In our last article, we started with a story about Alice, a B2B business owner of a small HVAC company who services commercial properties. She used the data in her CRM to create the ideal prospect profile so she can be more effective in prospecting. Creating the ideal prospect profile is great, but it is not very effective if Alice keeps it to herself. She knows that she needs to share her knowledge and expectations with her sales team. With the help of her marketing consultant, she shows her team how to use their CRM together for prospecting.
Here are the areas that she covers.
Understand the ideal profile for prospecting
Before her team can use the CRM for prospecting, they need to understand the ideal profile. Alice shares how she used their data to create the prospecting profile and shows them the reports in a “prospecting profile” dashboard in the CRM. This dashboard can be valuable to everyone on the sales team in a couple of ways:
- They can use it as a reference when prospecting and ask themselves if the prospect meets the criteria of the profile.
- Since the dashboard is in real-time, as a team, they can evaluate the data and forecast changes in buying behavior, sales cycle, and client needs.
Define expectations for data management in the CRM
Alice knows that incomplete and out-of-date data creates problems in prospecting and the sales cycle. One of the reasons for this is a lack of direction. Alice defines expectations for data management that are crucial to the HVAC industry and instructs her sales team to do the following:
- Enter their data in real-time. Every minute they wait or push it off, the information becomes less clear in their memory. Having the CRM readily available across devices (including your phone) makes it easy to update in real-time.
- Fill in missing data. If they are missing crucial data, the salesperson needs to reach out to the contact for the information. Incomplete data can skew reports, which, in turn, can skew decisions.
- Keep records up to date. If a prospect has converted into a sale, the Sales Rep needs to update the record, so the sales team knows where they are in the buyer’s/customer journey. Out-of-date records can hurt the reputation of the company if a salesperson reaches out only to find out their information is incorrect.
Layout expectations for follow up
Follow-up is a big part of the sales cycle, but if there are not clear expectations for the follow-up process, the sales team can experience Follow Up Fatigue. Alice does not want her team to be overbearing in follow-up, but she does not want them to be too lenient either. There needs to be a balance which is why she instructs them to use their CRM for a follow-up schedule with reminders. Using their CRM, she wants them to do the following when prospecting:
- Call and/or email the prospect with a personalized message.
- After 48 hours, call and/or email again.
- Wait 72 hours, call and/or email again.
- Wait 5 business days, call and/or email again.
Each time the salesperson reaches a prospect, they need to record the action and response in the CRM. This way, Alice and team members can see the progress and response. They can offer suggestions and tips to either get the attention of the prospect or to close the sale faster. Collaboration is key for a sales team which leads us to the last expectation that Alice sets for her team.
In order to collaborate, Alice’s sales team needs to be transparent with each other. If someone is struggling with closing sales with an ideal prospect in a specific industry such as healthcare, Alice and sales team members can help. If a sales team member cannot make a prospect sales meeting due to a family emergency, another salesperson can step in to help.
Whatever the scenario, the key is transparency which means they need to document all touchpoint interactions with their prospects in the CRM. When the salesperson’s transparency of interaction is thorough, the team can effectively help and work together as a team.
You may be able to relate to Alice as a B2B business owner, but how you use your CRM for prospecting may look different. This is what makes CRMs so wonderful. They are a tool that you can configure according to your business goals, ideal prospecting profiles, and your sales cycle. Are you using your CRM for prospecting? Does your sales team know how to use CRM as a collaborative tool for prospecting? Do you have a CRM that you can use for prospecting? If you are not sure, reach out to us for a free consultation at 301-332-0613 or fill out the form. We want to help you increase sales by identifying your ideal profile for prospecting and use a CRM to accomplish this.