Ways To Use CRM Data To Customize Your Sales Process

While it's great to have CRM data in front of you when you're getting ready to call a prospect, that's just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what you can do with this type of data. If you're curious about how this data can be used, here are four examples of ways to utilize it: 

Discover What Intervals are Most Effective 
How often should you touch base with a prospect? This is a question that salespeople across all industries have asked themselves for decades. While there are plenty of general guidelines, what works best for one business may not be the right fit for another. 
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If you want to answer this question for your specific business, CRM data can help. By compiling a report from all the data in your system, you can see the different intervals that have been used, as well as which one has consistently been the most effective. You can then use this to guide future decisions about how often you want to reach out and check-in with prospects. 

Go Beyond Generic Thank You Notes 
Although it may seemed old fashioned to some, sales professionals know that small gestures like a thank you note can go a long way. Since people are so used to only hearing from businesses by phone, this type of effort doesn't go unnoticed. What's great about having CRM data at your fingertips is you can make your notes stand out even more by finding little ways to personalize them. 

Use Current Customers to Predict What Future Customers Will Want 
As with discovering what intervals are most effective, another way to use CRM data in a macro manner is to look for trends among current customers that are likely to predict the desires of future customers. While this process is a little more subjective than the others on this list, taking the time to explore and experiment can yield some very interesting information. 

Seamlessly Integrate Other Strategies 
You probably spend a significant amount of your day on the phone. While there's still no substitute for a prospect actually hearing your voice, that doesn't mean it's the only strategy you should employ. By taking advantage of other channels like email marketing, you'll be able to ensure that you maximize the effectiveness of the time you do actually spend on the phone. 

If you're skeptical about email marketing, keep in mind that there's a big difference between sending untargeted blasts and the types of customized emails you can send with the help of CRM data. With the latter, not only will people be receptive to your emails, but the emails you send will help you build actual relationships and ultimately close sales. 

Just using the basic features of a CRM can help you save a lot of time. But if you want to get even more value out of this type of system, be sure to test out one or more of the above techniques so that you'll be able to maximize the value of your data.

Craig Klein is CEO and Founder of www.salesnexus.com, an online CRM software provider for small businesses and sales teams. Craig is a sales process guy. His passion is helping small businesses hire, train, measure and manage sales people through their sales process. Follow Craig on Google+ and Twitter to learn more.

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