CRM – Customer Relationship Management. It can help you go above and beyond in terms of sales. Companies know this, which is why Gartner expects the CRM market to be worth $36 billion by 2017. It’s a lifesaver, right?
This tool is only as valuable as you make it out to be. In some cases, CRM can make matters worse for inside sales teams that lack organization and structure. CIO magazine recently listed common problems that salespeople face when they aren’t using their CRM to the best of their abilities:
- Duplicate contacts and lead information
- Inability to generate an accurate customer mailing list
- Inability to identify key people in a deal
- Incorrect routing of lead or contact information
These are just a few of the issues that may arise when CRM is not being utilized properly. If your sales team reports these problems more often than not, it’s time to do a little tidying up.
Who’s Who in Your CRM?
Can your salespeople differentiate between a contact and an actual lead? Each CRM has its own labeling system, and showing your sales team how to use it efficiently is critical to keeping track of data. For instance, separating actual leads (people with a defined interest in your company or product) from contacts (people with basic information such as name and email address) with labels within your CRM can make it easier to stay on top of prospect relationships.
Look Out for Duplicates
Duplicates can easily thwart any organizational efforts you put into your CRM. Make it a point to seek out duplicates and eliminate them whenever you get the chance. Train your salespeople to maintain a watchful eye as they surf through the system. You might also want to set aside 10-15 minutes each day to do a little investigating yourself. Nipping this problem in the bud before it has a chance to grow out of control can help you get the most out of your CRM.
Watch the Score
Through marketing, your sales team should get a better idea of which leads are stronger than others – lead scoring may also be helping your salespeople decipher between them. That being said, it’s a good idea to incorporate this into your CRM organization process. As you catalog information in your system, separate people according to how well they’ve scored. This can make it easier for your sales reps in the field to pitch your product or service.
Keep It Fresh
Keeping information up to date is easier than it sounds when you have an extensive amount of data on your hands. When life gets busy around the office, your salespeople may be less inclined to update information in your CRM. It’s understandable, but it’s these types of slip-ups that lead to a mess within the system. It might be best to assign one person the task of keeping data updated on a daily basis – spending 15 minutes a day on this can save you a headache in the future. This can also give people peace of mind when they go into the system to find the most recent information on a lead.
A report conducted by Nucleus Research found that 80 percent of CRM benefits have yet to be achieved by companies that invest in this tool. Disorganization and a lack of maintenance are some of the key reasons why sales teams are not confident in CRM, but the potential is still there.