Hooray, it’s the silly season!
Chances are however, that it’s also a busy season. If yours is like most businesses then between the parties and lunches there’s also a lot of fluster going on as reps are cramming to get deals closed before the holidays and get new opportunities lined up for January.
If you’re lucky enough to find time to come up for air, then you might be conducting a sales review. It’s common at this time of year to find yourself thinking ahead to the new year and the things you’d like to do better. It’s now that if you can spare a thought for your poor old CRM, and the 4 biggest areas that almost everyone can improve on, that you’ll go a long way to giving yourself the kick-start to 2019 that fast tracks your sales success.
1. Data Quality.
“Rubbish in rubbish out” as the saying goes. This is the biggest single area we see people struggle with. Ask yourself:
How clean is your data, how useful is the data you have, and how easily accessible is it by those that need it?
Run some macro reports and find out what info is missing, look for abbreviations that hurting your searches (eg NZ vs New Zealand)
What fields do you have that are trying to capture useless information? What do you wish you knew about your leads and clients but don’t?
What other systems do you have to cross-check your data integrity against? Or could import or synchronise with?
Nail this alone and you’ll almost certainly see an uplift in sales performance.
Everyone is good at creating lists. They’re always useful at the time. But it takes a brave marketer to retire contact lists and even fewer that will delete out of date records completely. Email addresses were hard to capture so it feels counter intuitive to delete them, more so it’s great to boast of the high subscriber numbers your quarterly newsletter has. Often though less is more, and here’s why:
Be brave! If you’ve been emailing a list for a while (upwards of 6 months) and had nothing but tumbleweed from it, then it might be time to move those contacts on. Do you have your contacts segmented properly? If you have multiple offerings then it’s possible that someone has got onto one of your lists but the content you’ve followed up with just wasn’t striking a chord with them. You can email one last time saying you’re conducting a tidy up and ask them to re-subscribe if they’re still interested. If you hear nothing, then just get rid of them. They’ll find you again if they want to. Otherwise you’re far better dealing with a smaller list of engaged, qualified contacts.
On most CRM’s you can extract some simple yet powerful data that can drastically improve your sales performance.
Look at what sales stages you currently have, whether you need more or less? How long is the perfect time for a prospect to remain in each stage? And what activities should take place at each for them to best proceed to the next?
Remember to look also at lost deals as well those won as although it can be painful, you’ll often find the most useful learning’s from the ones that got away.
Try not to get too focused on the hunt for perfection here, but look for incremental improvements that you can measure and refine on an ongoing basis.
What tasks are being done manually that could be automated? Give your CRM users the gift that keeps on giving by freeing up some of their time. If they can do away with just one single boring, repetitive, time-consuming task then you can expect to be paid back in spades..!
Doing perfect CRM is pretty darn hard, I’d even go so far as to say virtually impossible. But everyone can do great CRM with some effort and commitment.
If you need a hand to get on the right path and stay there, then get in touch about our CRM support and maintenance service. We’ll do the CRM work for you so you can focus on the fun stuff. Our monthly service contracts start from $500 + gst.