, strengths, limitations, pricing, and more. Equip your sales team with battle cards for real-time customer interactions.

🔥Discover the advantages of competitive battle cards in sales: Stay competitive, empower sales reps with insights, and boost win rates by handling objections effectively.

💡 Ready to boost your sales team’s performance? Dive into creating your battle cards with our actionable framework! And if you are serious about elevating your sales game with updated competitor insights, try Unkover for free today!

Every sales leader asks their sales teams to sell, sell, sell.

Yet, many of them are not enabling their reps to just sell; they’re asking them to do extra work, such as researching competitors’ strengths and weaknesses and coming up with compelling messaging.

Don’t be one of them. [we’ll show you why and how you can do it painlessly]

And if you are a sales rep, welcome. This article will give you a framework to create your sales battlecards in no time and go back to what really matters: selling with the best-updated information on your competitors.

Let’s get started.

What are Battle Cards in Sales?

Let’s get this out of our way first. What are sales battle cards?

Battle cards in sales are strategic tools designed to give sales teams an edge during the sales process. They are compact guides that offer a deep dive into essential information about competitors, including their products, services, strategies, and weak points.

These cards provide sales representatives with crucial insights and persuasive arguments, enabling them to counter objections, highlight key benefits of their offerings, and effectively differentiate their products in a crowded marketplace.

By providing a quick reference to understand and outwit the competition, battle cards are invaluable assets for any sales professional aiming to close more deals and drive revenue.

7-Step Playbook to Create Your Competitive Sales Battle Card

And now on to the fun part: the seven steps to creating battle cards that can significantly enhance your sales team’s performance.

1. Pick your competitors

Start by identifying which competitors are directly pursuing your market share, or, even better, start by asking your reps what names they most often encounter in sales discussions.

Focus on a manageable number to ensure depth over breadth in your analysis, but don’t overlook the different types of competitors out there—direct, indirect, and potential disruptors.

Ideally, you should have a central place for keeping track of your competitors. We suggest using a competitive intelligence tool like Unkover to list all your competitors and track their online presence (more on this later).

Create your competitive battle cards: choose your competitors with Unkover

2. Include a competitor overview

This is the point where you actually start writing your battle card. You can use a template or a tool that collects all the information you have about a competitor.

In the competitor overview, give a snapshot of each competitor, covering key information like company size, product positioning, industry and target audience.

Don’t forget to include their Go-To-Market (GTM) strategy to understand how they approach and win in the industry, providing context for their actions and offerings.

For example, if you were to write a competitor overview of Personio, you’d go as follows:

“Personio is a leading HR software solution designed for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across Europe, centralizing recruitment, payroll, and performance management. It simplifies employee management with its comprehensive, user-friendly platform. The system boosts operational efficiency, saving time for HR teams.”

Create your competitive battle cards: Personio homepage

3. Describe product features

Detail the specific features and benefits of your competitors’ products or services. This step requires thorough research to accurately represent what they offer, serving as a foundation for effective comparison with your solutions.

The best format for this this step is to use a feature-by-feature comparison table. Having a handy table helps you twice.

Create your competitive battle cards: describe product features, Breadcrumbs vs HubSpot lead scoring
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It’s true that battle cards are usually internal documents for your team, but they could be the foundation of your competitor comparison pages (yes, you should do them–it’s not about disparaging your competitors but clearly stating how you compare with them).

4. Write both product strengths and limitations

Clearly articulate what they do well and where they fall short for each competitor.

It’s definitely a good idea to acknowledge your competitor key features because it allows your sales teams to reframe how your product is better or to provide an alternative solution.

Your product features may not cover all your prospects’ requirements, but you can still win if you can provide a better alternative or offer your prospects a solution to their problems they can’t say no to.

Plus, it shows that you are aware of areas for improvement and are actively working on making your product better. Potential customers will appreciate this honesty and may even provide valuable feedback to help address these limitations.

On the other hand, when mentioning your competitor company’s product limitations, make sure you position your solution the right way. Highlight the unique features and benefits of your product that directly address the customer pain points and needs of your target audience.

5. Include competitor’s pricing

Understanding and documenting your competitors’ pricing structures can give your team insights into business expectations and help them handle price objections. It also aids in strategizing your product’s pricing to highlight value effectively.

Tip: Prices change all the time. In fact, according to recent research, 40% of SaaS companies update their prices as often as once per quarter. Your best option is to track those pricing pages automatically. Use a tool like Unkover to automatically track any high-value page (including pricing) and notify you as soon as the change occurs.

