Rob is an expert in Contact Management System (CRM). As a small business owner, I need to upgrade my contact management system right now, and I figured it would be helpful information to fellow small business owners. Rob is the CEO of Sales Clinic, LLC, Urgent Care for your Sales Organization. Sales Clinic is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to helping you to Sell More. Their experienced consultants drive revenue through strategic planning, automation evaluation, growth analysis, and leadership development.
What is a CRM system?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management, but it’s called a number of things. The bottom line is that CRM is a database for companies to manage their prospects, leads, and customers in a central location where the users are collecting specific and predefined data, which is used to analyze the customer base and understand if your marketing is working, if you have product issues, how much support calls are costing you, etc. It’s critical for businesses to have it in place; it’s the center of the universe for businesses and their customers. If you care about how the business is being done, versus what is being done, you’ll have a CRM system in place that provides you with the data necessary to understand your business better.
One of the things you have to consider when you’re selling is the art of selling and the science of selling. Most people understand how to communicate what they’re selling to their prospects. But the science defines the process you’ll use to get from introduction to closing of the sale. If you understand that process and define it on paper, you can apply it to a CRM system and it will mirror how you do business. It then becomes easy to take an interaction with a prospect and integrate that information into the record of that individual in the CRM. And then, at a later date you can look back and see what other opportunities exist with them based on previous conversations. Most companies implement CRM prior to doing the planning and one of the challenges big companies have one of the problems they have is adoption. And when you trace that back you will usually find that the CRM system was implemented before they sat down and decided what the right way to implement was.
It’s no longer an option not to have a CRM system, and before you invest in one, know your business well enough to be able to define the process you go through from introduction to adoption/purchase.
First you have a lead, a name, address, and phone number and you want to turn that person into a prospect. The only way to do that is to qualify them, which means you have to define 3-5 questions that if answered in a particular pattern will turn a lead into a prospect. But, you have to first understand if the person has a need for your product or service.
How do you buy a service such as mine? How well are you achieving your revenue numbers? What’s getting in the way of revenue generation? How much do you want to grow in the next calendar year? If they have the need, do they have the budget? Are you prepared to invest in the services I’m offering? If so, now you have to close.
Lead, prospect, opportunity, present, close. Define each of those items; what are the criteria, what are the answers you expect to get back?
CRM helps you take those answers and register them in the database.
If you’re going to sell someone a widget, find out if they have the infrastructure to support the widget first. Find out if they have a need for what you’re selling.
When Rob started he put every prospect in a 3-ring binder, but he didn’t know where to start. He went to his CEO, asked him for a CRM system and promised him he’d increase my revenue by 30% and he did even more than that. He knew whom he’d call and why when he came in and he was able to record what happened and schedule a follow-up call in the CRM system. Every interaction, he says gives you more input into the sales process and will tell you if you’re making progress. When you register the information you won’t have possibilities fall through the cracks and lose out on potential revenue.
Define what information you want to get out of the system and that will guide what you do and what you ask. What are your goals and objectives are, what you want to define, and what % increase you want to make and how. The CRM will tell you how many chances you have to realize all of those goals and each week it will gauge exactly how the business is doing. Small companies gauge how well they’re doing by positive customer feedback. But you can register every customer inquiries and see how many were answered versus how many weren’t so that you don’t miss opportunities to improve.
You can contact Rob at salesclinic.com, [email protected] or text him at 818.968. 2666. He is available for a 1-hour free phone conversation (or in-person if local in CA) for business owners.