These unfortunate situations often occur when sales teams do not have, or do not properly use sales technologies. Or maybe they do not have, or cannot effectively use business intelligence that often lies hidden in outdated company spreadsheets. Notwithstanding these grim statistics, sales teams can rise above these dire situations and sell more effectively, make more sales calls per day or trip, and with a lower cost per call. The solution is CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and CRM add-ons.
For this technology to be most productive, the installation and training must be endorsed at the top: C-level executives, sales managers, and marketing managers.
Here's a quick look at how CRM and CRM add-ons can solve these three common selling problems:
- Not understanding and solving customers' challenges
- Being ill-prepared for meeting prospects
- Time not spent productively on selling
Understanding Customers and Feeling Confident in Solving Their Problems
Solutions for problem #1 (to understand customers) and problem #2 (unprepared for prospect meetings) start with knowledge based on customer-and-prospect business intelligence, such as sales leads, up-to-date contact information, and account profiles. Research indicates that 40% of marketing and sales data is never used. That's because database information is either hard to find, difficult or impossible to customize, or it is in the wrong format.
This is unfortunate because successful business is all about customers -- finding, serving, and keeping satisfied, loyal customers. These relationships must be managed across one's entire business: marketing, sales, and customer service. With a CRM system, all of these individuals are connected and all can easily enter and quickly retrieve database information, anywhere.
As great as a CRM system is, automation in itself, will not fix an inefficient sales process that you want to improve. Therefore someone at your company, an outside consultant, or a CRM provider should look at your entire operations as a whole. This will help assure that your CRM system will yield results that you will want.
More Time for Productive Selling Means More Call per Day or Trip
While CRM, itself, improves sales productivity, CRM add-ons can increase salespeople's performance even more; for example, reps making more face-to-face calls per day or trip. This helps reps to overcome problem #3 (65% of a salesperson's time is spent not selling).
InfoGrow's CRM Call Planner is one of these add-ons. This module integrates Bing Maps into Microsoft Dynamics CRM. It is launched within CRM, on-line or on-premise. With visualized sales information, maps point the way for sales teams to make better decisions for their limited time resources.
CRM Call Planner benefits for salespeople:
- Find all customers and prospects in a particular area: Let's say a rep is travelling to location X and wants to visit customers and prospects within a radius of 10 miles of that location. With a map inside CRM, a rep can easily make callbacks and arrange appointments to visit all nearby key customers and prospects. The CRM Call Planner also saves time when planning trips.
- Plan calls by leads, accounts, contacts, and by database criteria, such as sales volume, number of employees, and type of company - all color-coded on maps.
- Help assure that all key companies in a given target area are targeted. Although you could look at data in a table, a map makes the data more visible for making better decisions.
- Focus on the most profitable accounts and discover previously missed opportunities.
CRM Call Planner benefits for managers:
- With increased visibility into their reps' decisions and plans, sales managers can better coach their teams for increased sales successes. Managers can also clone "A" reps to help "B" players be top performers.
- Manage sales territories more efficiently: Reviewing customers and/or prospects by territories displayed on a map often reveals the need for changes in territory assignments and balanced territories.
With CRM and CRM add-ons, you can better understand your customers, be better prepared to meet prospects and solve their problems, and make more sales call per day or trip. Call me and ask how CRM and our CRM Call Planner can help you overcome your specific sales problems and sell more, with lower costs.