In parts one and two of this three-part blog series, we examined how you can generate more leads to increase sales and how to tackle the information deficit behind sales calls and presentations. In the final part of this blog series, we explain why you need a CRM tool to manage sales activities.
How can you justify a decision to use CRM and make the case for CRM to your manager?
To understand the benefits of CRM, you should consider the sales gaps and bottlenecks inside your business. In particular, you should consider the impact removing these bottlenecks will have on sales. The main benefit of CRM is that it can help you to sell more. It won’t do the selling for you, but it will help you fully leverage your skills. A CRM tool can also help you overcome barriers to increased sales.Every business owner and sales manager has different priorities or challenges. Examples include: leads; the administration of orders; the provision of customer service; and account management. These challenges represent ‘pinch-points’ or underperforming areas. Addressing these issues will alleviate business frustrations and could improve sales.
The ability of CRM to impact directly on a manager’s priorities is one of its key benefits. And if these priorities change over time, the role of CRM should shift accordingly. The primary purpose of a CRM tool is to fix a problem or address a priority for a manager. What are the key priorities or challenges you are facing right now? This is the starting point for identifying how CRM can make your life easier and your sales more efficient. In 6 months, your priorities as a manager may have changed. Your focus may have moved from leads to prequalification. CRM tools are designed with this in mind. Once you fix one problem, you can move on to address the next priority. You don’t need one tool for leads and another for customer service or account management. A CRM tool can do all of this and it allows you to adjust your focus as your business priorities shift.
Addressing business frustrations
When you know the benefits you want from CRM, you can identify how CRM could improve sales. To do this, you should consider which aspects of your sales and marketing initiatives are causing the most frustrations. The next step is to explore how a CRM tool can help you ease these frustrations and sell more effectively.
Some managers want a CRM tool because it gives them greater visibility and control over sales. Some managers want a tool to boost their marketing initiatives or customer service. Other managers want CRM to manage customer and prospect information more efficiently.
The question is: which of these benefits are important to you and your business?
About the authors
Ray Collis and John O’Gorman are authors of The B2B Sales Revolution and other books. Collis and O’Gorman are successful sales consultants with The ASG Group, and they are global leaders in sales performance management. For more information on the ASG Group, please visit theasggroup.com.