Create your competitive battle cards: monitor your competitors website with Unkover

6. Update frequently (or use a competitive intelligence tool)

The business world and your competitors are not static; hence, your sales battlecards should not be either, or your risk to equip your teams with outdated information.

Regular updates are essential to keep the information accurate and relevant.

Better still, consider using a competitive intelligence tool to automate parts of this process, ensuring your team always has the latest data at their fingertips.

You can use many tools, and while many of them can be expensive and difficult to set up, you can start using Unkover for free today and see value immediately. You just need to:

  1. Connect with your Slack so all the information gathered is available to you (and your team) directly where you can see them.
  2. Pick the websites of all your competitors and the specific pages you want to track (not sure? We’ll give you some suggestions).
  3. Read your competitors’ email marketing flows.
  4. Get competitive insights instantly.

Start your free trial of Unkover today.

7. Make your sales battlecards accessible to your team

Ensure that your sales team has access to these invaluable resources, preferably in a digital format that can be quickly updated and shared. Accessibility ensures that your team can leverage this intelligence in real time during customer interactions.

Tip: Use customizable templates and a system (like a DAM, digital asset management platform) that automatically sends notifications to your sales teams as soon as the battlecards are updated. This way, your reps will always use the latest information in their presentations.

3 Benefits of Having Competitive Battle Cards in Sales

Now that we have an actionable framework to build a sales battlecard for each of your competitors, let’s delve into the main benefits why you should create a battle card system for your sales team.

Stay ahead of the competition

I should have entitled this section “Keep up with the competition.” Approximately 90% of Fortune 500 companies use some form of competitive intelligence, and around 65% of US companies invest in some form of market intelligence.

Don’t want to state the obvious but if you’re not doing competitive intelligence (and doing it right) you are already behind.

The challenge is having a CI program that is not costing you too much and provides only the signals you need to have an impact on revenue (at Unkover we can help).

Elevate your sales game with updated competitor insights today; try Unkover for free!

Let sales reps sell

Battle cards arm your sales team with key insights and information at their fingertips, allowing them to focus more on what they do best and less on searching for data or crafting responses on the fly.

By being well-prepared and having a deep understanding of their competitors (aim at having one sales battlecard per competitor), sales reps can more effectively explain the unique value proposition of their products or services, tailor their sales pitch to different customer needs, increase win rates and ultimately close more deals.

Handle objections consistently

One of the biggest advantages of sales battlecards is the ability to address potential objections consistently and informatively.

Since battle cards include information on product strengths and limitations, their starting price point, competitor comparisons, and additional details, sales reps can anticipate common objections and have ready-made responses.

This consistency improves sales reps’ win rates and ensures a unified brand message and strategy across the entire team.

Craft better pitches in advance

With a comprehensive understanding of their offerings and competitors, sales reps can craft compelling, customized pitches well before meetings or calls, for example, including relevant case studies or a personalized comparison.

Sales battlecards help reps identify and highlight the aspects of their product that are most likely to resonate with each specific prospect based on the competitive landscape.

This preparation enables reps to approach potential customers with confidence, positioning their solutions in the best light possible to meet the customer’s needs and pain points and close more deals in the process.

Wrap up

Want to increase your reps’ win rates? Sales battlecards are a great place to start.

Use this 7-step framework to create your battle card template (remember, one per competitor) and arm your sales team with the tools they need for success.

If you want to up your sales battlecard game with always updated business (and marketing and sales!) information about your competition, try Unkover for free today!

FAQs

What makes a good battle card?

A good battle card blends concise information and actionable insights. It should clearly outline your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses, highlight your unique value proposition, and offer strategies for your sales team to leverage during customer interactions.

Up-to-date industry data, specific talking points tailored to your audience, and easily digestible formats that enable quick reference in the heat of sales conversations are key elements to include in your sales battlecard.

What are the best practices for battlecards?

The best practices for creating an effective sales battlecard involve regular updates to ensure accuracy, incorporating feedback from the sales team to improve relevance, and maintaining a balance between comprehensive detail and succinctness for ease of use.

It’s crucial to have access to actionable intelligence, such as objection handling tactics and key selling points, while presenting the information in a visually engaging manner to facilitate quick scanning during sales calls or meetings.

How do you use battle cards?

Sales teams use battle cards as a reference tool during various sales process stages. Before a call or meeting, they can review the battle card for insights into how to position their product against a competitor’s offer.

During interactions with prospects, such as a PowerPoint presentation or a sales pitch, a battle card provides quick answers to common objections and helps salespeople pivot conversations toward their advantages.

Training sessions also benefit from battle cards, as they serve as excellent materials for educating new sales staff about the competitive landscape and effective selling strategies.

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