You must use a sales CRM if you’re a VP of Sales. Period.
Give your salespeople the proper training and set the rules for how to use the sales CRM. Your salespeople have a better chance of making quota when the rules of engagement are clear.
Use These 9 Rules to Whip Your Sales CRM Into Shape
These are the nine key rules will help you get the most out of your Sales CRM:
Start with the basics
Create leads and contacts
- Enter information into your CRM when your salespeople meet new prospects, centers of influence, or anyone of interest. Consider using third-party resources to help make data entry easy. Look at apps that run on a smartphone, such as CamCard, which creates contacts from a business card image. LinkPoint360 is a computer app that reads an email signature and creates a CRM contact record.
- Salespeople should contact new leads within a set time limit, such as 48 hours.
- This is one of the most basic, but essential uses of your sales CRM. Calls should be logged when salespeople conduct any outreach activity. Run reports on this activity that show volume and quality of calls.
- You can install a plugin that works with your CRM that automatically dials the phone. It can also present a pop up window for salespeople to log their call notes.
Attach emails and create follow on tasks
- Document on-going dialog with leads and contacts by attaching emails to your sales CRM. Your salespeople should attach emails to leads and contacts, which document on-going dialog. Salesforce.com has a nice feature that attaches emails automatically.
- Track DEAL emails in your sales CRM. These are associated with an opportunity and provide a leading indicator for future business. See related resource that explains this in more detail.
Make your Sales CRM actionable
- Salespeople should maintain an activity list in the sales CRM. Suggest that they schedule time in their calendars to review and work their sales CRM activity list on a daily basis. Most of all, recommend that they do this at the same time each day.
- A short description of the task in the subject line summarizes the task. Therefore, when looking at a list, you don’t have to open up each task to find out what the activity is about.
- Tell your salespeople to set weekly goals in their section of your sales playbook. Then ask them to create corresponding activities in the sales CRM to accomplish these goals.
- There must be a minimum of one activity associated with each opportunity. Otherwise the opportunity doesn’t exist! This is how you can tell if a deal is being worked.
- Your salespeople should schedule a task to follow up in the future to reconnect with clients, prospects, referrals, etc.
- Categorize leads into cold, warm, and hot: prioritize working the warm and hot leads first.
- Convert leads when they are qualified as a contact that you’ll stay in touch with.
- Encourage each salesperson to create several lists for several purposes. For example, group past prospects, specific clients, or referrals into separate lists to work with. This promotes focused prospecting and selling activity.
Connect your Sales CRM to your Sales PlayBook
- Link your sales CRM to your Sales PlayBook.
- Create a link from your cloud-based Sales CRM lead record to your cloud-based Sales PlayBook. For example, describe how to qualify an opportunity. This section of the Sales PlayBook might list specific questions to ask. Another link can provide steps to follow up on a phone call or face-to-face meeting. Think about different procedures you want people to follow when working deals or performing other selling activity. You can also link to phone and email scripts.
Check up on deals and activity
Manage opportunities through your sales CRM
- Set policies for each stage of an opportunity, such as deals that are unqualified, qualified, have a favorable chance of closing, or are on notice to close.
Create views & reports
- Run reports frequently to stay on top of all the important information you need to manage your sales team. Use Views to generate quick lists to drive specific activity. This includes contacting leads, or making phone calls.