December 21, 2013 by
If you’re in a services industry, you know that your sales proposal can make or break your company. Create a stellar one, and you attract new clients. Fail to pay attention to what potential customers want in your proposal, and they’ll go somewhere else.
I previously wrote about 5 tips for creating a killer business proposal. One of my favorite tips from last time, and the reason I think I win my clients trust, is because I listen to what they need. Your proposal shouldn’t be centered around your fantastic products or benefits of working with your firm. It should focus on addressing your customer’s needs. What problems does he have? How can your company solve the problems? Sometimes the customer doesn’t get specific about his needs, and you have to read between the lines.
For example, if you’re a web design firm and your client says he wants more sales, what he really needs, at least from you, is more visitors. That you can achieve with a well-designed site. Get good at reframing the problem to meet your customer’s needs and you’ll reap the benefits in the form of new business.
As 2013 wraps up and you set your new business goals for 2014, here are some more tips for rocking your sales proposal.
December 20, 2013 by
When you adopt a CRM for your team, you go into the purchase with some expectations and promises set out by its manufacturer. It should be making life easier for your sales reps. It should give you an accurate look at all angles of your company’s performance. It should push your numbers to new highs. It should give enough value to be worth the price you’re paying.
These changes were all promised to you, but are they really happening? A CRM isn’t a panacea, it can’t magically transform your sales results. If your team isn’t using the software effectively or if the tool you have doesn’t match your needs, your team may actually be less productive. As a manager, you can’t run that risk. Here are five common issues with CRM that may be causing trouble for your productivity.
December 19, 2013 by
Congratulations, you’ve got a new CRM for your team! Now what?
Bringing a new tool into your business is an exciting purchase that will make your team more productive and allow your business to be more efficient. Before you can start reaping the benefits of a new system, though, you need to say a proper good-bye to the old one. That means getting all of the contact information, deals, documents and notes that your sales team has accumulated into a new home.
We’ve compiled a 5 step list to make that daunting move easier. With just a little planning and a few smart safeguards, your business can be up and running in your new tool in no time.
December 18, 2013 by
Is your sales team notorious for frequently providing a proposal only to lose the deal in the final contract stage? Have you noticed that your team has many incoming leads, but only a fraction of them are qualified? These are both signs of a leaky sales pipeline. Your sales pipeline includes all of your current deals and stage they are in, from incoming to won. Your sales pipeline should be tracked, measured and analyzed for every stage of the deal. So how do you know if sales are leaking through your pipeline?
Your CRM software should show you where you might need to plug a leak.
In Base CRM for example, the sales tracking report generates hard data to show your team’s success in converting leads to actual sales. And, more importantly, it shows you where your pipeline is leaking and so that you can figure why you’re losing those precious leads and turn them from drips to dollars. In the example listed below, six deals were entered in the Incoming stage, of those 6 deals, 4 were moved to the Qualified stage and then all four of those deals were moved to the quote stage.
Implementing a new tool or process in your business is a big decision, regardless of what that tool is. At Base, we’re known for our easy CRM implementations. To that end, we wanted to share with you some tips for making your CRM implementation as seamless as possible.
December 17, 2013 by
While your go-to response shouldn’t be “let’s just change CRM systems,” it’s also important to recognize when your current CRM is no longer cutting it. We recently wrote about 10 warning signs that you need to switch CRM systems, and today we’re taking it a step further.
Now that you know that in fact you should change your CRM software, how can you go about convincing your boss or department to make the switch? Change is difficult, but change with a price tag (in man hours and licensing fees) is even more difficult.
This 5 step plan will help you successfully get your management team behind switching CRM systems:
December 16, 2013 by
Professional sales managers know that in order to get good answers, they must ask the right questions.
CRM software earns major bonus points for keeping track of sales activity that is otherwise impossible to follow. CRMs empower sales managers with the data they need to direct teams, coach salespeople and report to the C-suite. A professionally managed sales team generates scores of data points in the course of an average workday and the CRM should, inobtrusively, capture that. We pulled together 6 questions every sales manager should be able to answer simply by querying the sales database, aka the CRM.
December 13, 2013 by
Build vs. Buy CRM: Just because you can build it, doesn’t mean you should.
Despite 50% growth for SaaS CRM’s like Base, companies often still grapple with the idea of building versus buying their CRM solutions. After all, when a company has very specific needs and a talented staff, it’s entirely possible to build a unique program in-house. Some companies believe a custom built CRM will better suit their business, protect their data, and be more cost effective.
The question is, do the pros of building your own CRM outweigh the cons? In our experience, most of the time that answer is no.
A CRM is too essential to your business to risk failure. If you’re on the fence about whether to buy or build a CRM solution, consider these factors first.
December 12, 2013 by
The latest generation of new recruits, to which I belong, are arriving to work with a tablet in hand and an independent streak you’d do well to nurture (not naysay). We are the tech-attuned generation born during the presidencies of Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bush. We are chided as constantly-connected narcissists and praised as innovative idealists. Either way, we represent the newest of the new hires and we’re here to stay.
Employers across the country are adjusting to the cultural expectations of this new crop of workers and most are finding the change surprisingly refreshing. Of course, in order to benefit from the unconventional thinking and talent of the millennial worker you may have to tinker with some workplace taboos–specifically: technology use. Sorry, but we will shun Lotus Notes and give you a blank stare if you assign us to a desktop computer. But, it’s because we know there’s a better way.
Let’s take a closer look at the tech norms of the millennial worker and hash out how your business can benefit.
December 11, 2013 by
Managing customer data is a hot topic. According to a recent article in the LA Times, consumer data is arguably the single most valuable commodity in the corporate world and needs to be treated and safeguarded as such.
A sales team handles a large volume of data, and to be successful, it needs to be able to take charge of that information. Conscientious control of customer data doesn’t need to be an impossible challenge. With just a little forethought, your sales team and your company can start being smart data owners. Here’s a list of 7 ways you can effectively manage your customer data.