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How Workflows and Fresh Data can Encourage Correct CRM Usage

CRM systems might not get much love, even though they’re an indispensable tool for sales teams to understand their customers’ needs and maximize the effectiveness of their sales pipeline and sales process.

Your business’s sales management might feel anxious investing money in a CRM. On the other hand, salespeople can get frustrated with stale statistics, constant manual data input and a lack of direction on how to capitalize on their CRM data.

The answer to these issues lies in the creation of workflows, which will help salespeople gather more accurate data and improve their sales prospecting tactics.

But how do you go about creating CRM workflows?

Workflows and playbooks

You can’t get great results without common rules. Therefore, your team (and your CRM) needs a sales playbook that describes how they should act in case of certain everyday events.

There are at least two kinds of workflows you should have in place:

1. Automating different steps using cadence triggers

Cadences are essentially the acts you do in different parts of your sales pipeline, though often people associate the term with the early steps of the sales process—between prospecting and having the meeting.

Regardless, building automations, or workflows, that either trigger when a deal hits a certain stage, or when the contact associated with the deal does something, will save time, increase effectiveness, and ensure salespeople won’t drop the ball.

Examples include sending emails to a contact when the deal is moved to a certain stage, and moving a deal to a certain stage when the contact has, for instance, agreed to a sales meeting or has filled out a form.

2. Informing salespeople of data discrepancies

I admit, this use case isn’t the sexiest, but it has vastly improved the data consistency and almost entirely wiped out any data inconsistency issues at Vainu.

Whenever a salesperson isn’t inputting something essential into a deal, the associated contact or organization, or have added something incorrect, they are informed instantly on Slack.

Although salespeople found it irritating at first, they now find it helpful after seeing the results: the need for these warnings is decreasing all the time as everyone gets to grips with “the correct” way of working.

The outcome? Accurate data throughout our unified CRM, marketing automation and customer success software, enabling us to build better integrations and closed-loop reporting.

Supercharging sales prospecting

Prospecting with a messy CRM data is horrible. It can take hours to find a good prospect among the data debris.

Now that salespeople have more time, you can encourage them to find better prospects and monitor their efforts.

1. Arrange organizations in priority order

Ever heard of account scoring? It’s like lead scoring but amped up. Whereas lead scoring focuses on people and often disregards what’s happening at the organization, account scoring focuses on the organization and tries to figure out whether or not the decision makers there would now be willing to buy.

And, with a sales intelligence platform like Vainu, you can track buying signals so that you can nail your pitch and timing.

First, though, try capitalizing on your CRM data.

For example, you could narrow your focus on those organizations that aren’t owned by any sales reps, and then sort through latest or next activity date to find any with a specific month stated in a past activity/note (e.g. “not interested, return in April 2019”). Those with a later date can be put further down in your priority list.

2. Go through automatic email responses

If you’re sending automated emails, there’s a good chance you bump into bounces and automatic responses—a good reason to send mass (automated) emails from a real email address, if you weren’t already.

At Vainu we go through all our automatic replies to emails and oh boy, are they a gold mine!

Especially people who have previously had a relationship with us and have now moved onto another possible prospect company. And, as a nice bonus for our marketing and sales operations teams, our contact database stays in better shape and more up-to-date. It’s a true win-win situation.

On average we see between 1-2% of our contact database “expiring” on a monthly basis, which isn’t bad—in fact quite the contrary! It means we’re getting great leads: people who have left their previous employer and whom we can now approach with a very targeted message.

And, even though going through the emails isn’t automated, our approach to it is very systematic. By typing “label:unread {keyword}” you can find all unread emails with relevant keywords mentioned in it, such as “holiday,” “out of office,” etc.

This way you can exclude all the people who haven’t changed employer and focus on those who say that they’ve moved on in their automatic response.

Learn more about developing CRM workflows

Thanks to the improved data, automations and systematic ways of prospecting, the sales director can count on the salespeople to do the right things and rely on accurate sales dashboards and forecasts.

Salespeople, meanwhile, get to enjoy the fruits of unified data and automated deal actions, including:

  1. Saving time as important actions happen automatically with the correct data
  2. Being able to find prospects who are in need of engagement
  3. Better understanding what data there is and what is possible on the CRM thanks to it

Pipedrive and Vainu are teaming up for a webinar that will change your relationship with your CRM. We’ll explain how to create CRM workflows that’ll have a direct impact on your performance. Plus, we’ll show you a few real cases from companies that have transformed the way they work with their CRM. Join us on Thursday, 4 April at 9 AM (CEST) and learn how to give your CRM a tidy-up that leads to better sales results!

Vainu is a sales intelligence platform that makes salespeople relevant to every step of the process by providing them with actionable company information, when and where they need it. If you’re looking to optimize your sales process, and are in need of dynamic company data, give Vainu a chance and request a demo now.

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