For the first three-plus years of SoMe Connect’s existence, they went through more than 20 CRMs, including Salesforce (which they found too complex), Excel (which was too basic) and Basecamp (which was not sales-focused).
Before using Pipedrive, SoMe Connect had no single point of access from which to manage sales activities, project deliverables, leads, referrals and other key data. Various bits of information were scattered across multiple applications such as Dropbox, Basecamp and Outlook, as well as Word documents and notepads. This lack of cohesion affected efficiency, timeliness and led to miscommunication and missed opportunities.
With SoMe Connect’s data in various places and its sales statistics nearly nonexistent, it was difficult moving things through the pipeline, let alone remembering smaller tasks and opportunities such as staying in touch with old clients, keeping up with deadlines and clearing daily to-do lists.
In the first quarter of 2015, Aalap stumbled upon Pipedrive and figured he’d give it a shot. This time, the CRM stuck. He was quickly struck with Pipedrive’s intuitive functionality and flexible reporting capabilities and said that it thought the way that he – as someone in a sales/business development role – thought.
As head of sales, Aalap was busy with digital marketing initiatives, as well as conferences, meetings and networking events. While he succeeded in turning many of these activities into business opportunities, he wanted a way to quantify those activities and establish a clear pattern between actions and results.
By logging in every activity, maintaining his pipeline stages and analyzing his Statistics in Pipedrive, Aalap was able to unite all his business activities into a single point of access and develop a nuanced understanding of their outcomes.
Quantifying his activities also allows Shah to identify where new business comes from – whether it be through SEO, referrals or networking events.
After one year of using Pipedrive, Aalap learned the following lessons concerning Pipedrive use, and sales as a whole:
Consistent Use. Unless he checks into Pipedrive every day and immediately logs in information, Aalap knows he will not see Pipedrive’s full benefit.
Follow-Ups Are Key. By keeping track of his leads, noting whom he does and does not follow up with and evaluating the outcomes, Aalap has found that follow-ups are key to landing new business and closing deals. But while the timeliness of the follow-up is important, the emphasis should be on content over speed.
Share Pipeline with Team. Aalap is SoMe’s sole Pipedrive user, but he makes sure to share his pipelines with his team so they can plan for the capacity of each project.
Pipedrive allowed Aalap to unite each area of his business under one roof and “be organized in an official way.” He’s now able to visualize his pipeline, prioritize tasks and retain necessary documentation, notes and other vital details.
Since Shah began using Pipedrive:
His close rate increased by 60%.
The length of SoMe’s sales cycle has steadily decreased from an average of 90 days to an average of 45 days.
SoMe’s annual revenue has grown from $600,000 to $1.4 million.
“I have a lot of ambitious plans for Pipedrive this year including starting a “check-in” pipeline to help smooth the transition process between sales and operations,” says Aalap.